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About WillroyGreenhand

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    aquaponics and gardening
  1. Hi all since 4 weeks i do my math about a bell siphon (I know there are posts but it's about size and mathematics here) Anyone can help? This was till now my best shot regarding gravel bed volume, pump capacity, flow rate by pipe diameter Cheers to anyone who knows the stuff.. Will
  2. Cheers ande, I have put a lot of work already into it and the challenge is still on. But the maintenance and the fruits are by now mainly in my wife's hand. I am spending a lot of time working offshore to cover the financial side for my for 2020 planned commercial systems (see my post under commercial aquaponics). So I do not touch my pension savings. 10000 sqm is a lot of investment to do and I want to be prepared. But since start of our backyard system my Thai wife is loving this and I am barely allowed to touch HER plants and veggies. But when it comes to engineering its my call, she googles and I build. Therefore I gets sometime treated by some nice dinner like Thai Style Red Claw Crayfish.. But also these gourmet treats are mostly cooked and eaten with her friends and family when I enjoy some usual food on the ship.
  3. Hi Joe I hope all is good and you recover well. This post is not meaning to this form but its in general in all forums related to aquaponics the same phenomenon. They are silent and almost any news comes up. I had the feeling that many did not continue after they might have some downfall, invested for nothing and so on. Aquaponics is serious work and it is often mentioned it demands almost no time. It demands as much time as your common house garden and also you need to upkeep your equipment and livestock. Pumps are not made forever and off cause all 2-3 years the old one is worn out and needs a new one while a shuffle and spade does with for 10 years and longer. I don't see much enthusiasm anymore in the forums, people are not posting anymore about their systems. I have just made the plan to knock down my pipe system and build a 9m long deep-water grow bed. That was also a lesson learned, the pump fails over night and not when you stand aside of it and your salad is dead in 2-3 hrs. We had some restarts with plants and came now to the conclusion, that can better. For many might such experiences have been the end of the path but a word to all. New things need development before they work and sometimes it is just better to give something up and start all over again. That was before and when I return from my offshore job it will be taken apart and... see below this will be the new step after our lessons are learned. ..and there were Crayfish all over the place, another lesson learned so my wife went to the hydraulic shop and made a first idea to stop these little Bastrds escaping through every filter an pump. 50 micron catcher will do it ;-). That is the idea of a 6 years Thai school and her growing love to the aquaponics. A little rice farmer's daughter doesn't give up and I am proud of her. (Using paintbox was my idea as auto-cad would nobody understand in my family) Last word: Don't give up, the future is in your backyard, needs just a bit more development. Cheers Will
  4. Hello all, I have experienced that the replies on all forums are very limited (not only here) and this gives me the feeling that many enthusiasts have given up their systems or running it on low fuel meaning that its just there behind the house, equipment broke down, worn out or the system has never been started as it supposed to be. Is this only my opinion or do others experience the same thing. May be other forums are still active but this and another one is in my eyes the biggest and most informative in the www. So why its getting everywhere quiet?
  5. Thanks Toga, here we go, at least one reply and negative experiences were made. I will not stop experimenting and see If I was only lucky because they didn't like the plants I put in and preferred their home cooked pellets from Duckweed, Soy, Carrots and Tilapia (head, scales, bones guts). As long I do it in my test farm in my backyard it isn't a disaster. And when I go commercial I always keep them contained in the Duckweed grow beds where I want to produce their food. May be safes me producing the food at all ;-) btw, I have made with Duckweed the experience that Tilapia grows much faster than without Duckweed in the mix. Lucky here in Thailand Duckweed grows like mad and I can keep up with the production I need (40% in my Fish Food, the rest Eggs, low quality veggies and Tilapia parts added with some fish garbage from the local fish market, (cooked off cause)
  6. they are looking great and sure juicy, please let us know how they taste compared to soil grown ones. I gave some imported peppers a try but most of my 'immigrated' chilies (beside the Thai ones) had no fire at all, the taste was blunt and waterish.
  7. Hi Johnny, I have started over 5 years ago with a trial system and also learned a lot of lessons. Check my post. I have still 2 years more before I am going fully commercial and still there are many questions like. Growing fish is "just" breaking even,, waste management,,, Deepwater Grow beds, making them deeper as usual and grow red claw crayfish in them... fruit trees in huge dutch buckets... swapping tropical seeds from other countries might create a market niece... and so on and on... Also I am looking for more answers which I think to know, but may be they are just not right..
  8. Hi all, I am a newbie here and can feel what happened to Dr Mark R McMurtry recently. I had made the same experience 15 years ago as I left Germany. I was stripped to the bone and left my home country with about 2300$ in my pocket to Thailand to build up a new life. And I was lucky to meet the best wife in the world (for me). She took me aside, gave me shelter and rigged me up by changing me from a jobless and divorced mechanic to a successful offshore consultant. She was teaching me that i should not look at my low education but use my full by mother nature given potential. But she also thought me that the luck comes to you only for the reason to give a little bit forward to others who need luck. In Thailand its a meal for the day, a helping hand, medicine or a smile to people in need. BUT, as an expat I have only a debit card to use at ATMs and pay pal I not use for the reason that I am working every year as much possible in the offshore industry to get a solid pension together and more of that I am since 5 years turning every coin to build up a commercial Aquaponics Farm as my days in the offshore are counted in a few years. The bones are asking to retire. Hence the Satellite connections on Vessels do not allow any bank transfers or transfers via pay pal. My favorite way of transfer is Western Union when I am onshore. Are there any other options to give my share to it, even it is only a little amount I can spare? Please provide details because it looks my job here is completed after over 300 days nonstop. In the coming days I can fly back to my lovely wife. Cheers Will
  9. The answer is: "think big" I made a lots of mistakes in the beginning choosing too small pipes and finally had to change them. If you have cut a hole in your bucket or tank with a hole saw, that is a real struggle to change a small hole to a bigger one.. Here a flow rate chart I use and then still I add a number up.
