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PostPosted: Jan 16th, '12, 17:39 
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SnowT wrote:

-- Need to be treated with something to stop them Rotting/termite's etc..[Is it Fish safe]
-- have to strong enough to take all that weight of media/water and plant's.
Need to be at a height that they get enough sun and are easy to work with/harvest..

Yes, those are precisedly the factors that I am considering.
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In your Pictures you have a space towards the fence.. Could you not have the grow-beds closer to the fence[still leaving enough room to get close to the fence to harvest] Thus giving you less height to deal with more access to the fish tank to watch your fish..
-- The first leg of the frame to sit where it is close to the house, but the second set of legs to Sit off the top edge closer to the fence.. this gives you a larger span[need to adjust the frame for strength]

The closer the grow bed gets to fence the more shade it will get in winter. I do not think shade problem is significant except in winter. In winter, I will have to grow something that does not require full sun. It may mean no vegie in winter.
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Could you use diffuser to help direct more light on to the grow area.. ie Mirror like surface's..

Diffuser is an interesting idea. I will be having poli roof on the table area, the right side of picture, not clearly shown. This poli roof is suntuf "diffused ice", which seems to have a very high light transmission (47%). The roof would look like a big fluro lamp. But The council rule does not allow me to cover all of my roof. So, I am having 50% white shade cloth on top of pond and plants in summer, to be removed in winter.

If the grow bed is raised as I plan, then there may be partial shade in winter. The lowest sun angle in Adelaide winter is 33 degree in mid day, I am told. I am not sure whether a grow bed with plant floor level at 47+90cm from ground is good enough to catch sun in winter. According to my estimate, may be OK, but just may be.

There is one more complication: my building (especially, living room) is designed to be heated by winter sun. So I should not raise grow bed to high in such a way it may block sun light to living room.

There are so many things to think about. But these issues are slowly conquered one by one by ingenuity.

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PostPosted: Jan 16th, '12, 18:23 
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It is such a pretty pond, it seems a shame to cover it up unless you need to to keep temps down.

What about the area at the end of some of the pictures, where it looks like the wall/fence is made of wooden planking? It looks like you already have shelves there and it looks like it gets good sun. You could go vertical in that area.

If you wanted to be over the fish pond, I think for aesthetics I would make it tiered rather than directly over it. Did you build the pond yourself? Could you make another tier above and behind it? It would look really pretty, shade the pond and get more sun than something level.

If you were just looking for functional, the metal tables would work fine but it sounds like you want something more if you were looking to make it a healing garden.

Good luck with the neighbors. It sounds like you have been patient and tried to be kind about it, but sometimes people will take advantage of that instead of being good neighbors themselves.


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PostPosted: Jan 16th, '12, 19:27 
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The top level of the shelf near the wooden stucture (rainwater tank) will be used for another grow bed eventually. This is the western side. If there is a high structure on this side, late afternoon sun will be blocked for the main growbed.

If the main (long) grow bed is located near house which is on the south side of pond, it will block winter sun to living room which has 12m long window. If, on the other hand, it is located near fence, it will have more shade from my Northern neighbour's house and solar panel.

So many things to think about (including the dispute with neighbour) even before getting into aquaponics!!
It is like a big puzzle. But, there will be a solution.

The design of an eco house was the first step, now it is a mini eco healing garden.

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- 5000L fish pond, 4 x 350L grow beds, 130 gold fish
- first system set up in Feb 2012, expansion in April

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PostPosted: Jan 17th, '12, 10:24 
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Hi Sejin

You live in our old stomping ground in Campbelltown... we even thought briefly about building in that village ...
Where did you get your fish from & how much?
Cheers

Stuart

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PostPosted: Jan 17th, '12, 11:15 
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Hi Sturt,

I wrote to you first.
But I got 30 SP from Solardome.
I would like to visit your place to see what you have.

