Aquaponic Gardening

A Community and Forum For Aquaponic Gardeners

Aquaponics For Beginners


Aquaponics For Beginners

This is a place where Beginners can post questions and find answers.

Advanced Users are welcome to help the Beginners out.

Please KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) .

Members: 666
Latest Activity: Mar 13

Discussion Forum

Low Fruit Production

Started by Danny. Last reply by Jeff S Jul 5, 2015. 14 Replies

My tomato plants (5) are growing but not producing much fruit, one or 2 tomatoes in the past 2 months.  A few others on the plants but take forever to turn red.  Any ideas what I can do to increase…Continue

Not for human consumption!?

Started by Nichelle Hubley. Last reply by Nichelle Hubley Jun 30, 2015. 7 Replies

Well, I think I messed up big time. I've been feeding my precious tilapia koi food (I like in a small place and it was all I could get... :( ) for about 2 months and last night I read on the back of…Continue

Help!! Help !!! with new filtration and set-up.

Started by Henrique Miguel. Last reply by Wayne Mcbryde May 14, 2015. 2 Replies

Hi,I have a set up of 2 55 gal  blue barrel with Tilapia and  guppies separate.   I have young ones and they are growing well. Issue of overcrowding and feeding. 1. I would like to use a water…Continue

New IBC Grow Out Tank System

Started by Phil Slaton. Last reply by Shirley A Davidson May 14, 2015. 8 Replies

The barrels in the back of the 6-IBC grow out tanks are 2-media filters, 1 lava rock filter and on the extreme left, the sump.  Since my heart surgery this grow out system is for sale.The large 1,000…Continue

Comment Wall


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Comment by David Gallentine on January 18, 2016 at 9:51am

Let me know if you need Tilapia fry,

Comment by David Gallentine on November 24, 2015 at 12:09am

Need any tilapia fry?

Comment by Leo White Bear on June 29, 2015 at 8:02pm


  With people that are new to aquaponics, I try to err on the high side when it comes to feeding fish.  As stated I suggested to keep records.  This is the best way to insure that all the fish feed and any food that is left can be removed from the system.  By no means did I state that it should stay in the water, this will definitely through-off the ammonia/nitrite/nitrate levels.


  With the info you just stated, I am forced to state that there may be a source of limestone getting into your system.  With your filters, are you using new filter media or used?  Check the water source, with your pH test kit/strips.  This may be more problematic and further discussion may have to be in order.  I have heard of one source of hydroton called hydro-corn was more prone to high pH because it had lime mixed in with the clay as a binder before it was fired.  Now I'm not saying that your hydroton has lime as a binder but get some distilled water and soak some hydroton overnight and check the ph.  it should be the same as before you added the hydroton.  Let us know what happens, we will try to figure this out together.

Comment by justalilcrazy on June 29, 2015 at 6:17pm
Leo, my main tank is 110 gal i have a 5gal swirl filter behind that and then running into a 25gal sump. I'm setting up for 2 4x4 beds but presently have just one ready to go. Been running the pump 24/7. Water is aerated and clear. You thought is the high nitrate is keeping ph high? I've added ph down and it was around 6.8. With no additions of water or ammonia,the ph will creep back up to 7.6.
Comment by Jeff S on June 29, 2015 at 4:22pm

Leo, I'm definitely no expert but I give my fish (Tilapia) 2 minutes to clean up the food but I do that to control ammonia levels since I have large stocking density for my limited media beds. I could see feeding them more if there was enough of a filter to get them to grow but goldfish in a starter system with 15 minutes of food seems like overkill until you find the ammonia/nitrate balance.

Comment by Leo White Bear on June 29, 2015 at 1:16pm


  I see your thoughts and I agree absolutely.  What does one do to a hot bowl of soup to cool it down?  They blow on it.  With the fan blowing across the surface of the water, just this action will cool it down.  With the added advantage, if you blow hard enough to ripple the water surface you will also add oxygen to the water.  People are under the misconception that it is the air bubbles passing through the water that adds the most oxygen but that's just not true.  It is added when the surface water is moved and it doesn't have to be white wave action.  Although this will add more O2, obviously, but just the action of water movement will cool and add O2.

Comment by Robert Rowe on June 29, 2015 at 8:13am

I live in Arizona. I have a 1500 gallon system of which the largest volume is my 700 Gallon Fish Tank. Currently with an outside air temperature of 112 Deg my water is 78-81 Degrees. I simply keep the sun off my tank and have a variable speed Fan blowing over the water surface. In addition "No Sun, No Algae".

Comment by Leo White Bear on June 29, 2015 at 4:58am

Remember that your system should be able to handle 1-pound of fish per 5-gallons of water.  Although I would go a bit less than that when just beginning with goldfish as they tend to be a bit dirtier than other species.  How large a water volume do you have?  A lot of the nutriments come from your feed and not just from your fish, you need to still keep an eye out on how your fish eat and how fast, keep notes in the beginning as this will help you to determine how much to feed them.  When you feed your fish, measure the amount of feed and see if they clean it up in the next 15-minutes.  If it is gone before that time, give them a bit more the next feeding.  If there is some left after 15-minutes, feed less next feeding.

Comment by justalilcrazy on June 29, 2015 at 2:44am
Leo, thx for commenting. No additives in ammonia. I actually stopped adding ammonia for 4 days and nitrites didn't seem to change. I dosed to 2ppm on friday morning but haven't since. Probably gonna start with goldfish. My first set up and i want it fully functional before i add a more pricey species.
Comment by Leo White Bear on June 28, 2015 at 9:30pm

The nitrite level is not that bad.  If you are experiencing nitrates being 100ppm it is time to add plants.  These will take up the nitrates to a safer level.  When the nitrates are at 40ppm you can add fish.

  Stop adding the ammonia and let the bacteria balance out to 40ppm.  What species of fish do you plan on using? 

  Check your pH, with these levels, it will be throwing off your system.  If you get to a pH of 7.0 you are doing well.  With the hydroton, there should be no reason to have the high pH so I'm leaning to the ammonia and high nitrates.  Does your ammonia have any additives?  Check the back of the package and see if it is actually 100% ammonia. 


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