Planted Tank for the Kids... and Daddy - The Planted Tank Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-22-2017, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 9
Planted Tank for the Kids... and Daddy

After 3 years out of the hobby (marine) some of the fantastic aquascaped tanks caught my eye... and my interest.

I decided to build a nano tank to try my hand at a planted, aquascaped, tank and also to give something for my kids to be interested in.

Building/Researching is one of the things i enjoy ALOT. I find the experience of these stages to be the most memorable and enjoyable and the 'maintenance' becomes much less interesting and engaging so i tried to prolong and enjoy every moment. I brought my son with me to pick out the tank (4 year old who thought he was making all the decisions) and I also let him do his own aquascape. In the end, i just told him that "daddy made a few changes to your design" and he was happy.

Some specific requirements i had for myself, and from my wife.
1) It had to be small... we just dont have much room in our house with a second kid and continue to try to find a new place. My next house will have a 80+ gallon tank (marine or planted, i haven't decided yet)
2) My children would be looking at the tank from the right side, so i was limited in my choices of aquascaping design and levels
3) I wanted it to be as low maintenance as possible
4) It had to be rimless... because it just looks sexy

Final Tank: 40x23x25CM (Approx 6 gallons)
Substrate: ADA Amazonia LIGHT - Apparently less ammonia leak and i like the more natural brown look
Lighting: New Chihiros RGB Series
Filtration: Aquaclear 30 for now w/ Biohome Ultimate

Woodworking: I found that i really enjoyed playing around with the driftwood i purchased... cutting off pieces from one branch and gluing it to another to make something completely new.

This was the perfect tool for the size of wood i was playing with.. and here is some of my glue-work.... Any nasty glue spots will be covered with moss.

Another trick i learnt online was that using superglue + baking soda creates an instant cement. This was perfect for gluing small branches onto my mini tree. Typically it would take like 1-2 minutes to set before i could move but with baking soda it would set within 1-2 seconds and it would be rock hard.

Some pieces came together really nice

I also discovered that dragonstone could be cut VERY easily by that same tool and i was able to shave off pieces of stone that were making it difficult to fit into areas.

I also used putty (like the kind teachers use to stick paper on the wall) to hold pieces in place while i did trial aquascapes)

Here are some of my original layout designs. Every once in a while i would get my wifes input/opinion on ideas.

A challenge with the aquascaping is that this tank would be viewable from two sides... the front (adults) and the side (my kids) so i had to break some aquascaping guidelines to accomplish this.

Instead of having a low depth in the front that gradually got higher in the back i had to go from a right to left incline so my kids (viewing from the right side) could see everything.

I tried to incorporate the 'rule of thirds' (look it up) to keep interesting perspective and alignment

Finally ready for water: Covered the front area in dwarf hairgrass and my tree in weeping moss.

Now... any suggestions for what i should plant in the back left??
I was thinking a bushier plant??
Or maybe a red one?
Fern maybe?
Kweli is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-22-2017, 03:42 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
tamsin's Avatar
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: UK
Posts: 882
I've just learnt the wonders of super glue - hadn't heard the baking soda trick though! Very nice joints.

A stem plant would give you the most colour/leaf shape options and will go bushy if trimmed. A dark green fern would contrast nicely with the moss too though.
tamsin is offline  
post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-23-2017, 09:34 PM
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 3
Nice work so far. Will be following along
Rok55 is offline  
post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-24-2017, 12:14 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
sevendust111's Avatar
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 566
For the "kids" haha. Sure. I tried that with my wife too. She is all mad now because I won't let the kids touch the tank. Word of advice for the future, get cube tanks. Tricks the wifey into thinking the tank is smaller than it is and they take up less space. My wife said no to a 20L in my family room but yes to a 25 cube.
sevendust111 is offline  
post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-02-2018, 04:19 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 9
Been a while since i posted... two kids will do that to you.

Tank has been going well and fully cycled about 1 month in. I purchased bioballs from angelfins and biodigest in hopes that i could move it along quicker... seems to have worked well because i havent noticed any problematic spikes or deaths.

Once the tank cycled i purchased 3 cherry shrimp (if i recall) and they are already breeding and making babies.. Infact, one clutch already hatched and the babies are all hanging out in my tree

The bonsai tree has really filled in pretty quickly. Took about 4 weeks but its very thick now and already requires grooming.

Anyway.. tank has been good... Im trying to get some more colours in here and maybe a red moss for the tree on the right.

Kweli is offline  
post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-02-2018, 04:29 PM
Planted Tank Obsessed
Vinster8108's Avatar
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Columbus, OH
Posts: 404
Wow that moss looks great! Nice choice with the S. repens, it's what I would have suggested. If you trim the moss up higher on your tree, you can stick the anubias under it (kinda like where the s. repens is) to give it some shade from the light.

75g Tank Journal:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Forest's Edge:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Vinster8108 is offline  
post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-02-2018, 05:10 PM
Algae Grower
aquazone's Avatar
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 101
I bet the kids love it! :-)

aquazone is offline  


Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome