Alright this is John Kohler from growing your
greens dot com and bringing you another exciting episode for you and coming at you coming at
you from the Las Vegas valley here and why I am here today is to show you guys is how
you can grow foods in Las Vegas or any desert actually that you live in.
So what you look at behind me is the standard house in Las Vegas or the standard residential
lot you know these lots are about 6,000 square feet and even in the 6,000 square feet lot
which many of you guys may live in a lot of similar size, you can grow a substantial amount
if not all of your own food that you need to eat if done appropriately.
I want you guys to have your own food security and not be dependent on the ship to come in
or trucks transport the food or you to have to go in the grocery store and you know the
gardener here you know told me about. That Las Vegas is an island and I am like “What?
Las Vegas is an Island? We are in the middle of continental United States”. Well, think
about it. If I-15, which is the major freeway that runs into Las Vegas were to transports
everything into Las Vegas the food, the furniture, everything that is sold in the stores to transport
it in on semi trucks if that freeway got shut off right Las Vegas is an Island you know.
I mean is Las Vegas does not produce a lot of food for its residents. Absolutely not
even ONE- TENTH of ONE PERCENT of the people in Las Vegas, grow enough food to eat I can
probably live off my garden for a good period of I don’t know too many people that can
that is one of the motivations. That should the gardener here and that isn’t
why they are actually growing food in a very unique and different way which I think is
an ideal and good solution for people growing in Las Vegas or other deserts or other island
is because of once Las Vegas gets cut off an island is no different than being in the
Virgin islands or being in Hawaii when the boats stops coming in.
I want you guys no matter where you live to be more sustainable. That means that you have
to grow all your food tomorrow no. It means I want you guys to start, you know start small
“by the inch it’s a cinch”, “by the yard it is hard” (INAUDIBLE).
(INAUDIBLE) if you don’t have a system like what we talk about today, set up a small system
to experience to see how it works as it grow. The gardener here has basically, has been
doing this system of gardening for the last three years. He has been learning as he grows
and he has been improving his system and now he is taking it to the point where he feels
that he is at a good point and he is willing to share it with me and now I can share it
with you guys his special way of growing technique that saves water in this day and age of droughts
and watering restriction and you know this method of growing saves the most water over
standard raise bed garden. So anyways without further ado let us go ahead
over to the gardener’s home and check out what he has got going on. Alright, so now
I am in the front yard and I am going to show you guys how the garden is growing it’s
right here he’s got raised beds in his front yard (INAUDIBLE) . Behind these raised beds
you can see the neighbors. There are just rocks which is basically not functional. You
could use the space that you had on your property whether you own or rent to grow your own food.
Then you could go to the grocery store and buy less food and one of my main messages
to you guys is that I want you guys to start growing your own food. Take some responsibility
for yourself or only have some food security and in my opinion most importantly have a
highest quality food available. I mean, industry and agriculture industry
is not growing food to grow the highest quality grow the best tasting food you know they are
growing specifically for the mullah or the money right and when money gets involved in
the industries and government I think things get really wacked out and things you know
aren’t being done in favor of the consumer person in any case. So what he has done here
he has some raised beds is in the front yard they are growing actually quite well ooh he
has got some peppers here, he has got some carrots he has got some collard greens and
some cabbages growing all in raised beds. Well, I am growing in raised beds in Las Vegas
and he is quite successful at it while he’s doing that here he also has over a half dozen
of those in raised beds in the back yard that is also going well he figured this well ok
in the desert which where we are at like the ground is literally sand I mean this is sand.
There is not a lot of (INAUDIBLE) in the sand but there isn’t a lot of organic matter.
Organic matter is needed to have plants thrive in whole nature system, the minerals and the
bacteria holding capability and all this kind of stuff for the vegetables we
like to eat to grow so instead of having to keep importing soil to grow in Las Vegas because
you have to enrich the soil here to grow it you know primarily the compost and not brought
in yards and yards of compost to grow in my system he figured he didn’t want to do that
he wanted to us a local resource that is much more available and actually directly piped
into his home as the growing medium. So anyways I’ll show you this system lets
go ahead and head into the back yard and let you guys know the system that you could have
used virtually anywhere to start growing your own food and you can grow some fish today.
