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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all -

We'll I'm setting up a new tank today. It's a 10 gallon tank that will have 15 watts of NO fluorescent (Westinghouse 6500K), no CO2, with peat and Eco Complete in the substrate. I was planning on setting up a second 10 gallon for a while. And when I listened to the Tom Barr talk here I figured that was a perfect idea.

Thursday night I bought a 4 pack of cork tile. It's natural cork that is no treated. The 4 pack of 12 inch square tiles are used for the background. I had to trim a bit off the bottom on each and sliced one in half or so.



I then used some aquarium silicon and mounted the cork to the back of the tank. Right now this is how it looks.



Sorry for the finger prints on the tank right now. Anyway you can see the seam but once there are some plants in front it should not be visible. Or I might mount some moss to the cork.

Larger pictures can be seen here.

The next step is getting the peat into the tank. So I'm off to boil the peat, toss it in the tank along with the Eco Complete. And I need to get a background in between the two tanks. I don't want any excess light getting into this one from the other.

More coming later tonight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Okay so I boiled the peat for a bit and tossed a very tiny layer on the bottom of the tank. The peat barely covered the glass - I still had spots that you could see the glass. I figured I should be conservative since I have never used peat before. And man that crap stinks when you boil it.

So once that was in I covered it with 20lbs of Eco Complete. I really like the black color of this stuff.



I placed a few rocks in just to mess around. What I want to do is have the two corners sloping up. So I'm going to hunt for some more rock today and see if I can find a bag of fine black gravel to maybe slope it more into the corners. We'll see. Or maybe have the rocks slope down from a corner into the middle of the tank.

I'm bidding on some Marsilea quadrifolia on Aquabid. Think that is the same Tsunami that is here - so I figured why not. Might make a cool foreground.

I might get some plants today. We'll see. If not then on Sunday for sure.[/img]

Oh an on a side note. I switched from Botanica line of Ferts to Flourish. My brown algae problem is almost gone and the plants started growing. Even though I kept my NPK ratio in line I think the Botanica line of ferts is lacking. You need to purchase 2 or 3 bottles to get the same elements as one bottle of Flourish. And its cheaper. I'm sold.
 

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About the cork tile - I've read about a few people trying it and having problems with it eventually falling apart (guessing whatever holds the pieces together can't last submerged). There has to be some kind of glue, as cork doesn't grow naturally like that. Since it's already siliconed in, I hope you don't have this problem.

I just test filled a 15g Corkbark tank I've been working on for my dwarf puffers. http://www.daemonfly.com/images/15g/corkfilled.jpg Still a few pieces to add, but you can get the idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Now that is cool. I looked at ordering some cork bark but I wanted to get the tank up. I hope it doesn't fall apart either. If it does I'll just remove it and go with a plain black background. My plan is to grow some moss on the wall. I have some erect moss coming from Singapore and I wanted to make sure I had the tank up and running for it. At the very least it will be a learning experience. Hey it can't be worse then battling algae! :p
 

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Yeah, hopefully your tile lasts at least a little while. Just don't put any plecos in as I've read they also add to the "property damage" ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
What you mean a common pleco would be bad for a 10 gallon tank? But the guy at the big commerical fish store said they are good algae eats! :lol: Yah no plecos. Not a big fan of them. Few ottos for sure. Not sure what else I will add. I was thinking maybe it would be a cool tank to keep a pair of apistos or pelvicachrmois species. Did that before and enjoyed it even in a ten gallon. Ah who knows.
 

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That's looking good mm. I think Apistogramma would be an excellent choice for that tank, especially if you can get some nice twisty and branchy wood.

Best,
Phil
 

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Hello Mike,

I just wanted to share some pictures of Vicki Locke's tank (bless her heart :cry:) with the same cork background as yours for inspiration. That's Java moss and Anubias sp. 'Petite' freshly stapled onto the cork. This is a high light 29G tank with her prized A. Hongsloi.



 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hi -

I forgot about those images of Vicki's tank. :( I saw them on AB when I first got back into this hobby and thought it was very cool. When I setup my 1st ten gallon I wanted to do it but could not locate any cork boards and gave up.

Thanks for sharing that. Very inspiring.

Mike
 

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Forgive both the newbie here, and the hi-jack, but why do you frown when you mention Vicki?

Gorgeous tank, BTW. Kinda inspiring for me actually, my boss recently gave me permission to set up a tank up at my work, and I've been wanting to do one as a breeder for Rams or some Apistos.
 

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I just had to say: Vicki is awesome...that's such a beautiful tank....
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Cheyd -

When I got back into planted tanks in the summer I found the Aqua Botanic website and found the forums there really helpful. The old posts I read helped me along. Vicki was very active there and I believe elsewhere from what I could tell and seemed like a very cool lady. Sometime in the fall I believe, she passed on. I never spoke with her but her posts were always insightful and at times humorus. I believe there was even a tribute to her, a donation made in her name to the Guy Jordan Endowment. Others know a lot more then I but from what I read it hit a lot of people hard on a personal level.
 

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Yep, in a nut shell thats what happened. She was a very knowledgable women and was very helpful in her posts and PM's to me. If youd like to visit her site check it out, it has some nice personal insite to her tanks and a great article on rinsing flourite. http://www.wheelpost.com/

So mm any updates?

.dc
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Nothing yet. I did get my erect moss and christmas moss from singapore today. And I have some plants coming too but not for a week or so I think. I'm excited for those. Right now I am debating weather to put some of the erect moss on the cork or xmas moss without tossing anything else in the tank. I might stop by the lfs Tuesday and see if I can find some junk to toss in there in the meantime. Think hygro. polysperma would work in a 1.5 watt tank to get things going?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Well I finally planted the tank. I made due with the rocks I had and I like it. Still more to plant. Anyway a quick picture. Sorry about the themometer. That will move to back side left when I plant more later this week.



The Anubias nana 'stardust' are floating around for now. Thursday I should get the 'narrowleaf' and 'marble' nanas in from AB along with some Egeria najas. Then I will plant that up. I'm think the nanas on the rocks with the bigger ones at the foot of the rocks.

Eventually I will plant the Marsilea augustifolia along the foreground in the front, starting along the left side.

The najas will go somewhere in middle back maybe. Not sure. Need to see when I get it. Maybe I can hide the heater and filter.

I still need to pin a few more narrow leaf java ferns in on the cork and some Xmas moss I have. So I'll update later this week.
 

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Looks good Mike.

Should look good when you get the rest of the plants in and they fill in some.

Hows the cork working out? Is it staying together or has it crumbled any?

I have a few peices and was thinking about doing a planted cork wall background in my #2 - 10 Gal tank which I am about to redo.

CD
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks. Can't wait to plant the rest later this week. Need to get some otos in there too. Maybe Wednesday. Wish I could find the red tail otos. Be neat new fish for me.

So far the cork seems fine. Granted it has only been 3 weeks since it went in. I hope it stays nice. I like the look of it. And nice to be able to pin things to it like ferns and mosses in case you can't wedge them into place.

How's the frogbit? :lol:
 

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Mike,

The Frogbit is doing very good. They are already starting to multiply, won't be long and I'll be offering them to others. LOL

I split most of it between my 2 - 20 Gal tanks, and I put some outside in a big plastic drum that I have some Water Hyacinths and Water Lettuce in,
I also put in a bunch of Java Moss and it is growing like crazy outside.

CD
 
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