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Hydroponics Got soil? No? Well you came to the right place. This forum is for discussions of all hydroponics related discussions. Discuss techniques, media, equipment, lighting, and all other on-topic discussions of hydroponics.


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Old 08-04-2009, 05:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hydroponics for begginers

As I dont know allmost nothing about hydroponics can somebody expllain basic procedure and equipment needed for start.
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:52 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

Basic Concepts of Hydroponics...
There are 6 basic types of hydroponic systems; Wick, Water Culture, Ebb and Flow (Flood & Drain), Drip (recovery or non-recovery), N.F.T. (Nutrient Film Technique) and Aeroponic.

There are hundreds of variations on these basic types of systems, but all hydroponic methods are a variation (or combination) of these six.

Ebb and flow- Simple, reliable and the most common way to grow plants hydroponically. A nutrient reservoir periodically fills the grow tray to hydrate the soilless grow substrate, providing nourishment to the plants.

Aeroponics- Plant roots are suspended in air within a grow tray while roots are misted by a high-pressure pump providing a super oxygenated environment to the root system, thus achieving accelerated growth rates. Plants also excel by being propagated this way. This is a great feed method for rapid growth rates and for the inspection of bare plant roots.

Top Feed Drip- Emits nutrient solution through drip lines during periodic intervals. The grow substrate generally will hold more air space than an ebb and flow system and is also more desirable because of its smaller reservoir.

Nutrient Film Technique (N.F.T.)- An oxygen rich nutrient solution runs along the bottom of a grow channel forming a thin nutrient film solution allowing long roots to feed and upper roots to breathe oxygen. This method is popular with lettuce gardens.

Deep Flow- Roots are growing in a constant deep flow of super oxygenated nutrient solution. This is a great system for cooler environments and for growing lettuce and gardens on a floating raft board.

Passive Container Garden- This method is ideal for gardeners to grow lush healthy plants without having to water very frequently. A soilless grow substrate is used to allow the substrate to sit in the nutrient solution without getting water logged like conventional potting soil.

The system the gardener chooses to grow with will ultimately depend on their particular gardening needs and requirements.

Here are some helpful links



Simply Hydroponics - Replace bulb

Home Hydroponics - Virginia Cooperative Extension


Hydroponics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:00 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

Nice! Glad to see a new section for this. I've been doing a lot of reasearch about it the past couple of weeks. CropKing.com | Helping to Establish and Grow Your Hydroponic Greenhouse Produce Business for Over 25 Years. is a great source of info.
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Assembled here is a list of the most commonly used terms in the industry, and their definitions.

