Jahmic's 35 tall low-tech riparium
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Old 04-10-2011, 09:26 PM   #1
jahmic
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Jahmic's 35 tall low-tech riparium


I didn't plan on having a second tank anytime soon...but picked this up for free from a friend:



~35 gallon 'tall' The measurements are 30"x12"x22.5", which puts it right around 32 gallons taking into account the glass thickness.

In any case...decided the dimensions were pretty perfect to build a riparium. Decided to go low tech and low maintenance on this one since my nano has pressurized CO2 and EI dosing. Just had to be different

Lighting - 30" Coralife T5HO 31W x 2

Substrate - Miracle Grow organic potting mix capped with Flourite regular

Filtration - Eheim 2213


edit: Initially I was going to go with an acrylic canopy...but it looks like I'm going to try to stick to an open top, and see how that goes.

Fauna
Fundulopanchax gardneri (pair)
Nannostomus beckfordi (x5)
Paracheirodon axelrodi (x9)
Hemigrammus rhodostomus (x5)
Trichogaster chuna
Cardina japonica (x 'how ever many my female killi has decided to not eat yet')


Flora

Aquatic
Cryptocoryne Wendtii (various sp.)
Cryptocoryne x willisii c. lucen
Cryptocoryne spiralis
Cryptocoryne retrospiralis
Cryptocoryne balensae
Hygrophila pinnatifida

Emersed
Sygnonium (sp?)
Staphiphyllum (sp?)
Pandanus tecotrius
Pilea mollis (Moon Valley)

Full tank shots:

4/24/11 - a rough start...



5/15/11



5/21/11





1/22/2012



1/04/2013



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Old 04-10-2011, 09:28 PM   #2
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Here's a few boring pictures of dirt.








Right now there is about a 1/2" cap of flourite over the 1" MG mix. I have another bag of flourite ready to go, and will add it to the tank to finish off the cap once I have the hardscape in place.

Next update...probably next weekend
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Old 04-11-2011, 12:51 AM   #3
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This'll be interesting to watch. Good luck.
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:02 AM   #4
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Got some great looking manzanita in the mail today...time to decide on a hardscape.

Here's the options I came up with so far...leaning towards either #1 or #3, but still haven't decided for sure. I have a couple days to play with this before planting the tank, so any suggestions (even outside of what I've come up with) are welcome. I may do some trimming once I decide on something for sure...but for now I just arranged the pieces around intact.

Anyway, I'm basically going for the look of stumps along a riverbank, with the roots going into the water. The bottom "third" of the tank will be filled, with the "stumps" above the waterline, surrounded by terrestrial plants.


1)




2) - If I use this one, the branch on the far right that sticks out to the right/front of the tank would be cut off, moving the "structure" of the 2 pieces over to the right. If you can see the 2 branches running perpendicular to the branch that would be cut off...that would essentially be lined up close to the right side of the tank.



3)




4)
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Old 04-16-2011, 02:12 AM   #5
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Ended up not liking the previous attempts much...I felt like in every one of them there was a piece sitting directly in the middle, which was extremely distracting.

I think this is going to be the hardscape I go with:

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Old 04-16-2011, 02:23 AM   #6
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I would put the flat part in the substrate because it looks too unnatural when it's sticking up. Looks great though
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Old 04-16-2011, 03:45 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockhoe14er View Post
I would put the flat part in the substrate because it looks too unnatural when it's sticking up. Looks great though
I hear what you're saying...

And, although I may totally fail at this ...the goal I'm going for is to create something similar to the marginal area of a tropical mangrove forest. Here's a decent representation of what I'm trying to pull off:





So, basically the water line will go to right about where the "flat parts" are currently sitting in the tank, with "roots" reaching into the water. I think I have some pretty decent ideas of where to place the plants in the background to fool the eyes into seeing a riverbank in the back of the tank.

We'll see how it actually works when it's all said and done though
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Old 04-16-2011, 04:22 AM   #8
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I think it will look awesome when it is done. Those flat parts will be covered with plants and the riparium planter's shades.


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Old 04-16-2011, 04:32 AM   #9
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O that's a great idea. That's going to look great.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jahmic View Post
I hear what you're saying...

And, although I may totally fail at this ...the goal I'm going for is to create something similar to the marginal area of a tropical mangrove forest. Here's a decent representation of what I'm trying to pull off:





So, basically the water line will go to right about where the "flat parts" are currently sitting in the tank, with "roots" reaching into the water. I think I have some pretty decent ideas of where to place the plants in the background to fool the eyes into seeing a riverbank in the back of the tank.

We'll see how it actually works when it's all said and done though
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Old 04-16-2011, 06:51 AM   #10
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Personally, i REALLY like option #2. A little unbalanced, but i think it works for what you're trying to accomplish...

Have you seen this tank before?:
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Old 04-16-2011, 07:17 AM   #11
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Nice find AZ.

You know, I liked the arrangement of #2 the most originally...but was worried about it not looking right with quite a few branches reaching toward the front of the tank. Specifically the one on the far right.

But...after looking at the photo you posted, it looks like they pulled that off really well.

Thanks for the input; I'm going to revisit that scape tomorrow. I think you're right though...especially when I start picturing where the waterline would be, it works really well with that scape.
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Old 04-17-2011, 06:35 AM   #12
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So, no sense in posting pics of the tank fully planted just yet since it's a cloudy mess, but I got all the planting into the substrate done today (thanks to the generosity of the local members )

For the hardscape, I ended up going with a variation of #2 that I had posted earlier. I wasn't convinced that it looked natural enough, so I shifted some things around, trimmed some branches, and ended up with this:



I think it does a pretty good job as far as mimicking roots going down into the substrate...looks better than it did before at least. Also, got the "stumps" to wrap around each other, and the pieces seem to fall into place alot more naturally overall. At least IMHO

I'll get more pics up once things settle...which may take a while since there's currently no filter in there. Definitely noticed some bubbling coming through the substrate...good to know that gas is able to escape...but it may not clear up for a couple days.
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Old 04-18-2011, 05:50 PM   #13
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Forgot that I grabbed a shot while I was planting...




I decided to not give myself another headache trying to scape the tank with water in there. Decided to plant everything while it was dry, which was SO much easier. I just kept misting in between...seemed to work out well.

And it's a good thing, because this is the mess I made when I added water:



Flourite + MGO = huge mess. I couldn't imagine trying to see what I was doing through that crap In all honesty, I didn't rinse the flourite as much as I did the previous time, and I rinsed the last layer of flourite and added it to the tank just before planting and filling the tank...which probably added to the mess. It's slowly clearing up...I'm going to drop in a cheap in-tank filter today so that the plants can get some more light...canister probably won't be here til later this week.
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Old 04-18-2011, 06:02 PM   #14
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looking good. I can't wait to see the finished project.
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Old 04-18-2011, 06:16 PM   #15
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That is a cool photo of the river.
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