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BEST MICRO NUTRIENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM ?

Discussion in 'Fertiliser - mineral supplements. Aquaponics syste' started by Ringer, Feb 1, 2016.

  1. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

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    Hi , I'm running a combo NFT ,Floating raft , F/D gravel bed system fed by 3x 3500L covered outdoor ponds and 6x IBC's . All water ( approx 11000l ) is constantly circulated through the entire system. My nutrients are supplied by redclaw crayfish, silver perch & murray cod.
    My trade background has helped a lot during the build and my after school /weekend job at a large redclaw/silver perch farm (22 acres of water) didn't hurt either. With that being said I still have a lot to learn about this aquaponics thing , so all advise is really appreciated . I understand "Nitrifing bacterial systems" well ,but with limited horticultural experience I'm still trying to figure out what is the best micro nutrient management system any help in this area would be very valuable.
     
  2. Murray

    Murray Site Admin Staff Member

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    Hi Ringer,
    Your system is still young so needs some assistance.
    Do you use a seaweed extract or Kelp Powder to help with nutrients?

    How many fish and how old are they?

    How many liters of wet gravel do you have?

    Yabbies may like to come in on this one re wet gravel.
     
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  3. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

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    Thanks for the prompt response Murray , the answer to your question I have 3x 300L gravel filled G/B's With many more to come. Folic maxicrop and trace elements have been helping , my plants look super healthy but actual growth has been slower than expected. I have 20 large crays ( breeding stock)
    100 juvenile silvers
    100 juvenile Murray cod
    100 juvenile jades
    The pond also have 100's of freshwater shrimp and native gudgens that I used to seed the nitrification process 2 months before I added any fish . I started the system 4 months ago. Do you see any issues I can't see .Any ideas how to increase my growth rate?
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
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  4. Terra

    Terra Active Member

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    See in your other post about your system its all running as one , while this is good for temperature and ph stability your at risk of losing a lot .
    Most of us have had our holy smoke moment for one reason or another .
    Back on topic but more or less the same issue
    Tomatoes have a different nutrient requirement to salad greens , so following your theme of "serious aquaponics" a couple of seperate systems might be of advantage as you progress .
    Trace elements I have been using a bit of "Rock dust" in each growbed when I build them , with great results this has become very popular in organic soil gardens .
    Im using one with 20 minerals ive seen them up to 60 trace elements
    More is not necessarily better Zinc and Copper levels are the main ones to watch (fish toxicity)
    I still use a bit of seasol , Iron , Pottasium Bicarb And Magnesium

    Ive done a lot of scratching around the internet as I used to live in a remote area and wasn't in a position to travel so learned by hard knocks as the saying goes.

    Nate Story at Bright Agrotech has some of the best free info on this subject availiable I believe
    If you want to look go to website Home - Blog - Aquaponic section
    Work through the blog articles on all the nutrients
    He sells a lot of stuff I have no interest in his systems his website gets bigger and bigger however if you scratch there you can learn a lot.
     
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  5. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

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    Thanks Terra nice informative response . All my ponds and grow applications are all plumbed so any one fixture can be isolated from the system at any time and fed from an independent "control" water tank . Your right about and I do understand the risks of one interlinked system but it's so bloody hot in SE Queensland if I don't run them together my water hits 30 degrees by lunch .
    Rock dust you say, interesting ?
    Cheers Terra.
     
  6. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

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    Guys how do I measure/ maintain all these trace elements without waiting for symptoms to develop in my plants , also the dosage rates on the packaging don't seem to apply to aquaponics so how do you all judge how much of a given product to add????
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
  7. Terra

    Terra Active Member

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    I guess its a feel thing iv been a very active soil gardener for 5o yrs that helps

    Its what happens before what happens happens that's often important

    A nutrient deficiency

    Is it because its in short supply or has low or high Ph (maybe a month ago) locked it out , it takes time to show up

    One of our members (Yabbies4me) has done a lot of testing on this some of his findings for guidelines

    http://aquaponics.net.au/forum/threads/yabbies-indoor-ibc-system-at-perth-aquaponics.6180/page-5

    Short version use ph control to guide you , don't put calcium in without potassium or magnesium

    And seasons will affect these ratios due to plant requirments

    If you have high ph

    Foliar treatments will be needed until your system matures

    Steady goes do less sooner

    Small treatments often are better than big ones now and then

    You have a large system buy some good tools to help you the normal , I just got a ph meter should have had one a long time ago , now its a lot easier to do less sooner and keep on top .
     
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  8. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

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    Thanks for all the info Terra most appreciated .Do you recommend a make/model of tester I've seen a lot on eBay but as you probably know this route often ends in tears .
     
  9. Terra

    Terra Active Member

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    I got mine from Perth Aquaponics
    Shameless plug for Hayden link below
    Look after the blokes that help us
    My mates collared my meter so I have to get another one
    With the rock dust I believe its not an instant fix more of background slow release giving some base level
    Your slow growth could be linked to the high temps we have had , plants have mechanisms in their leaves to deal with heat but not their roots.
    If you start getting ammonia readings it could be a sign your bacteria is battling , low ph and or high or low temperatures affect numbers
    Can we have some photos
    http://perthaquaponics.com.au/API/pH_Meter
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
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  10. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

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    Cheers Terra
    Promise I,ll post some pics on Sunday I had some storm damage yesterday I want to fix first.
    Thanks for taking the time to give me all this info .
     
  11. Murray

    Murray Site Admin Staff Member

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    Hi Ringer,
    A word on the rock dust....we got a bit carried away with that a few years ago and would up with clogged up beds. Good thing to do but use sparingly.
    We use a "Blue Lab" pH, Ec and Temp meter. Very good but a bit expensive.

    Storm damage.....Hope it was not too bad......I am at North Maclean and we have missed all the storms up until last night, so dry as here. I need rain real bad, my water hole/dam that I pump from for my AP is almost empty.
     
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  12. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

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    Thanks Murray . The storm damage was from a iron bark branch smashing through my NFT system. I'm four roads down from your place so I know what you mean about the rain , or lack of. It's like we're under a glass dome. As for the tester you mentioned , if it's good quality I'll cop the price ,these a lot of cheap rubbish out there. I'll save money by buying the right one first time rather than replacing cheap junk time after time .
    Cheers .
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2016

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