Aquaponic Gardening

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I am finishing up a room for my first system. The system uses IBC totes, has three grow beds and a 275 tank. The room it is going in is on the south side of the house and is an enclosed patio. I just finished installing a small gas furnace so I can heat the room higher than the remaining part of the house as I am planning on starting with tilapia.

I am insulating this with the highest R value I can find locally as currently it is not insulated nor are the walls finished. So can I just use drywall or would green board or cement board be better when I finish out the walls?

Has anyone with an inside system had challenges with excess humidity or mold? Also the room is on the south side of the house and I have 3 3' by 4' windows on the south side that will help a little with lighting but certainly wont be enough. How many light fixtures will I need over each bed? I will be using t5's if I can get them locally, if not t8's.

Are their any other areas I need to be aware of such as power requirements?

There is a hose bib in the middle of the room and I also can tap into water easily if needed. Thank-you for the help. It looks like we are on target to get to Colo to pick up the goodies from Syvia in Feb so I have to start getting the room finished.

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ok-no suggestions here so far. I will add some images of the room. We are just beginning this build out and so far have only installed the furnace for the room.

Wow, a whole room dedicated to AP...nice! A dehumidifier might help if you find that you need one...

"how many light fixtures" will probably depend on what you hope to accomplish and the light requirements of the plants that you plan on growing. T-8's are nice and cheap, good for short leafy greens, but have there own drawbacks...T-5's particularly the HighOutput variety are much stronger but are a lot more expensive. Right now I'm real sweet on PL-L's which are about the same cost as the T-8 set-ups, but with the output and performance of the way more expensive T-5HO's...

http://aquaponicscommunity.com/group/artificiallighting/forum/topic...

towards the end of the thread another member Jon Parr does a nice job of breaking the pricing down... lumens per Watt/cost and all that good stuff :) it might be of some interest to you. Also, there is an Artificial Lighting Group here on this forum as well. Which is where the above link is posted.

Cool. Thanks for the links and information. just what I needed. Lighting seems to be a black hole of research. So it looks like you have to wire them yourselves? No biggie as long as there is a written tut.

Anyway thanks for steering me in the right direction. My budget for lighting is 800-1000 so it is not very much. Also if it costs more than a additional 100$ a month in utilities it will not make much sense.

No problem. You don't necessarily have to wire them up yourself if you don't like DIY electrical stuff there are are pre-made/wired fixtures you can purchase (STARLITE makes a few different PL-L fixtures 2 tube 4 tube etc...). It's generally just less expensive (and more fun) to put them (and most other things) together yourself ;)

800 - 1000 US Dollars!?!... 100 bucks a month? Holy moses, with that budget, you might think about using three 600 Watt HPS set ups (one for each grow bed, and get something like the Phillips Son-T-Agro bulbs which are tweaked so they are good for the entire life cycle of the plants, from veg. to flower/fruit). This would also aid you in (or your furnace) in adding a bit of heat to the room, comes in handy at night, or when it's cold. There is a simple way to calculate your cost to run...or you could just use this link...http://www.citytrf.net/costs_calculator.htm

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