From Sylvia Berstein
Aquaponics is easy enough for anyone to get involved. Here are some tips for getting started:
• Get Educated. Find a trusted source of information, like Bernstein’s book or corresponding online course, to make sure your experience is successful, the first time.
• Get the right fish. Although you can use a wide variety of fish, you want to stick to freshwater varieties. Determine whether you want to raise the fish for the fun of it or whether you plan to eat them. If you want to include eating the fish in your plans, you may want to opt for raising tilapia. They are the most commonly used fish for aquaponics, they are easy to grow, reproduce readily in captivity, and most people like the way they taste.
• Pick your plants. When choosing the plants to include, opt for ones that are not acid-loving varieties. Be sure to plant them with their ultimate growth size in mind, so they can each get the sunlight they need.
• Establish the microbes. Every successful aquaponics system must have a good beneficial bacteria source. This is an essential step that must not be overlooked, or the fish and plants will not be able to live.
• Add the worms. After a couple of months of having the system up and running, you should add some red worms in order to help break down the fish waste that will be used for fertilizing the plants.
• Consider other elements. There are other things that need to be considered, including the temperature of the water, which will depend on the type of fish you are raising. Lighting is also important when it comes to growing your plants, although it is not needed for your fish. You will also want to take the size of your tank into consideration, as that will determine just how much you can comfortably grow.
• Get expert help. When you have questions about getting started, or about maintaining an aquaponic garden, be sure to speak with an expert. The information will be invaluable, helping to ensure that everything is set up correctly and that each garden is successful.