Hello everyone, I live in North plains,Oregon. We got introduced to aquaponics in April, we liked what we saw. In June we cleaned up our backyard, built a few more raised beds, did a lot of Internet searching. Then by July first was able to start building a system.
I thought that we could do this with a bunch of mini projects, by making the budget of each project to stay in or below $40.00. So every month we add something to help keep it going.
I started out with an old dog kennel, a carport tubelar frame, a section of the yard that my wife didn't want and 1 cheap Ibc tote. We've had a great summer growing, tinkering and learning. We have three grow beds in a CHOP system, with five fish for now. Our greenhouse is partially shaded by a rather large English laurel hedge. I set some some lofty goals for this year.
July we were cycled by the 25th, and planted lots of lettuce,chard, spinach,broccoli, beans and pes. August was a blur between work and life, in September we covered the greenhouse with 3 mil plastic. Got all the plumbing sorted out, added better bell siphons and moved up to a better sump pump.
In october I spent 8 days cutting back the laurel hedge, now we have more light, total cost $80( new chainsaw, 3 gallons of fuel, 1 trip to chiropractor).
We have been struggling with seed germination, so we bought a seed mat & better seeds... New seeds are on the way - first big frost coming up near the first of November....harvested all lettuce & spinach, time for winter growing phase.
So here we are seeing temps go up and down, back to browse & sift the web for winterized ideas on the cheap.
Items needed......lights to grow with, insulation to help with heat retention, ibc tank heater. More new plants and a better door.
We decided to use T5 grow lights.....seemed the best bang for the dollar. Got the bulbs from a indoor grow store, light fixtures from local big box store..( bulbs $12.00 each, fixtures were about $40.00 each minus wire plugs)
November is here!
last night we got two banks of T5 grow lights setup on a timer, as well as the fans and a baseboard heater. We went to bed a bit late and early the next morning I thought a UFO had landed in my backyard, I looked out my bedroom window and the grow lights lit up my whole backyard. So might have to build some type of reflector hood to focus lights upon the grow areas. Sigh...more info needed.
Insulation. For a plastic greenhouse. Needs to be low cost and efficient?
I'll save that for next time.