Aquaponics System Design – Questions Answered
An Aquaponics System Design can be in as any configurations as there are leaves on a tree. Once you have the essentials, the fish tank, the grow bed and the methods of getting the nutrient rich water from the tank to the bed and back, you can have your chosen ecosystem take on any look possible. As you think of your Aquaponics System Design, take into consideration the items you have on hand to build one and your overall goals in creating and running your system.
An Aquaponics System Design is diverse in how you can have it look, and what materials you choose to use for it. As you consider the design and the configuration of each item of the full ecosystem, you can put into place each piece that is vital, and desired. Creating your system with the established goals in mind can dictate how large or small your System can be; what exact items, pumps, filters, hoses, siphons, grow media, lights and monitors that will assist in a fully functioning food growing unit. Your Aquaponics System Design starts with the end in mind and the individuals steps needed to reach it become part of the plan.
Aquaponics System Design – the deeper dive
Goals Drive the Ecosystem
In any beginning stage of anything to do with agriculture, you need to have a goal or goals in mind as to guide you in the actions that are needing to be taken, and it is no different when you set to design your own Aquaponics Growing System. As you learn and consider the options you want to have for your Food Independence efforts will then dictate how you can build our own unit AND what you need to include in that build. Consider the fact of how many you want to feed from your system, the volume and output you want to have; how often you will need to transplant and retire the plants; what you want as the grow bed medium? Also think about the fish that will fuel the nitrogen cycle that you are looking to assist in the system; are they just for the ammonia or would their addition to your dinner table be in the offering? That facilitates the water pumps, the biofilters, the nutrient additives, the around the clock growing and monitoring of temps and pH levels. It also brings into the process how automated you want to be, whether it a more hands on approach or running things from your phone?
When you more closely define your goals then the picture of what you can Design becomes more clear and feeds the next steps.
Materials Make it a Reality
As the goals are clearly defined, then it will be able to clarify what you are using for your system, the containers, the framing and all the connecting pipes or hoses from one to the other. Whether you can use food grade plastics, or you use sealed woods, or metals. Because you aren’t using actual soil to hold the plants in place and to bring the nutrients to their roots, you have a wide array of materials you can choose from, Grow Media, that you can have in the grow beds. Crushed shells, expanded shale, fine rock gravel, lava rock, or clay pebbles. Additionally the configuration of the bell siphon you can use in the process of returning the water to the fish tank can take different looks and designs.
As it relates to materials, all the pumps, and filters, and lights with the hoses/pipes that connect along with the power draw of each also become better to determine as you are creating your Aquaponics System Design.
Atmosphere Placement is Everything
Because of the demands of the plants and the fish to have a tight window for temperature fluctuations, you need to consider as you design your Aquaponics System, of where it will actually be located. If you live in a place that the temps don’t move up or down more than 10 degrees Fahrenheit from 74 degrees then you can place this wherever you want, indoors or out. Pretty sure you are doing both yourself if that is the case.
However, if that is NOT the case, you will need to consider and plan on with your Aquaponics System Design, a way to achieve that homogenous climate that allows fish and plants to thrive year round. Your two options is indoors in a spare space you have that can maintain the degree temperatures as needed or you can build and maintain a greenhouse that can be warm in the winter and cooled in the summer.
Once you determine where the system will be, then you can take the actions necessary to make it happen.
Scheduling and Doing it the Correct Way
There is nothing worse than having to tear down a system and start over, it doesn’t feel good, and wastes a lot of time. We here at ThatAquaponicsGuy are looking to assist you in your efforts to become fully Food Independent. Check out the Aquaponics Systems we have designed with you in mind. From materials that can be easily acquired and replaced if necessary.
In addition we would love to be contacted to help you out as you need where you may need it, feel free to contact us and schedule a consultation with us! Remember, when you are prepared, you shall not fear. Godspeed and God Bless.