Recycled Timber, Aquaponics & Trout
Author: David Boxwell
I started my aquaponics project earlier this year. I wanted to grow sustainably and organically growing fish and veggies in one system. The only proviso was that it couldn't look industrial, from my wife. I managed to sell my bird aviary which was used as capital and utilised the space. I obtained some free besser blocks, lots of free timber and some IBC totes, and an old spa tub. After a steep learning curve and some valuable tuiton from an aquaponics forum, I now have set up a viable veggie and fish farm that is growing in gravel and being fed from the fish waste.
The veggies use the nitrates produced by the bacteria growing in the gravel and the veggies filter the water that is pumped continuously through the system resulting in a complete mini environment. The worm farm that I built also has added to the system by adding worms to the gravel beds to further break down fish waste and also to be a supplemental food for the fish. The worms also break down all my organic veggie waste and fruit scraps as well as producing worm tea to add as a natural fertiliser to The aquaponics and producing worm castings for my wicking beds in the recycled timber lined spa tub. The water from the radial flow filter feeds the wicking bed and makes the whole system water wise, using anout 10% of the water a normal soil garden would use.
The recycled timber was fabricated to line the IBC totes giving it a rustic look. The trout started off as fingerlings in May and I am now eating them in September. I have done a couple of stuffed trout recipes and last week I tried some smoked trout. Very yummy.
On the plate