Aquaponics Update #4 – Tank loaded & Aux Plant Filters Added

So the tank has been running great.  What started as some sick plants in a sterile tank with a pump and a few lava rocks as really started to blossom!

New growth

This isn’t close up enough to see, but there is a tone of new buds growing on the ficus. (the large plant with the big trunk)  Many more than I would have expected from a sick plant that has only been in the tank a few weeks.  Spider mites are completely gone & root growth has been amazing as well – I can see the roots through the glass vase. I went shopping for a few things today, there was a great sale on a mini heater, so I picked one up to speed up the growing process a bit, had some plants donated by a store, and got a few more fish to feed all the plants I’ve added.

Fern by ficus trunk

I have a fern that I added to the top of the main filter to help eat the added waste from the 3 goldfish I added, it will also eventually creep across the top of the entire filter adding more surface area for bacteria (good bacteria) to grow and become a heavy eater of fish waste.

Azolla (Fairy Fern) awesome plant - it uses a symbiotic relationship with cyanobacteria in order to fix nitrogen from the air

These (pic below) were actually donated to me by the store I go to for most of my plant & pond needs – The Indoor Sun Shop – its azolla.  Azolla is actually a floating fern that has a symbiotic relationship with cyanobacteria to help it fix nitrogen. It added a nice look to the tank, provide hiding spaces for fish & will also act as a filter for waste.

One of 2 aux filters added

This is the top of one of the 2 aux plant filters I added (see pic below).  They are recycled, tall, glass containers with lava rocks in the bottom.  Two small hoses (attached to the main hose, no extra pumps needed) run to the bottom of both and filter the water through to the top to the plants, then spill back out to the tank.  Same idea as the main filter, and used to process extra waste from the fish I added – and the fish that will be added down the line.

I have to wait a bit, again, for the tank to balance out now.  I’ve added a bunch of new plants (most of which are recycled from my house plants) and three new fish.  I have to wait for nature to turn things up and balance out the bacteria/plants/fish – but it should happen a bit quicker now that I have the heater and a grow lamp going.

There are two videos on Bourgeoisie’s FB page to check out (and hear the awesome sound of water trickling) and see the filters in action. Video #1 & Video #2

This project has been a success so far, so I’m getting closer to Phase 2 in Spring – a veggie garden in my window.

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