I am a bit embarrassed by the high grass, weeds, unfinished parts and junk laying around but i have a plan and there will not be any grass in my back yard when i am done.
The system starts with the aquaculture/aquaponics. I run the water through the DWC beds and the 1 gravel bed. I have not planted the DWC(deep water culture) beds because wylie, tx was hit by a biblical style hail storm back in april and i have to replace the liners. I thought they werent damaged but i guess they were.. because after i filled them with water I found they all seem to have slow leaks. Hopefully i can get that project done over the holiday weekend.
The back yard slopes to the back of the property so i pump the water up the incline to the fish tanks and grow beds and everything gravity feeds back to the sump tanks (the ibc tanks in the middle)
I used to be aquaponics only for growing vegetables but at the end of the season i have piles of garden waste, vines, leaves, vegetables that were damaged too much and i was like what do i do with this stuff? So i have started composting my leftover organics and that's what i use to fertilize the raised beds and wicking beds. Not all of the beds are built yet.
also, it occurs to me that maybe not all plants grow the best in aquaponics (sweet potatoes, radishes, beets, carrots, etc?). They can! but It's like a screwdriver vs a hammer.. Use the right tool for the job.
the grassy area between the grow beds and the fish tanks has the steepest grade. It would be difficult to level it well enough to build anything on it so i am going to try to turn it into a couple of long hugelkuture mounds. If you dont know what hugelkulture is... the word is german and means hill culture... and it's basically a stack of decomposing wood and leaves that you plant vegetables into. There's pluses and minuses but because of all of the organic/carbon material it is supposed to soak up water like a sponge, protect it and be more drought resistant than maybe raised beds. I have no experience here so this will all be fun/experimentation
The big overview
the fish tanks, sump and filtration. The shade cloth is to try to keep the sun off the water and temps down. It was something i was able to acquire second hand for free after one of the large PGA tour golf tournaments came through dallas. Apparently they buy 10's of thousands of dollars worth of shade cloth and carpet and they throw it all away afterwards. But they made it available to be picked up if you just come and get it. So I have a lot and I will be using more of it to shade some of the grow beds.
raised whicking beds fill of peppers, some okra and a few flowers to help attract predatory insects
gravel grow bed from the ferrocement build. It has been plumbed into the big/new aquaponics system. It has some experimental plants, mostly bananas, a hibiscus , a few unusual tree/bush saplings that i started from seed like mulberry, pawpaw, serviceberry, chokeberry, quince
The raised grow beds have some assorted squash and cucumber plants mixed in with the big sunchokes (edible tubers related to sunflowers). The pots have small trees that are either tropical and cant live year round outside, or i havent decided where i want to plant them yet. a few varieties of loquats, fig, jujube, bananas, lemon and lime