- A -
ACID – an acidic solution has a pH below 7
AERATION – directly supplying roots and grow medium with air or oxygen
ALGAE – any of various chiefly aquatic, eukaryotic, photosynthetic organisms, ranging in size from single-celled forms to the giant kelp
ALKALINE – a term describing a grow medium or nutrient solution with a high pH (over 7)
AMPERE (AMP) – this is the unit used to measure strength of an electric current
- B -
BACTERIA – any of the unicellular prokaryotic microorganisms of the class Schizomycetes, which vary in terms of morphology, oxygen and nutritional requirements, and motility, and may be free-living, saprophytic, or pathogenic in plants or animals
BALLAST – a device used to regulate flow of electricity to match the needs of a specific bulb
BLOOM – (1) the flower of a plant (2) the action of a plant’s flower reaching maturity
BLOSSOM BOOSTER – a fertilizer with a high phosphorous rating which increases flower yield
BOLT – a plant which has gone to seed prematurely
BUD – a small protuberance on a stem or branch, sometimes enclosed in protective scales and containing an undeveloped shoot, leaf, or flower
BURN – leaf tips which turn noticeably dark from excess fertilizers or salts
- C -
CANOPY – the uppermost reaches of your crop; those leaves most readily available to the light source
CARBON DIOXIDE (CO2) – a colourless, odourless, tasteless gas in the air necessary for plant life. It occurs naturally in the atmosphere at .03%
CELL DIVISION – The process by which a cell divides to form two daughter cells. Upon completion of the process, each daughter cell contains the same genetic material as the original cell and roughly half of its cytoplasm
CHITIN – a tough, protective, semitransparent substance, primarily a nitrogen-containing polysaccharide, forming the principal component of arthropod exoskeletons and the cell walls of certain fungi
CHLOROSIS – a sick plant displaying yellowing leaves due to a sub standard chlorophyll process; commonly caused by nutrient deficiency or imbalanced pH
CLONE – a plant which has been produced through asexual reproduction (i.e. – cuttings, layerings, and tissue culture)
CONDITIONING – the method used to bring an inert growing medium to optimum pH levels, such as soaking new rockwool in an acidic solution to lower the pH from 8.0 to 5.5
COTYLEDON – a leaf of the embryo of a seed plant, which upon germination either remains in the seed or emerges, enlarges, and becomes green. Also called seed leaf
CULTIVATION – the act of processing the fruit of a mature plant
CYTOKININ – any of a class of plant hormones that promote cell division and growth and delay the senescence of leaves
CYTOPLASM- The protoplasm outside the nucleus of a cell.
- D -
DAMPING OFF FUNGUS – disease which attacks young seedlings and cuttings causing them to rot at the base. This is generally caused by over watering.
DISSOLVED SOLIDS – the amount of dissolved solids, usually fertilizer salts, that are measured in parts per million
DRIP SYSTEM – an efficient water delivery system which employs a plumbed main hose filtering nutrient through various drip emitters, one drop at a time.
- E -
ELECTRICAL CONDUCTIVITY – the ability of a solution to carry electrical energy as a result of the elements and compounds in the solution
- F -
FERTILIZER – see nutrient
FLOOD TABLE – a large flat, walled basin used to hold and support grow medium and plants. Nutrient is then flooded into the basin at regular intervals
FOLIAR FEEDING – using a mister or spray bottle to deliver fertilizer solution directly to the foliage
FULVIC ACIDS - the fraction of humic substances that is soluble in water under all pH conditions. They remains in solution after removal of humic acid by acidification. Fulvic acids are light yellow to yellow-brown in color.
FUNGICIDE – a product which destroys or inhibits fungus
FUNGUS GNATS – minute, blackish, gregarious flies destructive to mushrooms and seedlings
- G -
GERMINATION – the process of causing the initiation of a plant from seed
GRAFTING –uniting (a shoot or bud) with a growing plant by insertion or by placing in close contact
GROW MEDIA / MEDIUM – the material used to support a plant’s root system and store nutrient solution in a hydroponic garden
GUANO – a substance composed chiefly of the dung of sea birds or bats, accumulated along certain coastal areas or in caves and used as fertilizer
- H -
HALOGEN – any of the elements chlorine, bromine, iodine and astatine existing in a free state. Halogens are in the arc tube of a halide lamp
HARDEN OFF – to gradually acclimatize a plant to a harsher environment. A seedling must be hardened off before planting outdoors
HID – High Intensity Discharge. This generally applies to the light bulbs used in hydroponic gardens
HOOD – the reflective cover of an HID lamp
HOR – abbreviation for Horizontal. This is commonly stamped on some HID bulbs to provide instructions as to how they should be mounted
HORMONE – chemical substance that controls the growth and development of a plant
HUMIC ACIDS - the fraction of humic substances that is not soluble in water under acidic conditions (pH < 2) but is soluble at higher pH values
HUMIDITY – wetness in the atmosphere
HUMIN - the fraction of humic substances that is not soluble in water at any pH value and in alkali. Humins are black in color.
HUMUS – a brown or black organic substance consisting of partially or wholly decayed vegetable or animal matter that provides nutrients for plants and increases the ability of soil to retain water
HYBRID – an offspring created by combining two plants of different breeds, variety or genetic make-up
HYDRATED LIME – instantly soluble lime, used to raise or lower pH
HYDROPONICS – cultivation of plants in nutrient solution rather than in soil
HYGROMETER – instrument used to measure the relative humidity in the atmosphere
- I -
INTENSITY – the magnitude of light energy per unit. Intensity diminishes as light travels away from the source
- K -
KILOWATT-HOUR – the measure of electricity used per hour. Ex: a 1000 watt HID uses one kilowatt per hour
- L -
LEAF CURL – leaf malformation indicative of over watering, over-fertilizing, lack of magnesium, insect damage, fungus damage or negative tropism
LIGHT CYCLE – see PHOTOPERIOD
LIGHT METER – a device used to calculate and measure the effective light in a tested area
LIGHT MOVER – an apparatus designed to simulate a natural horizon by slowly changing the position of a lamp and its influence
LUMEN – measurement of light output. One lumen is equal to the amount of light emitted by one candle that falls on one square foot of surface located one foot away from the candle
- M -
MACRO-NUTRIENT – one or all of the primary nutrients N-P-K or the secondary nutrients magnesium and calcium
MAXIMUM YIELD MAGAZINE – the number one source for the latest information pertaining to the hydroponics industry
MICRO-NUTRIENT – also referred to as trace elements, which includes the minerals S, Fe, Mn B, Mb, An and Cu
MICROBIAL – a minute life form; a microorganism, especially a bacterium that causes disease
MODULAR HYDROPONICS – the method of growing plants hydroponically in which each individual plant has its own contained grow medium and structure
MONOCHROMATIC – producing only one colour
- N -
NEMATODE – unsegmented worms with elongated rounded bodies pointed at both ends; mostly free-living but some are parasitic
NFT – Nutrient Film Technique. Nutrient is fed into grow tubes where the roots draw it up. A thin film of nutrient allows the roots to have constant contact with the nutrient and the air layer above at the same time
NITROGEN (N) – a nonmetallic element that constitutes nearly four-fifths of the air by volume, occurring as a colorless, odorless, almost inert diatomic gas, N2, in various minerals and in all proteins and used in a wide variety of important manufactures, including ammonia, nitric acid, TNT, and fertilizers. Atomic number 7; atomic weight 14.0067; melting point -209.86°C; boiling point -195.8°C

