"Ookii Hills Of Fate" Journal - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 02:51 AM Thread Starter
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"Ookii Hills Of Fate" Journal

Duh..duh, duh duh... Its time!

After being long over due.... I Bring to you "Ookii Hills Of Fate"

Let me start off by saying this will be my First ever REAL Aquascape. I've always just grew plants for fun and decided this time around, lets get serious.

I've been patiently plotting this scape out for the last Month and a half after being inspired by so many great scapes and Journals, pacing my self on Equipment and doing tons of reading. I decided to go with a High Tech Setup and do this thing up right.

Not guaranteeing this will be a complete success! But follow along as I take you day-by-day on my journey in hopes to a great looking turnout. As always ALL opinions/advice is welcome and feel free to Sub as this will be Pic heavy from start to finish, whether success of failure.

So enough with the narrating, lets get down to business shall we?
  • Tank Specs:


Tank: 15 Gallon Rimless (19 3/4 x 13 x 13 1/2)
Lighting: Current USA Fixture - 1x40w PC Bulb (Dual Daylight) - 1x36w PC ADA Bulb (8,000k)
Substrate: ADA Aqua Soil Amazonia NEW
Stand: ADA Imitation Stand
Filter: 2215 Eheim Canister Filter
Co2: 5lb Tank (JBJ Regulator w/bubble counter), Rex Grigg Reactor
In/Out Flows: Do Aqua Lily Pipes
Heater: ETH 200w In line


  • Flora:

HC, DHG and a few reds. (Haven't decided fully yet, i'm going to wait till the carpet fills in first)


  • Fauna:

Neon Tetras, Rummy Nose, Ottos

  • Method:

DSM





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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 02:52 AM Thread Starter
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PREPARATION FOR DAY 1 - SUNDAY June 3rd:

So after scrambling thru a few different Hardscapes. I decided to roll with this as I felt it was a good fit for what I was aiming for, nice space between Seiryu Stones and a thick looking HIll effect:

Front View:




Side View:



It was a bit frustrating if I might add, had no idea how hard it is to create a good scape. I give much credit to those with great Hardscaping skills.

Ok, so I just Picked up 2 layers of HC and its time to start cutting and planting for a first attempt of a DSM.



First Batch cut:



Second batch Cut:



Now the fun part, time to start planting using my new Azoo Pincettes I won in the raffle at the Scape Meeting. Thanks Scape!:



Second half filled, Bird eye view:



Front Shot after saran wrapping top:



Now time to let nature take its coarse, since its night time I will be starting the lighting tommro morning gradually moving up to 12 hrs. I'm going to start first with 10. More shots in the morning!
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 02:53 AM Thread Starter
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DAY 1 - Monday June 4th:

Well i'm not going to bore you with the same pictures from last night so rather I'm going to show you what I just got in:

My 2215 and In Line:



Also my Do Aqua Lily pipes and cutting tools (Forgot to take a pic of my pincettes but you all I'm sure are familiar):



Night time:

As I got home to do my 2nd air out and spray of the day I noticed I was getting a bit too spray happy which is algae heaven to DSM:



So I decided to poke a deep hole in the substrate with my twizzers and take as much surface as I can out with my handy dandy CVS syringe lol:

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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 02:54 AM Thread Starter
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DAY 2 - Tuesday June 5th

Quick Update as not a whole lot expected to go on, I'm noticing HC is not as healthy and green looking as it was when first planted. But, assuming this is normal as it transitions from submersed to Emersed state I'm not going to worry and hope for the best.

As you can see humidity is up, so hard to see clear but heres a bird eye shot:



In case for those who were wondering, this pic will show you why I call this "Ookii Hills Of Fate" which Ookii is Japanese for BIG:



I'm going to jump up the lighting from 10hrs to 11 today. Then follow up Tommro with 12.

Thats it for today!
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 02:54 AM Thread Starter
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DAY 3 - Wednesday June 6th:

Not going to be posting any pics today, as not much has changed. I think i'll be posting pics on a every other day basis for now then moving up to a weekly update.

Decided to add Tank water from my other tank that i'm dosing EI in and will be spraying down with this as recommended by Tom Barr. If I happen to see any signs of algae or mold I'll be using a dilluted Excel liquid to keep it at bay.

More pics to come tommro as I wait for my new stand which should be in by Friday!
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 09:13 PM
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nice start! How long are you planning the dry start to be? Are you planning to bump up the light to 24/7? I have found that if you start with emersed HC (which, granted, is like most of the time, haha), it's pretty easy to go straight up to 24 hours within a few days. Also, just take advantage of the fact that you don't have to baby this thing yet. if you ignore it and let it do it's thing, it'll be fine. taking daily pictures gets to be like watching grass grow... which is kind of true... and that can be mentally painful at times...

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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 12:15 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Aweeby!

The Dry start I'm estimating 4-6 weeks.. Not really trying to fill in here on the Dry start, that's why I planted heavy.. Main purpose is to just allow a good set rooting.. Then I'll fill and crank that co2 up.

No, IMO I don't see anything beneficial bumping the light up to 24/7. Not only would that burn bulbs out quick, but plants also need a downtime.


