Aquaponic Gardening

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Raft method for auaponics and also DWC aquaponics/ IBC aquaponics etc...

Hello,


I am eventually wanting to get into aquaponics on a commercial level. I am very new to this all right now, but am a ecological and sustainable horticulture major. So I do understand why i want to do this and have seen a lot about it so far.


I am interested more in the raft method as that seems to be what a lot of commercial growers are doing. First of all I am wondering if this is correct? Second I am wondering if I am more interested in this type of method, then where should I be expending my energies learning wise?

Are DWC and IBC two different things? Two methods or something completely different. I am just starting to learn here so any help would be awesome! Thank you.

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Hi Sean, welcome to the addiction that is Aquaponics.

DWC rafts are best for large scale lettuce production... just starting out, you should stick to media beds.

if you dont have it, read Sylvia’s book, AP Gardening. it will familiarize you with the construction types and vocabulary.

IBC totes are the square plastic boxes with metal frames that you see often used, because they are inexpensive and easy to locate.  ...but, IMO, they require too much effort to support, insulate, then decorate, and still look like industrial waste in the yard... i advise folks to use a 300 gallon Rubbermaid tank from a feed store, and build you grow beds from plywood and 2"x12"s. 

dont worry about starting small, in an effort to prove that it works, or that you can do it... trust me, it works, and you can do it.

...spend your money on a set up that can grow a worthwhile amount of food, and you will be able to reap the rewards of your efforts, with out struggling to keep your system stable.

I couldn't agree with Rob more. 

Copied right from Wikipedia: "An Intermediate bulk container (IBC) is a container used for transport and storage of fluids and bulk materials." Whereas DWC stands for Deep Water Culture, a hydroponic growing method. The two terms have nothing to do with each other, like comparing golf clubs with pregnancy classes...

Ah ok. Thank you very much both for responding. It sounds like anything I learn will be helpful at some point. I am in the process of trying to see if I can work aquaculture into my major right now. I figure it couldn't hurt to know more about any aspect of aquaponics. I am living in an apartment right now without a balcony or anything so unfortunately it might be a smaller setup for me at first. Thanks again for the info!

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