Aquaponic Gardening

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"Gravel Pit Self Reclaiming Aquaponics System"I knew When I ordered the book that there must be more to Aquaponic Gardening than using waste water from my fish tank,

and am enjoying getting started reading it! Especially since what I've learned about so far has confirmed what I decided would happen by my pumping water to flood irrigate from the free flowing liner-less pond in my gravel pit onto the gravel surface. I was sure this was a success of some kind despite of a huge increase of string algae (I must have 10,000 Japanese Trap Door Snails in there now from this) as the orchard grass which could barely grow there before filled in nice and thick with it getting 5 feet tall in places, and I was right the cottonwood trees growing in a stand next to the pond has taken off quite well now from having fish in there.

Now that I know my fish will do well and that the filtration system works,,,so to speak, can't wait find out/or figure out from the book and this forum what more to do, I will begin adding more fish (I spent around $10 on them to begin with, common goldfish and rosy red minnows as a test) I want to add Koi and edible fish of some kind, not sure how many goldfish I have now, but there appears to be plenty of minnows and snails to support many fish without extra feed, though the hoards of water boatman bugs have been scared off or eaten and only a few remain. I also have Water Sedge plants (quick former of peat) and bulrush plants (a wetland edible) ordered for spring planting along with quite a few of my spring planting trees that are on order being ones that will do well in the swampy condition/while making a nice wind break, so I should have a good start on my filtering of the water!

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First garter snake of the year sighted! 

Last night it got down to 12 deg F, but up to nearly 72 today. Tomorrow night a winter storm might be coming with 6 inches to I think 10 inches of snow possible, it sure warmed up early this year, but is still plenty of chances for that to revert! 

The pond water temp was 58 deg F despite how cold the air got last night, soon will be optimal temp for planting more fish that will get big enough to eat lots of minnows, there is way too many of those!!

I know I said before that what I thought would happen with what I began doing before can even remember knowing what Aquaponics was turned out to be true, but I really had no idea how effective it was going to be or that there was a lot more it could do for me and my bedraggled place than what I could even dream possible in such a short time! 

Yet, in the mean time I ordered a few more items for my remaining property that is not accessible to my Aquaponics pumping, some Desert Peach Bushes, non-edible fruit but should make an excellent ornamental shrub and wildlife forage! 

I ordered some more berry bushes too, those will probably go in the flower bed in front of the house since flowers are so hard to grow there, and then let the birds drop seed in the Aquaponics "grow bed" area when the trees I'm going to plant get big enough for the birds to roost in! 

The only big concern I have come up with I haven't come up with an answer to is the fact that there is lots of rock with either lime or calcium, so hopefully they will keep the PH balanced, after all it once was a river bed!

I have fish ordered, tadpoles too! This last snow storm raised the pond level quite a bit! I still need to find some edible fish that will do well in my pond, hopefully something that will get the minnow population under control! 

Perch perhaps?

Bluegill maybe?

Bass?

Catfish?

Check with some fish farms in your state and see what they have available.

I'm currently in the process of applying for a permit with the Fish Wildlife And Parks Service to get a permit for trout, not sure if I want to try for Cutthroat or Rainbow.

My Beagle Pugsley has decided he absolutely loves to watch my fish getting fed, and he even goes slow so he doesn't scare them!

My fish and tadpoles arrived several days ago, and seem to be doing well in the pond.

I've been seeing lots of birds after the fish, Great Blue Heron, Green Heron, Brown Pelicans, and various other water fowl. I've also been seeing lots of frogs this year. It's been really dry so far this year, but the pond level has stayed up good, though it slowly was going down, and over the last few days we got nearly a half inch of rain, so I might be Ok,,,,just as long as the pond gets refilled every time that over a period it drops like that. I've been noticing lots more of the Rosy Red Minnows getting near the full size for them lately. Hopefully I will hear back soon on my permit, so I can get some Rainbow Trout ordered. I've been busy getting my planting done, I've planted I think around 150 or more trees and bushes this year, and am not done yet, I have several flats of garden plants ready to be planted, just waiting for the Memorial Day week end, seems to be a good time to risk planting a garden around here,,,the reason I say risk is that we get frosts so late around here, some times eleven months of the year, but if you don't try you will never have one!

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