I originally setup this tank in October 2013 to accommodate a few endlers in a hurry.
I decided to experiment with black sand vs. substrate as this was going to be a temporary setup.
Tank: JBJ 8G AIO
Filtration: Sponge Pre Filter & Matrix
Pump: single 32W 12mm, reduced flow
Lighting: Finnex FugeRay-R 10" clip-on, 8-hour photo cycle
Substrate: 1/8" of Miracle Grow Organic potting soil capped by 1.25" black sand
Ludwigia repens x L. arcuata
Rotala macrandra 'Green Narrow Leaf'
Ammania spec. 'Bonsai'
Livestock: Endlers, Amano shrimp and a few horned nerite sails
Here is what it looked like on 11/7
Surprisingly, most of the plants rooted well and grew, albeit slowly. The Tropica 049G (S. repens) surprised me as to how long the roots were, but the bottom leaves are full of holes.
Decided to scape this tank in mid November. I emptied the tank and re-bedded the sand with an 1/8" base of moistened Miracle Grow Organic Potting Soil under the sand. I then positioned a few pieces of petrified wood and a piece of manzanita laced with moss and started planting. I decided to try a 2-level planting using the stair-stepped rock as a boundary. Hopefully the roots of the stem plants will hold the slope in place over the long run.
Floaters include Pistia stratiotes (dwarf water lettuce) and Salvinia Minima for the endler fry. They are restrained towards the front of the tank by fishing line between suction cups.
The glass cover is not full size so the floaters
Tied to the wood is a golf-ball and a half of Taiwan moss and a few stems of Hydrocotyle sp. 'Japan' for fun.
No CO2 for now, but if I do, it will be via a line under the power head to allow the impeller to diffuse it inline. Hoping not to need CO2 on this tank as I'd like to take it to my office as is in January and it's gotta be simple.
A few pics as of 12/1