Aquaponic Gardening

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TCLynx's Blog (61)

Herding Chickens

Now I've learned that herding most of my ducks is actually pretty easy (except for a moma duck trying to get back to her eggs, that is a whole other challenge) herding the ducks usually just takes a little patients and a long stick, walk slowly tword them so they will walk away from you in the direction you want. Don't walk too fast or they may panic and bolt around you instead of moving away in the direction you want. Use long stick, or net or mop, whatever to extend your reach wider so they… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 22, 2010 at 6:12pm — No Comments

Further away from Neutral pH monitoring

pH is a very important part of aquaponics so here is another blog post about it.



My first two years I was running systems that was full of shells as media, that system really didn't need much pH monitoring at all (or at least hasn't over the 2 years.) I've never seen the pH get down to 7.0 and the only things that cause it to get over 8 are a major algae bloom and a giant water change with well water. That lulled me into a false sense of security about pH.



Now I have my 300… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 22, 2010 at 10:17am — No Comments

How the HECK! Did that fish manage to get on top of the tank cover?

I went outside this morning and was on my way to an appointment so didn't have any extra time but I went to peak at the fish like I often do



?There was a 11 inch catfish laying on top!!!! of the tank cover???



There is a little gap off to one side near the feeder but to have gotten up onto the cover by the feeder then some how get on top of the higher bit of cover over the center of the tank was… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 21, 2010 at 11:15am — 4 Comments

September 20, 2010

Yesterday I started a bunch of trays of seeds. The trays I'm using hold 42 small peat pellets (7 rows of 6)

Anyway, I made a point of planting one tray in such a manner that I can do another tray the same (I often do each row as a type of seeds since I'm not likely to need 42 of any one thing all at once, I'm not commercial.) So since yesterday was ranked as a good day for planting above ground crops and today is a poor day for planting according to the almanac, I'm doing a… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 20, 2010 at 6:23pm — No Comments

September 19, 2010

Just so you all know, I use the

Gardening by the Moon Calendar from the Farmers' Almanac http://www.farmersalmanac.com/calendar/gardening/

I can't say as I've done any good side by side comparisons to know if it really works but I use it. There have been some times when I didn't check and just planted stuff because it was the only time I had and some of those times it seems very little came up. If it was due… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 19, 2010 at 6:47pm — 2 Comments

September 18, 2010

Not so much about Aquaponics, but more of just a Garden Journal post.



Planting Peas today. Snow peas, 1/2 lb packs of two different varieties from Johnny's Selected Seeds

Snow Sweet I planted on the East side of the South section of trellis and on the West side of the North Section of trellis along the middle of my side yard along the line of crepe myrtles.

Oregon Giant I planted on the West side of the South section (seeded very heavily I might add) and more normal seeding… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 18, 2010 at 3:23pm — 10 Comments

Keep a spare on hand

Just to reassure all that everything is fine before I even tell the story (though it isn't very dramatic that way, it isn't that dramatic a story anyway.)



Anyway,

It was labor day weekend and I was about to go out of town for 9 days and I noticed that the air volume coming from the air pump seemed to be far less than normal. Well dang, it's a holiday weekend and I can't get the replacement diaphragm kit for my pump before I leave. I'll just have to hope and pray there isn't a… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 16, 2010 at 1:41pm — No Comments

Where is the advise coming from?

I have lately read some things that give very cut and dried black and white answers about that is necessary for Aquaponics. This really bothered me because it didn't necessarily make note of the other parameters that affected such answers. There might be some advise you shouldn't second guess (like when you ask for help and explain the trouble, then it is usually prudent to listen to the help given) but when very hard fast narrow rules are handed out as if they apply equally to all situations,… Continue

Added by TCLynx on September 10, 2010 at 10:03pm — 8 Comments

Must Have Patience

Even some one who has been doing this for a couple years and knows that it takes 6 weeks to properly cycle up a new system, I must still remind myself that it requires patience (or patients as I'm often known to miss spell.)



So here I am getting all frustrated because my 300 gallon system isn't all cycled up and letting me feed up all the fingerlings really good. I'm railing at the test kit and blaming pH that the ammonia is still showing up I mean didn't it cycle faster back in the… Continue

Added by TCLynx on July 14, 2010 at 3:00pm — 8 Comments

Siphons and such

Is it time to get your feet wet?



I'm not sure that I am the best one to talk about siphons. I've used them. I've made some bell siphons but never been as good with them. I've had many many loop siphons and they usually work quite well providing conditions are right. I have also built FLOUT's and they are great if the situation warrants.



So what would make some one mess with siphons? Isn't it easier to just run the pump on a timer and let all the beds… Continue

Added by TCLynx on July 4, 2010 at 5:30pm — 2 Comments

Do Cheap Blue Barrels really save you money?

