This is my second journal in this forum. You can find my old 220-gallon jungle journal here
In November 2017, I came across a craigslist ad about someone selling their unused 40 gallon breeder tank. This was perfect because I had a beautiful wooden cabinet that perfectly matched the dimensions of that tank. So, I decided to set up a new planted tank.
Hardware used in this set-up:
Eheim Classic filter
T5HO lighting fixture
Ista Inline CO2 Reactor
CO2 drop checker
I decided to go for a Dutch set up in order to challenge myself to keep up the tidy rows of plants to mimic Dutch streets. I know it requires tedious trimming, which I don't mind.
The first thing I did is that I painted the background into black.
Next, ADA Aquasoil Amazonia arrived in mail. Three 9L bags were a perfect amount!
The tissue culture plants arrived a few days later, and I planted them according to the plan, which has changed so many times since then. One of the few parts that remain constant is the curving "street" of Staurogyne repens. The other plants here are Althernanthera reineckii 'Mini', Hemianthus callictroides 'Cuba', Hydrocotyle tripartita, and Lobelia cardinalis. I planted, sprayed them thoroughly, covered with plastic cling wrap, and left them alone for four weeks to allow them to root well and grow.
The most important part was to leave one corner of the tank slightly open for ventilation and to make sure that there is always enough condensation within the tank, which meant it was humid enough for the plants to thrive. The lights were on for 9 hours a day, and the plants seem to like that.