N-P-K -This term refers to the ratio of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) in fertilizers.
It is always expressed as N-P-K.
For example, a fertilizer labeled as 24-6-6 has a minimum of 24% nitrogen, 6% phosphorus, and 6% potassium
In this example, the remaining 64% of the fertilizer is comprised of inert matter

NUCLEUS-A large, membrane-bound, usually spherical protoplasmic structure within a living cell, containing the cell's hereditary material and controlling its metabolism, growth, and reproduction.
NUTRIENT – plant food, essential elements N-P-K, secondary elements and trace elements which are fundamental to sustaining plant life
NUTRIENT DEFICIENCIES – low and improper levels of nutrient being supplied to a plant
- O -
ORGANIC – of, marked by, or involving the use of fertilizers or pesticides that are strictly of animal or vegetable origin
- P -
pH – a scale from 1 to 14 that measures acid to alkaline balance.
PARABOLIC REFLECTOR – a concave reflector with a series of honeycombed panels used to reflect light
PERLITE – (1) a sand or volcanic glass, expanded by heat, which holds water and nutrients on its many irregular surfaces (2) mineral soil amendment
PHOSPHOROUS (P) – of, relating to, or containing phosphorus, especially with valence 3 or a valence lower than that of a comparable phosphoric compound
PHOTOPERIOD – the relationship between the length of light and dark in a 24 hour period
PHOTOSYNTHESIS – the process by which plants use light energy to collect carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and convert it to chemical energy in the form of sugar
POLLINATION – the transfer of pollen from a stamen to a pistil. This process is often enhanced by environmental manipulation, plant movement through shaking or vibration or the introduction of bees into the growing area
POLYPLOID – an organism with more than two sets of chromosomes
POTASSIUM (K) – a soft, silver-white, highly or explosively reactive metallic element that occurs in nature only in compounds. It is obtained by electrolysis of its common hydroxide and found in, or converted to, a wide variety of salts used especially in fertilizers and soaps. Atomic number 19; atomic weight 39.098; melting point 63.65°C; boiling point 774°C; specific gravity 0.862; valence 1
PREDATORY INSECT – any variety of insect introduced into a grow area used to combat pests or detrimental infestations
PROPOGATE – (1) Sexual – to produce a seed by breeding different male and female flowers (2) Asexual – to produce a plant by taking cuttings
PROTOPLASM-The complex, semifluid, translucent substance that constitutes the living matter of plant and animal cells and manifests the essential life functions of a cell. Composed of proteins, fats, and other molecules suspended in water, it includes the nucleus and cytoplasm.
PRUNING – to cut off or remove dead or living parts or branches of a plant to improve shape or growth
PYRETHRUM – natural insecticide made from the blossoms of various chrysanthemums
- R -
REFLECTOR – the highly reflective, smooth finished hood placed above a lamp to more efficiently direct its light
RESERVOIR (or RES) – any container of a variety of constructions which holds water in reserve for use
REVERSE OSMOSIS (R/O) – water which has had all of its contaminates and salts removed
ROCKWOOL – inert, soil less growing medium consisting of thin strand-like fibres made from rock
- S -
SECONDARY NUTRIENTS – Calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg)
SEEDLING – a young plant that is grown from a seed
SHORE FLY – any of numerous minute black flies of the family Ephydridae, living in damp or marshy places
SPIDER MITE – any of various small red mites of the family Tetranychidae that feed on vegetation, causing damage to the leaves
STIMULATOR – any product used to specifically increase one designated area of a plant’s growth cycle
STRESS – the effect a plant faces when it is subjected to a detrimental environment
SUN- is the intensely hot, self-luminous body of gas (mainly hydrogen and helium) at the center of the solar system. The Sun is a medium-size main-sequence star.
SYSTEMIC – a term used in reference to a disease within the plant tissue, not initiated from the external cells. This also refers to materials and compounds which are taken up or absorbed by the plant and designed to fight disease
- T -
THRIPS – any of various minute insects of the order Thysanoptera, having usually four narrow wings fringed with hairs, and many of which are major pests of various plants and trees
TRACE ELEMENT – a chemical element required in minute quantities by an organism to maintain proper physical functioning
TROPISM - The turning or bending movement of an organism or a part toward or away from an external stimulus, such as light
- U -
ULMIC ACID- is the acid radical found in humic matter which is soluble in alkali.
UNIFORM GROWTH – ensuring the entirety of the crop receives equal environmental stimulation resulting in equal growth of all plants
- V -
VERMICULITE – mica processed and expanded by heat
- W -
WETTING AGENT – compound that reduces the droplet size and lowers the surface tension of the water, making it wetter
WHITEFLY – any of various small whitish homopterous insects of the family Aleyrodidae, having long wings and a white waxy body, often injurious to plants
WICK – part of a passive hydroponic system using a wick suspended in the nutrient solution; the nutrients pass up the wick and are absorbed by the medium and roots
WORM CASTINGS – the nutrient rich fertilizer created by earthworms
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Old 08-08-2009, 07:24 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

