What do I need for my own Aquaponic system?
Aquaponics has all the best elements of gardening without the bad. No more weeding, no more digging, no more gophers, no more wasted water, no more fertilizers. You will have fresh veggies grown in your own compact beautiful garden. You can have your own fresh organic fish as well. Yes you can eat the fish you grow or use any ornamental fish you like. Like Koi or goldfish. This is the new victory gardening. Here in the U.S. we are just getting the message but it is the way things are done in many other parts of the world. We like the epp and flow system. This is what you need to have your very own aquapoinic garden in your house, apartment or condo…
Fish holding tank
We can start with the container to hold your fish. This can be anything that will hold 50 gallons or more of water including a koi pond or even am old bathtub.
Fill with fresh di-chlorinated water and add a small water pump. For a 2’ x 4’ table a 250 gallons per hour pump with do the job. Whichever pump you choose it must be left on 24 hours a day.
(Learn More about water pumps here: http://sunlandwatergardens.com/pond-supplies/pumps/)
Media or flow Table
This is a container that will hold the media that your plants are growing in. Ideally to save money on media it is recommended that it is not to deep. A depth of 6-8 inches is ideal. Something deeper or more shallow will work as well.
Learn more here: http://sunlandwatergardens.com/aquaponics/aquaponic-supplies/aquaponic-tables/aquaponic-flood-tray/
There are many different types of growing media you can use in your aquaponic system. First, there’s the rock or particle size, we prefer to use a media that is between 8mm and 16mm, there are some disadvantages if you go very far out of this range. If the media is a lot smaller then there’s not a much air space between the media when it’s in your bed. If the media is a lot larger, your surface area is markedly reduced, plus planting becomes a lot harder. You want to be a little careful with the rock you choose as some can have high levels of limestone and other high pH minerals within them which can lead to nutrient lock out and alage. Rock media or gravel is also very heavy so you need to plan to have enough support for it when building your growbeds and their stands and supports. The advantage of rock media is that it’s readily available and usually very cheap. Expanded clay is extremely light, pH neutral, comes in handy bags, it’s easy to plant in, easy to clean and sterile. However it’s downside, usually a bit more expensive. You will need to weigh up the pros and cons yourself, if you want quick and money is not the most limiting factor, then expanded clay is the go to.
Aquaponic Table Frame
You will need a frame to hold the media table above the fish container. This can be made of wood, metal or set on the side of a fish pond.
Learn more here: http://sunlandwatergardens.com/aquaponics/aquaponic-supplies/
Fish and vegetables
Now the fun part! Add fish such as Talapia, Bass, Catfish or Bluegill which are great eatable chooses. Even Koi or goldfish work to give your veggies what they need. You can add any veggie you like. We use a wire mesh for trailing plants like cucumbers,tomatoes, beans and peas to climb up on to save space. Next you just sit back and enjoy all the fresh organic fish and healthy veggies you can eat!