I've gotten bored with trying to make a pretty aquascape (or rather, it's frustrating trying to trim the plants and when they don't grow the way they want), but also didn't want a random hodge podge of various plants species either. So, I've decided to go with a biotope.
Given that my only fish is a rescued male betta, I am designing it around him, and going with a southeast Asia biotope theme.
I'm trying to narrow it down to just a specific region of southeast Asia, but struggling finding information as it all seems to conflict one another in regards to flora and fauna found there; and is making my head spin after countless days of research.
In my mind, I want to slope the substrate from about 5" on the right, down to about 2-3" on the left. I'm trying to create the edge of either a slow moving creek/stream, or a stagnant pool, still deciding. There will be leaf litter from the indian almond leaves, some staining from the leaf and wood tannins, and the tank will be kept to a toasty 80-82F. The only other fauna will be malaysian trumpet snails.
I currently have/will be getting in the next couple of days or so:
~10 gallon aquarium
~3 bags of flourite
~Finnex planted + 24/7 led light
~Indian almond leaves
~Reddish river rocks
~Reddish and brown toned gravel (just a couple handfuls worth, may or may not use)
~Whole bunch of seachem liquid fertilizers (flourish, comprehensive, potassium,iron, etc.)
~50 watt heater
~Aqueon internal filter with adjustable flow (love this thing, so quite!) Also have a Tom Tom internal filter with spray bar as well if I want to swap
The one plant that I must have (because it seems to be my betta's favorite plant, so I can't get rid of it) is hygrophila difformis/water wisteria.
I also want a "bog" plant (a plant that would grow at the waters edge in nature), and a floating plant (something with pretty roots, that won't be a total headache like duckweed would be nice.
Other than that, I want to keep it to a total of only 2-4 plant species.
Here is some information I've found so far:
Southeast Asian Blackwater Pool (Borneo blackwater creek, Borneo clearwater forest pool)-cryptocoryne, nymphaea, eleocharis
Southeast Asia Back-Water:Giant hygrophila, blyxa japonica
Southeast Asian River: Crypts, Vallisneria, hairgrass, crinum thainanum, cardamine lyrata
Badmans Tropical Fish:
Southeast Asia Lowland Stillwater (Allepey backwater): giant hygrophila, nitelia, hydrilla, water lilies, crypt ciliata, java moss, limnocharis, water lettuce
South east Asia Blackwater:crypt wendtii, crypt nevelli, pista stratiotes, hygro polysperma, nuphar japonicum, water sprite
Seriously Fish: "aquatic vegetation grows profusely and often includes representatives of genre such as Cryptocoryne, Blyxa, Barclaya, Eleocharis, Utricularia, and Lymnophila."
Plants that I've found from various sites and forum searches
~Other crypt species
Betta splendens natural origins: according to various sites
~Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, and parts of China
~Rice paddies, ponds, slow moving streams and swamps
~Southeast Asia-northern Malay Peninsula, central and eastern Thailand, Kampuchea, and southern Vietnam
~Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand and Cambodia in the river basins of the Mekong and Chao Phraya rivers, in rice paddies and drainage ditches, river basins and small streams
So basically, if anyone has ideas for a plant stocking list that includes wisteria that has a total of ~4 plant species found in a specific area of south east Asia (ie/ Mekong River, Chao Phraya river basin, Borneo creek, Malaysia, Thailand, etc as I really want to try to create a biotope of a specific eco system if possible.) It seems like fun! Lol
Right now, I'm leaning towards:
and trying to decide between blyxa japonica, java fern, a crypt species, cyperus helferi, or some other species for my "bog" plant to go on the highest part of the slope, and wondering if water lettuce would work in a 10 gallon.
I want to keep it low- moderate maintenance, I'm fine doing a daily dosing of liquid co2 and ferts, and trimming occasionally, but don't want to do much more than that.
I already have a java fern, but I'm not sure if I want to keep it, or go with a different species.
I get the 10 gallon tomorrow, so I will post pictures of my hard scape then!
Thank you in advance for any thoughts or ideas
And because pictures are fun (although it's slightly blurry), here is my current "mini biotope" where my betta, Reid currently resides in his temporary 2.5 gallon until the 10 gallon is set up.
Is my picture too big by the way? I am clueless when it comes to knowing how to find out the size of a picture and what not, and read the forum rules about pictures have to be a certain size.