1. Slide Flexible Tubing in through hole on bottom of Bamboo Growing Bed, then out through smaller hole on side of Bamboo Growing Bed. Pull all the way through until steel tubing touches the second smaller hole.
  2. Holding Bamboo Growing Bed on it’s side, slide glass sleeve over the steel tube, inserting into the hole of the Bamboo Growing Bed. You may need to twist the glass sleeve while inserting. Insert glass sleeve about ¼” to ½” into the bamboo.
  3. Place Bamboo Growing Bed on top of Aquarium.
  4. Place Plant Starts in the growing bed.  See more details here.
  5. Put 7 pellets of fish food in the growing bed (to feed worms in first week) then pour Clay Pebble container contents(clay pebbles, red worms, barley stray) on top of Plant Starts’ roots.   Make sure the barley straw is under the pebbles, it needs to be in contact with water to reduce algae growth.  Note that the contents are wet, they contain billions of microorganisms to jumpstart the ecosystem.
  6. Move Aquarium to windowsill.  See details on window selection.
  7. (Optional, for those wanting to child-proof or earthquake-proof the Window Aquatica.)  Remove Aquarium from window, noting where it was placed.  Take window hook adhesive(included in kit) and place it 6″ above the base of the window sill.  Place Window Aquatica back on the windowsill.  Adjust the hemp twine that holds the aquatic shade so that it is 6″ from the base.  From the back of Window Aquatica, pull on the twine and hook it into the window hook, securing the unit to the window.
  8. Once Window Aquatica is in place, fill Aquarium to top (till touching Bamboo Growing Bed) with drinkable room temperature water.    Note: whenever you fill up Window Aquatica with new water ( about twice/week), make sure the water is filled all the way up to the top, so that the bamboo is sitting in the water. This will minimize mold from growing on the bamboo by giving fish and other organisms access to the bamboo.  Also, the water will flow more easily and there will be less bubbling noise when the water level is high.  Note that the water lift can only lift water about 2″, so make sure water level is never more than 2″ below top of aquarium.  
  9. Plug Air pump in.  The Air Control Valve attached to the air pump can be adjusted to reduce the bubbling sound.
  10. Let run for 7 days before adding fish.   In the meantime, the worms will be eating and breaking down the pellets of fish food that you put in the bamboo growing bed.   This will help build the ecology (millions of bacteria) which will break down fish waste, uneaten fish food, and upcycle it to feed the plants.  You are developing a stable ecosystem before you introduce the fish.
  11. Read up on Aquaponics 101
  12. See guide on selecting fish for Window Aquatica
  13. Read Window Aquatica FAQs
  14. After 7 days,  when you get your fish in a plastic bag, make sure fish water in bag and Window Aquatica water are both at room temperature, add fish to Aquarium.  If the fish bag water and Window Aquatica water are at two different temperatures, it will shock the fish.
  15. For the first 2 weeks, cover the open ends of the aquarium (about 1-2″ gap).  We usually put a piece of tape over both ends.  The fish may want to jump out of the aquarium in the first week as they are not familiar with their new environment.  After 2 weeks, they won’t try to jump and you can remove whatever you put on the ends.