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A friend of mine quit his 10 year job in a chain pet shop to open an aquarium store. This means he can finally drag that 650 gal tank out of his basement and set it up. I've lent him 4 100 gal tanks (you can see one in the top left, it has a two foot snappig turtle in it) as well. Right now we're negotiating what to put in that tank. He intitially wanted African cichlids or large catfish thinking he didn't have enough to do a planted tank but I offered to donate lights to the cause. So now we have a tentative agreement on moto stingrays and giant crypts. I'm thinking usteriana on one side and cordata cf. grabowski "drew" on the other side.

I figure if I cut down several trees for driftwood it might be enough.

Oh and the punchline? He got the tank free. Some restaurant in Toronto gave it to him when they didn't want it any more.



Here's something else of botanical interest that you may never see, a Monkey puzzle tree:

 

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As much as I love crypts, I wouldn't try to plant a tank that size. Large planted tanks have their own issues to deal with. He's going to want to keep it low maint. African cichlids is a good idea. Done right with good rockwork, it will look awesome, be a good marketing tool for his store and will be much easier to maintain than a planted tank. African cichlids also demand decent prices, and people pay them - more profit to the store.


However, if doing crypts, I'd include C. balensae and C. aponogetifolia into the mix.
 

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Nice tank! I see a journal coming.

I think some Crypt. crispatula var. balansae , a Crinum, and maybe some giant red tiger val would look great in there too. Let them really reach out and reach their full potential.

Keep us posted.

Cheers.
Jim
 

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Can't wait to see this! I agree there are a lot of issues with a bigger tank, but seeing crinums and big crypts truely given space to flourish will be worth it all!

On a side note I don't think your tree is a Monkey Puzzle tree. That species (Araucaria araucana) usually has very sharp spiky leaves arranged all around the branch. I believe your plant is another species of Araucaria, possible A.bidwillii, the Bunya Pine or a similar species. Unless growing it inside has radically altered its growth habits! My little one (in a pot outside) is certainly very different from yours!
 

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On a side note I don't think your tree is a Monkey Puzzle tree. That species (Araucaria araucana) usually has very sharp spiky leaves arranged all around the branch. I believe your plant is another species of Araucaria, possible A.bidwillii, the Bunya Pine or a similar species. Unless growing it inside has radically altered its growth habits! My little one (in a pot outside) is certainly very different from yours!
I agree. The Monkey Puzzle tree is Araucaria araucana. The leaves form a complete whorl around the branch.
http://www.botanypictures.com/plantimages/araucaria araucana 04 ES madrid real jardin botanico.JPG

Your tree is either A. bidwillii or A. hunsteinii depending on the size of the leaves and cones. The leaves are flat on the branch.
http://www.botanypictures.com/plantimages/araucaria hunsteinii 01 (klinki pine).JPG

More than likely it is A. bidwillii as they are the more commonly sold of the two in the US. Still a cool plant though. Grow it like A. heterophylla, the Norfolk Island Pine.

Cheers.
Jim
 
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