Mr. Aqua 48g - First Iwagumi
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Old 05-14-2014, 01:50 PM   #1
bsantucci
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Mr. Aqua 48g - First Iwagumi


Hey all,

Started last July with a 46 gallon bow front and planted anything and everything in that. It was more of a naturalistic looking tank. Learned the basics of EI and lighting and decided that it was just too much maintenance with the high growing stems, cutting and replanting. I'm hoping the Iwagumi style is a bit easier to handle for maintenance.

Equipment:
Mr. Aqua 48g
Fluval 406
GLA Supreme CO2 system w/5 pound tank
GLA Atomic Inline Diffuser
CAL Labs Eflux intake and out pipes.
BML Dutch 6300k 36 inch
BML 10000k 36 inch
Apex Neptune System for controls
RGB backlighting

Flora:
Blyxa Japonica
Alternanthera Reineckii Cardinalis
Glossostigma elatinoides
Staurogyne repens

Fauna:
Bolivian Ram pair
Apisto Cac pair
Ember Tetras
Peacock Gudgeon
Bronze Cories
Otos
Zebra Danios (too much of a pain to catch so they get to stay)
2 male guppies who want to live forever apparently

Please ignore the dirty pipes, I'm cleaning them this weekend and working on the wiring to make it really neat under the cabinet. Tank was just planted but the glosso is already showing new shoots after 3 days.

Thoughts and recommendations are welcome as this is my first Iwagumi.




Last edited by bsantucci; 05-14-2014 at 01:50 PM.. Reason: added second photo
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Old 05-14-2014, 04:37 PM   #2
gmoses
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Oh man tare it down... start over.
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Old 05-14-2014, 04:39 PM   #3
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Ok ok... i was kidding. Still love the lighting. As for the set up i realky like the added red plants... looks good. If i am being picky i would move that one in front of the middle rock either over into the crack or some where else... my two cents.
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Old 05-14-2014, 06:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmoses View Post
Ok ok... i was kidding. Still love the lighting. As for the set up i realky like the added red plants... looks good. If i am being picky i would move that one in front of the middle rock either over into the crack or some where else... my two cents.
Hah, thanks man! I'll give that a look tonight while acclimating the tetras. I still have a few stems of the A. reineckii in the old tank that I can move into this one also.
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Old 05-14-2014, 06:28 PM   #5
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i love the texture contrast between the blyxa and alternanthera reineckii. i agree with @ gmoses about moving one of the rocks around, maybe wait until the plants settle and grow out more to see how you like the placement.
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Old 05-14-2014, 06:30 PM   #6
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what are you using to back light the back and have the color effect
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Old 05-14-2014, 06:43 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by colaudrey View Post
i love the texture contrast between the blyxa and alternanthera reineckii. i agree with @ gmoses about moving one of the rocks around, maybe wait until the plants settle and grow out more to see how you like the placement.
Thanks, appreciate the feedback! I think I'm going to let it grow out a bit like you said to see what I want to move and where.

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what are you using to back light the back and have the color effect
RGB LED tape lighting. Got mine from amazon. They have a few different brands available. I used etched glass vinyl on the back of the tank with a white foamboard to reflect/baffle the LED.
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Old 05-14-2014, 06:44 PM   #8
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Everything looks good as in planting. IMO I would trade places of the two rocks on the left, the larger one to the back. Then I would increase the slope in the back, maybe to the corners or off-centered.

Keep in mind those Blyxa will grow bigger, so I would place the ones in the front to the back and keep the Alternanthera Reineckii 'mini' in the mid-ground.

Other than that, it looks pretty cool! I like the sunset effect too.
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Old 05-14-2014, 07:09 PM   #9
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Everything looks good as in planting. IMO I would trade places of the two rocks on the left, the larger one to the back. Then I would increase the slope in the back, maybe to the corners or off-centered.

Keep in mind those Blyxa will grow bigger, so I would place the ones in the front to the back and keep the Alternanthera Reineckii 'mini' in the mid-ground.

Other than that, it looks pretty cool! I like the sunset effect too.
Thanks, this is the kinda info I was hoping to get when starting the journal. I'll take a look at those rocks when I get home too and see how they can be moved. I do realize the Blyxa will get bigger, but how much bigger? I've never grown it before. Maybe I'll move it to the back so that the Reineckii can kinda border each Blyxa.

