Garden & Aquaponics

Mihingo has its own vegetable and herb garden which is 100% organic. All the salads guests eat are assured to be as fresh as can be.

We have set up an aqua-ponic system with a solar pump circulating the water from the gravel beds and growing beds to the fish tanks. Tilapias are bred in the tanks, and one day we hope to supply the lodge with our very own fish. We introduced this system to reduce the water consumption of our garden which is the most precious commodity. This system is a closed system without any water getting lost into the ground and also with reduced evaporation.

The fish are fed on maggots produced from organic waste from the lodge kitchen. The fish release nutrients into the water. The nutrient rich water then runs through gravel beds where some of the bigger particles are caught. Plants are grown in the gravel beds and absorb some of the nutrients and bacteria also play their role in cleaning the water.

The gravel beds are made out of recycled 1,000 litre Coca Cola concentrate containers. The water level in the gravel beds changes constantly through a syphoning system. When the water level reaches a certain height the water is released into the growing beds.

We re-use the frozen food polystyrene boxes as often as possible, however when they get to the end of their life we use them in the growing beds. Small holes are made into the sheets of polystyrene which float on top of the water in which plants can be inserted. They grow roots into the water beneath the polystyrene which absorb the nutrients and release oxygen into the water. From the growing beds the water flows into a holding tank where the oxygenated and cleaned water is pumped continuously back to the fish tanks where the cycle starts again. The pump is solar powered and pumps day and night.

In charge of the garden and aqua-ponics is Mugisha who has quite the green thumb. He keeps the vegetables and fish growing, the monkeys out and the caterpillars from munching it all.