How much water to plants? how often and how long?

26 posts in this topic

the solids will break down and go through the entire system if not removed, the oxygen in the water will drop from the whole system.  The solids can be processed in the system at the expense  of fish growth. Some fish can turn vegetable matter into protien such as tilapia and carp.   Higher protien foods increase growth rates with diminishing returns.  Fish have one of the best food conversion rates of most farm livestock with up to 1:1 being possible as a best case scenario, though the best I've been able to pull off personally is 1:1.3 ratio of commercial feed, but I was supplementing with food I grew and did not track the weight of duckweed/azolla I was feeding.  However, that is with my greenwater system which operates differently from a true aquaponics system and only works with a few types of fish.


A separate aerobic digester has been touted by some to greatly increase plant growth as the breakdown takes about 35 days according to some sources.


I had an indoor setup that I raised 45 lbs of tilapia in a     75 gallon tank, but had much greater volume of filtration.  It's really a ratio of filtration to fish, more than volume of water to fish.  That's an oversimplification, but is more correct to say 1 lb of fish to x volume of filtration than 1 lb of fish to x volume of water.  


I strongly encourage you to read more on earthan groups website on solids filtration to gain a better understanding. Before voices like him and gary came along talking about the virtues of filtration, there were constant threads of  "help my system is x weeks old and my fish are dying".   Raising some fish in a pond is vastly different than raising fish in an artificial tank.    The water cress and tomatoes are one way to removed built of nutrients from system, but there are many others. Be wary of mint as it can quickly take over planter trays.

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