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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm posting for aquascaping advice and because I really like the tank... I'd like to know what you think. It has been around a little over three months and this is about to be my first significant full tank trim. It gets direct natural sunlight along with CF lighting. I use pressurized CO2 and EI with daily dosing. Filtration is an Eheim with only filter floss (plants as biofilters).



That fog is done with a humidifier and reduction fittings, plus the flex tube from one of my old projects. It runs on and off from right before to right after the photo period. I never manually mist.



Here's an old series of pics I like.




Here's some submerged plant pics.

Rotala Mexicana 'Goias' -- Thanks WofenCrazyName!




Rotala mini type 2 -- thanks RoyDeki!! -- and HM.






The emergent stuff is purple bamboo from BSmith's original very healthy 3. These pics from the top (and some below and above) are with no tank lights, only sunlight. Now that I am way past growout I'll lower bamboo blinds. The Petite started off as one of Bert's ball sized clumps.









There are Paradise fish, Kuhlii loaches, Cory hasborus, Otos, Sparkling Gourami, a Bristlenose Plec, and a CPD in there. I used to have Dario dario / Scarlett badis but lost them while neglecting a heating problem.














Fear my green spot ;)



Initial planting of R. 'Goias' and the female plec.

Her in this morning's sun.



For some reason I cannot grow HC.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
And above water.

All I know this as is as a Mexican Orchid (my first orchid). It has lost many leaves and has been in the tank since inception. But it stays alive and the remaining growth is healthy.


The grassy stuff is L. brasiliensis / "Microsword"

The back is really a fabric pond planter thingy with rocks and the wood to maintain shape.







L. aromatica



Tilandsia sp.






I'm thinking of going open foreground since I fail with HC. Or maybe just spread the Goias around. Thanks.
 

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awesomely fantastic setup my friend. after looking through all those pictures I thought that I had actually seen this setup in person.

Now for business. How long have you been working on this incredible tank?
What are the specs?
 

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Holy bundle of amazing! Your paludarium is incredible!
 

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wow !! awesome !!! so where is this back ground pond thingy >? I was trying to see it in the pics, cant . I also have that same humidifier so WOOT ! thanxs for the idea ! i will now use it in my design. I still need a tank, lol so no where near ready yet . but I love getting all these ideas! I cant wait . and the 40 long is a perfect size I think too . I hope to find one . I also love your fish, there are a few I will use. as well as plants . I did nto know the aromatica would grow out of water that way !! the roots are huge ! very nice. you have a great set up there, and that window is awesome too , perfect sunlight, and has to be awesome to atare at inside the home, I swear a few of those pics, looked just like a stroll in the woods. with the morning sun on the wood, just ......WOW ~~ great job !
 

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I still need a tank, lol so no where near ready yet . but I love getting all these ideas! I cant wait .
Check out craigslist.org for a tank. Some sell everything together, that is including the stand.
 

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What a great paludarium! I like the jungle effect and the way the plants just naturally grow out of the water. Your fish look so happy in there too.
 

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I agree, I'm really enjoying the photos in this thread. I've been gearing up for something about the same size... I just find myself wanting more height above the waterline.

I'd love to see more photos of the waterline and above, especially from the back... that area looks so swampy and nice!
 

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very cool! love that drift wood and the pics of the sparkling gouramis lurking in the plants just below the surface. very much like what i imagine them doing in the wild. what type of substrate are you using? also, is that a cryptocoryne growing emersed? sure looks like it.
killer job. love it!

-nick
 

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This would make a great shrimp tank.

I have a very odd tank made by Azoo that has a very modern style stand, the back of the tank is high and the front is low.

I was imagining arboreal plants on bark in the back, but now I have more ideas. Thanks for the photos and posts. Update this regularly, it's awesome.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you :)

Work (bulk/once a week -- if that -- fertilizing, little trimming or time) and tons of duckweed killed my hobby again. The tank is still going but is unsightly and many plants need to recover. I still was not happy with the plant layout though I liked it wild. I'm going to spread out the Rotala mexicana "Goias" and try new ground cover to show off the wood a little more. Now I'm considering getting something like Hygro "low-grow" to show color while always staying below the waterline.

Still no flowers :(
 

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i love this tank! would it be OK for me to link to it from my blog, and include a picture?

i have some Ranunculus inundatus that i am training as emersed plants. it is nice to see yours growing so well.

please send me a PM for the whatabout blog link if you have a moment.

can't wait for updated pictures!
 

