I soon began a series of modifications to new Aquaponic garden. Shortly after constructing the initial build, I moved, and had a much bigger window. So, I offset the fish tank, and built four more columns for the WindowFarm following the DIY instructions found on the WindowFarm website. After numerous trial and error attempts, I got the system working with only the occasional leak.
Eventually, it became clear that the sun penetrating my window would not be sufficient to grow plants to any sort of harvestable size. With this recognition, I opted to reverse the columns in the window, and grow them toward a massive 90 watt florescent designed to replicate sunlight. They immediately began to flourish.
At this point, my mother, who I am living with currently, proposed me building a greenhouse next to the one she had for starts in order to continue my experiments. In my zeal, I decided to completely re-do my garden, to fully take advantage of the new space. What followed was a series of hastily constructed garden designs, which worked in no sense of the word whatsoever. Discouraged, and with a trip to Spain quickly approaching, I opted to wait until I returned to continue my construction. In the meantime, I filled the greenhouse with all of the gizmos and gadgets and supplies I’d bought for gardening, and then replaced my WindowFarm with a traditional aquarium filter so my fish would survive the summer.
Now, I’ve been back from Spain for almost three months. I hadn’t built any gardens, and my fish were still living in there aquarium. It wasn’t until last weekend, when I left to Santa Barbara, that I really got motivated.
During my 5 day road trip, my filter broke. No one seemed to notice, and when I returned I found a shitty, brown aquarium, and a belly up fish! I acted quickly, draining half the water, and refilling it with new, but allas, my good friend Melmyn was no longer! Inspired by his tragic death, I was determined to see that his brother not suffer the same fate. I constructed a makeshift PVC frame for my original two-column WindowFarm, and with my last thirty dollars bought the supplies necessary to rig a plant filter for Cyd. Currently, he is swimming around in a little five gallon Halloween bucket, seemingly quite content.
This week, I plan on emptying out the greenhouse of the “failed” experiments, and then constructing a larger frame where I can hang all six columns. Then I will move my fish outside, and begin growing for the winter! What appeared at first to be a disaster; my garden not working the way I envisioned, and my fish' death; proved instead to be the perfect motivation to get my ass in gear! Moreover, these events were the inspiration to begin this blog. I’ve come to some sobering realizations about the world we live in recently.
This is why I’m writing this now: Humanity is coming to a tipping point. Without a sound plan for a sustainable future, there is no hope for human kind on this planet. The powers that be may be content to suck mother earth of her lifeforce and then move on to Mars, but I say: No! We still can reclaim our home, we still can turn around the damage that we have cause, and Aquaponic gardening is a damn good way to do that!