Aquaponic Gardening

A Community and Forum For Aquaponic Gardeners

   Hello all, I am new to the forum as well as aquaponics so here's a brief history. I am a 46 year old somewhat compulsive male living close to Toronto. I had to dig up the corner of my yard/garden this summer to fix a retaining wall issue I had and as the hole got bigger I decided it would make a nice little pond. My wife and I had discussed this idea over the years anyways so I guess now was the time. After removing numerous loads of dirt I had myself a small 1000 gallon pond with a max depth of 46". . I got the pond about 95% completed before the weather changed, with just a bit of tinkering left  to do with my DIY filtration system. I planned on having a few Koi in the pond but decided not to stock it until next spring. One day while I was digging I had the bright idea that maybe I could use this pond to make some sort of hydroponic garden and that night the internet introduced me to aquaponics. So now I have just completed my indoor aquaponics setup. I used a 100 gallon stock tank for a resivoir with a 50 gallon stock tank for a grow bed. I filled the grow bed with Haydite and used the pump and filter from my outdoor pond, both are a bit of overkill for this system but I hope they will work. The pump is rated at 1600GPH so i diverted half through my Laguna 2100 filter and half to the grow bed. Currently I am running the pump 20mins on 50 mins off. My timer only had 20 settings so thats why I used those times. I am also running a 30L/Min air pump with a 8" circular air stone 24/7.

I added 6 small 3" koi to the tank along with a pail ful of  filter water from the guy who sold me the fish last week. Today I planted 4 varieties of lettuce as I figured they would be a good crop to learn with.

Here are my water readings as of today.

PH 8.2    AMMONIA  0.5    NITRITE 0      NITRATE 80     TEMP 61.7F

I also started a composter (in the corner of the picture) and have 2 pounds of Red Wigglers and 2 pounds of European Night Crawlers coming any day now. Did I mention I was compulsive. Sorry for the long post and thx to anyone who made it to the end.

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