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PostPosted: May 28th, '17, 01:00 
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Lookin' good. Another benefit for my decision to retire because of both of our health conditions here is now we're both here almost always. Not to mention I'm the only one digging up here, smiles. :D

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PostPosted: May 29th, '17, 09:32 
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Brian you have been busy... That backyard looked pretty empty last time I saw it on your ferrocement threads... Now it's filling up! Makes me wish I had just built raft beds in my garden instead of dirt beds, but maybe I will convince the wife to do more outdoors dwc beds sometime down the road. I will keep my eyes open for good deals on large tanks in the meanwhile :)

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PostPosted: May 29th, '17, 10:40 
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I am not sure raft beds are any better than gravel beds, sand beds or dirt beds. I just wanted to try it out.

The plants in my rafts are starting to show yellow. Generally i think this is iron deficiency but I had added a couple of tablespoons of iron chelate about 3 weeks ago so i didnt think that was the cause... i tested ph and nitrates to find was 7.9 and nitrates are 5ppm.

i know plants like ph lower (high ph can inhibit plants from uptaking iron even though there is iron in the water) but i usually dont worry much about my ph being a little on the high side... however. 7.9 is high even for me. I think i must have added a bunch of limestone or whatever when replanting the gravel bed because (when i added in a lot of new expanded shale.)

I have started dosing with muratic acid to start bringing down the ph.. i will try to get PH stabilized in the 7.2-7.4 range over the next week. I also added another tablespoon for iron chelate but this time more local to the raft beds than in the sump like last time.

5.0 ppm nitrates was also surprisingly low to me. But i guess the system is still maturing. In the test kit that is an orangish color but in 8 years every nitrate test i have ever done my aquaponics systems have always been some shade of red (20ppm or higher) ... So i have moved the rest of the fish from my indoor/garage rearing tanks outside and I have started trying to feed more. I still feed twice a day and no more than they will eat in 5 or so minutes... The good news is Is the temps are still warming up and the fish have been getting more comfortable coming to the surface when i am standing near the tank so they have been eating more.

I have also ordered some organic magnesium sulfate but i havent added it yet. I want to see if lowering the PH and increasing feeding solves the problem.. I am already changing two variables i want to still have kind of reasonable idea of what step solved the problem as opposed to changing a bunch of variables and having no idea.
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PostPosted: May 29th, '17, 10:42 
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more pictures
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PostPosted: May 29th, '17, 12:37 
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Makes a lot of sense not changing too many things at once. I'm loving my AP aquarium and Koi pond journals. Removes most gray areas for me. I'm dosing mostly in foliar sprays for deficiencies in the DWC. I see results or not and note it for later so I can see trends, or not. Haha sorry, I'm not even certain that made sense to me.

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Specs: 2600 gallon (347.56cf) FT. 44cf GBs. 200 gal (26.7cf) ST. 15 gal (2cf) RFF. 50 gal (6.7cf) biofilter.
2017 season 100 Brook trout fingerlings. 5 Comets.
:?


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PostPosted: May 31st, '17, 06:02 
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Love the DWC beds (raceways?)! I'd like to know more about how you built those, unless I simply missed that post...


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PostPosted: May 31st, '17, 13:18 
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Shelgeyr...

well, i didnt brag about how i built those dwc beds because i did it on the cheap and i am not sure how long it will last so i didnt want to express that "this is the way to build diy dwc beds" because frankly.. this may be "how NOT to build dwc beds"

but basically it's a cedar wood frame with 2x4's and cattle fencing.

I tried to level my back yard with cushion sand.. they arent "level" by the definition of the word but i am content with how close i got...
let me know if you need more info.. i can probably dig up more pictures but i think it will look like more of the same...


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PostPosted: May 31st, '17, 20:22 
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bcotton wrote:
Shelgeyr...

well, i didnt brag about how i built those dwc beds because i did it on the cheap and i am not sure how long it will last so i didnt want to express that "this is the way to build diy dwc beds" because frankly.. this may be "how NOT to build dwc beds"

but basically it's a cedar wood frame with 2x4's and cattle fencing.

I tried to level my back yard with cushion sand.. they arent "level" by the definition of the word but i am content with how close i got...
let me know if you need more info.. i can probably dig up more pictures but i think it will look like more of the same...


