The First Lady’s System Review | Ask The Aquaponics God

The First Lady's System Review | Ask The Aquaponics God

We’ve finally got the First Lady (Rebekah) to have an aquaponics system featured on the show Ask The Aquaponics God.

Hopefully this inspires more women to get involved in aquaponics and start producing food!

Rebekah’s system is an aquarium style setup that incorporates a media grow bed on the top of it.

Her system has both pros and cons and is a work in progress, but at least she is attempting to produce her own food, which is the name of the game.

I get exciting seeing people put together their aquaponics systems and it really has a positive impact on the world the more people we have growing their own food.

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The School of Aquaponics


What do you think?


Written by The School of Aquaponics

We are here to push the movement of aquaponics in a forward direction. Our primary focus is help you in your adventure with aquaponics by providing you with the highest level of information. Aquaponics is still in its infancy and we predict that it will be the go to method of farming by many families and urban farmers. Our job is to ensure that they are taught correctly.

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  1. It is quite doable to have a beautiful aquarium display (with substrate) and a have a successful aquaponics garden together. There are several ways you can accomplish this depending on the tank design and filtration equipment you choose. Just think of the aquarium filtration system as the "solids removal" and Nitrification system and deliver the filtered water to your plants. Using substrate is just a matter if you are going to let the maintenance discourage you from enjoying the experience. With Rebekah's Tank: Even an old school dinosaur Under-Gravel filter with airlift tube(s) using aeration to move water up to the culture tray would work well. The gravel bed becomes the mechanical and biological filtration. Maintenance is easy, PWC with small vacuum tube, or use a battery operated bag filter type aquarium vacuum when you don't want to change any water. A remotely accessible option, is a cannister filter that removes solids from the water column, pumps the water up to the grow beds or grow trays. My wife and I grow basil quite successfully in those 3-pod Miracle grow Aero garden units on our kitchen counter top. They are very nice looking and compact, one or two of those on a decorative shelf, (couple small holes, and some black irrigation tubing) and you have a beautiful and decorative shallow water culture system with a grow light and timer already included…..There's always a way. Once you get the hang of managing the water quality and PH you can end up with some very happy aquarium fish and some yummy plants.

  2. It would be easier as a fish tank first and Aquaponic growing second to use a canister filter wo media and have the return line flow into the grow beds and gravity feed back into the tank. Add a sunsun jvp110 pump pushing water across the top of the tank pushing water away from the intake across the top creating a return circulation inside the tank pulling water back to the intake along the bottom of the tank pulling solids right to the filter. Reason I recommend the canister filter is you’ll still have the option later to go back to just keeping fish. You could also place the clay media in the filter baskets to use as a mineralization tank feeding the grow beds wo filtering out solids.

    As for hobby fish for a 20g long… that is a tough choice for such a small tank. I would personally try guppies which breed like rabbits and are very hearty fish. 5 female to every 1-2males for a property community. In a bare bottom 20l with good in tank circulation of around 20x tank capacity you could fit maybe 50 fish wo major risk of disease to the fish.

    Ideally you need a larger 75-90g min to be able to stock larger dirtier fish like Oscars smaller Mbuna Cichlids etc..

  3. I hope I don't offend you. I am going to say something nice. This is the 5th video of yours I've seen. The first 4 were "Okay" but I didn't like the fact that you labeled yourself the "god" of aquaponics, I found it especially arrogant. I also heard the way each video started, "The schoooool of …" I cracked a smile, thought it was neat branding, but it made you sound less educated to me for some reason. I thought to myself, good for him. Here is a man who found a way to make a living with what he has.
    Then I saw this video. WOW, you are very intelligent, and do have a rather robust vocabulary. I think on some of your videos your… stuttering? I don't think I'd call it stuttering, maybe hesitation and rambling you do… I can't find the right word, but it seems like you were tripping over your thoughts a bit. Maybe you had no script and always used the first cut. But again, after watching this video, you have my respect. AND. when I can afford it (poor disabled, ill combat veteran) I am going to be buying your book.
    Mad props, and I wish you well.

