October 6, 2013 · 10:00 AM
my phone is[masked] in case you have trouble getting here.
When you pull in, please watch out for dogs and try to park out of the way so others can get through, there is plenty of space for parking.
It usually takes between 1-2 hours for the farm tour. Please wear sturdy shoes, wash hands when you arrive and please sign in on the waiver form. Please watch your step, the ground is often uneven. No Smoking or tobacco products around the Aquaponic or garden area, tobacco products can carry/transmit tobacco mosaic virus which can infect a very wide variety of plants and could render the farm incapable of successful production if it got a foothold.
We do have dogs, Bailey is the Blue Tick Heeler/Hound/Mutt Knee High Dog, he is still a puppy not yet a year and a half old. His bark may sound scary but he is a good boy. The White fluffy things are my two Great Pyrenees Puppies, they are less than 5 months old and growing fast. Both Girls The bigger one is Emily and the smaller Anti. If you have major issues with dogs or are bringing little children, please let me know in advance so I can contain them for a more controlled introduction.
We Only Moved to the Farm a year ago, it is still a work in progress. The Barn/dwelling was here and the wood rail fencing was here All the aquaponics and gardens were installed by us after we moved in. Total property is about 12 acres (two of those are the road and a small strip on the other side of the road) about 10 acres on my side of the roads, about a third of that has free range chickens/ducks at this point.
I got into aquaponics back in 2007, I did not go to school for it, I learned from the internet and by trial and error. I do a bit of every type of aquaponics but my favorite is still the good old media bed or gravel bed type aquaponics, this is what I recommend for people wanting to try it in their own backyards. In FL for an outdoor system I recommend 300 gallons of fish tank to help maintain temperature stability. I have tried Tilapia in the past but water temperatures get too cold here if one doesn't heat the water. We prefer channel catfish and bluegill because not only do they taste good but they thrive in the temperature ranges normal to this climate. The Catfish can reasonably reach 3 lb in 12 months from fingerlings here. Bluegill grow slower and don't get very big but are a better choice for smaller tanks or for those people who have an objection to catfish. We also have lots of mosquito fish, they remain small and eat mosquito larva and are a great fish for starting up a new system or using in a small indoor learning system or just tossing in a rainwater catchment.