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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here is my overhauled 15g. I am still tweaking the rocks and have yet to resolve the back right corner. Any suggestions? Comments and criticisms greatly appreciated!



After all this time, my first real thread! :p
 

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I think it's great! If I didn't know any better I'd think you were trying to emulate a Hawaiian island there. Give it a little more time to grow in then repost some pictures. That would help give us a better idea of what it'll look like in the long term.
 

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Looks great, and it does look like an island. Are you the one I sent my Elatine to? Why is the Co2 diffuser upside down on the left? Its great, because those are all plants you never get to see in an aquascape. I didn't think that Downoi would be a very usfull plant in an aquascape, but you did a great job with it, looks like trees or something. Is that Bacopa sp. "Red" in the back?
 

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It's a lovely sight. Next time you photograph it, remove the instruments beforehand and it will look even better. I look forward to seeing an update on this one.

Andrew Cribb
 

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Stepping in here for a moment, but when presenting an unifinished tank to the site, it really isn't necessary to take out all the equipment. We all realize that you'll take it out for competition, but to take it out just to show it to us is superfluous.

That said, I believe this aquarium is extremely beautiful. The big rock looks a bit too prominent at this point, which is actually perfect. As the plants grow in, the hardscaping always tones down quite a bit.

You may want a stronger pieces on the left side to counterbalance the large rock on the right side, however. It is definitely a weakness I forsee in the future of this layout.

The plant choice is excellent. Just needs a couple rounds of pruning and filling in.

Carlos
 

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Hey Aaron,
looks very good and I think you do have a good idea on a Hawaiian island theme going on in there for you buddy. Great job. Hows the T5's doing?
 

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Stepping in here for a moment, but when presenting an unifinished tank to the site, it really isn't necessary to take out all the equipment. We all realize that you'll take it out for competition, but to take it out just to show it to us is superfluous.
True enough. I should practice my 'encouraging American English.' I will never be a judge :)

The rocks look like lava. If that's the case, would they have a high Fe content?

Andrew Cribb
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for all the comments. I know the tank is young, but any suggestions as to my problem area back right corner? I'm not sure about plant choice there.

To give you folks perspective, here is what the tank used to look like... on Sept. 15, 1 hour before the AGA deadline to be exact:


I had a hard time controlling growth to the point where the rocks kinda disappeared. (the consensus in my criticisms by the judges) They were totally right. This time, I want to make sure that doesn't happen so I added that big rock. With the ohters, however, I agree with Tsunami that they may just disappear again. Should I prop them up or go with bigger ones? BTW, the whole island feel was not my intention or inspiration, but it now that you say all say it, sure why not. Downoi palm trees! The rocks I believe are basalt, known commonly here as blue rock. I do use crushed lava cinders as a bottom layer mixed with peat in my substrate. I was experimenting with it and can honestly say I find it no better than straight flourite or APS

As far as a plant list,
Elatine triandra (From a really nice little Gnome. Thanks!)
Pogostemon helferi
Tonina fluviatilis
echinodorus tennellus
Rotala sp. vietnam
Java moss
Heteranthera zosterfolia

and indisriminate pieces of:
rotala rotundifolia
rotala indica
Hemianthus micranthemoides
ranalisma rostrata
I am probably going to take these out once things start filling in
 

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I think the Tonina is a good choice, tends to be slow growing and does not overhang rocks like Rotala sp. tends to do. Rotala would make this something other than a mini-aqua-landscape. I personally prefer the surreal landscape look. Tonina sp. Belem or Eriocaulon setaceum might also fit in. I wonder about the E. tennellus.

Perhaps we know the same Gnome who also provided me with some Elatine triandra. My ET has been abused somewhat. 99% has been removed from the tank and has gone. But I notice tiny pieces keep coming up all over the place (unless it is HC which would gladden my heart). I like the look of the ET in your aquarium. The light colour is exotic.

Considering how much some people pay for plants like Pogostemon helferi , Tonina sp., etc, your tank represents quite an investment. Better not let anyone 'sleep' in your fish room. :)

Filling in the back right corner with what? Possibly a small leaf plant hinting at distance.

Andrew Cribb
 

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Andrew,
If you look closely at elatine, it has little seed like things between the leaves. These fall off and spread all over the tank. My elatine pops up in the weirdest parts of my tank.
 

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That is DOWNOI (Pogostemon helferi). This is very rare plant. I have looking for a years but I cannot fine it. Even though I went to Thailand (the original of Downoi) I could not find it. : (

It is a sweet little creature
 

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Greg,

I have to give ET 10/10 for survival technique. I have melted it and buried it... but it comes back. It's a nice plant but I am still after getting HC to take - I like the smaller leaves. The ET seems to like high nitrate.

Andrew Cribb
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Plantdude,
to the left of the rock, Tonina fluviatilis, to the right and below, Pogostemon helferi. Both these plants are/ were available at Pets Plus a week and a half ago. I am in Mililani
 

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I think you are going to have to get larger complementary rocks. After looking at it a few times, I feel that the surrounding rocks are bound to be burried if you let the layout grow out.

Carlos
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I think you are going to have to get larger complementary rocks. After looking at it a few times, I feel that the surrounding rocks are bound to be burried if you let the layout grow out.
I am really struggling with this. Shortly after taking the photo, I gently removed a few rocks and replaced them with larger ones. It did not look good, much too large for the scale of my tank. I am beginning to think the Tonina has to go. Although it is fairly slow in ralation to other stem plants, having to top and replant is kinda annoying since they are located in a small wedge between the rocks. I have had to do this twice already and it is a PITA. What if I go with all Downoi around the rocks? I would still have the problem of topping and replanting but it is a much much slower plant that it might not be that annoying. What do you folks think? Any other suggestions in regards to a substitute for the Tonina?

The Elatine is amazingly fast, it might be faster than glosso! The good thing is that IMO it is easier to prune/ trim. Anyone need some? I got it coming out of my ears!
 

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Ah, very unique tank. It looks very nice. I wish it was a brighter pictures though.
 
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