A Visit from Milne

Murray Hallam and Milne Matthews

When Aquaponics enthusiast and veteran backyard farmer Milne Matthews decided to drop in on Aquaponics guru Murray Hallam the opportunity to film the encounter was too good to be true. Milne is also known by his avatar on two best aquaponics forums in Australia as just plain old “Fishfood.”

Whilst others pontificate about the finer aspects of aquaponics stocking ratios and argue over methods of solids removal, “Fishfood” just gets on with the job of raising fish and vegetables and growing his own food – all in his backyard in Sunbury Victoria. Since starting a thread on the backyard aquaponics forum and well as Murray Hallam’s Practical Aquaponics forum, Milne has created a reputation as a “quiet achiever.” Someone who doesn’t get involved in the politics of aquaponics but allows his presence to be felt through his deeds – producing heaps of produce.

Its his commitment over the years to regularly help beginners on the aquaponics forums and share freely in his knowledge without trying to prove himself that has earned him the respect of his peers.

So when Fishfood arrived at Murray Hallam’s aquaponics greenhouse last Friday, it was a good day to catch up with him and learn a few things from the 71 year old master. If you take the time to watch this video clip you’ll realize the value of Milne’s little popular phrases. “If it’s free pick it up.” speaks of a wasteful consumer culture. “If it aint broke – don’t fix it!” says you can’t improve on effective natural simplicity. Something many try to fix and improve on Nature creating a myriad of problems into the bargain by over complicating matters.

So here we have in 13 minutes, Fishfoods encounter and adventures with Aquaponics. His systems, his philosophy, his advice for newcomers, wicking beds, worms and the things you can do with a banana peel!