The Flourish Farm Aquaponics Course 

An Aquaponic Farming and Business Course
built from years of experience designing,
building and running aquaponic farms 

Tawnya Sawyer
Founder, Flourish Farm Denver
Owner, The Aquaponic Source

This comprehensive four day training is for individuals, families or organizations considering aquaponic farming as a viable business opportunity

This course is an important first step if you are...

  • A family looking to start a business growing fresh healthy food in your community
  • Desiring to change the food system one small farm at a time!
  • Changing careers or retiring and want to work in a beautiful greenhouse with fish and plants
  • A non-profit organization with a mission to serve a community in need of healthy food
  • A for-profit organization looking at aquaponics as an investment opportunity
  • Already experienced with aquaponic gardening and want to scale it up
  • Simply wanting to learn more and gain valuable experience from people who have been through it
  • Interested in developing or running aquaponic farms in other parts of the world


January 24-27, 2019

March 21 - 24, 2019

May 2 - 5, 2019





"What an exceptional class full of wonderful real knowledge and detailed information from A to Z in Aquaponics put together and presented by two people that are genuinely passionate and caring! Thank you Tawnya and JD for the wonderful experience!"  

Stella Tsiga, Spring 2017 Student

"Thank you JD & Tawnya for a great weeklong aquaponics course! You guys both did a great job presenting solid helpful information and kept the class motivating and interesting. Looking forward to getting our first farm up and running after your in depth - detailed course curriculum."

Kimber and Craig, Spring 2017 Students

What You Will Learn

  • All About Fish - Creating a healthy, low stress and highly productive fish population to fuel your aquaponic system. Select the right kind of fish, develop your rotation plan, transport, stocking density, feeding, breeding, quarantine, purge and selling fish to customers.
  • System Design and Components – The latest technologies in aquaponic system design and equipment built on years of design improvements in filtration, aeration, water flow, energy management, system monitoring, planting and nursery systems. Learn how to layout your farm and optimize for plant and fish production and learn about the benefits of a decoupled system to optimize for each environment independently. 
  • Plants and Pests – Understand and optimize crop rotation plans to align with the seasons, nutrient dynamics, the growing environment and your business and personal goals. How to keep your plants healthy, high value, pest free and flourishing. 
  • The Growing Environment – Learn about greenhouses or other structures that will work best in your climate. Avoid costly and time consuming mistakes when planning your farm site and building your dream. Learn how to manage heat, cold, light, humidity and other factors, ensure energy efficiency and improve growing indoors. We will review the latest in energy efficient passive solar greenhouse systems. 
  • The Business of Aquaponics – The make or break factors in starting and operating a business successfully. Startup and operating capital, personal planning, business planning, financial planning, project development, business structures and much more. Avoid the mistakes that have fallen other businesses to ensure the greatest chance to succeed. Learn how to use our production and financial planning tools to evaluate your business
  • Farm Management – Learn the daily, weekly, monthly and annual tasks to create a high functioning aquaponic farm. Startup cycling, seeding, transplanting, harvesting, scouting, pest management, water quality, maintenance, cleaning, food safety and much more.
  • Marketing and Sales – Receive the best strategies for selling your product and ensuring financial viability, customer identification, product, price, promotion, placement, packaging, and people. How to create a polyculture of revenue streams and support systems to ensure financial resiliency and long term success

What You Will Do

Plan Your Business and Farm

  • Learn how to develop a personal, business and marketing plan 
  • Plan your location. We will teach and provide you our site planning process to make sure you know the key steps for planning and preparing your location for aquaponics
  • Design your farm. We will cover key aquaponic design criteria and layout a farm system in our design software from scratch

Build Your Business and Farm

  • Build your Farm! - That's right we're going to build it together. As part of our small hands on workshop sessions, we will build major aspects of the Flourish 30 x 96' Farm such as:
       > Plumbing together the entire Spiral Flow Filtration System™
       > Assembling our modular deep water culture raft troughs
       > Assembling the elevated transplanting trough
  • Build relationships with restaurants, markets and distributors
  • Build a CSA Program (community supported agriculture) or a Farmer's Market Sales Strategy
  • Build your farm production and financial plans using the spreadsheet tools you will receive in the course

