Aquaponic Gardening

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Hello Everyone,

I'm from India and very glad to be on this active forum. I plan to start an Aquaponic Farm in Uttrakhand, India. The conditions we have are arid/semi-arid. Would appreciate some suggestions. Also can anyone advise on training available in India.

Thanks

Pawan

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The first thing I would do if I was you setup a small 20 or 30 liter system in your kitchen, with all the bells and whistles.
whether the ;place is arid or semiarid doesn’t matter, need to see how the temperatures vary from season to season and what fish you are going to use.
so start experimenting. and then scale up.
are you going to setup a greenhouse, or you plan to this in open air, that’s the bigger question, and how you plan on dealing with pests and etc.
the only training you need is the small scale test system, setup tomorrow not the next day. everything else will find its own place.

As to simply running a system, perhaps a small kitchen system is all you need to learn about the nitrogen cycle and get some experience with some fish and plants but that is actually a really far cry from the training you much need to run a large commercial operation.  Actually, most of the really important training for running a commercial operation has NOTHING to do with Aquaponics really.  It's far more to do with business and making sure you have a market for your product.

 

Now Aquaponics is great for arid climates as long as you have a good source of start up water and can get some top up water.  Aquaponics is far more water wise than soil farming with overhead irrigation or flood irrigation and you can grow water hungry plants even with this water wise method of farming.

 

You will need know your climate well enough to know if you need a greenhouse or not.  Having a greenhouse doesn't stop pest problems, it just changes them.  Out in the open you are more likely to get help from beneficial insects while in a greenhouse, YOU have to deal with the pests yourself and some pests seem far more likely to get out of hand in a greenhouse than others (spidermites, whiteflys, aphids) and heat/humidity needs to be controlled in a greenhouse and all these things are rather beside the point of Aquaponics but rather important to running a commercial aquaponics farm.

 

There are several training options out there for Aqupaonics but few of them deal much with the "non-aquaponic" business aspects that are far more important to managing a commercial operation than just the aquaponics.

 

Do you know what type of system you want to run?

What is your market?

What type of plants will sell well in that market?

Will they sell at a high enough profit to pay the bills?

Hi TCLynx thank you for this information.

below are the answer of your question.

1) I want to setup a raft system.

2) I would like ti sell green vegitables like basil, lettuce etc.

 

Please let me knoe if any video or online material available for such system.

 

As of now in India we don't have this technique, I want to setup the first aquaponics system here.

TCLynx said:

As to simply running a system, perhaps a small kitchen system is all you need to learn about the nitrogen cycle and get some experience with some fish and plants but that is actually a really far cry from the training you much need to run a large commercial operation.  Actually, most of the really important training for running a commercial operation has NOTHING to do with Aquaponics really.  It's far more to do with business and making sure you have a market for your product.

 

Now Aquaponics is great for arid climates as long as you have a good source of start up water and can get some top up water.  Aquaponics is far more water wise than soil farming with overhead irrigation or flood irrigation and you can grow water hungry plants even with this water wise method of farming.

 

You will need know your climate well enough to know if you need a greenhouse or not.  Having a greenhouse doesn't stop pest problems, it just changes them.  Out in the open you are more likely to get help from beneficial insects while in a greenhouse, YOU have to deal with the pests yourself and some pests seem far more likely to get out of hand in a greenhouse than others (spidermites, whiteflys, aphids) and heat/humidity needs to be controlled in a greenhouse and all these things are rather beside the point of Aquaponics but rather important to running a commercial aquaponics farm.

 

There are several training options out there for Aqupaonics but few of them deal much with the "non-aquaponic" business aspects that are far more important to managing a commercial operation than just the aquaponics.

 

Do you know what type of system you want to run?

What is your market?

What type of plants will sell well in that market?

Will they sell at a high enough profit to pay the bills?

It isn't a video teaching you how to build such a system but it is a video of a place with a commercial system as well as a micro system. There are manuals for sale to teach you how to build such systems if you are interested.

But you laboratory and lesson plan and disaster planning starts at your kitchen counter.

Your kitchen counter is a place where your simple survival depends on. At least if you are a semi health conscious and a penny pincher.

It is a place where you will visit at least twice a day if not three times day, first thing you set your sights on and the last thing you sleep to.

