22 votes

An amazing video of an aquaponic garden

I don't know if this has been posted before, but thought I would share it. I would love to get the design plans for this system.
http://youtu.be/c2z-IdnIGLE

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Veteran Community

Veteran Community Farms
http://www.growingmagazine.com/blog-6502.aspx
Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training (VSAT)
http://archisacres.com/main
Veterans Administration Pulls Funding From Therapeutic Farm Training Program
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/brigid-brett/veterans-administ...

http://youtu.be/K5zP4WPgcqY
Growing Power Inc.
Growing Power is a national nonprofit organization and land trust supporting people from diverse backgrounds, and the environments in which they live, by helping to provide equal access to healthy, high-quality, safe and affordable food for people in all communities. Growing Power implements this mission by providing hands-on training, on-the-ground demonstration, outreach and technical assistance through the development of Community Food Systems that help people grow, process, market and distribute food in a sustainable manner.
http://www.growingpower.org/

Those kids never have to face hunger

Shrimp s-h-i-t

Back to Eden Film shares the

Back to Eden Film shares the story of one man’s lifelong journey, walking with God and learning how to get back to the simple, productive growing methods of sustainable provision that were given to man in the garden of Eden.
http://www.backtoedenfilm.com/

Neighbors and friends nearby

Even though I've known these folks for years and known of the success of those who've applied what they've learned here, I had put off watching this video all the way through. Thanks BT, for posting this at a time that fit my watching schedule!

This stuff really works, as I have seen, and tasted first hand. Now it's time to do more with what I know to make this happen in my neighbor's yards also.

Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have the exact measure of the injustice and wrong which will be imposed on them. - Frederick Douglass

that's not correct

Aquaponics is not natural. It's a man made environment that depends on constant maintence, equipment like pumps, energy supply and suppliments. It produces a limited choice of crops.

At this point of American culinary evolution, most have developed a wide range of tastes which is what makes any diet hard because satisfaction with food is so powerful wars are fought for it.

So to take a person who has cultures a wide appreciation for flavor, to limit them to shrimp and lettuce diet, isn't very healthy because the tastes will get old and people won't want to eat.

Reminds me of a story I haven't thought of in years..

When I was a treasure salvor I lived on a houseboat with langusta (clawless lobster). When making arrangements for my folks to come visit I told my Mom, "I can fix you lobster everyday until you get sick of it." She says, "Ill never get sick of lobster."

So they come, and all Ihad to do was put on a mask, no snorkle needed, no fins.. just free dive a few feet and put as many as I like in the net.. After three days.. she told me, "no more lobster,, I love everything you made, it's all wonderful, but I can't eat another bite."

Now.. how about houseboat situation with a hydroponic garden fed from the grey water? If you can eat lobster everyday.. well.. we had plenty of fish.. too.. even oily big teeth barracuda.

Aquaponics is not natural?

and growing on chemically sterilized ground with petroleum fertilizers and weed killers is? Hydroponics is a man made environment and it does take constant maintenance and supplements. Aquaponics on the other hand is very natural, requires no fertilizers, weed killers, and every garden requires some maintenance. There are so many aquaponic systems designs that one can get lost in the definition, some are just redone hydroponic systems. At it's basics an aquaponic system uses the natural nitrogen cycle, the fish produced ammonia that is then converted to nitrites, then to nitrates by living bacteria that then provide nitrogen fertilizer for plant growth. If you add in compost, and grow an outside garden with an adjacent pond, it then all comes together, the compost with worms naturally maintains the right PH, adds the micro and other nutrients. The frogs and toads along with the fish keeps the insects at a minimum. That's what I have done and it's working beyond my expectations. The only things I have added is water, compost, a small electric water pump for circulation and aeration.

Why not compare to ORGANIC?

"...grow an outside garden with an adjacent pond..."

That's exactly what happend to the expensive investment I made building an aquaponic system. Three pumps later.. constant electricty.. water testing, you still have to feed to fish and sustain an unnatual enviroment?

Swimming pools are not natural? They have water and and what's not natura;l about water? No swimming pools, and aquaponic systems are not natural. They are great on commercial levels.

