Aquaponic Gardening

A Community and Forum For Aquaponic Gardeners

Hello to everyone.   My real life name is Rob Little.  As you might have guessed from the headline I have a small mushroom farm where I grow edible and medicinal species of fungi.  I'll keep this short as I see a hundred other introduction  posts and I'm sure that  mine will likely get lost in the tide like many others, but it's the formal thing to do, so here I am!   I was referred here from FallenOak Mushrooms.   I have been picking his brain for information and this site got his thumbs up.    

  I've grown indoor hydroponics for around 10 years.    In that time I've tried nearly every configuration I could think of.   The lure of aquaponics started to settle in a few years ago when I decided to go organic.   The nutes are super high priced and prone to 'issues'.  When I read about the aquaponics setup I was sold.  

  I hope to incorporate most of my small (33' x 10') green house into the system.   We plan to grow lettuce, tomatoes, beans, medical MJ, herbs and miscellaneous flowers.  So far, so good I guess, but  I'm a little perplexed about locating fingerlings.    It seems I can only find lake stocking services or WAY too many eggs.   It's most likely poorly chosen search terms in my google query.    Perhaps one of you could assist my efforts?    I'm located in Bay City, Oregon if that helps.

All suggestions are welcome, especially the kind that keep me from making costly newbie mistakes.   In the meantime, I'm reading everything I can get in before the sun rises and I have to go back to work outside. Thanks in advance for your valuable tips and advice.

Unrelated picture of baby shiitake mushrooms to try out the upload feature.  I couldn't get my avatar photo to upload.   In fact, none of my photos would upload as my avatar, so I just wanted to know if the photo uploader works for me at all.  

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Trout would be a great fish to farm if your temperatures are suitable.  Heating and/or cooling water is generally avoided, if possible, due to cost.  Tilapia can be legally used in your state, with the necessary transportation permit but it's a warm water fish.  I'm sure you'll find something which works for you.  Is eating the fish a goal?  If no, then possibly koi or goldfish could be used.  Native fish are generally tolerant to local temperatures.  Good luck.  I'm sure you'll succeed.

Hey welcome to the community! I would be very interested in growing mushrooms in my system. Do you have any quick resources to learn more about this??

I found fish by searching for suppliers on google. I found out that a lady who calls herself tilapia mama supplies for a local pet shop. I just bought from the pet shop because I knew the source was good. I double checked that they did in fact get them from her though because she didnt use hormones or nasty food.

Hi Jason and George,

Thank you both for the suggestions.   I'm headed to pick some fish up from a local lady.    She's selling 2-3 inch Koi for $5 apiece.    After perusing craigslist that seems like a fair price.    I'll buy 10 fish tomorrow and start dialing the system in.   Since I am completely new at this I fully expect to fail the first time out, but am looking forward to the learning experience regardless.

@Jason:     My post may have been poorly worded.     I grow mushrooms separate from the system.   In the future it would be interesting to try to integrate the two,  but for now I'm just learning the basics of the aquaponics setup.   Growing mushrooms is my side-job/hobby.   I know that Paul Stamets (mushroom cultivating god) uses  burlap bags of growing mushrooms to remediate polluted streams and drainage systems, perhaps there is a place in aquaponics for a fungal component.

As for mushroom growing resources I would start with anything from Paul Stamets.   The Mushroom Cultivator is an industry standard.  A website I highly recommend is  There you will find very kind, experienced and patient mentors.    If you like a rowdier site with lots of racism and people you have to block, painfully childish behavior, egos the size of Texas and a ton of basement dwelling trolls,  The Shroomery   has good info if you stick to the "Getting Started" section.    On you-tube you can look up user Roger Rabbit.  He does a great video series. "Let grow Mushrooms!"  is the title if I am remembering correctly.   There is more to the video series that is a paid thing but all the basics are represented in the videos available.  

Thank you both for the kind welcome, if you don't mind terribly I will add you to my friends list and rely on you for information when I get stumped   

Remember, you can do water changes, if necessary and that can save your fish.  Koi seem to be fairly resilient but too much nitrite will kill them.  Believe me, I know.

I've read Mycelium Running by Paul Stammets and have considered adding mushrooms to my gardening but have never taken the plunge.  Garden Giant is what I thought about trying - it seemed like the easiest and most likely to thrive here in N. Florida.  Temps range from 20F to 100 or so.  I'll check out the resources you suggested and thanks.  Rob, you can call on me anytime.

To anyone with an interest in mushrooms, be sure to see Paul Stammets' TED Talk.

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