A Sad Tale in 2 parts

Part 1…………….The Morris Minor Woody went on a trip to Dubbo NSW about 1400kl via Sydney got to 20 kl from Orange and tossed the Rear main seal this dumped the oil then sized the motor, this did size the gearbox and caused a rear axle to break.. I am at home and the poor little beast is still in the dead of winter at Dubbo 1129kl away via the New England highway..

Part 2…………..I left for about 10 days on that trip and in that short space of time anything and everything went wrong with the Aquaponics and I lost over 50 of my Jade perch 50m from where I type this…on a Happy note I will not need as much fish food to grow them out now!!!!!!!!

Wicking Garden Beds

OK : So if you don’t know about these things? here is a crash chat…take a bathtub fill in the plug hole ans seal it then lift the tub above the ground and toss in some 100mm ag pipe cover this and up all the sides with geo-textile or weed mat (my case)drill a hole 5in ( 125mm) up the side and another 6in (150mm0 for heavy drainage (like in Heavy downpours of rain) then cover the ag pipe with loose weed mat and fill to 5in 125mm with corse sand now cover the sand with a 2nd layer of geo-textile or weed mat up over the sides.This is now topped off with a good topsoil mix.

So 1 bathtub with 2 holes for water fill and flood relief.

Water ht and overflow_tn

Now the start of these are 100mm (4in) agg pipe laid in a large ring around the bottom of the tub, mine I joined the ring with joiners as they were on hand and as I cut 2 I had another section that just took up space in the bottom these are used as a clear run of water within the sand layer,Airrig1_tn

the weed mat is laid over so the sand will not seap down and fill the 100mm ag pipe

Airrig2_tn you will notice here that there is a 50mm fill pipe.

now the weed matAirrig3_tn Airrig4_tn So now 5in of sand ..(wet it down so it will pull down around all the sections of ag Pipe.

Put in the sandAirrig7_tn Then another layer of weed mat


Now this next  step is not mandated but I laid down 50mm grass clipping left a week in a plastic drum and then 50mm of hay that I had run over with the catcher mower to make it fine.Airrig9_tn Airrig10_tnnow my soil mix was 10 shovelfulls of a cow and lake mud that mixed with lawn clippings was about 4 years old this was added to 1 x 55 kg bag of good potting mix

IMG_1341_tn This was done last Sunday and on the Monday I planted out some 4 leaf stage Luttuce

the whole bet was then milched with mowen straw.

That was #1 test bed will load up test bed #2 tomorrow.


Aquaponics since Xmas 2014 to Feb 9th

The project had 30 Gold Fish running around in it working to get it settled in.

When it was first filled with water I put 20liters of fresh Cow Shite as a kicker for the bugs…

So along came Jan 2015 and mid month 100 Jade Perch fingerlings were dropped into the 2000liter ponds/tanks.

so here are some videos of things as they went.




And Now A QUESTION for anyone is this normal.


You cannot stay in the area of the pump at all

Green House at Last

While the little test bathtub has ticked away  with Fish loss and all the rest of small problems were worked out, I have very slowly been working on the foundations of the greenhouse.

OK so that bit (with day to day life ) has taken nigh on 2 years,

Until 2 weeks ago, a Mate turned up on a Sunday took a look at my block work and said when do I get to the windows?

My reply was at the currant rate 2016.

Say no More.

On the following Thursday at 7.30am (my normal day starts about 10am when I crawl out of bed to get the days Meds)

As with all things weird I had been woken at 4am with arms full of Broken Glass so watching a movie on YouTube in comes the Mate with all his Builder Gear and a helper and 5hrs later I was welding up the roof frame and after a cuppa he left with me to just put on a roof so Friday I got some Tophat lengths and after a while and a trip to th’ Hardware shop where I got myself a battery Driver I managed to also get up 2 x  1/2 sheets of clear roofing.

Then last Saturday I spent the whole day putting on the roof.

I had better explain something here,

I collect stuff some I buy and some just shows up by chance.

Now this greenhouse, the windows came from someone replacing all his windows the rest of the build is part of a huge amount of stuff that cost me $400 when Bunnings shifted from where they were into there new Building.

So the Blocks the steel frames, 8 x 2 Sleepers and some of the tin was just a small section of what was and is there.

OK so by now you are board so here are the photos.

looking straight at it the right side is west and the length is the only point that keeps full sun in mid winter.

In some of the photos at the western end there are 3 long grey troughs these will be mounted under the windows and other tubs will be against the center wall.

Below East on the left West on the right.

windows headon closeup windows

roof frame electric bolts roof frame shed full space Divide Wall tophats West face East West to East closeup Today sunday14th Sept Last Photo is Today

Sunday 14th September 2014, with new hole into main shed.

Wednesday 15th Oct 14

OK catchup

yesterday I finished a weeks work of digging the foundations laying the Besser Blocks and core filling all of them with concrete and steel beams …yes we have the walls and outline of the Fish Tank.IMG_0977IMG_0979

so now I sit back and wait for the whole thing to go off.

Joined   http://aquaponics.net.au

and there is my forum post at


Aquaponic’s and the Greenhouse

At last !!!!!!!!!!!!

After following along with all the stuff that Murry Hallam  http://www.aquaponics.net.au/ has had to say and a look at one of his CD’s from another fish and plant grower.

And a search of Australian sites a good one is http://www.backyardaquaponics.com 

I have a very good idea of what is what (might add here that my own system has been running in the back yard for 2 years) see my YouTube Channel



Just wade through the other stuff and see some rather bad video’s (Bad in the sense that they have a bit of content and are filmed by a BRICK.

So back to the heading “Aquaponic’s and the Greenhouse” I have had the foundations for this next step in Aquaponics for me down for a good 8 months so far and then life just stepped in as it seems to do and all came to a stop.

Well tomorrow I get back on track the block-work is done 8 months ago and now it needs some formwork for a concrete beam cast on top of it about 50mm deep and around the stump in the center.


This next video covers the main sorse of plant food in the Greenhouse as the fish have a cycle depending on age, as there will be about 3000lt main tank for them to swim in and at fingerling stage there would not be enough to poop to grow a Lettuce.

Now the old system is 2 years old now and it has been a lot of FUN keeping up with it over that time, it still is powered by the fish tank pump that has a habit of going into airlock more often that would be normal as there in not that syphon effect that it had when the large tank was up above it.

I have learn’t quite a bit from the whole exercise ….Tomartoes get leggy and produce lots of growth and not a lot of fruit (parrotts get it then anyway) …lettuce go straight up and seed…ETC.

But Comfrey -Garlic Chives – Mint – Basil and Mullberry love it though the Comfrey Eats a lot of Iron so it has now become a weekly job to add Iron to the system.

As you know if you have seen some of the videos from a year back or so the fish used here in this little system were Gold fish that are all about 6 inch ( 150mm )long but the only time I can ever get the system to read any nutriment was after hitting it with a bucket of worm juice.

Gold fish use up every bit of food before they poop, I have gathered up there poop and tested it and there is bugger all in it.

Anyway here is the look of the tub at present.. the Comfrey was cut down to gravel level 6 weeks ago.

so will get back as soon as I have some progress.