One Barrel System Final Setup

Here are the steps to set up the one barrel system, before planting your plants:

  1. Prove water flow and no leaks
    1. Make sure plugs in barrel are screwed in tight, so no leaks.
    2. Set barrel on level surface in a full to partial sunny area, near a power plug.
    3. Fill barrel with water to about 3” below the opening of the fish tank
    4. Setup the timer so it will turn on the pump periodically. Ex: 0:15 every 2 hours, more often in warmer weather
    5. Run the system for a while and make sure there are no leaks
    6. Determine drain protector cover, media,  and water height.
      1. drain protector cover: Measure the height from the top of the edge of the grow bed.
        Ex: top of drain protector 1” shorter that edge of growbed
      2. Media: fill the growbed with media (i.e. washed clay beads) to about 1”, or more below the height of the drain protector cover. This way water won’t wash beads over drain protector and into drain.
        Ex: 2” or less below height of edge of grow bed.
      3. Measure the height of the water in growbed when it is at its highest. Ex: 2” below the top edge of the growbed. You want the maximum height of the water to be about 2-3 inches below the surface of the media.

Ex: top of drain protector to top edge of grow bed = 1”

Top of media to top edge of grow bed = 2” minimum

Top of water to top edge of grow bed = 4”; you want water 2”-3” below surface of media

  1. Confirm height of drain protector cover, media,  and top of water
    1. Ex: top of drain protector to top edge of grow bed = 1”
    2. Top of media to top edge of grow bed = 2” minimum
    3. Top of water to top edge of grow bed = 4”; you want water 2”-3” below surface of media
    4. Plant plants so their stems are above the media, their “butt” is below the top of the media, and their roots are below their “butt”. Roots will grow into the water and live there. Transplant when roots are long enough to touch the top of the water, ex: about 2” long.
    5. Adjust the water height
      1. If your water height is too high it will flood the plants and often float some of the clay beads, at least until they gradually fill with water.
      2. The ½” drain pipe should be setup to adjust the water height. You can remove it and change it to properly set the water height.
      3. Remove drain pipe and drill holes at the maximum height you want the water to be, EX; 4” or 5” below the top edge of the grow bed. You can always rebuild the drain pipe with another piece of PVC pipe if you mess up.

Water Level

Reference: see section “water” http://aquaponicfun.com/general/one-barrel-aquaponics-system-construction/

You will want the water level flooded to a specific height in the growbed. After I took this picture I drilled two larger holes (not shown)  in the drain / overflow pipe to set the level I wanted for the maximum water in the growbed. I choose for the water to be 1″ to 1 & 1/2″ below the top of the clay beads at it’s highest level. The holes need to be large enough that they drain the water faster than the pump can deliver the water, else your plants will flood and your clay beads will try to float.

I have installed a 2″ PVC pipe to act as a strainer so that the media (beads) don’t get into the drain / overflow pipe when I need to remove it for cleaning or inspection.

Reference:

One Barrel System Questions and Answers

One Barrel Aquaponics System Details

One Barrel Aquaponics System Construction

One Barrel Aquaponics System

One Barrel System Final Setup (This post)

 

 Join our NewsletterName: Email: We respect your email privacyYour email addresss is protected by AWeber