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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 12:34 AM
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Keep updating!! Looks awesome so far


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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 12:51 AM
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Seems like too little water to me, especially after a fresh planting. I'd add back normal tap water and maybe mist only with the very dilute solution. That AS has plenty of ferts, so you shouldn't really be needing to add any.

If it keep browning I would fill it and blast the co2. Dry starts really can be tricky and there's really no reason to switch from submersed growth. If it was grown emmersed I would say go for the dry start. If you do fill it early, try to sprinkle some AS powder over the substrate to fill any gaps. HC is fine for a good while, but likes to float up eventually if you don't dry start it to get those nice deep roots.


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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 01:34 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shrimpNewbie View Post
Keep updating!! Looks awesome so far
Thanks SN.. I'll be posting more pics up tonite!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jcgd View Post
Seems like too little water to me, especially after a fresh planting. I'd add back normal tap water and maybe mist only with the very dilute solution. That AS has plenty of ferts, so you shouldn't really be needing to add any.

If it keep browning I would fill it and blast the co2. Dry starts really can be tricky and there's really no reason to switch from submersed growth. If it was grown emmersed I would say go for the dry start. If you do fill it early, try to sprinkle some AS powder over the substrate to fill any gaps. HC is fine for a good while, but likes to float up eventually if you don't dry start it to get those nice deep roots.
I don't think it's too little water. But I will admit its a bit tricky trying to accommodate the slopes. From what I've been reading you just want the soil moist with a few cm of water on the bottom surface. In return this will encourage the roots to reach down.

I think you're right, I might just go back to misting with tap water or RO. The AS should have sufficient nutrients already. I was just going off what Tom Barr was recommending. I really don't want to fill in till I see Root development. I've tried planting HC then filling right after and let me tell you..epic failure. Almost all of it up-rooted what a headache that was. Once I see a good root, I will fill and blast Co2.


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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 02:16 AM
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You might want to tilt your tank.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...ml#post1551515


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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 02:26 AM
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Great looking start


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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 02:41 AM Thread Starter
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DAY 5 - Friday June 8th:

Happy Friday yall!

Got some good news, my new Stand just came in. Looks pretty sweet if I must say, nice custom fit to the tank. Not the "Real Deal Holyfield" ADA stand, but a good imitation for a fraction of the price. The guy did decent work:







Things are starting to come together now. Pretty much got all the equipment I need at this point. The only tricky part is picking up the tank and moving it on to the new stand in a strong attempt not to crack the tank. We'll keep our fingers crossed.

I'm also having a somewhat difficulty time managing these slopes. Its hard to keep the higher hills moist without the water filling up on the lower level. But, I'm up for the challenge, So once again I resulted back to manually removing:



Then after I decided to take a few quick shots of the HC from a birds eye just to keep log:



Here's a close up:


As you see there's a few yellow leaves but I should be able to bounce back once filled. As long as these guys root i'll be in the green. So i'm going to wait it out, only thing I got to lose is time and money. But, in return comes Knowledge and experience. We are now up to 12hrs on lighting and misting once a day.

Also this saran wrap is really starting to frustrate me. I'm thinking tommro i'm going to go pick up some of that sticky cling wrap. Not sure if that holds any residue or chemicals that can harm the tank so any input is appreciated. But, the trouble I seem to be having with the saran wrap is once you lift it up to mist, placing back is hard to keep with a nice n neat seal. Any tips?


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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 03:22 AM
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Nice stand.

i suppose that those ADA bulbs aren't cheap ... but IMHO it's negligible- The beauty of dry start is that you can blast the light and get super fast growth without having to worry about algae. the dark period isn't technically required, with a simple plant like HC the circadian rhythm isn't as complex as ours, and short term, 24/7 light will have more benefit than harm. in many botany labs, plants are subjected to light 24/7 to speed up the life cycle. not to mention quite a few people here have also done a 24 hour day with no ill effects. i used cheap cfls for mine, so a burnt out bulb is a matter of 1-3$. But everyone has their own methods, so whatever works works.

i would say that your water level is actually a little too high... mold and rotting aren't fun either. the water line should be about 1 cm below substrate level, as you said, to encourage deeper rooting. IME if you keep it well sealed and let humidity build up, the slopes will stay wetter than if you continually open and mist. However, that might have something to do with the fact that i live on a very dry mountain.

and +1 on tilting.

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 08:27 PM Thread Starter
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DAY 7 - Sunday June 10th:

Today we got some good news. Starting to get some rooting shoots as well as the front section is starting to look a bit more thicker.





I'ma bit surprised seeing results this fast to be honest. Most journals I followed with similar setups didn't start shooting roots in till jumping into the 2-3 week mark. So keeping my fingers crossed.

What I did different the last few days was dropping the misting to every day to every other day. This brought up the humidity level in the tank



So as long as the soil stays moist and the plants don't look to be drying out too much I'll stick to that routine from here on out. Also got a few meltage on a few batches but I think that's expected.

Here's a side shot to show the batches towards the front perking up



So all in all, I think this was a good start for my 1st weeks progress.
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