About 3 years back, I was supported by a shoestring budget, and what ever i made from selling excess HC in that emersed iwagumi cube i had for awhile.
As for now, nothing really, that 40b was thrown together on spare cash here and there. We were thinking of re-doing the 10 as well, but also the 40. Going to wait for it to warm up a bit up here (actually it's really warm up here - typically there's 3 feet of snow on my lawn at this time of year - this year ... i can see almost all the grass) - and go to a rockyard, see what i can find.
As for a lower lying plants - think downoi would do well in a CO2 free lower lit tank?
If you meant stand - 1" thick plywood painted green. On a home made stand originally made for my 33, but works for my 40B as well.