My 100gal tank started back in June 2003 as a pretty low tech setup. Over time I gradually improved lighting (from 128W T8 to now ~200W T5) and CO2 (from one 2l bottle to three 3l bottles to pressurized).
Initially I didn't have an idea how to "aquascape", just planted large plants in the back, and small plants in the front. Unfortunately, the small swords in the front grew to monsters and needed to be moved around. It was a colorful collection of all plants I could get a hold of.
Over time, I figured out which plants like to grow under my conditions, as well as which plants I liked. Many plants disappeared all by themselves, leaving me with a wild mixture of different colors and shapes.
One day while hiking I found that huge piece of waterlogged root, and I know it had a place in my tank.
I had a free weekend and started to rip out and replant. The first large sword changed the water into a muddy brown soup (I am using loam in my
substrate!). Whipped out the HOT Magnum, some Diatom Powder, and let it run during the entire ordeal. Got rid of one huge E. osiris, it's size just nothing for a little 100 gal tank. Got rid of some fast growers like Ambulias, and left others like Water Sprite attached to rubber stoppers to reduce their explosive growth. All in all simplification...
Here is how it looks just after planting. Things need to grow in, take shape, and be pruned to shape. The left side doesn't look so good in the image, you don't see much of the stone terrace that is overshaded by Java Ferns, the Crypts in front hide most of it, but in reality it doesn't look too bad.
Let me know what you think... Here, as comparison, how it looked previously.