Aquaponic Gardening

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Hello everyone.

Lately, I've been reading a lot about natural fertilizers that organic gardeners/farmers are using.  In the pursuit until now of finding red worms, I started to try to find alternative ways of boosting the growth of my  AP plants.  Besides the challenge of the weather (mid 40's on a regular basis, Jeddah is an all-year summer capital) vermi-composting is another issue I am dealing with.


Anyway, FPJ stands for Fermented Plant Juice where fast growing vegetables like kangkong, sweet potatoe etc, are fermented using equal part of molasses or muscovado sugar and water. This is kept in a cool dry dark place for 7 days, then strained.  For every liter of water, one tbsp of the decoction is dilluted and sprayed once a week to plants.


I tried to ferment a batch last week and successfuly strained some on Thursday. Sprayed my plants in self watering container pots the same night and repeated it again last night, and sprayed my fruiting bittermelon, basil and okra last night.  I have a week to observe them, but maybe it is true or just my imagination, on Friday morning, the day after spraying my ornamental plants with it... i can feel the energy of the plants, almost like an aura.  They all seemed so happy to have had it the night before.


Anyway, I hope this is something some of you can experiment on.  The FPJ is supposed to stimulate growth and blooms.


Sprays should be done in the night or before sunrise as the experts says that growth hormones of the plants are most active during those times.


Will share some pics once I achieve good result. 


I also tried giving them blended banana (with skin) juice since last week.  HOpe it also helps.






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I know a guy who uses fermented plant juices and worm casting teas to supplement nutrients in his system. He grows the best lettuce on the island which is very humbling to me. Until I saw his system I used to claim to grow the best. He is experimenting with using his brews to ultimately eliminate the fish from the system.

hi there!


do you plan to try it sometime soon?


imagine, that I have super small balcony system and i am growing 4 bitter melon plants in 2 separate systems with only one adult tilapia in each tank, which is not even 20 gallon. 


i feel like i am halucinating here, but i really am not sure if it is the fermented juice... couple of days after my initial spray i think the plants both in my AP and the self watering container pots are greener and stronger.... my bitter melon have plenty of new vines and a lot of young fruits, the new vines are also impressively fat and healthy looking....


will give it a month to see the actual result and will share it here including photos.. i also sprayed it in my small indoor system directly on small pots with swiss chard seedlings on continuous flow.. the fish does not seem to have minded at all.

Fermenting fruit juice has to have two compounds or maybe just one really strong. When the juice ferments is increases or concentrates the fruictose sugars. If enough fementation takes place that starts to go to alcohol. Wonder what component the plants love the most the sugar or the alcohol content. Great concept.
i think the molasses is the agent combined with various bacterias already in the plant.. i don't really know, i am actually a bit slow on the technical side.. after fermentation, whats left is this soury-sweet-spoiled-veggies smell... slightly similar to the trash can in the wet market places... LOL, but only slight, and amazingly the smell vanishes like magic after an hour
Chris have you been able to wrangle a home brew out of him. If so better give it up. hehe.

Chris Smith said:
I know a guy who uses fermented plant juices and worm casting teas to supplement nutrients in his system. He grows the best lettuce on the island which is very humbling to me. Until I saw his system I used to claim to grow the best. He is experimenting with using his brews to ultimately eliminate the fish from the system.

Here is a really good pdf with alot of information about these subjects.

i am currently on my 2nd week of spraying my bittermelon/ampalaya with FFJ (fermented fruit juice), i hope the new fruits will be more healthy and will grow.  the first fruits are growing slowly if not have stopped.  today i also put in some compost tea from my super small compost bin (see blue pail in the background) from kitchen waste covered with potting soil.  i will have to try fermenting plant juice tonight by combining moringa,saluyot,kankong and spinach leaves from the vegetable market (i don't rearlly know if they harvested those in the morning as should be when using plants for fpj)


happy farming weekend everyone. we in saudi arabia are having one week of holidays because of our EID AL FITR holidays after Ramadan!  peace to all!


hello everyone,  almost a month since started using Fermented Fruit Juice (i made a weak solution) and just switched to a better concoction of fermented plant juice using moringa and saluyot with liquid molasses.... the vegetables in the aquaponics system and the ornamental plants in the self watering container pots are healthy and loving it... they get to be sprayed twice a week in the night...


the big challenge is the bittermelon/ampalaya fruits.. they are so smallllllllllllllll!  they look like wild/dwarf variety.. its good that we filipinos love to eat the young leaves or tops of bittermelon/ampalaya in our chicken stew with ginger, young papaya, onion, garlic and fish sauce......  the young leaves of bittermelon/ampalaya is also good with mongo beans and beef/chicken/fish 








Hi Yusuf,

I tried growing bitter melon with fantastic results. This plant goes crazy in AP. In one half barrel it took over everything there, and the roots spread throughout, it sucked all nutrient from the system to the point where other plants in other parts of the system slowed their growth. The bitter melons were huge and were bearing constantly. Beware, they take over AP completely! 

hi... just wanted to test it because when i get back to the philippines, surely bittermelon (ampalaya in our tagalog language) is a popular plant because you can use the fruit and leaves to make tea for those suffering from diabetes, plus I love the fruits saute'd in garlic and onion, mixed with fried baby shrimps or chicken or beef strips, then mixed with egg and made into torta or patties....i could eat one kilo of it in one seating....i love when there is still bitterness! anyway, yeah you are right, and it consumes a lot of water...i would love to have big long fruits, tomorrow i am bringing a colleague some of the young leaves for his mongo stew, i think this could be a single crop in itself for a small backyard AP system... like i mentioned, i am using fermented plant juice (fast growing plants like moringa, kangkong, sweet potato, alugbati etc) mixed with molasses and mineral water, fermented for 7 days, strained and squeezed then dilluted to use as spray or direct to plants.... and it seemed to be working fine


Your bitter melon variety is one that I have grown also. If I remember correctly, it is an Indian variety. There is a large white variety that I am growing now. I thought that since it was white that it would be less bitter but it was just as bitter. I have never heard of fermenting veg in order to make a folar spray. Have you just tried adding it to the system's water?


i see... i harvested a few the other day and gave it to my colleauge to include in his mung beans casserole... anyway, new fruits are showing up and its going to be my turn... a bunch of fresh young leaves/tops will be ready for another one of my colleague next week.. its nice to just share them.. anyway regarding FPJ and FFJ, fermented plant/fruit juice, it is very easy to do, you can use the plants that you have in your system, pick them in the early morning, for one kilo of plants/fruits add one kilo of molasses or brown sugar and one liter of water, put  them in a bucket, cover with drawing paper, put in cold dark place for 7 days, then squeeze and strain.  the liquid is now your fpj or ffj, mix 2 tbsp/liter of water and use as spray or direct to the base of the plant... the fish doesn't mind at all... Pinoy Aquaponics  check out some of my latest pics , this fermented fertilizer is very cheap, natural and so far, no harm to the system

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