Let us do some research into this topic, ok, my good intentions on this topic were to go back and see if I could find the research I did on it two years ago when I decided that barrels would not be cost effective for my planned big system.



Needless to say, I haven't managed to do that. What I do remember from my research was that I could get more grow bed volume and spend less money by building wooden grow beds and lining them with pond liner. These figures were affected greatly by the… Continue

Added by TCLynx on July 3, 2010 at 5:30pm — 4 Comments

High protein feed makes a difference

I've gotten myself a bag of higher protein feed for the fingerlings I've moved into the 300 gallon system. Dang, had to adjust the feeder down due to an ammonia spike from the only newly cycled system.

Higher protein feed does cost more but it can definitely make a difference in the growth of small fingerlings as well as increasing the nutrient levels in a system quite noticeably.

Added by TCLynx on July 2, 2010 at 7:44pm — 6 Comments

Canning

Perhaps it isn't exactly Aquaponic but canning our own produce is an important part of gardening and sustainability to me.



Today I'm canning some soup where the only ingredients that didn't come from our own garden is the corn, garlic and spices.



The corn at least was local and the rest, carrots, onions, potatoes, beans (3 types) and duck was all grown right here.



We have found that my soup is often so much tastier than the stuff from the store. I like to keep a shelf… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 25, 2010 at 7:30pm — 3 Comments

Day spent doing in the ducks

There is something to be said about knowing how your food comes to be your food. This step does turn some people vegetarian.



Today was a day for moving some of our ducks into new quarters in the freezer. That is right we were killing today. Killing one's own food does bring a closer connection to the whole process.



It does seem the closer the animal is to us, the harder the process can be. Most of us think nothing about harvesting a plant to eat even through that harvest is… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 23, 2010 at 7:30pm — No Comments

Spanish Moss as media test

I thought I would do a little test to see if Spanish Moss might be a suitable media.



I put six small catfish fingerlings in a small tank and a basket of Spanish moss under the inflow to the tank.



I started the test on June 12. Well on June 20 I discovered one of the six catfish looked like it's tail was all chewed up. Not knowing if it was a case of illness brought on by the Spanish moss or if perhaps there was fighting going on. I removed that fish from the tank and into an… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 22, 2010 at 8:38pm — 4 Comments

cheap swimming pools

Think twice before assuming a cheap swimming pool will be appropriate for your fish tank. Do some extra research.



I know that there are some people who have done it successfully but there are other situations where several months into operation of the system, certain types of fish start showing signs of illness.



Some types of swimming pool liners are treated with chemicals to protect the vinyl from UV, algae, and bacteria. Some of these chemicals are slow to release and can… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 21, 2010 at 7:58pm — 4 Comments

Water Chestnuts

Just lately I ordered some water chestnut plant starts. I've read that fresh water chestnuts (which of course are not nuts but actually more like a corm that grows attached to the plant roots under ground under water) are so much better than the canned variety that I thought I should try growing some for myself. They like a hot climate and I've heard they grow fast so it could be a great thing to have.



I'm not sure if they will like aquaponics or how best to grow them in aquaponics so… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 20, 2010 at 6:00pm — No Comments

Today, I just can't get very focused.

Perhaps it was due to the heat (and being pretty worn out from the past several days too.)



It is now raining pretty heavy and the temps have come down but it did get up to 101 F in the shade here today, I don't know what the heat index would have been though.



About all I accomplished today was installing a new bit of electronics on my main system (to control the automated valve I developed to operate the indexing valve on a CHIFT PIST system where the pump doesn't turn… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 19, 2010 at 6:05pm — No Comments

TCLynx 300 gallon systemBuilding a completely new system with experience

Now I feel a little out of order here since I realize that I probably haven't done a very good job of describing my main system or any of my other systems on this site. (The main system's story is a bit long and I don't quite feel up to re-writing that whole story at the moment.)



But anyway..... Now with a couple years experience keeping fish (I really didn't know much about keeping fish before I got into this) and nursing the bio-filters and coaxing the plants, I'm feeling a bit more… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 18, 2010 at 7:30pm — 8 Comments

I should be on video

There are times when I think how glad I am that no one is around to see what I've just done.



I'm often very wet when I have that thought.



See, I'm one to do quite a lot of quick change plumbing.



But now on later reflection, I probably would be a real you tube hit if I could post videos of the more spectacular incidents.



Plugging the pump back in but forgetting that I had opened that one ball valve to let water drain back so I could glue some plumbing. So… Continue

Added by TCLynx on June 17, 2010 at 6:00pm — 4 Comments

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