Aquaponic Gardening

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As newbie I'm setting up a small home aquaponics system.

After lots of reading (in Sylvia's book) I want to try a flood and drain system with an automatic siphon.

I'm just a bit confused about the dimension of my grow bed.

I'm planning a 80 gallon fish tank and a 38 square feet grow bed (400 x 240 x 12 inch).

I would like to know if the grow bed has the right dimensions.

Thank you for your advice.



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The inch dimension you gave comes out 666 square/cubic feet which has to be an error. You should shoot for a ratio of between equal volume to your fish tank to three times the volume of your fish tank.  That would give you a volume of 10 to 30 cubic feet.

You are right, Jonathan, it should be 40 x 24 x 12 inch.
The metric/imperial converson got me tricked...

So a ratio of 80 gallon fishtank and 60 gallon grow bed is not enough?

I should aim for at least 60 gallon fishtank and 60 gallon grow bed?

Later on I can go for 60 gal fischtank and 180 gal grow bed?


The volumetric ratio is sort of a dumbed down concept of what is going on in the system. It really depends how many fish you put in the tank. If you max out at 4-6 eight inch fish you will be fine. The real ratio that isn't in the book is [grams of fish food/m2/day]. For a media system you only need 10-15 grams per square meter per day to grow your plants. Fish tend to die in young systems so start with 8-12 fingerlings. If you end up with 12 survivors you should still be fine, just keep the feedings at the same 10-15 grams/m2/day.

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