After being out of the aquarium hobby in general for a few years, I decided to at least set up another planted. Can't spare the money nor the time for another reef system, even if I'd like to. Anyway, on to details:
Tank: 18" x 18" x 18" ( 45cm x 45cm x 45cm ) black-trimmed 25 gallon (100l) cube
Filtration: Fluval 407 Performance Canister filter, rated at 383 gph (245 gph circulation) -- glassware for influent/effluent lines
Lighting: 18" Ecoxotic E-Series @ 100% + 20" Finnex Planted + 24/7 @ 100% (should be on higher end of medium light). The Planted + 24/7 actually cuts on for 3.5 hours while the Ecoxotic is on for approx 6.5 hours.
CO2: Gen 1 CO2Art Pro regulator w/ 5lb tank, Inline atomizer -- drop checker to lime green / nearly yellow with no adverse effects.
Substrate: garden soil capped with Fluval Stratum. Pool filter sand in front portion.
Fertilization: EI, but on the lighter side daily at the moment. Currently using Nilocg Thrive with excellent results.
Driftwood and what was sold as pagoda stone
10x Nannostomus beckfordi
1x variable platy (to please the family lol)
2x Endler's livebearers
6x Cherry shrimp
1x ghost shrimp
-- 1x Windeløv, 2x narrow leaf and 4x needle leaf
and Anubias nana "petite"
May eventually remove some Cyperus
to include some sort of contrasting stem if I'm feeling cute, idk. Also considering some Riccardia
, which I think would look nice.
I kept the tank dark for the first 10 or so days and just changed water daily. It took a total of nearly 2.5 weeks to finally clear up. Added the first few plants after that and kept the light off for about another week until the rest arrived.
Tank is now fully stocked with plants, so just waiting for growout now. Below are the startup pics before the rest of my plant order arrived -- should've gotten some of the hardscape before I added water...
I'll get some updated pics soon