  10. Hi all, I had in my test system the idea to throw some rafts in the fish tank and see if the red claw crayfish is really eating the plants and roots. The opposite was the case. The rotten roots were accurately clipped and the white roots have been stimulated as the leafy green were growing faster than in the pipe system. Has anyone tried to grow red claws in his/her raft system? Or are there commercial growers doing it? I think it wouldn't matter to make for my planned Deep water beds a change and instead making them 30 cm raise them to 60cm. More water should even benefit the balance, doesn't it?
  11. Hello, we are planning after more than 5 years of trials, ups and downs, lessons learned , buffalo stomping through the greenhouse and developing a taste bud for red claw crayfish plus investing above 20.000 USD for the trial system (was well worth it, just to mention we had made a commercial system without this) to go commercial building a 10000 sqm greenhouse incl 12000 sqm outside area. Still there have been a few things answered by doing, but still the "i believe that is the right thing to do" is covered in doubts like "why nobody did this before. First I think you want to see pictures? here you go: That was early 2015, I tried to explain my wife and her family whats all about modern farming. Lots of laughing, not believing faces and the Palm Tree !!! NO WAY that thing should be cut off !! So I had to engineer (I am one with a hydroponic farming history in the Netherlands) my pipes around that bloody tree... 2 Buckets with Red Claw Crayfish were waiting that the water get filtered. Hence, wrong start at all. middle 2015 a lightning struck that bloody Palm tree and killed it instantly.. The first redesign was made because the static around the palm tree was just always going out of shape.. Here we end up with almost not controllable values, was it ammonium or nitrate, ph level and algae growth and clogged filters, pipes, pumps and and and.. name it we been there. end 2015 til mid 2016. My wife and her Auntie became addicted and Google is also in Thailand a good thing to burn money when you have Aquaponics questions. Both challenged me to make this and that In total 4 Upgrades: Ebb flood grow beds, a 4 filter system, grow up buckets, 2 more fish tanks as the crayfish population started to increase drastically. Meanwhile I started to let the Crays join our monthly BBQ Party and also Salad and Co were growing as mad. So beside my wife and her Auntie also some Nephews and Nieces joined that game and Google brought in more suggestions. End 2016: The crayfish made not enough dirt to get all plants fed and they were so lonely on the BBQ. We needed Tilapia to add more variety on the Grill. IBC Cubes for 20$ a go were just the most budget friendly investment since a long time. 2017 Thailands sun is a killer and so the shading roofs had to be implemented for a better harvest and because of the fact that Chilies and Tomatoes are a main dish in Thailand which kept hopping out of the pipes and ebb flow beds filled with clay pellets, a Dutch bucket system had to be built. Done end of 2017: Just to find out that.... Black tomatoes are only on the seed pack black... But the crayfish did well and a set of 20 aquariums had to be built and because the backyard was stuffed my office desk had to be moved and a part of the living room became a Sea-world. Last Picture: Where to go with all the poo? We tried our Bananas and a Vine called in Thailand Chicken Flower. Bang on. People looking for Lucky Lottery Numbers in the HUGE Banana Trees and wedding couples making Photos under the Flowers for good luck.. Enough is enough: Auntie showed us her land and after we realized she has a huge plot that plan continues: The Commercial System is now a daily part of my engineering tasks when bad weather days keep me off my real job. That will be 2020 the target. 100m x 80m greenhouse and also a copious outside grow area with all the family loves to have.. Bangkok is close and there is a good market for BIO products. Now my first question built on an experience we made by accident: The Red Claw Crays are everywhere and for the commercial System we want to raise them beside Tilapia right into the grow beds. The reason is we had some rafts floating in the fish tanks and against our fear they will rampage the roots of the plants they did well as free labor. They maintained the roots by clipping out every rotten piece and stimulated the growth of any plant. So why nobody ever tried to grow the Red Claws directly in the deep water grow beds? It will be a cheap labor, more harvest of Crays and bigger sizes as well. The poo has to be removed to avoid root rot. This will be the next step in our Trial System: First we scrap the Pipes as they are just trouble makers prone to clog and when we have a power cut the plants get "sad" with hanging leaves in minutes. The pipes will be exchanged by grow beds (with crayfish under the rafts) and in the center of the sloped grow bed we will make a pipe with holes to suck form time to time the poo (and small fry) off. I am looking forward for comments: bad or good all are helpful. Cheers all for reading.. Willroy
  12. Hey Hooo! I am Willroy from Thailand, Eastern Seaboard.. I am since more than 5 years working and upgrading (destroying and rebuilding ;-) on a trial System to get my Thai Family (I am Dutch) out of rural farming into the modern world. After a lot of laughing they are now well into it and I made the decision after giving them a hard time with a test system to plan a commercial system on our land. By the time going they start loving it.. I have found out many things, some by learning some the hard way and still there are questions that I will raise in the commercial forum.. May be there are some people here that can help.. here we go..