I am interested in this thread. I have an idea aboy hydroponics. But since this thread is in this banana.org, I am thinking that you will discuss hydroponics for bananas. Are you? Is it possible, given the size of banana plant? thanks...
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Old 08-08-2009, 07:36 AM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

Yes, hydroponics for bananas. Just like container grown bananas, no difference, except Hydro speaking. Pretty much anything that can be grown in soil, can be grown in Hydro...........faster, stronger, ect.
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Old 08-27-2009, 12:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

This is a nice thread. I am interested. Please include the costs. I have a lot of questions in mind, like, if we use hydroponics in banana, will the growing period be hastened and thereby having fruits earlier? Is it necessary to put the plant in a greenhouse? How deep and wide is the root of banana normal growing condition? Should we have the same size of pot or container if we will use hydroponics? I read aeroponics is cheaper that hydroponics and since there is no stagnant water, it is beneficial to the roots of the plants. I am just wandering, is it possible to aeroponic banana, considering its enormous size? What's the difference in yield between the normal growing condition and hydroponics for banana? How about the taste of the fruit, is there a difference, maybe sweeter in hydroponics? How about pests, can we still plant like Gros Michel without worrying about the attack of Panama Disease? Thanks.
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Old 10-15-2009, 05:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

This is great to see, I have been wondering if bananas can be grown hydroponically too. Most specifically, I want to know if, when the wind blows down a tree, can I salvage the half ripened fruit and hydroponically get it to grow, as if it was still on the tree? How do I know what nutrients it needs at this stage? This would save so much wastage if it could be done.
Look forward to your comments
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Old 10-17-2009, 05:00 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

I just bought an aerogarden, and was wondering, will I be able to germinate and grow a banana seed in there?
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Old 11-06-2009, 10:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

I have one of those aeroponic cutting rooters, an ez-clone. If you leave the cuttings in there too long, like you get busy and forget about them, run the thing nearly out of water and then fill it up with fertilizer water from the greenhouse, you can grow things in there indefinitely. I have brugmansia and hardy sweet pea cuttings in there from mid-summer but they are getting really tall.
I don't know if you could germinate a banana seed in an aerogarden,but I would think you would be able to keep it alive if it did germinate. at least until it got too big. Those things are pretty little aren't they?
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Old 11-07-2009, 11:16 AM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

One of the must have items in hydroponics is a way to measure pH levels. They can vary tremendously but need to kept within a reasonable range. It also helps to have a meter to measure the ppm or EC (amount of nutrients in the water).