We may have lost something in the definition

I don't know what went wrong with your system, maybe you were trying to grow too many fish in a confined area or you did not have it long enough for it to balance out. I have two small ponds with liners, about 3-4 feet deep, one is about 3'x 8', another 12'x 7', one has fish and the other grows duckweed and polliwogs in spring. The water irrigates the 5, 4'x8 raised bed gardens, as the level lowers in the ponds it is replenished with fresh. It does not "recirculate" to the grow beds like a traditional aquaponic set up, however I have hard clay ground so water finds it's way back to the ponds by gravity. A recirculating pump goes through a bio filter and aerates the water. Last year I think I changed out the goop from the filter twice and put it in the compost bin. A rainbird overhead sprinkler waters just that area for a few minuets as needed, to encourage the frogs to hunt the garden for insects. You and I have talked about this before. This may not be a conventional aquaponic system as it uses compost, so I don't try to grow the plants only on fish waste. I have had gardens for decades and this system has worked out way beyond my expectations with very little work. I am going to document it this year so I will be able to post some pictures.

Do

you have pumps?

As an experiment, I got a 100 gal feed take and 50 gal olive/food container, connected them with pvc and 92 watt/ 950 gph pump.. couple koi about 7 - 8" now and goldfish.. the water is fed by my well and the water from the olive/ 50 gal, is released into a compost pile made of chicken and anything organic.. this is made into a tea and that feed the straw bale garden..

It all seemed so simple.. if this works,, then I could improve.. I stopped.. what I told you is what I have going It's not aqua ponics though I have watercress in the 100 gal tank.

I'm on DP "all day" because I have so many chore to do.. do a chore, take a break.. and many times while I'm writing my attention is called elsewhere..

I'm feeding fish. Are you? Are you telling me that your fish are growing 7" just enough for a small filet, off lettuce roots? You don't test the water? Energy costs? Mine isn't solar, (which would be anouther investment). Same with chicken.. mine are pastured, but they demand feed.. (maybe it would be different if I had enough property to have to drive to see the chickens.. but as it is, they are my biggest fan club..

For me.. it's not worth it for talapia and lettuce, but I think for a community/ local industry.. built to a sustainable scale with alternative energy that is reliable, affordable and low maintenance it's a worthy investment.

Look forward to the pictures. I bought a digital comera and hate it, so I have camera issues.. I keep hoping the right camera will come into my life..

Whts up with the down votes?

I rarely agree with your points of view, but you are having legitimate questions and great impute in the subject. Thank you for sharing your experience and it would be nice if you can share more of it.

Well

When I first heard about aguaponics about 4 years ago, I was facinated by it.. seemed like a great way to have greens and fish, and for some reason, I thought once I put it together, it would be like nature and run itself.. I started small, which 100 gal tank is small, I could grow 2 large heads of lettuce and 6 - 8 talapia.. but if I was to be breeding, that would take another tank.. and

tank http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Produ...

olive barrel http://www.lexingtoncontainercompany.com/Olive---Pickle-Barr...

the pump was like $66.00 and repairing the pump.. plus air pump..

It sits up in cement bricks with inflow and outflow pipes to the olive barrel.. fromthe olive barrel are valves so I can dump the water with all the fish waste through the chicken waste compost pile and from there distributed to the garden and ornamental plants.

I have never tested the water, I never had to

I don't know what the size of the pump is, It's fairly small and runs at a slow to medium trickle. From the pond it goes up about about 3' to the deck which has the 10 gal bio filter box, then drops into a half 55 gal barrel liner 1 1/2' then drops the next 1 1/2' feet over stones like a water fall to the pond. The object was to get as much aeration as I could from the elevation drop. The last 5 years I just have had gold fish, the bigger ones have been taken out by a raccoon or something. This spring I'm thinking I want to get perch or catfish, it's too cold in Mi for tilapia. I have never checked the water, the dog drinks it, so it must be ok, LOL.

LOL Seems you test the water all the time. More than me.

I've heard of a canary in a mine and now, a dog for a pond.

Granger: "Water ok tru?"

tru: "I don't know. I'll see; Hold on. Here Scout! Come here boy.. looky this water.. check this out buddy. Drink up pup!"

Scout: "wag wag, lap, lap, gulp gulp".

tru: "Yep, Scout is still standin'! Water's ok!!"

That's funny

There is something to be said for the scientific method.

Personally,

Since I'm not willing to live like a sweaty a-s-s cotton picker -- and I hate high humidity... I'm inclined to live in the beautiful northeast.

So my main interest in hydro is to keep them greens coming in the winter using organic fish poop.

Incidentally you probably know that tilapia is widely used as the fertilizer machine of choice for hydro growing.