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Actually this is pretty damn awesome Brian. Many of us would do the exact same thing because of needs. It's brilliant. Hobbies even ones as important as backyard food production are still bound by simple rules of means motivation and opportunity. As I get older and hopefully wiser I'm not just thinking my builds only need to last as long as I will physically be able to maintain them, however time does factor in with cost and availability of materials here in our remote location. Great to see and know why you didn't expound on the style of construction.

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:wave1: Brian's AP
Specs: 2600 gallon (347.56cf) FT. 44cf GBs. 200 gal (26.7cf) ST. 15 gal (2cf) RFF. 50 gal (6.7cf) biofilter.
2017 season 100 Brook trout fingerlings. 5 Comets.
:?


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PostPosted: Jun 1st, '17, 01:22 
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Lowering the PH seems to have helped in some areas.



The new growth on the cucumbers are very green. The tomatoes never really "looked bad" but i think  they look better. The pepper plants however have not improved and are even getting worse with wilting leaves and brown spots. I do see ants on the raft so maybe its aphids, i will try to investigate better but i didnt have a lot of time this morning.

If anyone knows what the issue is from the pictures, i am open to ideas.
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Feed training Crappie
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PostPosted: Jun 1st, '17, 15:04 
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Sure looks like an iron deficiency to me Brian. I'd spray apply some iron.


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PostPosted: Jun 3rd, '17, 02:04 
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this is roughly two weeks growth on the greens grow beds (kale, chard, bok choi, pak, choi, lettuce, cabbage, etc.) There's been uneven growth and a lot of caterpillar damage to some plants.. specifically the kales. I have treated with liquid BT and most plants seem to be recovering. I am not sure on the uneven growth. The ones on the sides are growing much slower than the ones in the middle. I am thinking it may have something to do with air stone placement.

Also, inspired by rob bob. I am experimenting with root pouches in 4x4 foot grow beds. in the future i will call them "modular wicking beds" cause that's how i view them. I plan to grow some small trees, potatoes, sweet potatos, herbs , etc in the root pouches. Things that can be a pain to manage or harvest in a large soil grow bed or in the ground.



Because of the liners, i have a lot of options. If i end up not liking the root pouches i can always fill them in like real wicking beds. Also, i plan to try "kratky method" hydroponics in them. I am putting these in a lot of the open places that dont have aquaponics or other projects.. In total i expect there will be 12 throughout the yard.
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PostPosted: Jun 8th, '17, 21:17 
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bcotton wrote:
Shelgeyr...

well, i didnt brag about how i built those dwc beds because i did it on the cheap and i am not sure how long it will last so i didnt want to express that "this is the way to build diy dwc beds" because frankly.. this may be "how NOT to build dwc beds"

but basically it's a cedar wood frame with 2x4's and cattle fencing.

I tried to level my back yard with cushion sand.. they arent "level" by the definition of the word but i am content with how close i got...
let me know if you need more info.. i can probably dig up more pictures but i think it will look like more of the same...


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Thanks, Brian!

If I can come up with some intelligent questions, I'll be sure to ask, but for now I just admire how you did this.


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PostPosted: Jun 8th, '17, 22:36 
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after working to get the PH down below 7, the peppers are getting better.. they look like hell because they are dropping all of he yellow leaves but the new growth is dark green.. i estimate it will take a couple of weeks for them to start looking normal but everything else is growing great.


With the exception of the pak choi the greens are a little leggy, presumable from the heat. I have ordered some more heat tolerant varieties of greens to start rotating into the rafts as i start to harvest what i have grown
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PostPosted: Jun 13th, '17, 00:24 
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The pak choi seemed to have gotten ready overnight... This morning when i wen to feed the fish I saw one of them starting to make seed pods. I will cut them down asap and i may let the ones starting to go to seed go to seed. The other stuff is still behind and not bolting so they may end up being true to type.

These are the first cucumbers of the season. 3 of them from the aquaponics and one from the raised bed. (i know i am like 2 months behind, trying to catch up!)



The plan is to try some lacto fermentation with the pak choi and the cukes.
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Feed training Crappie
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PostPosted: Jun 14th, '17, 00:17 
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behind? two months? Shoot we're technically only in our second week of garden season for the year up here... =)

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