Aquaponic Gardening

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A few weeks have gone by since my last post. I checked my ammonia and nitrate levels a week ago, and the results were dismal. I had 0ppm nitrate, and 6ppm ammonia. I resolved that my second fish was going to die, because dependent on the pH of my water (which I neglected to check) as low as .1 ppm can be lethal. I suppose I must have around 6ph water, because fish survived the hard week of high ammonia, and is now super healthy! This week, my levels were up to 30ppm nitrate, and 0ppm ammonia, and I resolved to plant seeds. Having recently read the Aquaponic Source Magazine’s article on Dual Rooting, I figured I’d give it a try. I got paid on Friday (yay money!) so I visited my great uncle Joey to buy some good compost. He owns an awesome farm stand which has provided fresh veggies to Santa Rosa’s West End for almost a century and a half. Then, I took 3inch circles of burlap, and laid them two layers thick over my clay media. This is to keep the compost from circulating into the fish tank, while allowing the roots to poke through. I filled up my bottle farm with compost, and planted some red-leaf lettuce seeds. I’m hoping to grow spring-time plants through the winter in my greenhouse; it’s still quite warm in Nor-Cal, and I actually have to have shade cloth to replace the roof which faces South so it doesn’t get too hot in there! Once the days get shorter/cooler, I’ll put the panels back on, but for now the shade cloth is doing a swell job. Tomorrow, I’ll be adding on to the number of columns I have with the help of my grandfather! Stay tuned!

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