Aquaponic Gardening

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Hey all,

i wanted to know if someone can recommend a good testkit.

Has anyone a DO-meter or a TDS meter?

Would be interested to hear what measurements, what test kits (brand name) you use?




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Try Sylvias store here on this site. She sells a freshwater test kit that we all prefer. Price is right as well.

test kit

I've never sprung for a DO meter but you can look on Aquatic Eco Systems for some ideas.


A TDS meter is not really of much use in Aquaponics since it actually measures conductivity of salts dissolved in water and won't really give you an accurate idea of nutrient levels in Aquaponics.  About the only thing I've used a TDS meter in AP for is a not quite perfect method of kinda estimating the salt level in a system when needing to salt due to fish disease and for that I had to do dilution tests since the meter would only read up to about 1.8 ppt of salt.

I like using portable meters that can also be used for inline measurements.  It's a great way to learn how your system works. There are some parameters that can't be measured using probes, so I use test kits. I purchased a meter from Forston Labs called the LabNavigator. It has the capability of measuring 4 parameters at the same time. Below is a screen shot of a fishless cycling study I've been working on.




I forgot to mention that the LabNavigator can measure dissolved oxygen as well. Once I add fish for my study, I'll start measuring dissolved oxygen. Here's a picture of my study setup...

Nice, if you can afford the price tag.
yea...pretty expensive. I think commercial growers should consider purchasing either this meter or something similar. It's an  insurance policy. It can help to detect changes in the system before something catastrophic happens.

Yea, and for a major commercial operation they would probably want something that could monitor real time and send out alerts if certain parameters are exceeded so that the on call manager could be paged and quick come in to deal with any problem overnight or whatever.


I'd love to be able to track things that way but I have to pick and choose my investments for the time being.


The freshwater master test kit and a thermometer should take care of most home scale aquaponics operations and even some small commercial ventures going with low density fish stocking.

I agree test kits are sufficient for hobbyists and commercial systems with low stocking densities. I like gadgets and with my background in wastewater treatment process control, I want to know what's going on and how the system responds to various changes.


What kind of fish should I use for my little tupperware tank study?

Well it is handy to have some gadget minded people out there who can run some careful experiments and run the test so you can post your results to help everyone else too!!!!  We thank you for it.


What kind of fish in your tupperware tank?

very small ones

If you have some other AP going on and could provide yourself with tiny tilapia fry or something that might work but more likely you need to get some type of fish that will stay small longer so you might be looking to the aquarium shop for some ideas.

I don't know anything about guppies, but I thought it would be cute to call them my little tuppie guppies

LOL, perfect

I'm sure with a quick search on the internet and a trip to the aquarium shop you can pick up enough info about Guppies to get you through.


Benhehle: I'm colourblind thus do not have any much use for colour coded test kits.  I have invested in a Hanna aquaculture photometer before.  With a full set of reagents for DO, Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, pH it set me back around $1440 which was not cheap.  It is great for when you only want to spot check every now and then, but the reagents get pricey if you do a lot of monitoring.  Because of this, I wanted to simplify without going to bench-top monitoring equipment.  I picked the Martini (Supplied here in South Africa by Milwaukee instruments) EC58 and EC59 hand-held probes for just under $500 total for the probes, cleaning and callibration fluids.  With these, I can cover temperature, pH, EC, ORP and TDS.  I'll be getting them next week thus cannot report back on how good they are.

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