So now you are at the backyard fence and before I go into the backyard I do want to let you
guys know that before you start a front yard garden here in Las Vegas you want to make
sure that it is alright with the city and also the home owners association if you have
one in your neighborhood many places actually outlaw to grow vegetables in your front yard
and if it is I will definitely will encourage you guys to plan other edible vegetables that
are not recognized as vegetables my idea of local edible crops that you can plant in your
front yard that you can still eat if you are if it is not considered as a “known vegetable”
you can also plant many fruit trees and fruit producing shrubs if you are not able to grow
specific vegetables that you guys know and I want you guys to increase your diversity
of fruits that you eat. You know, one of the coolest things that you
grow in Las Vegas is the mesquite tree, the Mesquite pods are really nutritious food to
eat and that is what the native Americans eat before the white man came and they do
quite well in the weather and one of the coolest things about Mesquite is you can take the
pods and basically pre-dry and do a pattern you can have flour and do all types of baking,
eat raw all types of cool stuff, stores during the winter so all kinds of cool stuff grow
that and have all kinds of store the mesquite. Simple things like pinion nuts, pistachio
nuts, there are so many different foods you can grow if you can’t grow “real vegetables”
start growing some date palms which are used as ornamentals all over the valley as well
as juju bean or Chinese date fruits which are another fruit that tastes excellent when
they are fresh kind of like apple and even better when they are dried to perfection it
kinda reminds of a taste like an angel food cake. It is kinda spongy but it is sweet with
good flavor and in Chinese medicine the juju bean is a very healing and powerful food.
With that let us go hang and show you guys how this gardener is growing his vegetables
here in Las Vegas yeah gate in his backyard. I always recommend you know growing in the
sunniest spot. That is one of the things he learnt the front yard has the most sun but
he put this in the alley which is still in the backyard but the alley gets more sun that
the back yard once. Again plants are like us and like the sun
lets go check it out as you guys can see here we got an amazing aquaponic system and the
coolest thing about this aquaponic system is that this aquaponic system is 99.9 percent
made out of parts available locally. You know, he picked up all these different
you know parts, pumps and all these stuff in places like Lowes, Home Depot and Harbor
Freight so he didn’t have to order hardly anything to make this system work and you
know.. so and he is not even using any type of IBC totes or anything like that which is
totally amazing it just blows my mind . So any way let us go back there and show you
guys his aquaponic system and how he has done it. So now we are looking at is the aquaponic
system or actually half of the aquaponic system because the aquaponic system is more than
just the plants or the (INAUDIBLE) we are looking at the plant. Half there is the fish
half the because the fish is what makes the fertilizer the plants now whether you know
are having your own garden most people will put manure in their garden and this is the
animal manure that many people believe that it is the fertility to their garden and yes
I believe that animal manure can be a part of a fertility programme but in the aquaponics
pretty much the fish are providing the fertility the fish poop but also the fish pee and that
basically feeds the plants indirectly. And some of the plants we got growing right here
are these guys. These guys are the uh, snow peas. Wow, nice and tasty nice and delicious.
These were recently planted. They do not like the full het of the Las Vegas
summers that reaches regularly over 100 degrees. These were recently planted so they are a
bit smaller. But behind me, as you guys can see we have
some bean plants, and these bean plants are huge are like if we just look in here all
type of beans happening and these are just trellised up on this like little wire like,
basically hoop here to take all over no and here is just one of these guys hmmm man that
is such a good green bean. Now I wanna notice if you guys know every growing style whether
you are growing in raised beds or whether you are growing aquaponic right. You’re
basically providing different climatic conditions for the plants. In under different climatic
conditions, plants will grow better/worse or maybe the same. And one of the things I
really couldn’t grow for the life of me this year, in my garden, were the green beans.
Now the Asian long beans did pretty well in heat but the green beans don’t do well so
I guess if I wanna grow green beans I am gonna definitely use an aquaponic system because
by the looks of it he’s done quite well with it. And now why would that be? Well, wow,
the water, you know, is keeping the green beans cooler than having them in the soil.
And so that’s why I believe I believe one of the reason why the green beans have worked
so well in this system and not so well in the garden because with the water, keep things
a little bit cooler and the plants have access to the water to transpire and keep themselves
cooler you know much like if in the hot summer in Las Vegas we become dehydrated fast. When
you drink water, water to cool us down. Well, the plants also need the water. And one of
the biggest challenge with gardeners in the desert they just tend to have under water
and not water enough so that their plants dry out too quickly and you know much like
us, we need water to survive and so do our plants anyways besides the water, and the
nutrients in the plants lets go ahead and show you guys some other part of this aquaponic
system. So in this part of the aquaponic system, what
we have is lettuce that was just planted. I just want to we courage you guys to plant
foods of color, Don’t just plant the green lettuce. Plant some beautiful red lettuces
.They look ornamental and would dress up a nice salad and hey they even look a little
bit festive you know for a card. They are holidays, Christmas and all of this stuff
coming up real soon. Now we are getting in to the winter in Las Vegas and soon enough
you know there will be the freezing temperatures and the beans will get pulled out and the
crops will be transitioned over into leafy greens. You know one of the things I’ve
seen done really well, under aquaponics, is things like Bok Choi and some of the mustard
family plants. But of course the Lettuce is a good one that work as well. I will go ahead
and lift up this raft here. And these rafts are nothing more than basically some Styrofoam
that is normally sold for insulation at your local big box store. And as you guys can see.