Run Your Business and Farm

  • Seed, transplant and harvest vegetables in the greenhouse
  • Scout for pests and nutrient deficiencies on plants and determine corrective actions
  • Test water quality, review water flow dynamics and maintenance routines
  • Sell, harvest and prepare fish
  • Review food safety, packaging options, delivery processes, customer relations and accounting
  • Assess, manage and mitigate risks that can effect your business
  • Monitor and respond to key environmental variables

What You Will Receive

  • An Instructor team dedicated to providing you the best experience and training you can receive in aquaponics. We don't withhold any information or make you sign any contracts to attend our workshops
  • A 250 + page binder with all of the course powerpoints, planning worksheets, resources for your farm, log files and a glossary of terms, Full color laminated plant disease and pest identification guides for use in the farm
  • Lunches feature food from our farms including fish
  • A huge and constantly updated electronic resources library
  • Personal, business, and market planning worksheets
  • A Financial and Production Planning electronic workbook so you can create your own financial pro formas, run scenarios and predict your rate of return so you can understand the overall financial feasibility for your farm.  
  • A full review of our farm's Profit and Loss statements for the past two years
  • A Chart of Accounts to setup the books, invoice examples
  • Insurance information, business structures and tax considerations
  • A full list of farm startup supplies
  • Farm Standard Operating Procedures

Experience Our Aquaponic Farms

Hands on farm sessions will take place at our two aquaponic farms only minutes apart in Denver. Each farm is uniquely different and we will review in detail how the farms are designed, built, and managed

Flourish Farm at the GrowHaus

Flourish Farm at the GrowHaus

The Mental Health Center of Denver


Classroom Instruction will take place at the GeoTech Environmental Center in beautiful Denver, Colorado. 2650 E 40th Ave | Denver, CO


January 24-27, 2019

March 21 - 24, 2019

May 2 - 5, 2019

Classes begin at 8:30am and run until 5pm. Sundays will end a little earlier to help accommodate travel plans


This Class Can Be Yours For Free!

At any point in the future should you choose to purchase one of our Flourish 30 x 96 Aquaponic Farms we will credit the entire cost of the course towards your purchase! (One class credit per Flourish Farm system)

Denver Area Attractions

Have fun and enjoy the beauty during your Denver trip

  1. Stroll through Downtown - Denver’s downtown blends both a Wild West and urban chic vibe. Hit up the 16th Street Mall to browse decades-old bookshops like Tattered Cover and buy cowboy apparel at Rockmount Ranch Wear.
  2. Hike around Red Rocks These gorgeous red rocks jutting from the earth have been graced by thousands of musicians from the Beatles to The Grateful Dead to Depeche Mode. You name it,  they've been there or desperately want to be.
  3. Browse the Denver Botanic Gardens - Whether you’re a nature lover or just like to escape the concrete jungle without leaving city limits, the Gardens are a must-visit.
  4. Dine at Denver Restaurants who serve Flourish Farm Greens - All of our restaurant customers are within 5 miles of the farm. Visit our partner restaurants such as The Populist, Acorn, The Plimoth, Comida, Cholon, Jax Fish House, The Preservery. 
  5. Gear up for a game at Coors Field - Watch the Colorado Rockies hit home runs at Coors Field—the park with the highest elevation in Major League Baseball.

Directions, Travel, Parking and Other Class Information

Parking - The parking lot at GeoTech will be available for all students to park. 
Lunch - Lunch will be provided each day. There is an onsite cafeteria and kitchen (we will contact you closer to the workshop date to take your order and any dietary restrictions) 
Travel and Lodging - GeoTech is only 21 miles from Denver International Airport and right off of I-70 and Steele Street. 
Hotel Suggestions:
Denver Stapleton - North
3.9 miles from GeoTech
Address: 4040 Quebec St Denver
Phone: 303-321-6666
Rates starting at $109/night
3.3 miles from GeoTech
Address: 3500 Park Ave West, Denver, CO
Phone: 1-303-458-1222
Rates starting at $75/night 
Quality Inn Denver Central
2.6 miles from the Geotech
Address: 200 West 48th Ave Denver, CO 80216
Phone: 1-303-296-4000
Rates starting at $95/night 

Cancellation Policy - Cancellations will receive a full refund up to two weeks before class. Less than two weeks before class the refund will be 50%. Less than 48 hours before class there are no refunds.  We reserve the right to cancel class if enrollments are low. If you are flying in, please consider purchasing a refundable ticket.