Sejin

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- first system set up in Feb 2012, expansion in April

History to April 2, 2012:
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PostPosted: Jan 18th, '12, 15:23 
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Unfortunately we have no fish available at the moment... and if we do they won't be available until late in the season. We would never sell fish at that size ... it is possible they aren't even weaned. They should be on a .5mm feed or even a dust by the look of some of those fish.

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PostPosted: Jan 20th, '12, 00:41 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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MDF and normal ply will rot and warp if it gets even a little wet. Marine ply is water proof, but will cost a lot. I think it would cost more than just buying proper grow beds.

Whatever wood you use, you would need to add a pond liner of some kind as well, so that would add some extra cost.

I'd agree with trying to place your grow beds so that the are not directly over the top of the pond. It's a very attractive pond as it is, and it would be a shame to cover it all up. It's very easy to move water a bit further to return it to the pond, and if you built the grow beds behind the pond, and at either end, you could cover them in cane or something and keep the good looks of your system.

Also you could build some attractive grow beds from the same stone, and put them on the house side around any tables etc. Perhaps not suitable for a big tomato plant or for growing cucumber, but I think grow beds with things lettuce and herbs are a really nice thing to sit close to.

If you have the money, the safest and easiest way to do your grow beds is to buy them ready made in some form. Either proper grow beds, stock troughs, or blue barrels.

The test kit that most people use is the fresh water master kit, and you'll find that the shop link on the top of this web site is the best place to buy it from.here is a link to the actual product.

What are the dimensions of the shelving you have bought?

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PostPosted: Jan 20th, '12, 23:52 
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My ideas keep evolving: some ideas continue and some are modified.

Two drawing below give top and side view of a backyard garden that is 4.5m x 14m.
Of this ares both ends are used by two large rainwater tanks (3m x 1m x 2m (H)).

Of the area that is left four dominants features are:

1] pond (1,2m external width, 0.8m internal width, 5m long, 50cm below ground, 47cm above ground),
2] table area to be covered by poli roof (4.3m x 3.7m)
3] On South side, there is a living room with 12m wide window,
4] On North side, there is a fence with Northern neighbour whose building is 1m North of fence and 3m tall, and above roof is located a tall solar water heater panel (about 3m wide and 2m high at about 50 degree angle) which gives shade not only my garden but 2m deep inside my living room. My Norther neighbour agreed to move the solar panel by 1-1.5m North and lower the angle of panel.

In order to get sun light in winter, my main grow bed (GB 1) has to be elevated, but at the same time it should not move toward living room so that it does not give shade to my living room, and cannot move toward the fence if it is to avoid shading from neighbours building.

Under this condition, I am trying to make most of the given condition that I have. Raise grow beds 107cm 180cm above ground, towers, trays 92m, 70cm, and Nutrient Flow channels (2m above ground, above the table area covered by poli roof, 47% light transmission, diffused ice, to be tested for vegetable growing). I am at the moment waiting for the council approval for the poli roof.

A requirement for my aquaponics system plan is aesthetics of healing garden design.
Pond is the key festure is this garden. To put grow bed on the seat of the pond can block view of fishes. But I found that metal frame gives a fair bit of open space to look into pond especially when the bottom of grow bed is 60cm above the pond seat and there is a 40cm gap between two consecutive shelves. I have decided use only 3 shelves rather than 4. With 40cm gap between two shelves, 3 shelves result in 260cm long grow bed in place of 360cm. This means about a half of pond (2.5m) will remain uncovered by shelves. This is a compromise solution infulenced by readers' comments. Thanks everyone.

Sejin


Attachments:
File comment: Conceptual drawing 2
12-01-21 Healing aquaponic garden plan.jpg
12-01-21 Healing aquaponic garden plan.jpg [ 60.03 KiB | Viewed 2851 times ]

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My system:
- 5000L fish pond, 4 x 350L grow beds, 130 gold fish
- first system set up in Feb 2012, expansion in April

History to April 2, 2012:
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=11530&start=240#p322974
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PostPosted: Jan 21st, '12, 14:01 
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1] BYAP grow bed:
220 x 120 x 30 cm, $375, delivery cost for 2 to Adelaide = $200
Total cost for 2 delivered = $930 without stands

2] Murray's grow bed:
212 x 92 x 30 cm, $425, delivery cost to Adelaide $560 to depot.
Total cost for 2 delivered = $1410 without stands

For my purpose 92cm width would be better, but neither of them suits my shelf stand.
Us of commercial grow beds means work table is too high.