Now look at this. This is incredible we got some standard net pots here that is available
at a hydroponics store. We got nice little lettuce. Look at that root mass on that man
that is like over 12 inches long and just some little volcano rock there holding the
root down. I mean this is definitely a healthy looking lettuce here and, you know, the common
person may think that it is easy to do aquaponics because the fish poop feeds the plants but
if you look down in this water I am not seeing any fish poop floating around or anything.
The water is quite clear and you know it is because the fish poo doesn’t actually feed
the plants directly. It needs to go through a secondary process and there is some other
creatures or living organisms in this system besides just the fish and just the plants
and this is something that many people sometimes miss. Now, besides these other creatures that
we will cover in a second. You know, another thing they are doing, you know, in this area
alone which is new is there actually oxygen in the water with an air stone and this has
caused massive increase in growth of the roots and of also the plants.
So I wanna encourage you guys if you do have an aquaponic system is to aerate your water
which will aerate the roots. After all there is a whole ‘nother way of growing food that
is actually called aeroponics, where they literally grow with oxygen, and so I always
believe, you know, adding oxygen is probably a good thing for your plants.
Let’s go ahead and lower this thing down. Uh, one of these things on this uh, Styrofoam
stuff is very important. This stuff will break down with the sun. The UV will break this
stuff down and powd, (INAUDIBLE) ,flake it off, turn into a powder giving your system,
.really mess it up. So they have actually used a latex paint to protect the Styrofoam
from breaking down the UVs. So yeah, he has painted that super important and super critical.
I guess uh, next let us go ahead to look at the fish and look at that other creature that
I talked about that breaks down the fish pee and poop into nutrients for the plants.
Alright so now we are looking at another component of the aquaponic system it’s the fish of
course. So in here actually he has some Koi and goldfish and you know the main reason
for aquaponics is that you cannot only grow your own vegetables which are actually higher
in protein in fish and protein whether you believe that or not by calorie but you can
grow your own fish for food or for pets or for whatever you want to do with them and
he has about 50 to 60 different fishing here and I got the lucky job today of feeding them
so we are going to go ahead. “Dinner time fishies!” Alright so they
are not coming up today. Might be a little cold for them. Oh the water is a bit cold.
It’s been you know the nights been getting down to like I don’t know the 40s and stuff
so getting cold here although we haven’t gotten frost as yet. So that is a good thing.
But yeah he has got all the water in here and this is quite a bit cold but besides just
the fish which is just pretty cool right. The coolest thing about this basically fish
tank is what it’s made out of..i means you guys can see it’s kind of like black or
something you‘re not seeing you know a lot of fish tank made out of plastic and few will
buy (INAUDIBLE) you know containers and use IBC totes but he’s done nothing like that
actually I pride ( inaudible) IBC tote he has constructed this totally out of wood.
I’m like wait a second some wood! Literally some plywood from Home depot or Lowes and
some two by fours is supporting the weight of all the water in here I mean water with
like 8 pound per gallon or something like that.
This is a lot of weight here so let me go ahead and show you guys how the construction
on this and No he doesn’t have this have one of those rubber pond liners or PVC pond
liner in here there is no pond liner just basically just the wood. Although he did coat
it with something I will show you guys in a second. So yeah this makes construction
very easy (inaudible phrase basic has built it), you know painted on he is a paint contractor
actually. A special coating and it holds the water totally water proof no leaks whatsoever
let me go ahead and show you guys the exposed side of this fish tank made out of some wood.
So now I am going to show you guys the construction of the finished tank here and basically as
you guys can see it is basically two by four I mean this looks like exposed siding inside
of a house Yes pretty much what it is three quarter inch plywood with the 2 by 4s and
that is the construction of this tank here as well as all the trough that hold the water
that hold the raft that holds the plants that you guys saw just a little bit ago.
Amazing. and he did not have to buy any additional pond lining to line the bottom he has a special
coating that he uses that I will share with you guys that is actually coming up next.
You know the next thing that I want to see is you know this is just a guy that has never
done aquaponics before you know he has learned by the school of hard knocks, he read a bunch
of stuff online and studied it intently, figured out how to do it and he’s built a system
and he as he built it he is changing it and learning you know how to you know how to do
it differently you know how to improve it as time goes on. And you know I don’t want
you guys to wait until you think you know it all and then do this system cause guess
what that day will never come you know you got to just jump in with the good solid foundation
right and you will be making adjustments as you go everybody does.
