Aquaponic Gardening

A Community and Forum For Aquaponic Gardeners

Update on aquaponics at the Valley View Orchard Community learning center. Mini-Pool to Mini-Farm Conversion Demonstration

The purpose of this project is to demonstrate how an off-the-shelf mini-pool can be converted to an effective aquaponic mini-farm for under $1,000 and to teach/demonstrate a spectrum of disciplines including biology, ecology, zoology, microbiology, botany, water chemistry, physics, mathematics, business, sustainability and more to students at Valley View Elementary School and its associated community.

Construction time: 12 hours
100% off the shelf materials
Power usage 150 watts 
Deep Water Floating Raft Technique (core) - Opportunity for other techniques to be demonstrated in time.
1,200 gallons used
60ft2+ grow bed space
60 gallon temporary fish production space.
First test crops at 32 day mark (see photographs)(32 day aquaponic lettuce (foreground, peppers, basil (11 o'clock & marigolds).

Nitrogen cycle established and water quality stabilized (green water nearly gone).

The system is now ready for a full scale late summer vegetable and fish production capacity test. Time to see what it can do.

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Replies to This Discussion

Greetings. The Center's address is 911 W. Baseline Rd. Phoenix Az and it often hosts events that are open to the public. I will post the next one when it comes up. Also standard 50% shade screen. Lowes I think.

How do you care for this?  Do you get in the water?  Or do you just use a long pole to get to what you need to get to......

Greetings @ J. Shocklie. The management is actually quite easy. At 10' in diameter, one only need reach 5' to access all points so it is almost never necessary to get in the water. A short pole can help but you can do without it.  Here is a photo of the prototype system in full glory last month to give you an idea what I mean:

Link to photo:

Also, the individual rafts at between 1ft2 and 2ft2 can be moved around like a big puzzle when needed.

Finally, part of your message did not come through so if you would like to know more, please ask.

Late summer vegetable and fish production capacity test plants:

Egg Plant

Cone Flower

Large leaf basil

Yolo Wonder Pepper

GCA Wonder Pepper


Pequin Pepper


Bibb Lettuce

Additional crops being considered:

Japanese soyu cucumber

Siam Queen Basil

Cherry Tomato

Charentais melon


Lemon Cucumbers

Armenian melons (cucumbers)

NOTE: A number of these are cool weather crops but under the right conditions they seem to work in aquaponics. So, we shall see.

Carlie was wanting to see this set up, is there a tour coming up or a way we could go visit?


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