Aquaponic Gardening

A Community and Forum For Aquaponic Gardeners

July 2011 Blog Posts (16)

Abundantly green

Oh my, the lettuce is already starting to bolt in less than a month. Eating as fast as we can.  The fish are happy and growing.  Looking for varieties of veggies and fruit that grow well in the raft system here in west central Florida.  Having to dispose of some of the squash, melons and cucumber plants since they aren't doing well and attracting white fly.  The really good thing is that this is definitely easier than when we attempted gardening in the traditional way.  Another bonus is the…

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Added by Brian Thiesing on July 30, 2011 at 9:23am — 4 Comments

Are we too focussed on monitoring?

I have been spending a bit of time pondering monitoring in aquaponics again.  I think it has a lot to do with my aquatic ecology background – seasonal shifts in nutrient supply, nutrient sources and sinks, seasonal growth and die-backs.  Before embarking on the aquaponic journey I was well on my way to do a PhD on ecosystem energetics but the funding never panned out and I abandoned that idea. 

 

In aquaponics, things work a bit differently but it is not always all that easy to…

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Added by Kobus Jooste on July 27, 2011 at 2:56am — 10 Comments

shopping at walmart is a bad idea

At least as far as buying red wrigglers go. Walmart is on my bad side right now because they had previously mislabeled some squash plants I bought as cucumbers. I didn't figure that one out until the fruit was coming in, the bastards.

I bought worms today for my growbeds, and didn't think anything of the weird rubberized stuff they were packed in. Well, hours later, I checked in on how they were doing in their new home. Long story short: the ants are having a feast.

Added by Debra Colvin on July 24, 2011 at 12:22am — 2 Comments

Commercial Aquaponics - A Pimp's Approach

I was recently thinking about how operating a commercial aquaponic farm had similarities to my former business.  Having run a huge construction firm when housing and commercial construction was booming far greater than it ever should have, we used to joke that we were pimps.  People were always incredulous that two women operated a company that did trades as diverse as drywall and stucco to insulation, painting and metal framing.  One look at me and they couldn’t imagine me on drywall stilts…

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Added by Gina Cavaliero on July 24, 2011 at 12:00am — 41 Comments

Things I learned

Well this year for me my was all about learning and trying new things. First off Im very happy with the results of my hard work. My tank and grow bed setup has worked well but I can see why having min of 12" grow bed is better than 8". A  lot of my plants got to top heavy with fruit and fell over using stakes has helped but you need the deeper bed to hold the stake. But I got mine to work using my porch railing to hold the plants. I got my system up and running faster by…

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Added by Nick Rizzo on July 23, 2011 at 7:30am — No Comments

The system has been running smoothly for the last month. There have been no issues or setbacks to deal with lately. The tomato has begun to cover the screen above it. I am starting to weave it throug…

The system has been running smoothly for the last month. There have been no issues or setbacks to deal with lately. The tomato has begun to cover the screen above it. I am starting to weave it through itself. The stems seem to take the curviest paths to their current locations. Aside from all the twists, the tomato is growing vigorously. I have to tamp down the vertical growth every couple of days. If not the tomato grows into the light, which may eventually burn the…
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Added by Sean Short on July 22, 2011 at 9:32pm — 1 Comment

A quick jig for making towers

There are a great many variations on the theme of hanging towers utilizing 4 inch (110 mm) pipe out there.  Following on a discussion that has been ongoing on the forum, I will add the following:

 

I am not sure who first made these.  I have seen versions with planting depressions at stepped intervals, made with projecting pvc couplings in stead of depressions, made with three planting depressions per row ………………………. If this is someone here’s design, I say thank you for sharing…

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Added by Kobus Jooste on July 20, 2011 at 11:55am — 5 Comments

What a difference the right people can make

There has been many discussions, both here on the forum and in my circle of friends and family about the difference that the right people can make.  The members of this forum are all quite keen on aquaponics and there are many that believe that it is going to become a massive industry.  Pity then that none of these optimists seem to populate the corridors of government, research, university and funding agencies. Or very few then.  I have had my share of frustrations and, so it seems, has…

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Added by Kobus Jooste on July 20, 2011 at 1:12am — 2 Comments

The aquaponic system that can be running in a day

There have been many reports of system cycling issues – most of which revolves around peoples’ problems with understanding the whole Nitrogen cycle.  At a risk of causing frustration with people that thought that there were no exceptions to the rule, I would like to report back on a research system that I have started in 2010 and which basically runs on the concept of trying to avoid the cycle all together.

