180l (~47gal) tank - El Natural - Aquatic Plant Central

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El Natural Diana Walstad's low-maintenance, soil-based 'El Natural' method for keeping plants and fish.

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Old 02-26-2018, 04:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 180l (~47gal) tank

Please say hello to my first tank ever, Juwel Rio 180 jungle. First photo taken after weekly pruning, second one is how it all started about 1.5 years ago . I didn't know anything about Walstad method back then, but it is using similar principles (nutrient rich substrate, old "living" substrate, gravel cap, many plants,..). Substrate is quite thick, but I installed heating cable underneath, so there is smaller risk of having anaerobic conditions. I don't add any CO2 or liquid carbon, only root fertilizer every few months. Recently, about a month ago, I stopped dosing liquid fertilizer as well (I suspect that it was slowly killing my shrimps and snails) and plants are still growing fine.

P.S. all driftwood pieces are still in the tank
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Old 02-26-2018, 07:11 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

Very healthy looking tank!
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Old 02-26-2018, 07:38 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Nice looking!
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Old 02-26-2018, 09:03 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

I like this tank.
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Old 03-02-2018, 03:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

Lovely tank! It was a pleasure to look at.

AND I don't remember ever seeing such fat Cardinal Tetras.

You're on a roll!

Last edited by dwalstad; 03-02-2018 at 03:21 PM.. Reason: misspelling
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Old 03-03-2018, 12:27 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

Thank you all, I'm glad that you enjoyed my photos. I will post an update here and there, even though it's probably hard to see small changes in such a jungle, so they'll probably look the same

I was surprised with the size of Cardinal tetras as well, I guess that they are enjoying diet on unlucky shrimplets. Also almost all of them are females and being in hard water, they never even tried to breed, so I believe they might be still storing their eggs, making them even bigger.
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Old 04-01-2018, 08:57 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

Jungle after weekly trimming. Still no added ferts - everything grows nicely except 3 exceptions.

1. floaters were showing a bit of iron deficiency, but they were covering 100% of surface after return from 2 weeks vacation. I removed pretty much everything and kept only few pieces - these don't show deficiency symptoms (yet).

2. banana plant doesn't grow, I see new leaf occasionally, but it almost immediately disintegrates. No roots growing when put on substrate either. I moved it to the middle of tank, under strong light - no change yet.

3. in vitro cultivation of Echinodorus quadricostatus and dwarf sag don't want to grow even after a month. They get uprooted very often by snails and there is a very little roots growth visible. No idea what's wrong with them, I though that they are weed under almost all conditions..

Aanyway, couple of pictures (including our diver sheep Olivia ).

Oh, and one of three swordtail females grew gonopodium, it took him more than one year to become adult

(linked from imgur, click for higher res)




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Old 04-01-2018, 09:24 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

Nice jungle you have grown there
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Old 04-01-2018, 10:42 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

Thanks, I mostly let nature take its course, with gentle trimming here and there.

Btw. I lost most of red shrimps, though natural colored ones are everywhere (green, transparent, brown,..). I guess that fish can pick brightly colored shrimps more easily, so they become food Well, another example of nature taking its course.. I will repopulate red shrimps once my bigger fish die of old age (swordtails and cardinal tetras). Small platies and endlers shouldn't do much damage.
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Old 04-01-2018, 01:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: 180l (~47gal) tank

I'm envious! That is an incredible planted tank. "Olivia" sends it over the top.

Also, thanks for the help about Facebook.
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