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The Best Way to Start and Grow Seedlings for Aquaponics is simple when you know how.  I will be sharing with you some of the best ways that I have been taught.  I have tried them all, and they work.


Ways that people start and grow seedlings  for Aquaponics

The best way to start and grow seedlings for aquaponics is based upon your personal likes.  You can work real hard at growing with an aquaponics system or you can make it easy.  I choose the easy, successful way that works for me as well as the people that I trust as mentors.    The best way to Start and grow seedlings for aquaponics is found below.  Pick the one that you will enjoy the most and get the best results.


1. Starting the seeds in a wet paper towel (works well for cucumbers and beans.  Yes, peas also but not
my favorite.)

2. Throwing the seeds (broadcasting like lots of gardeners and some farms still do).  You toss the seeds as evenly as you can over the growing surface, then keeping the medium wet. But do not drown them in too much water.  Works well for carrots, Radishes and lettuce.

3.  Use a “Starting Media Pot or Incubator”.
A. Peat Sponges are small containers or media that use peat and other bio-materials that promote growth, you usually do not have to worry about pH, but they have been know to also produce gnats from the fungus among us.  An they can be expensive.

B. Vermicompost is probably my favorite way to start seed and get them growing.  That is because we have our own
Compost piles and lots of worms.  It is less expensive, and it is easy to work with.

C. Rockwool.  This is an inexpensive way to start seeds for aquaponics or hydroponics.  The biggest advantage of this media is the lack of mungus or insects that may be hiding inside of the media.  The bad part, some people say, is that you have to keep the pH Balanced and they do not like working with spun rock.  I like it, just because I have better success with it.

An Easier Way to Start and grow Seedlings for Aquaponics

4.  Now this is one of the easiest ways to start plants, if you have access.  Cuttings.  If you already have plants,the cuttings do well in aquaponics systems.  The roots take well, especially peppers and other night shade plants.

One of my Favorite Ways to Start and Grow Seedlings for Aquaponics

5.  I thought that the Easiest way to start and grow seedlings for Aquaponics:  Purchase starts.  Let someone else do the work for you!  I thought that you get healthy plants  and you do not have to baby them!  These are the  steps that you will need to take before place then in your Aquaponic system:

A.  Remove the plant from the pot
B.  Shake off the excess dirt
C.  Wash the plant gently off to remove as much dirt as you can from the roots.
D.  Check the plant for bugs
E.  Dip and swish the roots in a solution like Roots Accelerator or Rapid Start.

I had used this method in 1981 with some success.  I was pretty lucky.   Johnathon Wood from shared that this type of starting your plants for aquaponics systems can have quite a few problems that may endanger your plants and your fish.  I invite you to contact Johnathon for his expert advice if you choose to try using starts.   Check out his comments in the comment section!

There are other solutions that different  growers  use, but these are the ones that I know of that work.  I depend upon other experts and mentors advice also.  The one thing that I know about is that growing is a lesson in experimentation and building upon failures and successes.. Join a group of friends and mentors who know more than yourself. I constantly ask questions, then try it out.

I want to invite you to be included in our newsletter to learn more from us and the experts that we learn from.  Real world experience and decades of trial and success.

  • I would not recommend the later suggestion of taking plants out of the soil and placing them in a water culture system. I have done it before and there are so many risks that it is not worth the trouble. The first main risk is if you are going into a hydroponic system with your plants you must separate the roots from ALL of the soil. There cant be any soil matter left in the roots because it will leach out into your solution and cause all sorts of problems. The soil matter left in the roots could gum up your whole system and eventually kill your plants.A system like the NFT system uses small sprayers to spray each basket, if the basket does not get sprayed the roots will not get moisture and dry out which will shut the plant down. If pieces of soil matter get past the pump screen into the line it will plug the sprayer. Also material that is still breaking down will still do that process in your water system causing nutrient toxicity and PH problems. Nutrients that have been designed for water systems have already gone through the process of breaking down, you could call them stable. I would recommend if you are going to propagate in soil stay with soil throughout.