  4. Do u need a are pump in the grow bed with clay pellets in a system like the im a beginner and i want to do the same thing like that but with a wooden grow bed same size as the fish tank

  5. Michael, I want to buy your book but I didn't have the link to proses buy the book. so please provide the link to help get aquaponic book, thanks & God bless always on you.

  6. If you do not love the system you will tire of it and get rid of it. There are ideas like tiling the bottom of the tank to add color yet give you the effect of a clean bottom. Guppies work great in high densities. You can use plastic plants siliconed to the tiles for decorating. Any pump that sucks off the bottom will work for keeping the tank bottom clean when it is bare or tiled bottom. The sponge on the intake needs to go away but you need a screened intake so all fish can be safe. This guy is great for commercial even small scale commercial systems but does not truely understand needing to enjoy it. You only need a 1 inch of dry space in the tank. The air stone placed below your current pump will pick up solids to the intake as well as add the extra O2. Please try and place your tank near a window for natural light. I used expensive aquarium plant lighting that I had for my first system and added a true grow light later(metal halide). Get rid of the ceramic media as it does the same job as the media in the grow box but some filter floss or sponge to polish water is good on return. Rebekah please check out Rob Bob's youtube channel for a more laid back but real look at aquaponics. I am subscribed there a well. Different values but still uses science and math to explain.

  7. Oh my gosh, THANK YOU!!! This was so helpful. I can't wait to move and get the system up and running better than ever. For now my hopes are simply for some fresh greens all year, but eventually I plan on buying a piece of property and building a legit aquaponics greenhouse so your book, classes, and this channel will continue to help and inspire me. Keep up the good work.

  8. It’s interesting that you said food is running out. You are absolutely right. I just convinced my husband to agree with me on buying land. Nevertheless your book is amazing. I’m still reading it and got a ways to go.

    I do want to ask, do you build these systems for people or companies for a price, or only teach others how to build them?

  9. I disagree that substrate is a bad thing. It depends upon what kind of system you want. I'm focusing on self-maintained systems where I do very little including feeding. Substrate and water plants and algae help support a whole ecosystem which then allows me to stock different fish and they eat each other's fry. The snails and shrimp process the waste and keep the algae in check. I have different kinds of aquarium fish as in Nevada food fish are prohibited for non-licensed systems. Oh sure I could just add Tilapia without claiming them but in the future if I want to register as a farm with the county and someone comes in to inspect my systems and finds prohibited livestock I'd be fined HUGE.

    So yes, if you are commercially growing tilapia or another food fish, you'd want nothing in the system that would hamper the flow of effluent out of the tank into the sump. But this woman is enjoying a cute aquarium indoors so substrate is just fine for her setup. She just needs to stock more fish. There's nowhere near the numbers necessary to make the nitrogen necessary to support veggies. The main issue is the betta as males are known to not be friendly with most community fish. I wouldn't add goldfish either as they grow impossibly big for such a small tank. Better to add more kuhli's and small/nano danios or tetras as they do very well in large schools and don't grow larger than 2". Plus, they look very nice in the tank.

    In fact, she doesn't even need to add a grow bed above her tank, as there are ways to add DWT plants without needing anything outside of the tank. Here's a video of this guy with a cool design.

  10. I've already been doing aquaponics for two years now. I'm thinking we women have a harder time getting in front of the camera to film it for the public to see because we are so critical about our looks or the way we sound or how the system looks or the state of the house in the background etc… So this isn't a man's sport… We women just don't boast about it.

  11. Great setup. Nice job. You can use Gold fish for your setup. The problem will be removing the waste from the media bed after awhile. So keep that in mind. Aquaponics can be configured to fit small or commercial setups. The problem is that people make it too complicated. I read "The Aquaponics God Manual". It's has very good information. The only problem I saw was that it said figure 11.2 but meant figure 10.2. The editor didn't catch that because it's was throughout the book. I recommend this book for beginners.


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