Aquaponic Gardening

A Community and Forum For Aquaponic Gardeners

Aquaponics For Beginners


Aquaponics For Beginners

This is a place where Beginners can post questions and find answers.

Advanced Users are welcome to help the Beginners out.

Please KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) .

Members: 672
Latest Activity: Feb 2, 2019

Discussion Forum

A few fish for sale or good home

Started by Linda Logan. Last reply by Linda Logan Feb 2, 2019. 1 Reply

I need to shut down my indoor system for a few months. I have 2 mature Shubunkin, 1 albino Hypostomus to clean the aquarium. There is another small fish living in the sump.I live in SE Portland and…Continue

Aquaponics system as filter for swimming pool

Started by John Wilson. Last reply by Wade J Rochelle Jan 25, 2019. 3 Replies

Hi all, we've just purchased a property with a large indoor swimming pool. Around 80,000L with a greenhouse roof and plenty of room around it for grow beds. However, this is far too big for us to…Continue

Not for human consumption!?

Started by Nichelle Hubley. Last reply by Nichelle Hubley Jun 30, 2015. 7 Replies

Well, I think I messed up big time. I've been feeding my precious tilapia koi food (I like in a small place and it was all I could get... :( ) for about 2 months and last night I read on the back of…Continue

Help!! Help !!! with new filtration and set-up.

Started by Henrique Miguel. Last reply by Wayne Mcbryde May 14, 2015. 2 Replies

Hi,I have a set up of 2 55 gal  blue barrel with Tilapia and  guppies separate.   I have young ones and they are growing well. Issue of overcrowding and feeding. 1. I would like to use a water…Continue

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Comment by Leo White Bear on December 31, 2017 at 5:43pm


  My advice is NOT to start big.  Being on this forum tells me that you are just beginning your AP adventure.  I'm not saying don't do it, I'm saying that you may need to get a bit of experience under your belt before jumping in so deep. 

  If you just want to raise fish, join a fish husbandry forum, they will advise you on the nuances of raising just fish and its downfalls.

  If you want to get an understanding of AP then my advise would be to start with a dual IBC system.  Here you are looking at approx a dual 250 gallon fish tanks with grow beds stationed above them.  Start out with a media based system as the grow beds act as a filtration system by trapping the organic matter within the media where the worms can break it down to help in feeding your plants.  You don't need to grow veggies in these systems, you can grow ornimentals, fruit bushes, cut flowers ect.

  First, learn the basics, the quarks of start up and how long this system takes to establish the two main bacteria that will break down the ammonia and nitrites into nitrates that your plants will feed on.

  Most of all, research, research and more research.  You will be much happier and comfortable with your system and THEN you can expand.

Comment by Jeff S on December 30, 2017 at 10:02pm

Charles, I've been doing aquaponics for about 4 years. I have 500, 100, and 50 gallon systems. Not a day goes by that I don't think about what I would do differently if I did it again. I'm a believer in go big or go home but Jim is giving you good advise. I will add to that if you are planning on selling fish and veggies you need to find/create a market for what you grow before you get big. As easy as aquaponics sounds it's far from it, at least until you understand everything you're getting in to. 

Comment by Jim Fisk on December 30, 2017 at 10:53am

Charles unless you have a long time history with raising fish and farming in general you are really asking for trouble starting AP at such a grand scale. It takes about a year for experienced folks to get their system stabilized and running smoothly. Parts of that year are simply getting all the chemistry stable regardless of experience. Not to be a Debby Downer here but commercial AP systems go broke all the time and many of those folks are experienced. If you are asking these questions on this page you are way in over your head. Please join a commercial forum thread and learn, learn, learn. We don't need any more commercial failures as it casts a pawl on AP in general. It is always easy to throw $ at a new venture. Money is no way a formula for success. We see it all the time. Keep your powder dry until you are way past these basic questions before you take your shot. All the best and have a Happy New Year.

Comment by Charles Chuks on December 30, 2017 at 9:50am

From the bottom of my heart , thank you very much Jeff & Leo  for your advice and comment and dose wishing to advice later. 

The size of the system am planning to start with, am thinking of a system that can accommodate a fish approximately 30,000 - 40,000 Lbs. per year. Do you know where to get the system and what do you advice. 

Comment by Jeff S on December 29, 2017 at 9:42pm

Start small. Don't get too excited by all the neat things you see. Like Leo said, look around and decide on a system that looks like it will work for you. A Tilapia farm with vegetables is sorta reversed aquaponics. I see aquaponics as more a vegetable farm with fish as a byproduct. Fish take a lot longer to grow and require more attention than vegetables as a rule since what your fish produce feeds your plants. 

What size system do you see yourself starting with?

Comment by Leo White Bear on December 29, 2017 at 5:53pm

The best thing to do right now is research.  Look through the past posts, ask questions and learn.  This is a venture that can be fun and possibly allow you to experiment with different types of aquaponic set-ups, from media base to NTF to wicking beds.  You could go with a manufactured system to an all out scrounged system.  Learn what you can before you jump in with both feet there are qurkes and differences that need to be learned like testing the water for proper pH, ammonia, nitrates and nitrites and how these affect your system.

  Most of all have fun, take this serious because you have lives of your fish to think about.  The fish are the heart of your system, otherwise you just have hydroponics.

Comment by Charles Chuks on December 29, 2017 at 5:04pm

I am planning to start a Tilapia farm in a small scale together with vegetables, is there any suggestion and advice on how to begin.

Comment by Jeff S on August 1, 2017 at 9:59am

I understand your cautious approach. Unlike ammonia, acid doesn't have quite the impact on 500 gallons of water and like I said if pH drops too much just add some of your 8.3 water. Would be interesting to see if the pH raises back up on it's own. The next time you need muratic acid just go to your local big box or hardware store. I never heard of the powdered form.

Comment by Anthony Payne on July 31, 2017 at 10:12pm

I could only get powder form. so I just put in two full teaspoons going to check is here in a bit. It seem powerful I took a gallon of the water put in a 1/4 tsp and it dropped of the chart so I'm feeling it out. 

Comment by Jeff S on July 31, 2017 at 7:30pm

My system is the same size as yours Anthony. Go ahead and put 3-4 ounces of muratic acid in  it. Won't hurt a thing. Even if it drops too far you can always add water lol


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