I still make adjustments to my garden every day as I go on as I learn more you know I
(INAUDIBLE). I refine it that I can better production, better harvest and more importantly.
Do less work. And that’s a big of the aquaponic system right. You want to do the least amount
of work as possible, get the most amount of return and after he has (dialed it in) for
a number of years that is what he is able to literally do. You know pretty much he has
to just come out here, feed the fish every day, check the water once in a while which
will show you guys in a second and he just comes out and has to harvest and eat the food
that he is producing in his backyard here. So I guess the next thing we are gonna do
is actually show you guys the special coating that he uses and it’s this stuff right here.
Comes in a big five gallon buckets and I wanna always encourage you guys to actually or re-use
your buckets and they are very handy in the garden I use them to collect like compost
and collect my food scraps and you can even drill holes in these guys and use them as
planters. You know, buckets are amazing and it is sad that so many people throw them out
these days and you wanna kick man. Checkout my past videos from like four years
ago on you know things to do with a five gallon buckets in the garden. That was quite a fun
video to me. Anyways this stuff is actually called the “Brush Grade Pond Coat Seamless
Pond and Plant Box liner” and this is for waterproofing protection for planter boxes.
I mean, it says planter boxes, and it is non flammable and has no toxins, softeners or
VOCs. This is very important because if your fish are going to live in there. Right. If
they have any kind of toxins in there, your fish aren’t gonna do well and likewise you
know we don’t wanna be putting foods in our bodies that are contaminated with things.
I mean, this is pretty amazing and it says the acidic content in here and the (INAUDIBLE)
and all this stuff by a company called the Perma-Dry and once again it says at the bottom
“Non toxic, no VOCs”. Now if I were to go with a system like this would I go with
this coating. Well, definitely, I would consider this coating
as one of my options you know I’d also look into the pond liners or probably more looking
towards real rubber pond liner but those guys can get quite expensive so this maybe an option
and you know I want to let you guys know that this may be an option for you ,you know. Another
thing that you might do is probably use an IBC tote to cut it down and you don’t need
any kind of liner when using just plastic right. The IBC tote’s or get a food grade
one that’s made out of kind of nice, hard food grade, food approved plastic so I guess,
once the water which is the carrier of the roots for the plants and also the carrier
for the water so that is his “soil” with quotes around it because and it is free because
it is piped in to his house .Well, not quite free. He is paying for it. But it is super
cheap. A lot easier that bringing in compost. He is basically turning on his spigot, filling
up his tanks here. Filling up his system with all the water so that he is able to grow some
food of really big component of this system for it to work properly. Besides the fish
and the plants is the filtration, I cannot stress this enough. As you guys can see what
he is using for filtration is right here. These are just Rubbermaid brute trash cans
available you know locally. Once again at the Home improvement stores. I wanna encourage
you guys to get the commercial grade trash cans don’t just get the cheap one. I know
you might save couple bucks in getting the cheap ones but the cheap ones will degrade
overtime and not be as durable I mean that is why they are commercial grade they are
nice and thick, heavy duty, normally he has the tops on. He took the tops off for me today.
Let me go ahead and show you guys four different trashcan filters that he has created by using
just simply the trashcan plus some very simple PVC pipe (INAUDIBLE).
So as you guys can see this is the filtration set up. There is a total of four of these
brute, Rubbermaid garbage cans and each one is a little bit different. You know, I wouldn’t
say that one is more important than the other. They are all important for this system to
work properly. You know, he did a really have two of these guys and it was not sufficient
so once again learn as you grow. He got two more now if you guys are going to do it. Probably
might want to get four of these guys and do a system similar to this cause, you know,
there is no substitute for filtration in my opinion. The first one here is basically just
a swirl filter the water enters the bottom, it swirls up to the top and comes out this
pipe and goes into the bottom of the next garbage can filter and it sees next the next
two that are super important in my opinion. This is probably the heart of the aquaponics
system although an aquaponic can throw us off and talk about the fish and the plants
but this intermediary step which is the biology to drive this whole system and to make it
work properly and what these two filters are these this is basically the biology or the
bacteria in the system because it takes these bacteria that break down the fish waste and
turn it into plant food. This is super important and how it does this number one he has basically
a fabric here and actually this is something that is actually commonly available. Some
people use like these little scrubber things. He’s found to use these because once again
these are locally available and no matter where you live in the United States you got
a Lowes or Home depot and some common stores. You could pick this up and what it simply
is this stuff which is Filtrate, Filtrete basic custom fit air clinging filter and it
is very important when you choosing air cleaning filters like this is for some other kind of
scrubby bristle nylon brush things that you use to scrub your sink down and put them in
your system you wanna make sure that these not have an microbial coating because what
we really growing in these two filters are microbes. Microbes are super important. They
are what’s doing the work to convert the solids from the fish into food for the plants
so that’s these two next barrels here and then now we are gonna go on and share with
you guys a third barrel and this is a way he is able to basically re-use something that
would normally get tossed out in his system to help get the water cleaner. To this fourth
trash can literally basically called the Gasser. Basically has the clear water and wow man
looks so different from the water in the first one and then there is water from another that
I would drink from it but it is way cleaner than the first one and the last thing you
doing is basically the gasser. I can’t really lift this up here but if you guys could look
at that basically a net with a whole bunch of used bottle cap of soda pop bottles and
maybe some water bottles. I don’t recommend you guys drink soda pop so collect these from
your neighbors if you going to do this this basically create the surface area for the
bacteria and you know…helps get the water cleaner before it is pumped on to the plants.