Also, I had a hell of a time trying to keep Eco-Complete with a slope. Any tips? Doesn't seem to want to stay. I think I'd need to have some support under the substrate and since I'm planted and fish added I think that ship has sailed.
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Old 05-14-2014, 08:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsantucci View Post
Thanks, this is the kinda info I was hoping to get when starting the journal. I'll take a look at those rocks when I get home too and see how they can be moved. I do realize the Blyxa will get bigger, but how much bigger? I've never grown it before. Maybe I'll move it to the back so that the Reineckii can kinda border each Blyxa.

Also, I had a hell of a time trying to keep Eco-Complete with a slope. Any tips? Doesn't seem to want to stay. I think I'd need to have some support under the substrate and since I'm planted and fish added I think that ship has sailed.
No problem man. Didn't know you were using Eco-Complete, the coarseness of it is too much, it wouldn't have been my choice of substrate. ADA Aquasoil is the best in my IMO. Just make due of it. What I did to maintain a slope, was getting those cheap chopping mats from Bed Bath & Beyond or wherever you can find them. They come in a multi pack. Just cut to height. They can also be used at the same time as barriers to keep plants from mixing, but I really don't care for that. I like the chaoticness of nature and let it take it's course. Just keeping it check at times.

If settled in and conditions are right. The Blyxa can and will bush out. At the most the height it would reach would be half the height of your tank or more, towering over your rocks. But I think it would look nice.

Good luck man, can't wait to see it fill in! I could see it already...
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Old 05-14-2014, 08:51 PM   #11
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No problem man. Didn't know you were using Eco-Complete, the coarseness of it is too much, it wouldn't have been my choice of substrate. ADA Aquasoil is the best in my IMO. Just make due of it. What I did to maintain a slope, was getting those cheap chopping mats from Bed Bath & Beyond or wherever you can find them. They come in a multi pack. Just cut to height. They can also be used at the same time as barriers to keep plants from mixing, but I really don't care for that. I like the chaoticness of nature and let it take it's course. Just keeping it check at times.

If settled in and conditions are right. The Blyxa can and will bush out. At the most the height it would reach would be half the height of your tank or more, towering over your rocks. But I think it would look nice.

Good luck man, can't wait to see it fill in! I could see it already...
Hmm, I'll look into it, not sure I want to disturb that much in the tank now. Maybe if I just slop the corners only it wouldn't be so bad. I do have an extra bag here so I have more substrate I can use if needed. I didn't want to do aquasoil since it breaks down over time and I moved to this style tank to do less maintenance, not full teardowns after a year or two.

Cool I imagine the Blyxa will definitely get full. I bought 5 a month ago from someone on here and in one month of my other tank waiting for this each of them threw off a daughter plant so now I have 10.

My Star Repens was growing a bit weird in the other tank, some stems grew nice, some had a stunted leaf here or there, and some just melted away. Kinda odd how they all grew a bit different. I'm hoping I have better results in this tank cause I love the look and think the it will compliment the glosso nicely.
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Old 05-15-2014, 01:13 AM   #12
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I've been trying to figure out how I want to put a backing on my first planted tank...and I think I found my solution. Already have LED strips that I used to backlight my LCD monitors....which I'm no longer using. Looks like I just found a use for them.

Based entirely on what I've read and seen of Iwagumi...the rocks look a bit small for the tank. My understanding is the Rocks are supposed to be prominent when the plants finally grow in. From what I see it looks like the plants will overgrow the rocks unless kept in check. The top half of the tank doesn't have anything in it. This is entirely based on no person experience of course...just see the link in my signature. I've been doing a lot of research on planted tanks in preparation for the tanks I want to setup, including Iwagumi style.
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Last edited by thor79; 05-15-2014 at 01:42 AM.. Reason: added some thoughts on the layout
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Old 05-15-2014, 01:20 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by thor79 View Post
I've been trying to figure out how I want to put a backing on my first planted tank...and I think I found my solution. Already have LED strips that I used to backlight my LCD monitors....which I'm no longer using. Looks like I just found a use for them.
Cool glad I could be of assistance haha
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Old 05-15-2014, 02:03 AM   #14
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Out of curiosity, how thick is the glass on the Mr. Aqua?
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Old 05-15-2014, 12:49 PM   #15
bsantucci
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Out of curiosity, how thick is the glass on the Mr. Aqua?
Not sure off hand, but I can measure tonight when I'm home from work.
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