Without a doubt one of the most rewarding aspects of our business is to be able to support small out-of-the garage inventors and craftsmen who have a passion for aquaponics. One of our roles as a company in this emerging aquaponics community is to provide a marketing platform for their niche products, whether they are vertical towers, sequencing timers, or complete aquaponics systems.
We recently met one such craftsman, Jerry Jones, at one of our open house events. He came with his wife and showed us pictures of his aquaponics system. He asked if I would pay a visit to his greenhouse to help him with some system issues he was having. We agreed on a consulting fee and the next week I headed over to his place, which was about an hour away. With a few minor tweaks his system was fine, but much more importantly, after we were done he showed me his workshop.
Jerry led me to a garage that he and his son converted into the most beautiful, pristine workshop you can imagine. When you get to know him a bit, you discover that this is not surprising given that his occupation since he was 17 was as a torque converter rebuilder in a machine shop. He first worked in Arvada, Colorado, then in Alaska for 5 years, and then had his own shop in Loveland, CO. for 13 years. In 2003 he got cancer in his throat and then his lungs so his son took over the business. He felt that he had to do something productive with his time so he took up making green chili out of his home and sold thousands of jars. Next, he and his wife Lea sold their house and their business, bought an RV and traveled for 4 years. They finally settled back in Colorado, bought a house and ordered a greenhouse before they even moved in.
Next, Jerry discovered aquaponics and when we met, he was creating the most thoughtfully constructed, single-bed IBC tote systems I had ever seen. He had taken the simple design of cutting a tote into the typical 2/3 fish tank and 1/3 grow bed and enhanced it with some wonderful improvements. He covered all the raw edges with custom fit PVC pipe. He separated the grow bed and the fish tank with a beautifully constructed, stained wooden grid. He even created a clever way to make sure the media guard is never pulled from the media.
After some discussion, Jerry agreed that we could represent his premium Tote systems at The Aquaponic Source, including a new three bed system that he has created based on our IBC Tote Plumbing Kit. We are proud to announce that the AquaBundance IBC Tote Aquaponics Systems line has been born. It is an extremely cost effective, yet finely crafted set of aquaponics systems giving you both the productivity of 200 – 275 gallon fish tanks with the earth-friendly satisfaction of knowing that you are rescuing storage containers from landfills.
But mostly we are proud to be representing the fine work of Jerry Jones.