Summer of 2013 Garden and Aquaponics update

It has been a long time since there has been a blog post but there has been a lot of activity.  After another successful winter it was time to come outside again and to get to work. There were several things to work on, 1) To have another successful roof garden with some improvements. 2) To improve the outdoor aquaponics systems filters.  3) to improve the vertical aqua piping 3) To develop an Ebb and Flow system 4) To create an Aeroponic system on the 3rd floor.

Container Garden

Lets start with the container garden.  It is going great so far and this season has yielded quarts and quarts of Strawberries, pints of Blueberries, lots of lettuce, carrots, radishes and herbs as well as collards and beans.  We are moving into tomato and pepper time and that makes me very excited!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Im very happy to say that I put the abundance of Fruit to good use and made Strawberry, Blueberry and Mango (not from the garden) Sorbet, so I will be able to enjoy all summer.

Im also happy to report that there are 3 new ladies at the Urban Lab.

2013 Aquaponics system

 

Another year and more improvements to the outdoor Aquaponics system. This year I added a whole new level and some new ways of growing. As you will see the fish are still in a 275 gallon IBC tank under the stairs. That water now pumps up to the roof of the second level where it goes through a 2 stage filtering system (through a 30 and 20 gallon adapted garbage cans) at that point Half the water come out and flows into the system that runs along the side of the house. This continous flow of water also filters the water and helps re-oxygenate the water for  the fish before it goes back into the tank. In the second stage of the filter is a pump and every 7 minutes that pump comes on for 30 seconds and pumps water up to the 3rd floor deck where you can see I have built a new system. That system is an aeroponic system that is basically gutters with small pipes inside with sprayers, so it sprays the roots of the plants. That water all drains into one pipe which them comes down to a tub that you see next to the filters. That is an ebb and flow system. So essentially every 7 minutes that tub fills half way with water and waters the plants in there before draining back into the Fish tank. Last year I had about 50 grow holes or units, this year I have over 200! And these different types of growing are better for different types of plants. it is a lot of fun. In addition I have about 50 Tilapia that are over a pound now and will be 2 pounds each and perfect for eating in the next month. Come on down!!!