Aquaponic Gardening

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Any success growing trees?

I have a 3 month old, 130 gallon system with goldfish. I planted a grapefruit tree 3 weeks ago that seems to be doing well. I also tossed a few avocado seeds into the grow beds back in April. They have sprouted but seem to be growing really slow...same issue with some loquat and mango seeds I have thrown in. I am in the works of expanding and improving my system. Any tips for optimal tree growth?

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Trees often grow pretty slow.  The loquat seedlings I planted in the ground a few years ago are only shoulder high now.  The citrus grows slower than that.  Avocado are not super fast growers.  I've never grown mango.  How big are the grow beds?  Many of these trees are not going to really reach their potential in a small container.  My old grapefruit tree in the ground behind the old house probably has a span of 30 feet, is your grow bed several feet deep and 30 foot in diameter?  The big loquat is probably 20 feet in diameter.  The Avacado isn't that big but it is only now just producing fruit and it's probably 20 foot tall with a 10 + foot spread.  I'm not sure how big the mango would get.

i dont yet have a system. i know from watching aquaponic videos on youtube that murray hallam has diffrent citrus trees and a papaya tree.so i can conclude that trees will grow in the systems and as TCLynx stated trees do grow slow even in the best of conditinons but i am shure that you allready knew that. i know malcolm that this is not the directy related on how to get trees to grow faster in an aquaponic system. one thing that i do remember one thing about avocados is that they will use stored energy in the seed after the seedling has sprouted. they will use the stored energy for months.

I see... I was expecting the trees to grow faster but it makes sense they will grow slow. My grow beds are small. I have five ten gallon grow beds. I know i need 3x as much to match my tank volume. I am working on expanding, hopefully in the next week I will be adding grow beds. So far fish and plants have been surving. My plans were to keep the trees dwarfed. I have heard of dwarfed citrus doing well and producing fruit. Besides Mr. Murray down under I haven't come across any info on trees in Aquaponics. Have tried it? Know of anyone doing it?


TCLynx said:

Trees often grow pretty slow.  The loquat seedlings I planted in the ground a few years ago are only shoulder high now.  The citrus grows slower than that.  Avocado are not super fast growers.  I've never grown mango.  How big are the grow beds?  Many of these trees are not going to really reach their potential in a small container.  My old grapefruit tree in the ground behind the old house probably has a span of 30 feet, is your grow bed several feet deep and 30 foot in diameter?  The big loquat is probably 20 feet in diameter.  The Avacado isn't that big but it is only now just producing fruit and it's probably 20 foot tall with a 10 + foot spread.  I'm not sure how big the mango would get.

Alright. I guess a good idea would be to plant a seed in the system and one out and see if there is any difference in the speed of growth.



loki said:

i dont yet have a system. i know from watching aquaponic videos on youtube that murray hallam has diffrent citrus trees and a papaya tree.so i can conclude that trees will grow in the systems and as TCLynx stated trees do grow slow even in the best of conditinons but i am shure that you allready knew that. i know malcolm that this is not the directy related on how to get trees to grow faster in an aquaponic system. one thing that i do remember one thing about avocados is that they will use stored energy in the seed after the seedling has sprouted. they will use the stored energy for months.

it would be a good idea to do this and see the rate of growth diffrence! would injoy seeing the out come if you do an experiment. one thing that i want to know is would growing a fruit tree in a aquaponic system be worth growing? or is it just a waste of grow space cause the rate of growth  would be too small to justify a space in the system? 
 
Malcolm Malkovich said:

Alright. I guess a good idea would be to plant a seed in the system and one out and see if there is any difference in the speed of growth.



loki said:

i dont yet have a system. i know from watching aquaponic videos on youtube that murray hallam has diffrent citrus trees and a papaya tree.so i can conclude that trees will grow in the systems and as TCLynx stated trees do grow slow even in the best of conditinons but i am shure that you allready knew that. i know malcolm that this is not the directy related on how to get trees to grow faster in an aquaponic system. one thing that i do remember one thing about avocados is that they will use stored energy in the seed after the seedling has sprouted. they will use the stored energy for months.

There are some dwarf varieties that will produce in a 10 gallon pot.  Some Lemon and kumquat I think, maybe a tangerine might manage.  However, keeping a tree dwarf isn't simply a matter of pruning, most "dwarf" are grafted onto dwarf root stock to allow them to mature without being too big to handle.  keep in mind that what "dwarf" means will vary greatly from tree type to tree type.  Many "dwarf" types just mean it won't get much bigger than 15-20' span.  Some others that can actually produce as almost more of a shrub might manage as potted plants which is about what it will be in a 10-50 gallon grow bed.  I've seen fairly small loquats producing.  I don't know how many years it will take to get a loquat seedling to produce fruit, I know it would take more than 3 years since that is how long the seedlings all around my place have been there and they are not producing yet.  I expect at least 3-5 years is what you are going to wait for most fast growing woody trees or shrubs to start producing more than just promises or teasers and that is a guess based on 1 gallon nursery stock.

All I can add to this is that it takes up to 20 years for an avocado tree, from seed, to begin producing fruit. I spent the $40 at my local nursery to buy one that s about 4' tall and flowering. Then I spent another $40 the next year when I learned it's best to have multiple trees. Mine are in dirt. Hope you have better luck. Keep us posted.

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