How Neem Oil Affects Plants Grown in an Aquaponics System

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Elise Hanson Julio Landero Figueroa


By Elise Hanson, Environmental Studies

Advisor: Julio Landero Figueroa

Presentation ID: AM_ATRIUM15

Abstract: Aquaponics is growing as a sustainable farming option when it comes to feeding the increasing population, one reason being that it can be set up indoors, eliminating climate as a factor. However, this does not necessarily eliminate exposure to outdoor pests. The inclusion of other biotic organisms, like crayfish and bacteria, only allow for organic pest management techniques in order to minimize harm. Neem oil is a naturally occurring substance that is sourced from the neem tree, Azadirachta indica, which is native to India. This oil can be manually extracted from several parts of the neem tree by crushing the plant and pressing the oil out, the most concentrated areas are in the seeds and fruits. Neem oil is commonly used as an alternative, natural pest repellent due to its known insecticidal properties and low toxicity. When the oil is ingested by pests it disrupts their feeding and can also prevent larvae from maturing. When it is applied externally it can coat the pest's breathing holes causing them to suffocate. In this study, the objective is to determine the level of absorption of neem oil into the plant roots, stems, and leaves.

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AM Poster Session -- Atrium -- Sustainability & Biodiversity