I just located a very good source of information on aquaponics. This website has some answers to questions I have had, such as how much growing space for the plants do you create compared to the amount of fish tank below it? Easy answer is 2:1
A 50 gallon fish tank gives you enough nutrients to maintain 100 gallons of plant growing space. Use the ratio configuration of 7.48 per cubic feet. Example:
You have a 50 Gallon fish tank. How do you determine the size of
your grow beds using the 2:1 ratio?
Following the 2:1 grow bed to fish tank ratio you will need
approximately 100 gallons of grow bed volume
Divide 100 gallons by 7.48 to determine cubic feet
Cubic ft = 14’ (rounded up)
Assuming ideal grow bed depth of 1 ft you can conclude that a
single 2’ x 7’ grow bed would work
Or two 2’ x 3.5’ grow beds
If depth is 6” you can double the grow bed area to 28 s.f.
Are you doing aquaponics?
I'm really considering it and would like to see one already established in our area but I haven't asked around much yet. What I would like to raise is Bluegill, I can't seem to acquire the taste for Tilapia very well. I've been told you can order the fish through Southern States. Getting them established in a pond or large tank would be the beginning of it, then add the growing tanks after a few months. It does have my interests that's for sure.
Have you checked with the extension agent at Virginia State? Brian Neerie is in charge of aquaculture there and may be able to get the fish and advice you need