I mean that’s how this whole system works now you know aquaponics to me is like a lot
more or complicated on some levels than soil gardening. In soil gardening, there is a lot
of natural checks and balances that nature has set up you know it’s kinda difficult
to really mess up bad in soil gardening if you follow the right procedures and you are
not putting chemical fertilizer where you can burn stuff. Well, likewise in aquaponics
system right because your controlling many of the environmental factors the water, the
ph, you gotta make sure you have good bacteria that are basically digesting the (soil) and
turning all the fish waste and fertilizer. You gotta check that regularly so that you
can ensure your plants are gonna grow and your whole system is going to work properly.
So let’s go over and check out commonly available water test kit you could actually
test the watering your aquaponic system to make sure you get it (valved) in properly
and your system’s is gonna work like his is working here.
So how I like to look at aquaponics personally is that you kinda like playing God for the
creatures in your environment, in your system mean for your fish and for your plants you
are God because you are controlling the environment I mean in Nature I set up the soil I put on
a watering system and pretty much I let nature figure things out and aside from my drip irrigation
system come on I don’t have to worry about much but in a aquaponics system. You know,
it is even more technical than that because when you get up to do something like this
what we’re looking at is just a standard API fresh water master test kit and this is
available like PETCO or one of the Pet Smart places you know for testing water in aquariums
and that’s really what you’re doing. You’re testing water in your aquaponics aquarium.
Because you wanna make sure that things are (valved) in properly because if it’s not
(valved) in properly. Guess what? You know, you’re plants might look all piss poor (INAUDIBLE)
they might turning yellow and not doing well, they’re not getting new growth something
missing right and I’ve seen many aquaponics systems do well and actually this is one of
the better ones I’ve seen you know I’ve also seen ones that actually are not doing
well and are not looking well you know despite “aquaponics is the future. Aquaponics is
the answer” why I think it can be part of the answer and especially in places like Las
Vegas where there is you know poor soil and things can be more difficult (INAUDIBLE) aquaponics
can be the great equalizer that can allow more people to start growing food easier if
they got trained properly and learn how to work the system here and one of the amazing
things is ,I mean, this test kits here is super (INAUDIBLE) . Just gets some water from
your thing you put a couple of drops of the different test solutions and basically you
read the little chart there is like color coded chart here you know one of the most
important things in the aquaponics and also in soil gardening is your pH range.
Very important to have plants in the right ph range as well both the fish. His ph here
is running a little bit higher than optimal in like a 7.8 you know..I you know like around
it 7- 7.3 or something like that well you know it’s a little bit higher and it may
be because of the water or possibly because of the coding he is using, you know, may make
it a little bit higher you know the next few things that your critical component of the
system that will need to get resolved properly without the bacteria that I showed you guys
earlier where it is being populated into the filter actually the system is not going to
work and your test kit is going to tell you if your system is working or not the first
one is going to test the ammonia and that is one of these guys right here and the ammonia
is basically what the fish makes. The fact that the fish poo and the fish pee
that makes the ammonia so you can test ok. I got ammonia and that’s a good thing cause
that’s the fertilizer that you know for your plants and you know what happen to fish
or not gonna make enough fertilizer to basically allow the amount of plants you want to live
you know so if you have too many plants or too many fish it’s not going to be goods
you need to balance it out and then the next thing besides the ammonia is you got the nitrite
and the nitrate. Nitrite is the next test and basically what happens is the ammonia
that your fish makes is now converted by the bacteria in one of the garbage cans into the
nitrite…right and this is an intermediary step and you have to make sure that you have
some nitrite in there because it shows you that your bacteria in your system is working
properly. Now of course the last component is also important it’s another kind of bacteria
that converts the Nitrite into the Nitrate that is now a basically the food for the plant
that it makes I mean the plants can’t absorb the ammonia or the Nitrite alone. It needs
to have the proper one the Nitrate and that is where the bacteria come into play that
is why they are so important. Now the cool thing is you know in many different aquaponic
systems where they had to add a lot of different inputs in to the system to make your work
I mean of course the biggest input in aquaponic systems is of course the fish food which is
a given. I mean, you gotta feed the fish although there has been plenty of systems that I have
seen where people grow some of their own fish food depending on the kind of fish they have.
