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We're not serious aquaponic practitioners, just experimental gardeners. Today we graduated the kalo from the aquaponic cinderbeds (Google 'Olomana Gardens) to the garden.
A month ago I took some sweet potato slips and put them in the float bed's open mesh cups (with some of the roots in water constantly, which they are not supposed to be, but it works for a busy schedule.)
The ornamental 'uala came from the South Kona Farmer's Market several months ago. It was featured in the edible landscaping section; the leaves are spiky with purple accents.
The poor plant nearly died from [my] neglect. I guiltily took the wilted plant and put it in our aquaponic-ciderbed ICU. There it thrived on my neglect. A couple of months later it was a cascading mass of purple vine and vibrant green. I took little cuttings and put them in separate cups, in the float bed. Two weeks later the 4-6" cuttings made it to the big time real dirt garden. It was nerve wracking. I'd almost killed them once. It's been over a month now, and they are doing very well. Not as dramatic as the aquaponics, but landscaping was part of the job description.
With that success in hand, today the kalo mana ele'ele were transplanted. Some of them are more than two feet high and have taken over the cinderbeds. Mana ele'ele is an upland kalo, distinctive for its dark purplish stems, and traditionally known for cultivation on Hawai'i Island. Drought tolerance is also one of its virtues.
I'm not so worried this time. We might plant some 'uala slips between the kalo. Since the new taro patch is in the front yard (formerly inedible lawn) it's easy to keep an eye on.
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