Installing a 150 gal  4’x8’x1′ aquaponics garden


Installation instructions for  a 4’x8’ Kijani Grows Aquaponics Garden


  1. What you will need
  • Firm level location for garden and fish tank
  • Roof cover to prevent direct sunlight from falling on fish tank
  • 32 cubic feet (1 yard) washed pea gravel
  • Fish tank water conditioner
  • Bacterial starter kits
  • Water test kit
  • Plant seeds
  • Fish
  • Screwdriver
  1. Unboxing
  • kit contents include:
  • grow bed

  • fish tank

  • irrigation piping

  • pump assembly

  • center leg

  • gravel guard pipe
  • growbed stand pipe
  • drainage pip

  • growbed depth sensor stand pipe
  • electric timer
  1. Place garden on a secure firm floor
  2. Remove transportation pallet base by unscrewing the metal brackets underneath the garden
  3. Remove the packaging cardboard from the accessories and garden
  4. Remove the packaging straps and plastic lining cover
  5. Remove the fish-tank, accessories and irrigation tubing from inside the grow-bed
  6. Place the fish-tank in by the drain end of the grow bed in such a way that the drain kit o the bottom of the garden is next to the grow-bed as shown below

  • Mount the middle leg to the center cross beams underneath the grow bed using the metal brackets. Secure by fastening with 1” screws as shown below

  • Adding  the  grow bed strand pipe as shown below with the holes on the side of the pipe facing up


  • Add the gravel guard as shown below

  1. Add the drainage pipe to the bottom of the growbed as shown below

  1. Adding water to the fish tank
  2. Start the pump running and pump the water into the growbed so we can test for leaks before we add gravel
  3. Secure the pump attachment with a clamp and let it run overnight … unless there are very apparent leaks … eg water running from the side of the growbed etc.
  4. If no leaks are found the following day, proceed to getting the garden media. Various examples are given in the urls below
  5. Pea gravel can be procured from a construction yard store.
  1. Turn off the pump and remove the standpipe so water in the growbed can flow back into the fishtanks
  2. Insert the stand pipe into the growbed again, this time with the small holes on the side of the stand pipe in the bottom of the growbed
  3. Holding the gravel guard centered firmly in place, gently fill the growbed evenly with the washed pea gravel (or other growbed media) as shown below

  1. Add the irrigation assembly on top of the gravel with the irrigation holes facing the gravel bed

  1. finally secure the pump assembly to the irrigation assembly as show

  1. Connect the pump to the electric timer and power it on.
  2. Every 30 minutes, the pump should start filling the growbed with water until it overflows through the standpipe into the fishtank. The pump will then go off in the next 30 minutes allowing the growbed to drain slowly into the fish tank using the tiny holes on the bottom of the standpipe.
  3. Let it run overnight to make sure there are no problems
  4. the water should be dirty by now … sometimes I get rid of this batch
  5. Turn of the pump and fill the tank with water,
  6. Add water conditioner to remove chlorine and chloramines from the water
  7. Power the garden and let it run for a while (often I go overnight again)
  8. Now we are ready for adding fish. Whatever kind you decide on start slowly
  1. Test your water on a daily basis using a water test kit (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, ph) measure these, put them on a spreadsheet, graph them and send them to me. We need to take such measurements for the first 30 days and after that a weekly or monthly readings
  2. I like to start plants from seeds to avoid cross contamination. All you have to do is sprinkle the seeds on top of the garden and  run your fingers through to make the seeds fall through the holes in the gravel, or use a container to scoop water from the fish tank and manually water the top of your growbed to allow the seeds to drop in. if starting plants from seedlings, make sure you gently wash off all the soil from the roots but planting the plants in the garden
  1. You can inoculate the garden using a bacteria starter kit. I normally don’t and let nature take its cause. It makes for more interesting data results from the daily test water quality readings