Mark's - "Petit Coin de Paradis" (Updated Pics)
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Old 08-14-2009, 03:23 AM   #1
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Mark's - "Petit Coin de Paradis" (Updated Pics)


"Petit Coin de Paradis"

"Corner of Heaven"
formally
"Les Collines Rouges"

"The Red Hills"

This is another journal I am starting for a 15 gallon tank I will be setting up over the next few weeks. It will be for my office that I am putting in upstairs. At the moment I am thinking of doing DIY CO2 which I really don't want to do but I do not have the money for a pressurized system at the moment. The specs are below:

Tank - 15 gallon
Filter: Fluval 304
Lighting: Nova Extreme SLR T-5 Fixture, 48 watt
Heater: Stealth in-tank
Substrate: I am going to use mineralized top soil (first time trying this) with Tropic Isle Tahitian Moon Sand as the cap
Hardscape: Red Rocks (you can see a couple of them in the tank pic below)
Dosing: I will be dosing 2.5ml of excel daily and nothing else since I am using mineralized soil.
Flora: I know for sure HC but beyond that I don't know.
Fauna: I am thinking of Threadfin rainbows and otos but may change my mind

Here is a pic of the tank..


I just started tonight the process of mineralizing my top soil, so here is a pic..

Top soil that I got from a local landscape shop. It is really nice topsoil and he said there are no additives. Was able to get it for free!


It is mineralizing! I only used 1 bucket and I think I will have more then I need.


Will be getting a mineralized kit from Torpedobarb next week since it is hard to find the clay, dolmite and potash around here.

I will also be building a stand for it and will keep you updated on the progress with that.
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Last edited by dewalltheway; 09-17-2011 at 02:45 PM..
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Old 08-14-2009, 03:26 AM   #2
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Awesome! Thanks for documenting the mineralizing process. It's nice to see a 15 long used for fresh water. They are nice tanks.
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Old 08-14-2009, 03:30 AM   #3
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Thx! This 15 gallon was actually my first planted tank I owned and then went to a 55 gallon and put this into storage. I thought it was a good time to get it out and start it up again plus I have been wanting to try this mineralized soil for quite some time. This is going to be fun!
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Old 08-14-2009, 03:40 AM   #4
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Just so you know, for red hills it would be collines rouges (pronounced the same way though), to make it plural, or, les collines rouges for "the red hills". Or you could do "les mantagnes rouges" for "the red mountains" (pronounced mon-tan-ya) which might sound better to you. IDK, I just wanted an excuse to use my French
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Old 08-14-2009, 12:19 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clwatkins10 View Post
Just so you know, for red hills it would be collines rouges (pronounced the same way though), to make it plural, or, les collines rouges for "the red hills". Or you could do "les mantagnes rouges" for "the red mountains" (pronounced mon-tan-ya) which might sound better to you. IDK, I just wanted an excuse to use my French
Thx for the info. I thought about using the word mountain but thought hills would be better suited since the rocks are more rounded. I will make the changes. I just love naming my tanks in french. It sounds so elouquent. Thx!
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Old 08-14-2009, 05:22 PM   #6
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Well I may have been alittle to impatient but it was a beautiful sunny, warm day here in Ohio so I drained the tub and laid out the mud to dry. Round #1

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Old 08-19-2009, 12:56 PM   #7
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Well....I ended up purchasing a new Nova Extreme SLR T-5 fixture from Dr. Fosters & Smith for this tank. It was on sale plus I had a gift certificate. Here is the link.. http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...m?pcatid=16770 I ordered the 24" - 48watt freshwater light. I also bought my black moon sand. I am still in the process of mineralizing my soil. I haven't had any time to do anything on the stand, but it will be a couple weeks before I do anything on that. I will keep you posted.
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Old 08-22-2009, 03:29 AM   #8
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Well a small update. I received my stuff today from Fosters and Smith. I can't wait to get this thing going but still waiting on the mineralized soil process but it will be worth the wait. I am starting on the 4th round of soaking and then drying. Below is a pic of the soil today. It has been in my garage all week because it has been storming here everyday this week. Today was the first day it didn't and had a real nice breeze and not much humidity so it dried much faster. I hope to have a finished product by next week.

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Old 08-23-2009, 04:32 PM   #9
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I don't know why, but I am fascinating looking at this mud. Very pretty. Did your wife think you were crazy?
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Old 08-23-2009, 04:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sewingalot View Post
I don't know why, but I am fascinating looking at this mud. Very pretty. Did your wife think you were crazy?
Everyone thinks I am crazy! they are like "Why are you spreading out mud?" or "Why do we have mud in our garage?" I just keep telling them, you will see what this mud is going to do. (I hope I don't disappoint or then I will be crazy!)
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Old 08-27-2009, 12:54 AM   #11
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I am finally done with the minerializing of my topsoil. What a thrill to see the results! To complete the steps of the process below are some pics to the final product.

After doing the drying process 5 times (I think I could have stopped after 3 times, but being a newbie at it, I was looking for the soil to do something it wasn't going to do.) I started the sifting process. I took my wheelbarrow and put a piece of plastic in it and then I have a piece screening material that they use in gravel pits to screen rocks and put that on top of it. I purchased a piece of wire mesh material at my local lumber store and put the across the top of the screen. Then I poured some of the dirt on it and started crushing it thru.

Soil after the last drying process...


The start of the screening process..


The product after that screening...


Then I also had purchased a piece of window screen and I now placed that on top of those screens and repeated the process..


The final product.....Mineralized Soil!!!..


Closer look, it is like a powder...


Now I just have to fine time to start up this tank.
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Old 08-27-2009, 01:01 AM   #12
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Wow that's awesome stuff!
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Old 08-27-2009, 01:39 AM   #13
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And the best thing about it, is that it was free! A local landscaper here in my town has this awesome topsoil that he allowed me to get (3) 5 gallon buckets full and here is a pic after I screened the topsoil for another batch of minerialized soil tonight. It almost looks good enough to use now without going thru the process.
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Old 08-27-2009, 01:49 AM   #14
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Looks like aquasoil
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Old 08-27-2009, 02:24 AM   #15
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I have to give a big thanks to Torpedobarb for all his help thru this first time process of mineralizing. He was a big help and has also provided the nutrient kit and clay I will use for the rest of the process.

Thanks Torpedobarb!
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