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This forum sure is sleepy. Is there anybody out there? I'd love to see more pictures of the 40 breeder whenrver you can shoot some more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Of course you folks can link my stuff as much as you want :)

So, work and a super fun summer led to my neglecting this tank to the point it became a Purple Bamboo farm (check out the bucket pics in this no-longer-applicable FS thread). I ended up starting the tank back up the day after I uprooted those weeds with the same hardscape minus some wood and pots. Still growing out and a ways away from being of APC standards but maybe you'll like these progression pics through Monday anyway.

v2, day one ;)


Couple weeks later


Little into starting the Rotala indica field


This past Monday, a little less than two months in. I think I'm about a month away from the balance that leads to the water clarity in the last big set of pics.


Believe it or not I plan to keep this more scaped than last time's wildness. I've not trimmed and shaped as often as I should, though.


Polygonum sp 'Sao Paulo' is hawt.


Further back because I am not afraid of my current algae ;)


That Crypt in the pot in the back is tough and lived through the neglect.




The healthiest emersed stem




more algae


Ludwigia senegalensis (aka Ludwigia 'Guinea')...


... which I'm considering propogating here in place of this Rotala rotundifolia variant I got from TPT when I bought Rotala mexicana 'Goias'. I grew it out because I was interested in what it was. It's definitely not 'Green' nor regular rotundifolia.




This Riccia was a pest but decided to attach to this wood and now I think it's kind of cute.




I'm playing with some Java Fern 'Needle Leaf' I picked up here in APC but think it may mess up the scale. Doing a trim this weekend or so and will post if you folks are up for giving tips or just want more surfing time ;) Wish me luck.
 

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You said in your OP, that you were posting for aquascaping advice...I'm sorry, but what advice could you possibly need?? This is truly stunning!

If I may ask, what is your maintanence schedule...water changes, trimming, etc?

I have always had a thing for pal's, and your setup is an inspiration...congrats :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thanks ghengis. But, you know, as much as I learn from and enjoy this tank -- and it is my favorite tank I've had -- I still think it leaps and bounds away from the great APC tanks. And I think that's an honest assesment most folks would agree with. But maybe with a little dumb luck and more practice... :) But, like, golden ratio and proportion and a good eye and stuff? I know I'm still a gardener and not an aquascaper.

I dose every day, and my method is somewhat unique though fast. I dose my macros with these guys -- 1mL of KNO3 solution adds 1ppm NO3 into my tank's volume, 1mL of KH2PO4 adds 0.4ppm PO4 -- and traces by dipping a couple wet fingers into my trace mix then dipping those fingers in my tank, which I've already measured via scale to add about 0.2ppm Fe from DTPA (every other day) and 0.1ppm Fe as a proxy for trace levels from Plantex (the remaining days). I do things this way because I believe consistency is way more important than exact values when coupled with regular large water changes. So, for example, I dosed 5mLs (I use a syringe but used to use a bottle cap) of my KNO3 solution when my tank was just starting with little mass. Now with algae I have increased NO3 dosing to about 7mLs. It's just a fast easy way to adjust when needed. (And, with my way of going from little to lots of plant mass, I've learned adjustment is good as long as we stay consistent afterwards.)

I trim a few times a week when I can, but that's mostly just snipping tops off the Rotala indica to make its shape. I've cut down the Polygonum sp 'Sao Paulo' at least 4 times now, replanting the tops and tossing the bottoms in the back to help hide that pot and get branching emergent growth. (My goal with the single P. 'Sao Paulo' on the right is to mimic PJAN's Old Chinese Garden off-center red point with his Nymphaea sp., and to do it I want a pretty thick stem and dominant, large, colurful leaves.) So that's maybe 15-30 minutes a week. Then bigger trims like what I expect will happen this weekend are probably a couple hours, mostly drinking beer and staring at the tank while waiting for inspiration.

Water changes are via Python and painless -- I usually do other stuff while I drain it once, refill a little high to soak the emergent growth, drain it again, then refill to my target height. I'd guess I change like 70% of the water weekly but don't really know. Maybe 20 minutes for that?

So... all in all that's maybe 2-3 hours a week. It sounds like a lot but man I spend more time watching the tank than most people do watching TV. So, relative to the enjoyment and destressing I get, my maintenance schedule is pretty light. Remembering that my lady may feel negelcted is harder work ;)

I hope that makes sense so please let me know if it doesn't.
 
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