The reason for insistence on the kitchen counter is:

It is much easier to watch your system. It is much easier to tweak, whether you going to use raft system or the bell tower of London.

If I was you I would setup a variety of small scale system with a variety of fish that you can find at the local market and start playing with it. See what works for you.

Keep tweaking it.

As for your basil, is that really a vegetable that is commonly used in India. If you are going for high finance, find a niche product that has high income potential. Which means scouring shops and supermarkets and WetMarkets and Backlley markets. See what people value, see what is hard to grow for other people. See what people trying to get their hands on all year long, and yet it only shows up a few days or months of the year.

This is quintessential definition of a business intelligence gathering. It means lots of walking talking exploring. You have to hit the wholesale and retail markets and see what is crossing from where to where. Where do hotels and institutions and schools and army  buy their stuff, someone is supplying them, it might as well be you.

 

But none of that intelligence gathering means anything if you can’t tweak the system into production. You start from your kitchen counter if you have one, otherwise from your bedroom floor and scale up. I hope it doesn’t offend you what I say, since Where I m at present in china, kitchen counters are more western phenomena and it is slowly being built into new kitchens and people clean everything on the floor and sidewalks.

 

There are two things I will tell you to see if you get your hands one, the first one is easy, worms, you can dig it up and start trying to use it in your system.

Second might not be so easy, Zeolites, this should moderate your system nicely and create a good substrate for your plants at the same, it will capture the waste material from the fish and provide a substrate for the bacteria and at the same time release the nutrients to the plants on demand. You might have to look around, normally it is used as cat litter mostly in USA , in India, I don’t know what they would use it for? But keep looking, I think it is a worthwhile investment in material for a well functioning system.

If you want I have accumulated a half dozen research papers on the subject, send me an email I will forward it to you.

Zeoponics@live.com

 

Hello,

 

I need to ask you some questions? This will determine whats possible or not.

 

1. Are you located near Delhi or far to the north next to China?

2. How much land do you have at your disposal? In Acreage.

3. What is the Temperature difference during the year, and are you located in a area that gets seasonal monsoon's or not?

4. Are you subject to alot of flooding or not?

5. who will be your clientele Business's or Family shoppers, or both?

6. Who much can you yourself take care of, or are you going to need family or friends to run this operation?

7. The big question how much resources do you have to start building with?

8. where are you getting your water from? Is it contaminated or not? can you dig a deep well to supply the water or do you have to get it from streams or rivers? Big questions that need answers?

9. Do you plan on selling the fish as well? What breed? Pick one that is expensive to buy in your location?

10. What do you plan on feeding the fish with? Pelted Crawlers or earth worms are great if the fish are meat eaters, if not you may have o buy the feed? Raising the worms also creates earth castings for other types of gardens.

 

Starting a business in India is not the same as one here in the USA. Your government right now is pro business and you may be eligible for a micro loan to set up this operation..Ours is not, they regulate us to the point of starvation.  I will get back to you when you give me the answeares to these questions.

Take a look at my operation from my pictures. it is a small YOU-Pick CO-OP run by the members. Right now the pictures show the construction phase, we just planted a few things in the greenhouse this year, next year everything goes into operation. We only use NON-GMO seeds they are better tasting.

Doug 

Hi Pawan,

 

That is great that you are thinking of setting up an aquaponics system in India... in fact though, there are already a number of community or small commerical systems running in India and so if you are able to find these then they may be able to offer you advice on how best to go about setting this up.

 

They are also likely to already have the necessary information about temperature variances and so forth.  I will try to find the details for you.  Here is a screen-grab of some photos of the Indian project that I was sent recently:

 



Good luck with the project.

 

Aragon

 

Thank you Aragon for the information, can you send me some link or web adress where I can find out the aquaponics farm details which are located in india.

 

Pawan

Japan Aquaponics - アクアポニックス 日本 said:

Hi Pawan,

 

That is great that you are thinking of setting up an aquaponics system in India... in fact though, there are already a number of community or small commerical systems running in India and so if you are able to find these then they may be able to offer you advice on how best to go about setting this up.

 

They are also likely to already have the necessary information about temperature variances and so forth.  I will try to find the details for you.  Here is a screen-grab of some photos of the Indian project that I was sent recently:

 



Good luck with the project.

 

Aragon

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