What would it cost if I made grow beds.
1] Grow bed 1 260 x 90 x 30 cm
2] Grow bed 2 & 3 180 x 60 x 30 cm

Structural particle board: 360 x 90 cm (only $37) may be used.
Three of them can be cut to make theee grow beds mentioned above.
See diagram.

LIner 1mm proliner:
Wrap external wall in order to avoid any water on particle board.

Grow bed 1:
width 260 +120= 380cm, 4.5 metre wide liner will have to be sued.
length 90 + 120 = 210cm, 2.5 metre wide liner will have to be used.
$97 / metre, $97 x 2,5m = $250

Grow bed 2 and 3:
width 180 +120 = 300cm, need to use 4.5m long liner.
length: 60 + 120 = 180, needs 2m long, means $200 for each of 180 x 60cm grow bed.

Three grow beds: particle board plus cutting cost: $150; $650 liner. $800 production costs for 3 grow beds. Labour cost not included.

Home made grow beds: made to measure, not too sure of quality of product.

Sejin


Attachments:
12-01-21 (3).jpg
12-01-21 (3).jpg [ 29.65 KiB | Viewed 2840 times ]

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My system:
- 5000L fish pond, 4 x 350L grow beds, 130 gold fish
- first system set up in Feb 2012, expansion in April

History to April 2, 2012:
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=11530&start=240#p322974
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PostPosted: Jan 21st, '12, 16:23 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Do know sketchup? It's a free 3d drawing program from google that al lot of people use for aquaponics design.

One very cool thing about it is that you can enter your position and it shows the suns angles and shadows throughout the year.

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PostPosted: Jan 21st, '12, 20:05 
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Will learn to use it some time soon.
Doesn't look too hard.

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My system:
- 5000L fish pond, 4 x 350L grow beds, 130 gold fish
- first system set up in Feb 2012, expansion in April

History to April 2, 2012:
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=11530&start=240#p322974


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PostPosted: Jan 21st, '12, 23:12 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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yeah, it's easy. And there are a stack of things already drawn like the BYAP grow beds etc. that you can download and drop into your plan.

You could also work out how low the solar heater next door needs to be :)

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My skills include being able to move slowly forward in time, and if I really concentrate, I can sometimes tell what I'm thinking.


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PostPosted: Jan 22nd, '12, 08:28 
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Two issue of shading in winter when sun is at its lowest angle:

1] shade from the solar panels on the Northern neighbour's roof.
2] shade of my grow bed on my living room.

The height of grow bed as a work bench also needs to be considered.


Attachments:
12-01-22 (2).tif
12-01-22 (2).tif [ 124.29 KiB | Viewed 2808 times ]

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My system:
- 5000L fish pond, 4 x 350L grow beds, 130 gold fish
- first system set up in Feb 2012, expansion in April

History to April 2, 2012:
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=11530&start=240#p322974
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PostPosted: Jan 22nd, '12, 09:37 
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My starting point is that, hoping to have something like koys, I already built a beautiful pond, but have now filled with 30 gold fishes. But my idea has changed to aquaponics.

Re your comment about Koi. Please note that, although you may be able to get your hands on koi in Adelaide, they are illegal to keep in South Australia.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010 ... e=adelaide

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PostPosted: Jan 22nd, '12, 10:17 
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Yes, I became aware of the law. That is why my encounter with aquaponics was timely.

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My system:
- 5000L fish pond, 4 x 350L grow beds, 130 gold fish
- first system set up in Feb 2012, expansion in April

History to April 2, 2012:
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=11530&start=240#p322974


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