Fish in Aquaponics

7 Easy DIY Aquaponics Systems That Work

Aquaponics has been a growing trend among those who want to grow their own organic food. It’s a rewarding hobby to grow both fish and plants in a clean and closed system that requires very little work. You can create and set up your own small aquaponics system at home that fits your budget. Here are some easy DIY aquaponic systems, that will give you ideas on how to set up your own system at home.

1. DIY Goldfish And Aquaponics

This small project is suitable for your balcony, garage, or small garden. This system uses a 120 gallon DIY wooden crate made of a thick plywood and plastic pond liner.

This system uses a pond pump with a capability of 125-300 gallons per hour and a pvc removable spray bar. The water is pumped from the tank to the grow bed through a self-made pvc pipe and drained through a simple pvc drain covered by a filter box to prevent the substrate from clogging the pipe. Lava rock, gravel and clay pebbles are used as the grow media for the plants.

The wooden crate gives the system a nice natural look and rustic feel. This is great for environmentally conscious people who want to have their own small systems.

Level of Difficulty: Easy

Type of Aquaponics System: Media-Based Outdoor

Fish: Goldfish

Grow Media: Expanded Clay Pebbles

Materials Used:

1 inch plywood, pond liner, pvc pipes, pump

2. The Easiest Aquaponics System

For a small indoor aquaponics system. This set-up uses a 29 gallon aquarium fish tank and four goldfish. The corner 375 gallon pump pumps the water from the aquarium to the grow bed containing Hydroton expanded clay pellets as a growing medium. A standard aquarium meshy material acts as a filter.

The system uses an automatic programmable timer that turns on and off every 15 minutes to flood the grow bed. The system also uses additional lighting for both the tank and the grow bed and improvised cardboard wrapped in aluminum foil as a light reflector. You can be resourceful in finding materials for your system.

Level of Difficulty: Easy

Type of Aquaponics System: Media-Based

Fish: Goldfish

Grow Media: Expanded Clay Pebbles

Materials Used:

Aquarium Fish Tank, standard aquarium meshy material, standard window grow box, pvc pipes, net pots, aluminum foil, cardboard

3. Small-Scale Aquaponics For Beginners

This basic indoor aquaponics system uses a 30 gallon aquarium and goldfish and 2 catfish. The system uses gravel as his grow media and a flood and drain bell siphon. A T5 growing light is also used in this indoor system. A pump is used to pump the water from the fish tank to the grow bed.

He grows a variety of herbs and vegetables in his small system. This system is a great project for beginners who want to learn the basics of aquaponics before moving on to a larger system.

Level of Difficulty: Easy

Type of Aquaponics System: Media-Based

Fish: Goldfish

Grow Media: Gravel & Expanded Clay Pebbles

Materials Used:

pvc pipes, aquarium fish tank, pump, grow bed, wood table

4. Ikea Shelf Turned Into An Indoor Aquaponics System

The priorities for this indoor apartment aquaponics set-up; appearance, design, and functionality were the main basis for building this system. The owner made sure that the system ,based on IKEA shelf, matched his other furniture for a great looking indoor aquaponics system.

A 14 gallons aquarium is used in this set-up. A pump is used to pump the water to the hydroton filled grow bed by an aquarium pump. Instead of using a siphon, he used a pvc standpipe to drain the water from the grow bed.

To minimize energy consumption a small 200l/h 3W pump is used to pump the water from the fish tank to the grow bed and to simplify his plumbing he ran a water tube from the pump into the grow bed through the drain pipe.

Level of Difficulty: Medium

Type of Aquaponics System: Media-Based Indoor

Fish: Goldfish

Grow Media: Expanded Clay Pebbles

Materials Used:

Ikea Besta Shelf, aquarium tank, pvc drainage pipe, plant box, aquarium pump, table

5. DIY Backyard Aquaponics System

This interesting project shows a successful hybrid Aquaponic system (a combination of media-based and NFT system). PVC pipes and buckets are used as grow beds and clay pebbles are used for the grow media. He grows a variety of vegetables and vines in his system. The fish tank is a standard aquarium tank.

Level of Difficulty: Medium

Type of Aquaponics System: Hybrid Media-Based/NFT System

Fish: Goldfish

Grow Media: Lava rock, Gravel, & Expanded Clay Pebbles

Materials Used:

pvc pipes, net cups, clay pebbles, bucket, water pump, standard aquarium tank

6. Easy Gravity-Based Aquaponics Garden

This aquaponics system is a combination of media-based system and NFT system uses pvc pipes and is very efficient. Plants are grown vertically. The water flows to the pipes using gravity, holes are drilled with 7 inches space between them for the plants to grow. The water flows to the pipes on a 15 minutes cycle.

Level of Difficulty: Medium

Type of Aquaponics System: Hybrid Media-Based/NFT System

Fish: Goldfish

Grow Media: Gravel, Expanded Clay Pebbles

Materials Used:

pvc pipes, plastic cups, 2 tanks 45 gallons, pond liner,  pvc cap, gravel rocks for the fish tank,  20 ft black tubing, 2 pumps, clay pebbles

7. Brilliant DIY Vertical Aquaponic System

This system uses a 10 gallon fish tank and a utility shelf. The fish tank is placed on the bottom shelf and trays with clay pebble grow media are placed on each shelf above the tank. Pipes brings the water from the fish tank to the grow beds using a pump.

This system is simple to set up, inexpensive, and perfect for areas with little horizontal space. A variety of plants can be grown in this system.

Level of Difficulty: Medium

Type of Aquaponics System: Media-Based

Fish: Goldfish

Grow Media: Expanded Clay Pebbles

Materials Used:

utility shelf, 10-gallon aquarium, pvc pipes, water pump, clay pebbles, T5 grow light

Summary

DIY aquaponics is one of the most effective ways to start your own aquaponics system at home. You don’t need to have a scientific mind to create our own system. We just need to be creative and resourceful to make one. So go ahead and build yourself a system and you’ll be surprised with the outcome. If you want more information about aquaponics you can join our Facebook Group.