 

Originally developed to find a way to diversify aquaculture in South…

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Added by Kobus Jooste on July 18, 2011 at 3:23am — 4 Comments

Up and running

The fish are in, the plants are in and all is well.  Very soon we will be harvesting lettuce and enjoying the fruits of our labor.  We've managed to outsmart the lizards that were eating the tender seedlings by putting them in the troughs once their roots were sticking out of the net pots.  The shade cloth (60%) is working great.  We put in half the fish 2 weeks ago and the other half a week ago and have only lost one from the move.  These were full size Tilapia so we are grateful that they are… Continue

Added by Brian Thiesing on July 12, 2011 at 1:48pm — No Comments

2011/07/09 - Happy and healthy

Everything is growing like crazy.  I'm really thrilled with how this is going.



Here's a salad I made a few days back using some cucumber from a coworker's garden, plus lots of goodies out of mine including the basil flowers I've been pinching back.…

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Added by Andrea on July 9, 2011 at 12:15pm — 1 Comment

Sloping Settling Filter Bottom

I want to give the bottom of my settling filter a "V-shaped" bottom, but after trying to find a method of making one, I decided that what I saw was too complicated or too much work. I Thought of a simple solution. "Why don't I just build a wooden base that would support a barrel that was tipped at a 45 degree angle so that thejunction of a side and the bottom were at the lowest point and then install a spigot at that lowest point. So this is my next system tweak.

 

Added by Conrad Chin-Yee on July 9, 2011 at 4:25am — No Comments

Aquaponics in Saudi Arabia

 

Hello everyone!  Been a while since my last update. 

1. Aquaponics system 1 - Bitter mellon is growing fast and seem to be happy in AP.  Tomatoes stopped growing from 1" because of the heat (we are having mid 40's here in Saudi Arabia), Okra grew a new stem but no flowers or fruits, Basils are growing new stems after i cut a few to clone, fish tank have 6 goldfish and pleco

2. Aquaponics system 2 - Bell pepper is lush and healthy although no signs of flowers yet,…

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Added by Yusuf Mario Germino on July 7, 2011 at 1:28pm — 1 Comment

DWC

Hello, I'm confused. I can see that there are advantages  (especially in hot climates) of Deep Water Cultures but, I'm unsure of how they work. As I see it, there are two types of bacteria on the growing gravel that changes the ammonia to the nitrites and Nitrates. My question I guess is " What changes the ammonia if there are no rocks"?  Am I right on anything yet? I'm sure that the problems I am encountering is the balance of fish to water to grow beds.

I have found that using…

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Added by Matt Rosso on July 4, 2011 at 12:02pm — 4 Comments

Long Distance Collaboration

Kobus Jooste commented...

(SNIP) I would love to learn from as many sources as I can, and enjoy collaborating and brainstorming.  I think my "problem" if I may call it is twofold.  First, I partnered up with a group of people that had big commercial units and large profits as motivation, neglecting the need for laying foundations with school and community / backyard awareness.  They were a large engineering company with little desire…

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Added by Greg Pettengill on July 3, 2011 at 2:36pm — No Comments

Just say No! It's easier that way.

Below are excerpts from a recent email conversation.  They typify my experiences in trying to get people in authority in Brevard County, Florida, to accept and/or support Community Gardens in any form, over the last 3 years.

 

Note: Bill…

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Added by Greg Pettengill on July 2, 2011 at 9:31am — 6 Comments

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