[Wet Thumb Forum]-Very first tank...some help requested? - Aquascaping - Aquatic Plant Central

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Aquascaping Discuss aquascaping designs and techniques as well as get critiques on your aquascaping pictures. Find out how to use aquatic plants, reefs, and wood to design a planted aquarium.

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Old 03-19-2004, 04:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Hi,

I am about to set up my first planted tank. I think it will be a 'hi-tech' tank based on every thing that I have read.

Specs:

30gal long, eheim 2213, Dave Gombergs CO2 kit, flourite substrate (about 3-4inches), coralife 90w light.

My water is NYC tapwater and not sure yet on the chemistry.

I want to have a tank that 'looks' like the discus tank posted here with a lush grass like front and tall flowing backround plants. At the same time I want to have my first tank be something easy to grow and learn with.

Does anyone have any suggestions or comments on plant choices or see anything missing in my equipment setup?

Many thanks! As this tank gets going I will definitely post pictures as this is my profession.
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Old 03-19-2004, 04:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Hi,

I am about to set up my first planted tank. I think it will be a 'hi-tech' tank based on every thing that I have read.

Specs:

30gal long, eheim 2213, Dave Gombergs CO2 kit, flourite substrate (about 3-4inches), coralife 90w light.

My water is NYC tapwater and not sure yet on the chemistry.

I want to have a tank that 'looks' like the discus tank posted here with a lush grass like front and tall flowing backround plants. At the same time I want to have my first tank be something easy to grow and learn with.

Does anyone have any suggestions or comments on plant choices or see anything missing in my equipment setup?

Many thanks! As this tank gets going I will definitely post pictures as this is my profession.
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Old 03-19-2004, 04:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Wandy,

Welcome to the forum! By all accounts, NY City tap water is very soft.

Your equipment sounds OK, but you might want to set a slightly different goal. The discus tank pictured here is a huge tank (8 feet long, I think) maintained by a professional. You can't get quite that look in a 30 gallon tank.

Not that 30 gallon tanks can't be great. I think it's a good size, but the fish and plants that you would use to make it look great are likely different from what you see in the photo.


Roger Miller

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"The indispensible first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: Decide what you want" -- Ben Stein
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Old 03-19-2004, 05:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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I thought that tank was large. I realize I may need to 'downsize' but it is more the effect of simple lush low front and tall elegant back. I have a nice piece of driftwood I will probably use as an 'off' centerpiece to break it up a little.

My anticipated fish load would likely be some bottom dweller like an otto or SAE and a school of neon tetras or some similar species.

My goal is something verdant, 'simple' and elegant.
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Old 03-20-2004, 02:27 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Wandy,

Your aquascape concept is doable. When you get to details let us know.

Otos and SAEs are both happier in groups, and otos are so small that fairly large groups are called for. You might consider various rainbow fish as a good choice in a 30 gallon tank.

Roger Miller

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"The indispensible first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: Decide what you want" -- Ben Stein
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Old 03-20-2004, 04:03 AM   #6 (permalink)
 
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These are some of the plants I am considering but not sure how many I need to order.

Foreground:

Eleorcharis Parrulus, Echinodorus Tenellus, Sagitaria Natans, Micranthemum, Sagitaria Subulata (I had to look the names up)

Mid/Back:

Cryptocoryne Sprialis, retropspiralis, walkeri, balansae

Java Fern

From my reading they would all fit into my tank goal and equipment use. I am sure there are some other I am missing and not sure how much to order on this. Again, any and all suggestions welcomed. They seem to all be moderate light, moderate to low requirements that could work together.

The fish choice is to give a stark contrast against the green which is why i am thinking the neon tetras. Again, suggestions welcomed.
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Old 03-20-2004, 04:38 AM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Foreground choices look pretty good, though some may tend to grow higher than you want in a foreground. This is true of the E. tenellus (unless you can get the red-tinted strain) and S. subulata. I'm not sure about S. natans.

Micranthemum (I guess you mean Hemianthus micranthemoides) is a nice light-colored accent. I would tend to plant it in the midground against a darker background.

Lilaeopsis and marsilea are two more options.

The mid/fore might need some more thought. I'm not sure about C. retrospiralis and C. spiralis, but C. balansae if healthy will outgrow your tank. The leaves will grow to 30" - 36" and the tank isn't all that deep. C. walkeri might give a good mid ground and in time a good background. Plants you buy will probably be fairly small, so it might take quite a while for them to reach the height you have in mind. C. wendtii is another dark-leaved alternative that would start out small and in time will grow to about the height of your tank.

Java fern is a good choice for a background plant. You probably would want the large-leafed variety. There are narrowleafed and a smaller variety as well.

Aponogetons (mostly hybrids) can grow well under your conditions and provide a thick green and leafy background. They start quickly, but may fade after a while. They can also outgrow your tank, but they might be useful for starters.

The plants you selected should do well in moderate or low light. With 90 watts over a 30 gallon tank you will have pretty bright light. The combination of shade-tolerant plants with bright light could cause problems. You might want to mix in some stem plants both for color accents and to add fast-growers while your tank sets up.

What are you planning for the backdrop?


Roger Miller

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Old 03-20-2004, 05:12 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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I was going to put a matte black foam core as the backround or did you mean in terms of plant?

What are your suggestions for any other plants? Any suggestions on where to buy these?

Can fish be ordered online as well? I do not have a LFS I trust. I have also read about a quarantine tank. Is this something I should have?
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Old 03-20-2004, 07:23 AM   #9 (permalink)
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for fish petqua on 98th and broadway is good. also I'm told there is a great aquarium shop on 38th and third... world Aquarium I think.

plants, I'm a NYer going on line.

have you figured out how you are going to get co2 tanks refilled? apparently they are illegal in the city.. also our water is super soft.. my small tank naturally goes to 6.4... so dumping ph is an issue. I started a thread on this on the equipment page.
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Old 03-20-2004, 08:29 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Hi Sherry,

My CO2 cannister was refilled by a fire extinguisher refiller on 26th st bet. 7/8th ave. I have been to the store on 38th but customer service was on par with the kind of customer service you get when you check into a hospital. LESS than satisfactory. That is why I am a big online purchaser, researcher, etc. It levels the playing ground and service and delivery is generally high and often qualified by other purchasers. That is why I am asking for online plant and fish dealers.

I will have to go to the store you suggested on the UWS.
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