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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 08:50 
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This is my first system and I am still trying to tweek and perfect it. I live on the second floor of an apartment so I don't have much room to work with but wanted something where I could grow various herbs. And I live in Arizona so it's getting pretty hot so keeping the fish and plants out of the sun and cool is getting tricky. Here are some pictures of the process and final product.


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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 08:52 
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Here are some more pictures of how the water drains


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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 08:57 
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The barrel didn't hold water like I wanted. I soaked it and although it expanded, water still leaked from knots and cracks in the wood, hence the unsightly sealant, but it sure does work really well.


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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 09:02 
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Finished product


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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 09:04 
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Basil progress


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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 09:09 
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I have two main problems -

1) Since I'm in Arizona and the barrel is on the balcony the water gets really hot! I figure the only real thing I can do that isn't incredibly expensive is to just scrap the barrel and get a bigger tank. Any other ideas would be great!

2) The only plant that is growing is Basil which is the first plant after the hose bib. Is Basil just a quick growing plant and the rest will grow soon or is it the only plant getting the ammonia from the tank?

Any help would be great!


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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 10:37 
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(01)

A larger tank would be your best solution but with what you have, shading and insulating the tank would be a slight help.

(02)

From your photo it looks like it's the wettest area in your GB's and germinating the seeds quicker than anywhere else. You may need to water your other seeds with a watering can until they germinate and their roots reach the damper section of your media and are self watering.

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PostPosted: Jun 24th, '14, 12:20 
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Joblow is right, you'll need a larger tank to keep the water temp more stable. Insulation won't hurt either.

I'm a little paranoid about the tap you're using at the top. After a few thousand times of recirculating the water through it, it might release some toxins that the fish don't like, I just can't remember the types of metals that are bad. Others will know better than me.

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PostPosted: Jun 25th, '14, 00:22 
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Thanks for the suggestions. I think I'll just have to get a 30-40 gallon proper fish tank. Hopefully that will help keep temperature down and help the fish stay happy.

So here's another question I'm not too sure about. After measuring the pH levels, it seems like the water is usually slightly acidic. What can I do to bring it up to be more neutral? Could this be a side effect of not having enough fish?


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PostPosted: Jun 25th, '14, 10:26 
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It would be good to measure the pH of your source water first.
The nitrification process actually lowers the pH over time, so feeding more fish would eventually make the pH even lower.

What exactly are your pH measurements?
Slightly acidic is good for nutrient absorption


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PostPosted: Jun 25th, '14, 10:59 
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I'd say it measures between 5 and 6, hard to tell exactly since my pH test works off of colors.


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