I haven't kept fish for the last twelve years and I never was really compelled to go through the hassle of setting up an aquarium until I began lurking these forums. And so I was soon inspired to set up my own low tech planted tank. There's a space at the foot of my bed that perfectly fits a tank with a 30x12 footprint. After a rough year, the prospect of waking up to an aquatic garden seemed like just the thing to keep me on track. With that in mind, please excuse the bedframe in some of the shots.
- 29 gallon Aqueon tank
- 2x AGA 30" 20w t8 light strips (bulbs are probably due for a change, but the indirect lighting from north-ish facing windows probably helps)
- Cascade 500 canister
- Aqueon 100w heater
- Miracle Gro Organic Choice Potting Mix capped with Eco Complete
- hunk of malaysian driftwood
- zebra(?) rocks
- Anubias spp.
- Cryptocoryne parva
- Cryptocoryne wendtii
- Echinodorus tenellus
- Hygrophila corymbosa 'green temple'
- Hygrophila difformis
- rogue duckweed
- 2x Paracheirodon axelrodi
Mudtank! "This will never work."
Feeling a little better about things a few dozen water changes later.
Canister is hooked up, java ferns are in, bacterial bloom is everywhere. I also added some Anubias 'nana' and H. difformis.
E. tenellus goes in and I think I'd added some crypts earlier--parva and what is likely wendtii.
As viewed from my bed. I also began cycling with ammonia.
I got lazy about photos after this point, probably thanks to the continuous buildup of diatoms and this ugly brown java moss I picked up in February:
Side view. Nice and green with a little help from Excel.
The cardinals unfortunately came from Petsmart and are now suffering from ich, so I've bumped the temp and added conservative amounts of salt. Everyone's alive thus far and they've decimated the little bugs (daphnia?) and detritus worms that were all over the tank. Six otos were added shortly after the cardinals (Petsmart stock again, so I don't have high hopes for them.) and cleaned up the worst of the diatoms overnight. After everyone's settled in and healed up (or dead), I'd like to do a bit of rescaping, work in more Anubias plus H. corymbosa 'compacta' and 'green temple,' tame that java moss...