So I hear you on the boredom of limited choices, but I can juice hydro kale and other veggies -- OMG! SPROUTS ARE SUPER FOODS! -- for nutrition in the winter months.

And the rest of the year we grow outdoor and greenhouse where apropos.

Of course the foundation of it all is the Polyface farm model.
http://www.polyfacefarms.com/

talapia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tilapia

In modern aquaculture, wild-type Nile tilapia are not too often seen, as the dark color of their flesh is not much desired by many customers, and because it has a bit of a reputation of being a trash fish associated with poverty.[33] On the other hand, they are fast-growing and give good fillets; leucistic ("Red") breeds which have lighter meat have been developed and these are very popular.

Hybrid stock is also used in aquaculture; Nile × blue tilapia hybrids are usually rather dark, but a light-colored hybrid breed known as "Rocky Mountain White" tilapia is often grown due to its very light flesh and tolerance of low temperatures.[33]

Commercially grown tilapia are almost exclusively male. Cultivators use hormones, such as testosterone, to reverse the sex of newly spawned females. Because tilapia are prolific breeders, the presence of female tilapia results in rapidly increasing populations of small fish, rather than a stable population of harvest-size animals.[34]

Other methods of tilapia population control are polyculture, with predators farmed alongside tilapia or hybridization with other species.[35]

Wow Granger

That was a mouthful!
There's a lot to learn and know huh?

Really

When I was in culinary school, talapia was being introduced as a perch from India, farmed fish.. farmed fish was a new idea at the time except to foreign students who refused to touch it.. "poor people's food" exactly as the article says. And India was the big exporter.. seafood is the US second largest import BTW..

So when this aquaponic thing came around.. it facinated me and I got into it.. but what I never figured and maybe I didn't see it.. is it's not cheap.. you still have to feed/suppliment, test, and it's work/maintenance and energy dependent.. so to me.. that's some expensive talapia and lettuce... it's like solar enegry.. all a solar aray means is you had money to pay all your electric up front.. it's like they have it figured to sell at 30 years of on the grid.

I can imagine a nice green

I can imagine a nice green house "lean to" on south side of house with a smaller pond like that growing shrimp. Would be really cool.

Maybe 6'x20'pond, small enough you can reach to center. Then when you look out dining room windows, you are looking into the green house, seeing that all year round (if possible here, would be cool). Water might help hold the temp overnight till the sun warms it back up, dunno.

Blah.

Inspirational

something to do with those community skate park closures

Lovely!

Imagine of all those useless fountains in our cities were put to use...

Love or fear? Chose again with every breath.

or the swimming pools!

I have a 18'x34' swimming pool that has 28,000 gallons of water in it, I am so tempted to put a green house over it and convert it to an aquaponic system.

You would need a ten story structure over your pool

to handle all of the grow space required to maintain a reservoir like that.

You see aquaponics requires a balance between growspace:water:fish or it won't work correctly

A more practical thing to do would be to have a small pond in the deep end only, use the pool's plumbing for moving water, and the green house in the rest of the unoccupied pool space.

I am really considering starting a business up here in Toronto refurbishing old pools, that cost too much to maintain, into gardens like i have described above.

That's a good point

I knew that you needed a specific sq ft of grow space for each gallon of water or pound of fish, but how do you maintain that balance through the grow cycle? Some of the systems out there look so simple, but I have a hunch it's a little more complicated than it appears. I know if the PH or the ammonia levels get too high the fish can be lost quick.

Your business idea of converting pools into aquaponic grow systems could have some real potential. The cost of running and maintaining a swimming pool is expensive, an aquaponic system would be an asset, not an expense.

Epic

I was thinking of starting an Aquaponics business, as the dollar dies to ensure my community had food and jobs. We would at the least be able to use food to back a local currency and get away from the oppression of things to come. This system would be perfect if it can produce a decent amount of protein. Shrimp are cool, buy how many shrimp can you harvest and how much labor will be involved per pound of food there?

Ron brought the Liberty movement together, Rand is expanding the crap out of it! :)

Aquaponics has had a huge increase in interest recently

It just may be a good business venture. I would believe that any money invested in this food system may have a better return on dollars invested than any thing else in this economy. When you calculate the amount of vegetables and fish that can be grown in a small area, it vastly out performs conventional agriculture. Check this out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mCCN4nq7BlQ

I am willing to bet

If I started one now, by 2 or 3 months I would not be able to keep up with the demand of selling it at the farmers market.

Ron brought the Liberty movement together, Rand is expanding the crap out of it! :)