Texas Gardening forum: Aquaponics...Anyone tried it?

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Southeast Texas (Zone 8b)
Birds
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Colleen
Jan 10, 2013 3:45 PM CST
I live in a rural area on 4 acre so have plenty of room to garden. We have a good size vegetable garden, but I am very interested in trying aquaponics. Aquaponics, for those who don't know, is the raising of some sort of fish in a container (whether they are edible fish depends on the size of your system) and pumping the water from the tank in a continous flow through a medium of some sort to filter it (lava rock, pea gravel, etc). Vegetables are planted in the medium and the "byproducts" of the fish are taken up by the plants as fertilizer. Anyone tried it and care to share any info?Thumb of 2013-01-10/Colleen/642fef
Thumb of 2013-01-10/Colleen/44b55a
Love and peace...
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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dave
Jan 10, 2013 3:57 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Great pictures! Is that your setup there? I'm impressed!

Late last year I went to Dallas and attended a weekend workshop put on by the Colorado Aquaponics people. It was fantastic and I came home with a complete aquaponics system. I haven't set it up yet because I want to build a greenhouse for it so I can use it all year round. I'm fearful of keeping it out all winter long.

The entire concept is highly exciting to me.
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Jan 11, 2013 8:12 AM CST

Moderator

Hi, Coleen, and welcome to Texas Gardening. I envy you your four acres! Please share any information you gather on aquaponics with us. The closest I’ve come is scooping water from my small backyard pond for potted plants. The second photo looks like something even a small yard gardener could successfully construct.
Southeast Texas (Zone 8b)
Birds
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Colleen
Jan 12, 2013 8:50 AM CST
Hi Dave,

How I wished this was my setup! No, not mine, just photos I've seen. We are still trying to locate food grade IBC containers to use to build ours but they are not readily available in our area. We thought we had located some but after some questioning of the guy trying to sell them, we found that they had contained potassium fluoride (KF). He claimed they were food grade, but after googling KF, I don't think I want to chance it. Smaller setups usually use goldfish, but my husband would like to use perch so we can eat'em. That requires a bit bigger tank than the blue plastic 55 gal barrels. Guess we'll keep lookin' for IBC's.
Love and peace...
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Apr 24, 2013 9:30 PM CST

Moderator

Our garden club is having a member/speaker in June that teaches rainwater collection. We ran into him at the Farmers' Market at Barton Square mall Saturday where he was doing a demonstration. He showed us a very easy way to set up a rain barrel. He said he had gotten the simple supplies from Third Coast Horticulture Supplies in Austin.

So yesterday, instead of taking care of my own garden (or cleaning the house), off we went to find Third Coast. Glad we did! The owner couldn't have been nicer. He explained everything to us, even after knowing I was an unrepentant water guzzling, tropical grower. We stayed way longer than we planned. DH was into all the cubbies for connectors. I was into the aquaponic set-up in the front window. I took quite a few photos of the set up in the store. After spending about 45 minutes there, we had to meet friends and as we were leaving, the owner offered to come to a meeting and demonstrate his aquaponic set-up at one of our summer meetings.

Thumb of 2013-04-25/Bubbles/fcea63 Herbs growing in the window

Thumb of 2013-04-25/Bubbles/1eda66 The fishy set-up underneath the herbs

Thumb of 2013-04-25/Bubbles/964546 Another view

Thumb of 2013-04-25/Bubbles/03e42e The tillapia fishes under the herbs

I'll have to post the simple rubber grommets that we bought to set up a rain barrel in next post tomorrow. Makes any barrel an easy rainwater collector!
Name: Anna
North Texas (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Texas Clematis Garden Ideas: Level 1 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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canadanna
Apr 26, 2013 5:27 PM CST
Can't wait.
Waaa! I want to live in Austin and belong to your garden club!
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Apr 26, 2013 7:49 PM CST

Moderator

Anna, sent tree-mail!
[Last edited by Bubbles - Apr 29, 2013 6:24 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #397062 (7)
Name: Pete
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8a)
pmenefee
May 3, 2013 11:43 AM CST
Colleen, I just found your post in the Texas gardening section. I'm giving it a try now with a slightly different twist. I have a Koi pond in my yard and I set up a sheep and goat feeder as a grow bed and pump water from the pond into it. Here's a link to some posts here on this site: The thread "Aquaponics starter project." in All Things Gardening forum
I see on my posting of March 10 which has a picture, that the growth has been better than I expected when I compare it to today. When you look every day it's hard to see where you've been.Thumb of 2013-05-03/pmenefee/09e60d
The brocoli on the left has really grown, but so far only leaves. We've eaten the red lettuce and cut it back
Pete

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