Now he brings in the fish food here which is one input but you know the fish don’t
eat a lot of food you know its relatively inexpensive.
The other thing that he does need to add is right here this is actually called the super
iron chillate. This is a water soluble iron I’ve always seen this as required and it
doesn’t take a lot of this stuff in this system to basically get a good balance system
here .I mean that’s all he has and yes his pH is a little high he could add something
to lower it but you know once again he is learning as he grow as he is growing and if
the plants and the fish appear to be healthy and growing well I mean why change what’s
growing and introducing another variable into your system right. so I wanna encourage you
guys if you do have a aquaponic system or wanna have one try to reduce the amount of
variables because the more kind of variables you make right the more chances of messing
things up. You know, so yeah, so it is really cool that you have been able to do. This system
I guess adding the fish food and the iron chillate and it looks like amazing to me.
So the next thing I want to do is I want to sit down with Scott the farmer here that’s
growing the fish and the plants and were are going to sit down and ask him some questions
about aquaponics and why he started to grow his food here in his back yard in the middle
of the desert. So now we are here with Scott Coggins of Coggins
Gardens and he is the gentleman that is growing all this food and has created with his own
two hands what I showed you guys today in this episode super, oober cool that he is
doing this. So Scott I want to thank you for having me over.
Thanks John. (INAUDIBLE) first off and the next thing I
want to ask you is why did you decide to do aquaponics here in the desert. I was sitting in the (class) one day and I
heard about (INAUDIBLE) feeding 10,000 people. Food Security is important to me and I feel
that everyone should have some ownership of their food so I came home and had this (INAUDIBLE)
idea to talk to my wife into letting me build this back here she thinks I a crazy its 2
years into it we are starting to harvest some food and things just starting to move forward.
It’s been very exciting (INAUDIBLE) . Wow so you know you had some previous experience
with gardening in Southern Nevada so you are not new to gardening but you are new to aquaponics
so tell me a little about that and about that relationship.
So I consider myself a third generation gardener in Nevada, my grandparents had a vegetable
gardens I remember when I was a kid in the mid late ‘70s or early ‘70s late‘60s
and then my father (INAUDIBLE) also better tomatoes down here for (INAUDIBLE) I have
been on this property for 20 years 6000 square foot lot and we started gardening I took some
trees down and got some raised beds around here but Aquaponics is. I am growing stuff
on concrete. If you look on the ground here you can grow vegetables here on concrete there
is so many opportunities. There is a lot of place to grow vegetables and grow (INAUDIBLE)
and fish at the same there is just it is the way of the future as I see it.
Wow so, why specifically aquaponics? Instead of (INAUDIBLE) grow like I grow.
Well, I actually do both I built this to prove the system to myself that it works and I’ve
done that now what’s the next step well we’ve got some exciting ideas that maybe
be the crazy guy that’s growing food on his roof maybe in the Spring . We don’t
know these things yet I we got other things we are gonna try to do. The fact of the matter
is you can take fish and build yourself a wacko system out of wood with some paint and
you know, grow fish and grow produce the same time. Now, with that being said, and it gives
you food security. Las Vegas is an island. Think about how we get here and there are
a few roads in this town. Earlier in this Summer we had a problem you know I-15 got
shut down. Think about your food security you have to take some ownership of you food
because if you don’t who will? I mean I totally agree you guys gotta take
ownership of your own food that is why I have all these videos. Over 1000 videos now to
teach you guys all aspects I don’t just necessarily focus on aquaponics but I am glad
when I get to come out and share with people doing this and to show you guys the examples
I mean. This is a great example of what Scott is doing here you guys can do out of a Home
Depot, Lowes and some of these stores. Scott let’s talk about some of these different
stores you bought some of these stuff at and you know where do you get that special paint
stuff cause I know some people out there might be thinking about that.
