Aquaponics 101 – Veg up, Fish down.

The tomatoes that I spoke about last month have grown like crazy and have just started flowering, so soon we’ll have a very large crop which we’ll use in the restaurant. Here’s what they look like now.

tomatoes04031

Can you see the massive banana tree growing quite happily in an Aquaponic environment in the top right of the image?

Aquaponically grown tomatoes (or any fruit or veg for that matter) tastes far better than any store-bought produce.  The fruit itself is not as uniform or pretty as a commercially produced product, but the TASTE sure makes up for it.

Here is an older bush which is producing a steady stream of fresh tomatoes.  Now can you see why the supports are so important?

tomatoes204032

Also can you notice how I have trimmed all low branches very severely and only allowed leaves to grow above the level of the first bamboo cross-supports? Last year my tomatoes suffered from a variety of fungal ailments because it got too damp and humid under the tomato bushes. Pruning severely allows a flow of fresh air under the bushes and so far (touch wood) I have had no problems whatsoever.

On the fish side, things haven’t been going so well. Soon after using the new incubator I noticed that the baby fry were starting to display strange behavior and then dying a day or two later. We subsequently discovered that they were suffering from an infection of gill flukes and although they can be treated I decided to cull this batch of about 500 babies, sterilise everything and start again. There are loads of eggs and babies ready to be harvested so hold thumbs for me.

The Incubator Mark #2 wasn’t a great success as I had the water set too hard and as the babies hatched the force of the water started to burst their egg sacs. I will persevere but I am going to have to be very careful with the flow rate.

Enough for now.

Synaptoman

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