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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In Nature Aquarium World, Amano presents three basic layouts for the would be aquascaper: triangular (or triadic), mound, and concave (u-shaped). In this week's topic, we will discuss these three basic layouts and how we apply them to our own tanks.

Triadic (triangular):

A basic triangular layout is composed of two triangles -- one is open space
and the other includes the plants, wood, or rocks. Plants start high in
one corner and gradually become shorter and shorter until they seem
to fade into the horizon of the aquarium.

Tip: Play with the amount of plans/hardscaping space to that of open space until you are comfortable with the appearance of the tank.

Mound (convex):

Plants are arranged a little off center, creating a sort of hill which is
surrounded by low growing plants such as Glossostigma and Eleocharis
acicularis. In this example, the stark, bare branches sticking out of the
mound and the schooling fish create a very dynamic, energetic layout.

Concave (u-shaped):

In this layout, driftwood, rocks and plants are arranged on both sides of
the tank, leaving the area near the center (never in the center) open.
The groupings on both sides of the tank should never be the same
size so that the aquarium does not appear too symmetrical. Generally,
the groupings are sized at a ratio of 2:1, 3:1, or 1:1.618. So one side
should be at least one and a half times larger than the other (eye ball it!).

Phew. So does anyone here layout their tanks according to the rules of
one of the three basic layouts? Are there more ways of aquascaping
these tanks than just the aforementioned three? Examples?


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Wow! Where did those pictures come from? Very interesting post! I would like to learn more about aquascaping. Do you have any book recommendations? My plants are just stuck in the tank where I thought they might look good, with no thought to the overall artistic layout. These pictures get me thinking!

· Registered
1,717 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
They came from Those tanks belong to the
famous Japanese aquarist Takashi Amano. Here is a good link
with some of the basics on Nature Aquarium style aquascaping:

For inspiration, click 'View Entries'....

Some good aquascaping books that are currently available in this

Nature Aquarium World I
Nature Aquarium World II
Nature Aquarium World III
Aquarium Plant Paradise

...all by Takashi Amano.


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119 Posts
Are there any other good books? I have kinda a convex plan, but merely by accident, vals at on end and wisteria at the other. I wish my tank looked like those ones, maybe one day. Right now, I'm still happy if my plants don't die.
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