I believe the company is called [Promo-Dry] in here Southern California You have to order
it to Southern Nevada, It is expensive but as opposed to the reason why I went with the
Promo dry as opposed to a liner is I don’t have much waste. All the waste I had was on
the rollers and the brushes. I still have the product I could do other projects with
instead of cutting off the trimming. That stuff is no longer usable for me. That is
the reason why (I went this path).Was this the correct path? Time will tell. I don’t
know. We don’t know. I’ve never built one of these. Quite frankly, I don’t think
anyone has one like mine either. So hey. End of the day it’s mine.
I’ve never seen another one like this. I mean, for me the proof is in the pudding.
The steps working. The plants look great. I mean. What are some of the other stores
you used in the local area to buy some of the stuff?
So the local merchants would be Lowes, Home Depot for the woods and the screws and what
not. We went to Harbor Freight to get the pump and We had to go to Pet Co for the fish
and API testing kit. I had to order online – Amazon to get the
net pods. 2inch net pods we have. We need to have a one stop shop. The Hydroponics store
I went down there for sea salt in the early days. They don’t have- the Hydroponics shop
in Vegas don’t have what I need. So there needs to be a one stop shop in Las Vegas.
It’s gonna be somebody that we know that gets it done. I don’t know but the idea
is out there. One more thing, (INAUDIBLE). In 1996 has changed
you can’t have in edible fish that’s why I have goldfish in my backyard I have to research
that how I can change that law. But then you should be able to grow edible fish on your
property. You can have chickens and rabbits. You should be able to have fish as well.
I mean I totally agree. I think there should not be a law that restricts, you know, usage
of what we want to grow if it’s an edible crop. I mean it’s. It’s completely ridiculous
it’s like almost living in a police state or something.
Not even (INAUDIBLE).You shouldn’t make a fish illegal!
Totally agree. So Scott let’s talk about, you know, I know you are really into education.
You wanna educate some of the people out there because most people frankly have no clue about
aquaponics. You guys watch me I’ve been to many different aquaponic pros and shared
them with you but if you are, you know, finding this video for the first time and you are
from Las Vegas and you want to tour your garden you guys do tours and classes and all that
stuff to share what you have learnt and once again you know Scott like me, I am just learning
in life from learning as a gardener. I’ve learnt a lot of stuff cause I have done a
lot of stuff and he’s been doing this for years and knows more about aquaponics than
I do in Las Vegas cause I haven’t done any here although one of these days I’ll set
it up and I’ll probably give him a call for his expertise so yes do you give class
and tour sand all this kind of stuff. We’re setting up for tours in the early
spring next year, 2015. You can contact us through our Coggins Garden Facebook page or
Coggins Garden YouTube channel to set up a personal tour. But we will start having classes
and organize tours in the early spring of 2014 or 2015 and as you see right back here
we just went through the summer we getting everything going. I want to have stuff growing
so that you can come back here and actually see it actually work and I gather. You know
John’s here and tomorrow is Thanksgiving and those green beans are going to be eaten
and those are coming out and I’m going to put a plastic cover off that and then we’re
going to start all the winter crops so by time we get re-back open get re-open and growing
in early 2015 we will be ready that all of you an (come) visit us.
This Scott is amazing that you are able to grow through the summer. Many people think
it is not possible to grow in the middle of summer. I mean, I think this last summer got
up to 100 and teen degrees in Fahrenheit and I’m able to grow you know year round summer,
winter , whenever and I’m wanna let you guys know if you guys live in Las Vegas its
always growing season in Las Vegas right There is never not a time when you cannot grow food
in Las Vegas (INAUDIBLE). Some of you guys live in other areas of the country where there
are distinct seasons where you could grow but unfortunately the nurseries in town believe
that you can’t grow in the winters so they don’t sell plants starts and this kind of
stuff and make it easy for people to grow but it is possible once again if you set it
up properly, you know, if you are doing a soil gardening like I did You gotta have god
soil good water and system. If you doing aquaponics wanna set up something
like this cause it obviously works and obviously you know some of the covering definitely more
important in the winter time to keep things a bit warmer to get better growth. So another
thing I want to talk to you about Scott today is, I know, you have really amazing idea about
you know making aquaponics more accessible for people especially if they don’t wanna
be an expert in aquaponics but like a storage type facility because people have extra stuff
in their life and they have to like take it to this storage center and they rent the little
storage space in the storage center but you could have like an aquaponics farm or community
garden and you wanna share this concept with my viewers out there and maybe somebody out
there will do this concept cause it sounds like an awesome idea to me.
So it’s a pretty simple concept and well seems simple in my mind but it’s a pretty
simple concept you get a piece of property (INAUDIBLE) lot for instance and you (INAUDIBLE)
and put ,you know,10 by 20 or 20 by 20 spots out here with a aquaponics system on there.
