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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 05-16-2011, 07:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Aquascaping in Low-Tech

This thread is the spawn of THIS thread, in which several of us discussed the difference between "natural" and "nature" and the method vs. the style.

Here, I'd like to post, and see posts of, beautiful scapes (I know...it's all a matter of opinion) that rely on Low-Tech or "El Natural" methods. I want to show hobbyists that an aesthetically pleasing aquascape is possible with even the lowest tech set-ups. I want to dispel the myth that NPT's are merely functional, that they are also capable of producing art.

Anyone is welcome to share photos/info here. Be mindful that the goal is to showcase low tech tanks and the scapes created with them.

-Dave

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Old 05-16-2011, 08:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

So, I guess I'll start. Here is my latest low-tech* scape. I put the * because this is the last photo of the scape while still in a low-tech state. After the photo was taken, it started getting "enhanced" and will soon be all-out high-tech (though the substrate will not change).

As of this photo, the scape was 3 or 4 months old. Main plants are Anubias 'nana' and 'coffeefolia' with Amazon sword, Crypt. spiralis and C. retrospiralis and a foreground of S. repens.

Growth was SLOW (except the sword) and I was fortunate enough to be able to start off heavily planted (benefits of local clubs). Lighting was 4 x 39watt t-5HO (1.25 WPG) and soil is mineralized topsoil capped with misc. used left-overs from fellow hobbyists. No ferts to speak of at this point. Moderate fish load and heavy feeding.

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Old 05-16-2011, 09:16 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

I want that tank to have my babies dave
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Old 05-17-2011, 04:32 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

This is an old picture of my scape, The big sword, blyxa and broad leaf chain sword do most of the bio filtering I thing. This tank worked so well I had no nitrates and got GBA, trasitioning it to high tech now and removed teh big sword and now have dwarf hairgrass in that area. It used to be 2 WPG now it is 5.6 WPG, setting up C)2 and ei ferts. I have an algae problem right now, using exel instead of CO2 until iget my bubble counter, once it has grown in I paln to scale it down to low tech again to see if it works. Will get some piccies later
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Old 05-17-2011, 09:32 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

Well since we're talking design and low tech I'll throw my little nano in here. I really only change the water once a week and/or top off. I haven't been dosing and the lower light level keeps the sand clean as well. The tank has been running for 5 months now and houses a few RCS. No reason this tank isn't scalable to something larger.

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Old 05-17-2011, 07:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

I have two aquaria to add, so I'll describe them in separate posts.

This first one is called Hidden Spring, and you can read my journal here: https://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...en-spring.html These are new pictures of the tank.

This is a wood and plants composition. There is a horizontal piece of manzanita, partially buried in the substrate, that creates a terrace. Three vertical pieces of wood extend above the surface of the water. Two are in back of the horizontal piece, and behind it on the left. The other is on the right in front.

The planting is pretty simple. A center piece red cryptocoryne is on the left of center, in front of the terrace. Two species of back ground plants fill the space behind it. A light colored foreground plant contrasts with the cryptocoryne. Anubias grows on the driftwood, and moss adds some detail.

The planting has been simplified since the tank was new. There is less moss, vallisneria has taken the place of wisteria, and two species of crypts have been removed.

The emersed wood was originally intended to be a major element of the design, but my lighting is not adequate to grow epiphytes in the air, and grow plants underwater. So the fixture is mounted below the tops of the wood. One interesting little detail that does not show up in a whole tank shot gives me a lot of pleasure. This is the little gardens of submersed and emersed moss and riccia that grow around each vertical piece of wood. This is only place I can keep riccia alive, and periodically tiny mushrooms sprout from the wood.

This tank is now about 11 months old.
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Old 05-17-2011, 07:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

The second aquarium is called Tributary, and its journal is here: https://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...tributary.html

This tank is only about 6 weeks old, so it has a long way to go. It is a stone and plants design. The stones (Texas limestone "holey rock") form a terrace on either side, separated by the tributary on the left of center. Substrate in the back on the terraces is dark gray and is intended to be completely covered by foliage. Substrate in the front is light colored, and at least part of it will be visible when the design is complete.

This design is deliberately more open and light than Hidden Spring, with lots of negative space in the middle. Hidden Spring has been described as "shady and jungly", and Tributary is supposed to be the opposite, although not to the extreme of iwagumi. Right now I am working on how to achieve occult balance between the two sides, and how make the negative space interesting without filling it up with "stuff"--that would defeat the purpose.
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Old 05-17-2011, 08:36 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

Dabrybry, as long you mean baby Apistos, that's fine. But I expect a full courtship and formal proposal, and the Apistos must vow to love and cherish...'til death do they part.

House, I think your nano is what we were trying to describe to mudboots earlier.

Great low-tech aquascapes guys!!! Keep them coming.

-Dave
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Old 05-18-2011, 06:16 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

Quote:
Originally Posted by davemonkey View Post
Dabrybry, as long you mean baby Apistos, that's fine. But I expect a full courtship and formal proposal, and the Apistos must vow to love and cherish...'til death do they part.
And a BIG ring from Jared.

It's a pleasure to see the other aquaria--more, more!
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Old 05-18-2011, 07:17 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Aquascaping in Low-Tech

one of my low tech scapes. i personally think low tech can be whatever you want it to be scape wise. it doesnt have to be a dirty mess.





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