Aquaponic Gardening

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Tom OBrien's Blog (6)

Sunlight vs HPS

I finally broke down and bought a real HPS grow light after growing a big batch of really long stringy pea plants that produced no pea pods. And while it is a very big improvement over the T-8 grow lights with year old bulbs I had been using, I can't help noticing that my outdoor peas are now kicking ass on my indoor plants even though they were started later. Of course, the indoor garden does have a pretty big edge in this area from October through March, but when it warms up it looks like…


Added by Tom OBrien on June 15, 2013 at 11:45pm — 3 Comments

Giving Perch a try

After having some bad luck with the second batch of trout, I decided to give yellow perch a try. This is going to be a much longer project because the fish are smaller (3-5") and don't grow as fast, but the perch are doing well after the first few weeks. They ate very little for the first couple days, but now they are feeding eagerly. Some of the smaller ones looked like they couldn't handle the pellet size, so I broke some of them up and that seems to be doing the trick. Wish me luck!

Added by Tom OBrien on June 4, 2013 at 8:07pm — 6 Comments

Fishless cycling is boring

The trout kicked the bucket and now I'm left with an empty tank and two grow beds full of vigorously growing pea plants. I think I'd like to try a hardier fish next time like yellow perch. Unfortunately my local hatchery won't be selling perch until things thaw out around here.

Added by Tom OBrien on February 20, 2013 at 8:59pm — 7 Comments

Trout Project II

I have re-started my system with 16 8-10" trout in a 150 gallon stock tank and pea plants in two 50 gallon grow beds. Fish-less cycling in preparation for the trout was very quick compared to the new system startup last spring. I was concerned that the temperature differential between the outdoor pond at the hatchery (45 F) and the water in my basement tank (62 F) would be a problem, but all the fish seem to have survived it despite some initial sluggishness.

This time we also had a…


Added by Tom OBrien on December 25, 2012 at 10:23pm — No Comments

Week 20 - The Trout Experiment Ends

I'm going to harvest the fish, clean the tanks and the grow beds, and get them ready for the winter growing season this weekend. This has been fun, and surprisingly successful for a first experiment, thanks largely to all the helpful experts here on this website. The fact that I kept several trout alive for 20 weeks exceeded my expectations. I was disappointed that I lost so many the first day, but pleasantly surprised that I only lost a few to other causes. The growth rates of the fish…


Added by Tom OBrien on September 27, 2012 at 8:42pm — No Comments

Trout Harvest Time

The basement trout farm in 150 gallon stock tanks has been going for 17 weeks now and some of the fish are finally ready to harvest. I've had mixed success with this project, but I've learned a whole lot in the process. First thing, before you bring trout home, you need to have a secure cover ready to go. Our goldfish didn't do much exploring, but the trout apparently had a strong desire to see more of the basement. I lost six trout the first day because there were gaps in the cover around…


Added by Tom OBrien on September 11, 2012 at 10:17pm — No Comments

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