Aquaponic Gardening

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Paint Advice for Raft & Grow Box Wood Frame: Color? Paint Type?

We built our pine wood rames for rafts and growbeds. Now I'm preparing to paint the wood. When choosing a paint color, is it just personal preference or are certain colors advantageous? I live in a cool climate (Seattle), so reflective white is perhaps not paramount. What colors does everyone suggest? White? Red? Green? Cedar stain? Should I use exterior enamal or deck stain?


I'll be using pond liner so the wood will not be in contact with any water. Thanks so much for any and all advice!

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Hi Dana. I think it's personal preference. I like natural wood, personally, so I did nothing to my redwood boxes. Latex (water-based acrylic) seems to be prefered by those in the threads here. Since there is no contact or threat of drips landing in the water, then suit yourself. I painted the tops of my rafts dirt brown. Most suggest white to reflect light, but I'm in sunny country, and white is way too bright to even work around. Plus, I have read that too much light on the bottom side of leaves is detrimental. White flies and other pests are attracted to light colors, especially pale yellow, though I don't know if painting the boxes pale yellow would distract pests from the plants, or attract more pests to the general area. Anyway, good luck, and those boxes sure look nice.

i'd use liner.. even with marine grade wood, you'll probably get more "flex" than most paint could hold up.. you could use "pond paint" but end up paying more than for a good edpm liner

Thanks, Keith. Yes, indeed - edpm liner is a must and I should have said I'm using it. I was just mulling over the color paint for the wood tank, raft and grow boxes. I did end up using Behrs Solid Color Deck Stain - a nice redwood color, which looks good with the black liner.


Here's a progression up to where we are this week:
1) Staining the boxes
2) Getting that liner all the way into every corner of the deep fish tank
3) The under-liner pink rigid insulation in the grow and raft boxes and all laid out in the greenhouse. No plumbing yet, of course, and the rafts will be on footings to get them to just under the overhanging grow boxes.


Hello Dana, Im also in Seattle and just started doing aquaponics. Hows your greenhouse aquaponics now and what fish are you using?



Hi Ramil - great to know another person in Seattle getting into aquaponics! We will be using koi rather than fish to harvest as we enjoy them more as pets. We wound down our aquaponics for the winter because it was just too cold and rainy to work on it, but we're gearing up for spring. The lovely Seattle weather last weekend was inspiring! Where are you in your progress?


Just tasted my first aquaponics strawberry yesterday! I also have a greenhouse and heated my FT to raise tilapia. I also added my kois, although I think they are unhappy, to small a place to swim. I'll move them back to the pond in the summer. Cukes and tomatoes are flowering and growing everywhere, have been eating the lettuce and chard and cant wait for our first tilapia

Excellent! So glad you went for it (unlike us - ha). My husband and I would love to see your set up, especially since you have koi. We live in West Seattle, so if you want some a/p company sometime, email me at

What a small world, I live in west seattle as well. I would love to show my set up. I've sent you an email.

I know that Friendly Aquaponics, and Green Acres too I think, paints the exposed wood of their grow beds, and also the tops of their rafts.  Does anyone know how Friendly gets organic certification with this practice?  My certifier will not allow any paint near any growing media (ie. water in this case).

Hi Everyone, Does anyone know a brand of exterior 100% acrylic paint that does not contain mildewcide/fungicide? Also has Anyone used milk paint for helping to protect the wood on wooden GB's? I am fixin' to make some milk paint and am wondering how it will hold up on some new GB's inside my greenhouse.

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