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 Post subject: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 12th, '15, 17:19 
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Hi,

I am rather new to aquaponics. I successfully built my first small system. It is running now for about 6 Month, with interruptions and design changes of course. I recently added a filtration system (sponges attached to the in and outlets + mini swirl filter). The plants are growing, but not as well as I was hoping. I hope you guys can give me some advice on how to tweak my system. I mainly want to grow herbs that i can use in my kitchen.

here are some pictures.

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File comment: My system.
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File comment: I am growing Koriander, Basil, Mint, and tobacco ( below the plastic bottle) . the strawberry and salvia plants were cut from the garden and transplanted into the system about 1 week ago. I hope they will grow roots.
IMG_20150612_103632_075-640x640.jpg
IMG_20150612_103632_075-640x640.jpg [ 74.95 KiB | Viewed 3598 times ]
Attachment:
File comment: 1 guppy, 4 Neons and 3 small catfish.
5w submersible pump, without filtermaterial.

IMG_20150612_103712_215-640x640.jpg
IMG_20150612_103712_215-640x640.jpg [ 56.07 KiB | Viewed 3598 times ]
Attachment:
File comment: I added this mini swirl filter about 1 week ago. Water comes diretly from the bottom of the growbed and flows into the tank.
IMG_20150612_103725_482-640x640.jpg
IMG_20150612_103725_482-640x640.jpg [ 56.51 KiB | Viewed 3598 times ]
Attachment:
File comment: Main outlet from the Growbed
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IMG_20150612_103740_672-640x640.jpg [ 45.89 KiB | Viewed 3598 times ]
Attachment:
File comment: 85w energy saving lamp
IMG_20150612_103829_928-640x640.jpg
IMG_20150612_103829_928-640x640.jpg [ 42.72 KiB | Viewed 3598 times ]


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 13th, '15, 01:07 
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Welcome to the forum :thumbright:


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 14th, '15, 05:03 
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My basil and koriander look rather pale. Does this look like an iron deficiency? I'm not adding iron to the system yet and prefer to find a different solution.
Could it be enough to add phosphorus acid to the water to lower down the pH to 6-7 ? It should be easier for the plant to consume the available iron for in low pH water. And tap water always includes small amounts of iron. Would the low amounts of iron in my tank water be enough for my plants if I just lower the pH? I am adding around 0.5l of fresh water every 2 days. The ph is now around 8. Way too high I think.
Another question, is the gravel in my tank benefical or rather not?

Thankss


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 14th, '15, 06:54 
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Take a look at which leaves are pale. Are they the younger or the older leaves? Some nutrients are mobile others are not so mobile.

Mobile and Immobile Nutrients -
Mobile Nutrients - Deficiencies show on old growth first
Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Molybdenum, Magnesium and Zinc

Immobile Nutrients - Deficiencies show on new growth first
Iron, Copper, Manganese, Chlorine, Cobalt, Boron, Calcium, Sulfur

The most commonly seen deficiencies in AP are probably potassium and iron. You could have a bit of both going on. Maxicrop or Seasol would help with the potassium. Maxicrop plus Iron applied as a spray would help with both.

Yes, lowering the pH would help with iron availability or you can spray on Maxicrop plus Iron to avoid the pH lockout in the system water and just wait for nitrification to bring down the pH for you. Changes to pH should be done in increments of no more than 0.4 pH units at one time. It's better to adjust the top up water to 6.5 pH, let it stand for a few hours to make sure the pH is stable and finally add it to the system. This will gradually adjust the pH of the system with each top up addition so in your case you'd adjust the 0.5 L you're adding every two days. I usually use Hydrochloric acid but phosphoric acid will work (might give you an algae bloom though).

Hope this is what you wanted to know.


