My First Journey with NPT - 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 06-24-2019, 03:10 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default My First Journey with NPT

Hi and hello fro Indonesia.
This is my first post and my first building an NPT after so many month learning from this forum. The tank is nano tank a 10g.
Dirt soil i've been using is from my own backyard, with 4 times mineralizing (wash and dry it) before i mixed with clay, the depth is around 1 inch. And i topped the dirt with pasir malang 1 inch (i don't know this sand in english) and topped the sand a little for aesthetic purpose with aquasoil, the sand (pasir malang) is consist from 1 mm to 3 mm in diameter. And the plants are:
- helantium tenellum
- juncus repens
- utricularia graminifolia (wabikusa)
- dwarf hairgrass
- lobelia cardinalis
- bacopa monnieri
- staurogyne repens
- ceratophyllum demersum
- pistia stratiotes

The tank is 8 days and after days 7, i put 3 ramshorn snails and 1 mysterious snail.

Light duration is about 9 hrs, i made the lighting by myself 12 watt diy led hpl, with hob filter and surface skimmer. Is it ok to use both hob filter and surface skimmer in this kinda NPT?

And what do you think about this tank?

And i would like to thank everyone in this forum for giving me enlightment about aquascape, especially Natural Planted Tank.
Looking forward to make this kinda method to be succeeded
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Old 06-24-2019, 05:19 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

Welcome to APC!

I really like that DIY LED light you made - looks very professional. Are all of the plants you have in the substrate stem plants? As I understand Ms Walstad's method, you need some rosette plants, which have strong root systems. But, I'm not sure which ones would work in that size tank.
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Old 06-24-2019, 06:02 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

Well thank you for the lighting, and for the stem plant, i think bacopa monnieri fall under that category, am i right? And for the rossete, there's cryptocorynne wendtii. The one in the middle right next to the stone.
And why do NPT need a rossete plant? I think i've missed this information, when reading on this forum. Care to share? Thanks @hoppycalif
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Old 06-24-2019, 06:29 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

Very good looking tank!

Rosette plants usually have very strong root systems. These plants can actually move oxygen from the leaves to the roots. This helps to keep the substrate from being depleted of oxygen (anaerobic). Your Cryptocoryne, Helanthium, and possibly the Lobelia will all serve this purpose.
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Old 06-25-2019, 04:23 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

@Michael, thank you so much for the explanation. I will look into it in this forum.
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Old 06-25-2019, 05:50 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

If that's a betta in there, cover your tank. It'll jump out.
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Old 06-25-2019, 05:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

Well, last night the betta wasn’t jumping out of tank, but got into the surface skimmer instead. Skimmer is out i guess, for the sake of the betta. Thank you for your input @mistergreen, this weekend i will a cover from acrylic, need to make the cut to on acrylic to fit with the hob.
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Old 06-25-2019, 11:17 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

Nice tank, looks very professional, DIY lights including.

In my tank, Helanthium tenellum dominates the tank, no other "grass like" plant has a chance. I'm curious if your Dwarf hairgrass and Staurogyne repens will me more successful Or do you plan to keep them at bay with pruning?

Why do you think that you need a skimmer? Is it a preventive measure? With HOB breaking the water surface I believe that you won't need it at all.
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Old 06-26-2019, 08:31 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

@mysiak, well thank you. Yes, my original plan is to keep pruning Helantium tenellum and Staurogyne repens, but no pruning with Dwarf hairgrass

And i thought i need skimmer for the biofilm that might occur, after the incident, no more skimmer in the tank and i adjusted the flow in the HOB so it can break the water surface without too much causing water agitation.

I hope my betta is doing just fine after that incident
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Old 06-26-2019, 09:13 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: My First Journey with NPT

I find pruning of rooted "weed" plants serious pain in the.. , so I leave it to the nature (well, it's probably just an excuse for my laziness ). But my "natural jungle" tanks certainly wouldn't win any beauty contest If you're motivated enough, I'm sure that your plan will work.

Fish, if given the chance, have amazing recovery abilities. Missing fins or scales will grow back, they just need time, clean water and as little stress as possible.
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