It’s got a, you know, the raised bed, I mean, a flood and drain type system, a fish
tank and just different types of components of aquaponics system you put them all on the
property. You have the big system like I have back here that will grow the fish and the
vegetables in the start We rent them out to a customer for 100 bucks a month or something
any not (INAUDIBLE) as your business plan will allow for but at the end of the day I
can prove back that you will get your money back at the end of the year you will grow
your fish you will have . In my mind’s eye this business will have uh, on staff expert
her all the time to help all the customers now .Just imagine. Just imagine the social
experiment that would happen there. Just think of you’re growing something, you’re growing
some, I’m growing something, my neighbor is (INAUDIBLE). We don’t all have the same
taste but we all wanna grow the food. Just imagine what (INAUDIBLE) just imagine (INAUDIBLE)
the social experiment just will be just will be grown on a piece of property like that
some’n (INAUDIBLE) down town in Henderson) . (Tony Henderson) got a big plan down there.
He’s got all these people growing, living in small area they need to have the ability
to grow their own fresh food. This can be done in abandoned buildings. This can be done
anywhere in the country. The fact of the matter is it just gives more people access to growing
their own food, a protein and John and I agree little bit/ disagree that I think fish are
protein too. But Fish are protein but not as good a protein
as vegetables and I mean the lower in the food chain it’s all good. Whatever you wanna
do. Alright, I definitely agree, mean, this can even be done on roofs of buildings provided
the roofs can hold the water weight. I mean, you know, every building should have some
aquaponics on top I mean use the space minimally to grow some food because you know there are
food deserts I mean we live in the desert but in my opinion. Las Vegas is a huge food
desert I mean not because we are not grocery stores around town because people are simply
not growing their own food but you know it is not going to be big corporations and companies
that are going to change this cause there are not going to start farms in Vegas . Doesn’t
make sense financially for them but what it does make sense for is each of you guys that
are watching this where ever you live is to put in a little small garden. Doesn’t have
to be huge like this it could be a 4 foot by 4 foot garden it could be just a little
aquaponics if it’s just to get your feet wet literally but if it doesn’t. If it leaks
hopefully it won’t leak. Would starting to grow some food to see how it works then
you could expand and get your system bigger to keep growing more and more of your food
as time goes on there will only be inflation food will start to costing more. Food will
start getting scarce and especially in my opinion the quality of food will be going
down but if you start growing your own food you know once you got your fixed cost covered
like you know .Scott’s built this system here he’s got some fixed cost once he’s
grown enough food to pay for it he is basically making money. This is like better than making
solar panels in your house man cause we always gotta keep eating. You can always turn off
some lights to save some power but we always need to continue to eat some food there so
I wanna encourage you guys just take one little step to start being more self-sustainable
, more sufficient and having your own food security Scott any last words you want to
say to my viewers out there today? Tomorrow morning you are all going to get
up and go to work for your food. Either you work in your garden in your front yard or
you go get your money from your boss but at the end of the day part of your money no matter
how you do it you work for your food every day that just depends on how you want to work.
I choose to work on it this way. Some (might do can’t do it all but can do some of it)(INAUDIBLE).
Absolutely and you know life is not about all or nothing you know. I just do the best
I can you know I grow a good portion of my vegetables you know I don’t grow all my
own food yet one of these days I will have some acreage and I will be growing all my
own food and you know likewise I wanna encourage you guys if you have acreage you should be
growing a bigger portion of your own food than I am if you got acreage and if you got
a place like this I mean I think Scott’s doing an amazing job he’s got some (need
for planting size) in this aquaponics system . I can’t wait to come back when he’s
got this in full till, in full production and he has he’ll have more greens than he
can and his family can eat more than likely so.
(INAUDIBLE). So Anyways I really hope you guys enjoyed
this episode. Learned more about aquaponics, learned about how it works, how you can do
it literally with supplies from your local stores in your local area. How you can grow
in some of the toughest dessert and environments like here in the Las Vegas area and, you know,
motivate you guys to start growing some food today .I want you guys to give me a thumbs
up if you like this video and I’ll come back out and do some more videos with Scott
. He is a great guy. I love spending time with him here today and look forward to visiting
him in the future. So yeah also be sure to click the button down below to subscribe if
you are not ready to be notified of future episodes that I will have and also be sure
to check the links below to check out Scott’s Face book and his You tube channel where he’ll
probably hopefully be posting some videos on his garden and his tips on what he’s
learned and maybe some construction tips on those of you guys that wanna know how exactly
he built that I just kinda showed you guys an overview. Anyways, once again, I’m John
Kohler with growing your greens dot com. We’ll see you next time and until then remember
“keep on growing”.