View Full Version : Growbeds
25th June 2010, 07:49
Hey guys, just finished watching the Aquaponics Secrets dvd, which I loved even more than the original (which was very good also). I'm looking at starting my first system sometime in the near future. I've found a fish tank locally (High Country 350 gallon water trough), but now I'm trying to find something good to work as growbeds. I prefer larger beds if possible so I don't have to run as much piping and bell siphons, etc. Any advice?
25th June 2010, 18:13
Hi Brandon, Welcome to the Forum. A while back I read a post about someone in the US using cattle troughs as grow beds in aquaponics. There are a number of manufactures making feed and water troughs for farm stock out of concrete, plastic and metal at an affordable price. Google "Cattle troughs" through Google Images and see if any of the designs tickle your fancy. Good to hear you enjoyed Murray's DVD.
25th June 2010, 19:50
Hi the tubs are Rubber made tubs available from harber freight
26th June 2010, 01:56
I was thinking of using water troughs. High country has a 350 gallon round tank I was going to use for fish, but the largest 12 inch troughs are only 55 gallons in size, so that means I would have to buy 6 to get to a 1:1 ratio of fish tank volume to growbed volume.
26th June 2010, 06:35
Don't stress too much about the 1:1 ratio. It is just a guide. If you have fewer grow beds you will have to stock with fewer fish.
In a home system the grow beds are the bio-filter that we just happen to grow veggies in.......
so smaller bio-filter/s (grow beds) can only deal with the waste from fewer fish (and grow fewer veggies)
26th June 2010, 07:43
I wondered about reducing the number of fish. Thanks Murray.
6th July 2010, 05:09
It seems to me that the 1:1 ratio would have some issues. Maybe there is something that i missed but if the growbed was as big as the tank wouldn't it empty the fish tank everytime the growbed filled? Please let me know what to do. I'm super psyched about aquaponics. Thanks:carrot:
6th July 2010, 06:00
The gravel grow bed will only take around 1/3 of its volume in water...the rest is gravel.
If you have multiple small grow beds, which is almost always the case, then when fitted with auto siphons, they do not all drain at the same time....so there is even less water out of the fish tank at any given time.
6th July 2010, 10:28
In cases where muliple growbeds are installed/desired... you can collect the return from the growbeds into a sump... which is then pumped back to the fish tank... by a float activated pump in the sump tank...
Some earlier systems had both a pump in the fish tank, activated by a timer.... and a sump pump, float activated...
Newer systems only have a single pump in the sump tank... a constant height in the fish tank... which supplies the growbeds by gravity...
This was originally known as "Chift Pist".... constant height in fish tank, pump in sump tank.... but was shortened to "Chop"... constant height, one pump...
The other method of supplying multiple growbeds, without a sump.... requires an indexing valve that sequentially fills each growbed in rotation...
6th July 2010, 10:39
you guys are spectacular. It's so obvious now. I like the idea of the chop system despite the fact that it may be a little more complex to set up. I like the idea of having the grow beds a little lower. Thanks again.:p
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