Backyard Ebb & Flow Aquaponic System

Home made bell siphon

Hydroton Filled Grow Bed Week 1

This is a home scale aquaponic unit that installed a our backyard. We repaired an old 150 gallon fish tank by supporting it with some treated 2×4’s and plywood. It is a gravity feed system that operates with one pump that pumps water up into the top 7ft x 4inch PVC unit. 3inch Holes are drilled every 10 inches along the pipe where different vegetables are growing. The water exits the first tube and splits into two hoses.

PVC Pipe Hydroponic Set-up

Home Scale System Week 1

One hose brings the water into a food grade cement mixer filled with clay hydroton balls, the other hose runs to a second 7ft x 4inc PVC tube. The second PVC tube is tilted slightly down like the first one with vegetables every ten inches. The tube drains into another grow bed filled with river stone and pebbles connected to a home-made bell siphon.

Home Scale Unit Week 4

Home Scale Unit Week 4

The first grow bed and the second one both drain back into the fish tank on their own with rather simple bell siphones I created by using two old water bottles and two glass mason jars. The way the 4 inc PVS tubes drain into the 3/4 inch hoses give the system the effect that it is alive while the water is pumping.

Tilapia Aquaponics

Happy Tilapia

The system acts like it is is breathing, We have since fixed the sound a bit however it is still fun to look at it as a live unit itself. Breathing and flowing water from the fish to the plants like blood through its system.


This Following video was taken when the system was just over two weeks old:


This Next video was taken when the system was just over 45 days old:


Check out some more photos of the system:

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