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Feed your Family with Aquaponics

Feed your Family with a Portable Farms® Aquaponics System 
– by Colle and Phyllis Davis

farm 8 18 2012How many people do you want to feed? Let’s start with that  . . . 

In a highly effective system with gravel as the medium base, a grow tray space of 25 to 30 sq. ft. will feed one adult their table vegetables year round – FOREVER.

Use the number of people you want to feed times (x) the 25 sq. ft. required for each person and the resulting figure will be the size of grow tray space you will need. That’s easy.

The formula for number of people times the 25 sq. ft. required to feed them can be applied no matter what the number of people you want to feed. A commercial installation with 10,000 sq. feet of enclosed space provides 6,000 sq. ft. of grow space and will feed 240 people.

This 16' x 33' greenhouse contains 3 modules of Portable Farms® Aquaponics Systems and feeds 10 people FOREVER.

This 16′ x 33′ greenhouse contains 3 modules of Portable Farms® Aquaponics Systems and feeds 10 people FOREVER.

WHERE will you install your aquaponics system?

We recommend a location with six hours of direct sunlight available. Or, you can install a small aquaponics system in a garage, basement or spare room but you must use grow lights to grow the food. Sunlight is preferable if possible because it’s free and grow lights require electrical power. However, if you install your aquaponics system to receive sunlight, you must enclose it in a greenhouse to protect it from weather, insects, etc.

What type of building would you like to select to surround your aquaponics system?

You can build your own greenhouse for about $25 per sq ft or you can buy a fully made greenhouse for slightly more than that.

What kind of fish will you use in your aquaponics system?

Check with your State Authorities with the Fish and Wildlife Department and find out if tilapia are legal in your state. Tilapia are the fish of preference in ALL aquaponics systems in the Northern Hemisphere. They are a fresh water/warm water fish and very healthy.

 

What is the total cost for my backyard aquaponics system?

A generous number we recommend is $35 per sq ft. which includes the cost of the greenhouse, the training from Aquaponics University that teaches you to build and operate an aquaponics system, the Portable Farms® Kit and the additional materials to build your system (excluding grow lights).

13 comments

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  1. Ansel

    Hello,

    I have three acres of land. Can one make a commercial living with this system? How will future costumers feel about buying products from an aquaponics system grower? Can this system get USDA Organic certified?

    I appreciate you answering mys questions.

    Thanks.

    1. portfarms

      Ansel,

      A 10,000 sq ft (quarter acre, 1,000m2) installation will pay itself off in 2 to 4 years and generate a US$100,000+/year net-net income for many years. If you can live on that amount of money than, yes, one can make a nice living. The first step is to complete a market survey in your local to see how large the market is for the finest food in the world. Casino, resort hotels, top tier restaurants and institutions which serve an least one meal per day are your market, with casinos THE BEST. Currently the demand for the aquaponics grown food is projected to not being met for many years because the food produce in the Portable Farms® is the finest in the world. Certification is certainly possible because NO SOIL is ever used.

      We trust this information is helpful to moving your project forward.

      Colle Davis – Inventor

  2. Gary Briscoe

    I live in Texas where it gets extremely hot but in the winter it also freezes. What type of structure should I put my grow trays in so that my fish are protected from the elements?

    1. portfarms

      Gary,

      Having spent 12 years in Texas, I understand exactly what you are talking about. The term is ‘climatically adapted structure’ and this means that the temperature INSIDE the structure at the top of the Grow Table can range from 45 to 104 degrees F. This is a very broad range and through the use of shade cloth, roof vents, side vents and OCCASIONALLY swamp coolers or mister you can successfully install and operate a Portable Farms® Aquaponics Systems anywhere in the world.

      The AU Course actually covers this subject in great depth so you can build an appropriate structure after completing the Course.

      We trust this information is helpful in moving your project forward.

      Colle Davis – Inventor

  3. Nick

    Hi,

    I have a building that I would like to install an aquaponics system in and would like your feedback of things I should be aware of. 32′ x 32′ with 10′ ceiling. Very well insulated (8″ walls) and has in-floor heat that is hooked up to an indoor wood boiler. I live in NW Wisconsin but would be able to keep it heated well during the winter. There are several windows but do not expect it would be enough natural light and expect grow lights would be needed. What I would like to do is take advantage of the ceiling height and build vertically. One question I have is on average how much room is needed for the grow bed, plants and lighting?

    Thanks
    Nick

  4. Elle

    Want to convert half of our 2-car garage to a portable farm producing enough veg for 4 people. The intention is to install two huge skylights to bring in natural light, grow lighting for better production year ’round and insulation as appropriate, rather than build a separate building. I’d sourced you guys a while back, but am now going through the course information. I’ve a question.

    You stated that the fish are a renewable resource. If the offspring are “mules” how are they renewable? Also, how much more space will be required to grow the fishes food? Our interest is in becoming completely food production self-sufficient within your system but without reinvesting large sums in fish, fish food, gravel, etc., FOREVER. Can we achieve that with your system? Thanks.

    1. portfarms

      Elle,

      Your installation will work fine. Make sure you have enough grow lights to have 12 hours of ‘sunlight’ each day.

      The fish are not ‘mules’, they are incredibly fertile. The hybrid used is nearly all male so there is no breeding in the tanks. Purchasing a small colony for breeding will insure a constant supply of fry to add to your system and LOTS left over to sell to other aquaponics enthusiasts. Raising fish food is pretty straight forward, the trick is to teach the fry to eat the vegetable matter when they are very young.

      Your idea of being self-sufficient sound great, but the real devil is in the details. Good luck.

      Colle Davis – Inventor

  5. Mitch Gertz

    Which are the other countries that the Portable Farms™ Aquaponics Systems’ Modular Aquaponics Systems is good in?

    I live in Thailand.

    Thanks

    Mitch

    1. portfarms

      Mitch,

      The Portable Farms® Aquaponics Systems can be installed anywhere a climatically adapted structure is available. They have been installed in Alaska, Canada, the Caribbean, several countries in Africa and in South America. We do not ship to countries where intellectual property rights are ignored.

      We trust this information helps.

      Sincerely,

      Colle Davis – Inventor

  6. Douglas

    Do the grow beds need to be separate or could you make a u out of the two beds & use one pfas system?

    1. portfarms

      Douglas,

      The reason the Grow Trays/Modules are separate is for ease of construction. As long as the entire Grow Tray is level in all directions it can be any configuration you want. Most people are not skilled enough at carpentry/cabinet building to pull this off. For the PFAS as long as the Grow Tray area does not exceed 200 sq ft and your can reach to all parts of it, then the configuration is up to you.

      Colle Davis – Inventor

  7. Douglas

    I would like to build a 20×30 greenhouse with three beds 2 3×26 & 1 6×26, how many systems would that require?

    1. portfarms

      Douglas,

      Here is a suggest that will give you a better utilization of the space. Use two trays 6’x 26′ with aisles on each side. This layout will yield over 50% coverage in Grow Tray space for the total footprint of the building and only require two PFAS Kits. It will also save you lumber, time, effort and the cost of the ‘third’ PFAS Kit.

      Good luck and keep us posted on your progress.

      Colle Davis – Invento

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