Contact: 973-767-9578, or elementalroot@gmail.com



​Learn about the exciting Aquaponics project coming to The New Weis Center! Once the system is installed and operating, the Aquaponics building will be open by appointment for groups and school tours to learn about this sustainable farming method.

​"My name is LJ Barthelemy and I am a graduate from Rider University. Throughout my 3 years at Rider (I graduated early) I majored in Entrepreneurial Studies with a concentration in Philosophy. With my degree and entrepreneurial mindset, I returned home to Ringwood, New Jersey to see how I could help my community and put my social and environmental skills to work. 

Teaming up with The New Weis Center, I have begun my first venture, Elemental Roots, a sustainable agriculture company focused on Aquaponics.

Aquaponics is a method of combining aqua-culture (raising of fish) and Hydroponics (soil-less agriculture) to create a unique, self-sustaining ecosystem that cleans water while producing healthier plants in a more efficient way. The system I am creating will grow food up to 3x faster than traditional agriculture, produce 30% higher yields than traditional agriculture, and use 90% less water than traditional agriculture - all powered by renewable energy. I am planning to utilize solar, hydro-electric, geothermal and wind energy to run the system completely off the grid.

At The New Weis Center, I am leading a team of dedicated volunteers to rehabilitate a building they are generously providing for this pilot project. My team includes John Albano, Doug Ruccione, and Hector Rojas. We plan to create a unique system that can be scaled for both commercial and personal use. Our vision also includes teaming up with local schools and education programs to teach our youth about the importance of sustainable living. Sustainable agriculture is the future of food production and if practiced responsibly, can lead generations to come to a healthy, greener future! 

We are looking for potential investors and partners to help us make our vision a reality! If you are interested in getting involved, investing, or volunteering to assist our startup company, please see the contact information below. And stay tuned for our fundraisers and "go fund me" campaign!"

"The garden is a metaphor for life, and gardening is the symbol of the spiritual path."  ~ Larry Dossey

Summer 2018 Update: LJ and his team are preparing the outside plot for raised beds, and continuing work on the building that will house the aquaponics project. Next steps include constructing the system, running tests, building up a bacteria colony and getting ready to introduce fish and plants!

LJ and New Weis Center Lead Educator Jill Burgy recently completed a pilot, in-classroom project at Lakeland High School, teaching the students about aquaponics and helping them construct their own mini-systems.