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 15th, '15, 04:02 
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thanks for the fast reply,

how low can natural nitrifications bring down the pH?
is it possible to put old rusty nails or something into the fishtank to help with iron availability?


my waterlevel is constantly 1/3 of the growbed high, the pump is connected to a timer that turns off every 2 hours for 30minutes. I havent seen any systems like that, but it would be difficult to take out all the plants and stones to change this and it seems to work....should i change the tubing and built it into a regular flood and drain system with bellsyphon, or just leave it like that?




and the last question :D
is the gravel in the fishtank benificial to the system or not?

thanks for your help :)


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 15th, '15, 13:56 
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The nitrification process can bring the pH down into the 5 to 6 range but by doing this it stops nitrification. FYI With the API test kits (which many people here use) it only measures down to 6 so it's tough to tell how low the pH actually is when you have a reading of 6.

Rusty nails aren't going to do any good if the pH is too high.

Sounds like you're doing what we would call timed flood and drain. It used to be more common and a fair number of people here have done it. You're fine to leave it as is the only thing I will mention is because you're only getting about 1/3 to 1/2 of the media wet it reduces your filtration by quite a bit since only the dampened media provides any filtration

Gravel in the tank is a mixed bag - I don't recommend it though because it accumulates solids in the fish tank. Where you really want the solids going is to the grow beds or a solids filter of some kind, that is outside the fish tank. The gravel is capable of adding some filtration if it's well aerated but I'd definitely put it elsewhere.

Hope this helps


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 15th, '15, 16:10 
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okay cool, thanks scotty ;)

going to do some adjustments during the week.


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 24th, '15, 20:22 
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Removed the gravel from the fishtank and bought a Test kit.
Growth is still moderate, but okay. Gonna add some Iron soon, maybe try Bio Bizz Alga Mic too. And it seems that I need to lower my pH . Nitrification seems to take place, but my pH is not dropping yet. Going to use Hydrochloric Acid probably.

pH 8
Nitrate 10mg/l
Nitrites 0-0,5mg/l
Ammonia 0
Iron 0-0.1mg/l
PO4 5-10 mg/l





Gesendet von meinem XT910 mit Tapatalk


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 25th, '15, 01:55 
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Normally I would suggest this - You might want to salt the water to 1 PPT for nitrite poisoning and to help the fish with stress. 1ppt = 1KG per 1000L or 1gm per L.

The strawberries will likely die if you use the salt though. I think with the low level of nitrites you have the fish will be OK anyway so I'd just leave it alone for now.

3aqaqaq wrote:
Gonna add some Iron soon


:thumbright: Remember because of the high pH it matters how the iron is added. If you're going to add to the system water Fe-DTPA iron chelate is probably the way to go. If you have something else like Maxicrop plus iron, dilute it and spray it on (usually the package will tell you the dilution).

Cheers


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 25th, '15, 02:55 
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thanks for tip on FE-DTPA. Gonna keep an eye in the nitrite levels. By salt you mean regular kitchen salt?
could my plants become unhealthy to eat due to permanent high nitrite levels? my basil tasted strange when I tried it, kind of bitter and minty. But maybe that's because of the deficiencies

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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 25th, '15, 04:37 
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The salt is regular salt but un-iodized and without caking agents. Sometimes sea salt from the bulk bins at the grocery fits the bill. People with large systems often use pool salt. There are some other sources I can't think of at the moment :dontknow: .

I think the mint taste is because of the basil being adjacent to the mint. Not sure about the bitter taste but I doubt it's from the nitrites and you should be safe with the low amounts of nitrite, I wouldn't hesitate to eat these but I'm not an expert on this subject. Nitrites are used as preservatives in Sausage at much higher levels. I can tell you that the nitrites are converted to nitrate and these are then converted into plant protein so except under conditions of low growth the plants will have low levels. Plant levels are usually higher in drought or during winter when light levels are low. There is a lot of research going on about this sort of thing.


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 Post subject: Re: 3aqaqaq first System
PostPosted: Jun 26th, '15, 00:46 
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here is the site i got my gear from-they have everything you need(iron)

you were asking about biobizz yeah?

anyway- i would probably drop the light a bit closer to the plants you have a fan there so shouldn't be too hot

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