Our Resource File

Our Resource File

Where we keep bits and pieces that are relevant to this project but are not part of the manual.

Sand Garden Academy (SGA) Outline, draft 2.0 (first gasp)

Preface : How this introductory course will proceed, 

strongly recommend acting in the real world – aka physically do vs read (and fantasize) – as you proceed in this course

No one has EVER grown or produced (or knows/learned) ANY thing without their literally have do it – meat-space, aka the real world

1. Forget all AP BS – unlearn what you believe you know

2. Prerequisite knowledge/skills – &/or willingness to find out

3. Light, basics, capture AMAP by maximizing leaf surface area in growing area to extent possible

4. Water, basics – source yours, test it, adjust pH as needed, storage

5. Sand,  basics – source yours, test for inertness, test for drainage rate (after settling), don’t accept claims by anyone and seek/test multiple sources

6 a. Tank location, sizes and shape – entire ‘point’ is to get the ‘wastes’ out of the water and onto/into biofilter ASAP and AMAP

6 b. Water exchange/filtration and aeration – pump types, sizing, location, aeration options (varies by species and growth rate expectation)

6 c. Water quality monitoring, re-mediation

7 a. Biofilter size, depth, leveling surface and bottom slope

7 b. Biofilter drainage/return – plumbing/fittings not recommended.  KISS

7 c. Biofilter,  furrows and ridges, initial, development, management

7 d. Exchange aka filtration aka Irrigation volume and scheduling

8 a. Fish species selection

8 b. Fish feed, appropriate

8 c. Feeding fish, amount & schedule

8 d. Stocking density & mgmt of biomass to market size

9 a. Plant species/ requirements x categories

9 b. Planting, sowing or x-plts / scheduling by season or market

9 c. Plant husbandry – daily observations and pruning

10.  Pest and disease management strategies

11. Ecosystem balance: nutrient inputs and outputs, adjustments, in situ pH adjustment 

x crop type(s), x species mix/stage, seasonality factors (aka light levels)

12. Environmental management,  air movement, temp. regulation, shading, RH, CO2

13. Keep records:  of what you did and what happened 

14. Harvesting, market factors, business considerations 

15. Upsizing strategy/opportunity development

16.  For further technical and scientific detail, expansion planning, etc. consider Silver membership.

For personalized input, feedback and recommendations chose Gold membership


earlier ‘draft’ attempt


purpose, limitations of manual (limited in scope/technical detail/science

Glossary of terms

BASIC Facts, 

biology. chemistry, physics

e.g.  plants are 100% powered by sun ( … light,  solar radiation  –  (leaf surface area (coverage) directly proportional to energy input)

bacteria (and other microbes) ‘power’ (rule, dominate, activate, actualize, control, predominate )  the biosphere, –  including you.

every organism/process has a required pH range to function and an optimum pH to develop/perform optimally

pH is only applicable to aqueous solutions (fluids).  Minerals/solids do not have pH because no Hydrogen

gravity sucks yet is your friend nevertheless

sand has voids – aka pore volume, typically 30 +/- 10% by volume.    liquids pass, particles do not

bacteria/microbes, fish and plants all require O2 

Key operating principles

maintain enuf fish (# and mass) to consumed 25-30 g of feed/day per square meter of planted biofilter  (fruiting crops)

extract ALL fish excretions to full extent possible as soon as practical   (get shit out of water and onto/into biofilter)

flooding frequency, duration of drained condition = (microbes/plants require O2) , rest overnight

Aspect/Component proportions     v:v, v:a ratios

Technology options – appropriateness to user/ location, ability, expectation

Materials and equipment selection

water  sourcing, storage, pH adjustment

Sand – sources, testing for suitability, 

Drainage –   strategy 

Energy strategy  – human powered, animal power, wind power, photovoltaic . grid powered

Tanks – location (elevation aka in ground, on grade) , shape and proportion, aeration options/choices/

complete turn-over/exchange following each feeding

fish feeds  – differs by species, composition (balanced to meet species&plant reqmts, presentation (floating pellet), frequency, observe consumption, feed to satiation 2x/day

volume (as fish grow they consume a reduced proportion (percent) of the body weight – e.g. 10g Til @15%/day,  250g @5-7%, 1kg @2-3%

Biofilters   depth. slopes,  widths, lengths (drainage wrt length)

purpose/functions, size and placement of furrows … and ridges

prevent anaerobic conditions developing at depth –  in bottom

Nitrogen (in solution) processors/transformers – import for fish

other bacterial etc species process/transport every the other organic molecule  

(> compounds (bio-molecules) > plant available forms / plant nutrient assimilation (& filter ‘clean’)

Plants species selection

seasonal aspects, cultural/market value, nutrient value, nutrient proportion consideration. planting density, (energy/light ‘capture), scheduling, rotations

Schedule – water, fish, planting

Monitoring and adjustment/intervention

Pest and disease mitigation/control strategies

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