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Old 01-22-2013, 10:45 PM   #1
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3 Gallon Nano Tank Hardscape Opinions Pics


I'm doing a small 3 gallon nano tank for my office at work. I'm going to do Iwagumi style and I already have a bunch of HC ready to plant for dry start. Before I do that I want to nail down my rock placement.

I am open to any opinions, suggestions, constructive criticism or whatever.

First layout I played with was with more rocks with a hill in the back left corner.



Second layout I played with was just a slope from front to back with just 3 rocks. In front are all the other rocks I have to play with. They look disproportionally large, but aren't that big.



It's going to be mostly an HC carpet with something like blyxa japonica planted in the rocks. It's my first go at this style. I thought it'd be easy, but once you start moving rocks around rotating them, you realize the possibilities are endless, even with just a few rocks in a tiny space.

Any ideas on this? Do you prefer one over the other?
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:17 AM   #2
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I like the first scape the most, i think the rocks are spread out but not too much, in my opinion it's great!
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Old 01-23-2013, 03:23 AM   #3
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I prefer the first.
My opinion as a novice aquascaper : I would take the back-right rock and place it in front-left, and shift everything else a little bit to the right.
The front-right rock may be too small, the plants will probably hide it. It's important to have (and see) an odd number of rocks.
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Old 01-23-2013, 03:29 AM   #4
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The first one, hands down, I really like it...
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Old 01-23-2013, 03:48 PM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback — it was very helpful! I played around a little more this morning and I think I've landed on something I really like. This is much more like the first pic above, except I used a slightly bigger stone for one of the small flanking stone, and turned the front stone so it's pointing back at the bigger one.

I feel like they all relate to each other better now. The two medium stones almost look like the broke off the bigger one as they slid down the slope.

More opinions before I plant HC this afternoon?

Angled view from above (how I see it when I look at it):



Straight on front view:

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Old 01-23-2013, 03:56 PM   #6
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The first one was actually WAY better.

It is sparser and better placed.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:22 PM   #7
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The first one was actually WAY better.

It is sparser and better placed.
The main difference is the front rock being turned about 180. It makes a big difference though. I'm on the fence. I just turned around in my chair and spun the front rock again like the first pic. It definitely opens it up more. Arg! I like them both! LOL!

Opened up is probably better in such a small tank.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:26 PM   #8
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I say on every aquascape thread I comment on: I am no expert, but I have a good eye for what looks right. Empty space is a key to a good scape
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:04 PM   #9
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Okay... it's settled. I closed my door and planted 1/3 of my HC over lunch. There is more space between the front and middle stone than it appears (camera angle). I'm digging how the gap between them and the big stone creates a little valley. Thanks all!

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Old 01-23-2013, 06:06 PM   #10
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Yep! That's excellent. Very nice
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:14 PM   #11
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Looks good so far! do you use stem plants or taller plants in Iwagumi's? i've never had experience with this before, and it has peeked my interested!
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:25 PM   #12
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Looks good so far! do you use stem plants or taller plants in Iwagumi's? i've never had experience with this before, and it has peeked my interested!
I think it really depends on tank size and they look you are going for. You certainly could do that. This tank is really short at just 8" tall. With 1.25" to 3" of substrate, a lot of plants would hit the top quickly, and would dwarf the rocks.

I'll be limiting my species to HC and probably just 2 others. Maybe blyxa japonica and hydrocotyle tripartita Japan. I'm not 100% yet, but I also have a month to think about it now while my DSM runs its course.
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