I'm growing/have grown tomatoes, lettuce and peppers in DWC systems. Once the solution gets stabilized, there is not much work to it - check the nutrient solution, ppm and pH once a week or so and add whatever is necessary. The investment is small - a five gallon bucket, air pump, pot to hold the plant and rocks/hydroton to keep it standing upright, a bit of air tubing and something to diffuse the air. You can buy air stones rather cheap but IME, they tend to break down or clog up and can ruin a plant. I use 1/4" water soaker hose you can buy from a hardware store. Total cost of system - maybe $10.

Mike
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Old 11-12-2009, 11:11 PM   #12 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

Quote:
Originally Posted by sandy0225 View Post
I have one of those aeroponic cutting rooters, an ez-clone. If you leave the cuttings in there too long, like you get busy and forget about them, run the thing nearly out of water and then fill it up with fertilizer water from the greenhouse, you can grow things in there indefinitely. I have brugmansia and hardy sweet pea cuttings in there from mid-summer but they are getting really tall.
I don't know if you could germinate a banana seed in an aerogarden,but I would think you would be able to keep it alive if it did germinate. at least until it got too big. Those things are pretty little aren't they?
yea it is pretty small... it is like about 2 ft or 2.5... some where around there... but if it does germinate, i could just transplant it on dirt right?
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Old 12-01-2009, 08:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

You could theoretically keep it growing until it got too tall for your little light fixture. But you could transplant it to soil at any time. Does it have instructions for growing anything from seeds with it? Like are you supposed to start lettuce for example from seed in it?
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:36 PM   #14 (permalink)
 
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You could theoretically keep it growing until it got too tall for your little light fixture. But you could transplant it to soil at any time. Does it have instructions for growing anything from seeds with it? Like are you supposed to start lettuce for example from seed in it?
yea the system comes with a seed kit.. already prepared to just put in the seed pods in the aerogarden with the seeds in it... but i took some of the seeds out and planted a germinated musa nagensium seed... i germinated it in pure peat moss... germinated like in about a week and a half...
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Old 08-31-2010, 01:32 PM   #15 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

Is there any variety of bananas (small, so it can stay in a pot) that I can put in my pond? Kinda like a bog plant, partially submerged in water?

Thanks,
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Old 08-31-2010, 02:11 PM   #16 (permalink)
I think with my banana ;)
 
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

This a slightly more "eco" or "bio" method...
VermiPonics

Btw. great site, great info, great people there.
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Old 12-10-2010, 05:46 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

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Nice! Glad to see a new section for this. I've been doing a lot of reasearch about it the past couple of weeks. CropKing.com | Helping to Establish and Grow Your Hydroponic Greenhouse Produce Business for Over 25 Years. is a great source of info.
I wish I knew beforehand that this place was so close to me! I just might have to take the 30 minute drive to go see them and maybe learn a few things. They have an awesome looking aquaponic setup that they advertise as around $1800 initial cost and only runs on 60 watts! I could fit roughly 8 or so of those in my basement!
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:27 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

Mike Van who used to post here has turned me on to Auquaponics. This is really cool if you have a little extra space and a green house for colder areas. Protein and veggies!

Friendly Aquaponics, Inc. | Build backyard and commercial Aquaponics systems yourself
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Old 12-10-2010, 10:53 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

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Mike Van who used to post here has turned me on to Auquaponics. This is really cool if you have a little extra space and a green house for colder areas. Protein and veggies!

Friendly Aquaponics, Inc. | Build backyard and commercial Aquaponics systems yourself
Mike is the one that got us hooked on it too! My husband went nuts with it! It's really awesome, I love it. We used native fish instead of talapia to withstand the colder climate here.
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Old 12-11-2010, 12:13 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hydroponics for begginers

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Mike is the one that got us hooked on it too! My husband went nuts with it! It's really awesome, I love it. We used native fish instead of talapia to withstand the colder climate here.
Wow that's cool! More info and pictures please!!
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