Aquatic Plant Forum banner
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Hardware

> 40Gl Acrylic Tank
> Cust. Steel Stand
> DIY PAR38LED Track lights
> Fuval G3 filter
> Finnex 300w Titanium Heater
> MTS
> Const./Play Sand Cap

Flora

C. Becketti
C. Nurri
Java Fern
Taiwan Moss


Fonia

Cherry Barbs
SAE
Neon Blue Goby
Amano Shrimp
Cherry Shrimp
Ramshorns
MTS
Black Worms
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,041 Posts
That looks great. Neat, clean and (in the best sense) subdued. It’s great the way the fish interact with the plants!

I have that same tank except mine has a black back to it. I’ve just started using it again as a grow out tank.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks everyone!

I was going for a "jungle island" / "planted mini-reef" look. I wanted to keep it as simple as possible. That was the main objective from day one. I selected the least demanding equipment and plants. All inhabitants are algae eaters that tolerate each other. The low light plants are all basically from same S.E Asian habitat.

Aaron - I give a lot of growth credit to the MTS. I've learned a lot from your threads on the topic.


I wanted a tank that did not look like came from aisle #2 at PetSmartCo. The PAR38LEDs were the perfect choice for the living room. I put the HD Track light, IKEA shades and EBAY LEDs up for under $175. It did take a while to find shades with good air flow that fit the room. I recommend a LEDs that are dimmable. HD has wall dimmer switch that are LED compatible. I've found I can influence growth to suit my needs by moving the track lights left-right and using the dimmer.

I had a local welder build the stand from 1.25 sq, thick wall stock then I had a shop powder coat it with a textured slate grey finish. It works well with the Grey tile floor and dark grey carpet. The room is narrow 12' wide. In that room a cabinet stand would over power the room.

The back ground is a pebble textured floresent lens for a 2x4" ceiling fixture from HD.

I've never been a big fan of canister filters but, I'm sold on the G2 due to the ease of maintenance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,116 Posts
DogFish,

I got to ask you about the maintenance of this tank. Fertilization, water changes, light period, anything else that would be interesting.

Killer shadows under the plants. I was just looking at the PAR38 bulbs last night.

Your tank looks like it's not occupying the space but it is opening it up. NICE!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Niko - Thank you for the interest and kind words.

Lighting - I try to mimic natural lighting as best I can. Photo periods vary through out the week. I also vary the light strength with the dimmer. Most days are 12 hrs, but I do some 10, 8 even 6hr. days. Some of the long days are 1/2 power with a mid day full peak. Some days 1/2 power all day. Some are full.

We often talk about the Sun were our plant live in nature but we seldom speak about the rains and cloudy days.

I also move the pendents left & right each week to vary the intensity. As you know the PAR38 'Bulbs' cast a cone of light. When I 1st set up the tank (Jan 2012) I really didn't grasp the effect. The plants under the light grew in a pyramid shape in a reaction to the light. By moving them I can effect the grow rate of the Crypts & Java fern.

Water Changes - 20% weekly with tap water that is 7.5ph. The 1st week of each month I use R.O. water.

I've gotten pretty good at building MTS and I credit my plant success to the dirt. I dose the water column 1x a wk but, I'm not always consistent. I used terrestrial garden frets Atlantis Fish Emulsion Fertilizer 2-4-0 and Dr. Earth's Seaweed concentrate 0-0-4.5. I dose at one to two drops per gl tank size. The dose is subjective base on how the java looks (color) how fast the moss seems to be growing and the amount of plants. In the summer the fish were out in my Whiskey Barrel pond. So I used more Fish Emulsion then.

I clean the G2 pre filter weekly, bio filter is rinsed monthly.

I don't test anything, don't even own a test kit. I know the tap ph from the city water dept. annual report. I take a very Darwinistic approach to my aquariums. I feel my results are mostly due to good research and being honest/realistic in my goals. The tank has thick lush growth, yet it is very easy to maintain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for the kind words.

Did my big monthly cleaning today, cleaned the complete filter and the lilly pipes.

I have a nice bunch of baby Java that are almost ready to remove and attach to the driftwood.



Found a baby Cherry Barb that was exciting. This it the 2nd baby from two spawns I've had survive. I do not do anything special when the fish spawn or the cherry shrimp have a have babies. It's very Darwinistic tank. So, to have even one Cherry Barb fry make it to 1/4" is exciting ... for me at least. :D

The one from last fall survived and is an adult female.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
Most inspiring tank... Crypts are just such cool plants, ferns too!

It's really exciting to discover fry of one sort or another. Then again, I get excited even when the fish start to color up before mating.

I was thinking, since this is a setup using soil, there really shouldn't be any limits as to which plants one uses. I understand the choice of course, slow growing plants, but I was wondering if one could use bolbitis in a similar setup. What do you think?

Brian
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yes, anything with roots will do well in soil. After all, that's what how our plants grow in nature...in dirt.

I'm a minimalist, I choose plants, fish, inverts that like my water 7.5+ph from the tap. I don't want to spend a lot of time pruning or playing with CO2.

That is how I selected the plants for this tank...very easy to keep.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I am strongly considering removing the C.Becketii and spreading the C. Nurii and masking this a single crypt sp. tank. The patch is now about 10"x12" it has any ware between 30 to 60 plants depending on splinting the mothers and counting all the babies.

I'm deciding between setting up a 20L C. Beckettii & maybe C. Parva tank or just selling all the C. Becketti as an instant scape package?

My third option would be save them for summer and move them outdoors. I just haven't committed to the pond project yet.

I got this "Dumpster Dive" pond last fall on trash day.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
Uhhhh... pond, pond I wote pond!

Sorry:) I don't know about you, but where I live, we have alot of winter and bad weather, so I'm so gonna do me a little pond when summer comes.

Look what this guy does, and he dosn't even have a garden.

Your choice ofcourse but if you live anywhere near sunny weather I hope you go for it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
I really like the simplicity of this aquarium. I also really like that you are having such success with a dirt sub. I started a walstad 20 days ago, thinking that only a few plants would do well. Turns out that just about everything I put into there seems to do really well. I havent experimented with a ton of plants, but I see other examples of tanks with plants I dont have doing super as well. Its really encouraging for a beginner like me to see :)

Just wondering, do you use activated carbon in your tank? Your water is super clear!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Yes, I think you'll find all plants do well in dirt, no surprise they grow in it in nature. :D

No I do not use chemical filtration. I keep up on weekly water changes and keep the fish bio-load low. Also all fauna are algae eaters to some extent, so feeding is very light. I've been experimenting with 5-10% 2Xs a day water changes. I started this last Thanksgiving due to a heater malfunction. The original intent was just to maintain temps. My tank looks so good I have not replaced the heater.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top