Ok, so once again when I need something to take my mind off work and classes, I start planning tanks I'll probably never (but sometimes do) build. So this time I'm thinking about doing a shallow square tank with dimensions similar to 24x24x8 or something of that sort. I'll be using used tanks, de-rimming and re-siliconing them and using a piece of 1/4-1/2" scrap glass for the bottom. I plan to have the water filled to the rim with a central or rear center area built up with a bonsai growing just above the water line. Now this is where I've been thinking and researching. Obviously no (known) tree will survive fully submerged and some might succumb to root-rot if the roots are continuously submerged (with the exception of Cypress and one other which the name eludes me at the moment). So what I'm thinking is to make a pocket in the built up hill/mountain, and have a bowl that looks like natural stone and ground cover placed in the pocket. Something like this:
Top of pocket --> /\ ------------------/\
dirt mound ---> /___________________\ ^ water line
This way the tree would not be exposed to the water, but could still benefit from the humidity from the body of water. Also with this design the bowl would be removable for trimming and if it needed to go in the garage for colder winters. (I haven't decided on what type of tree I'll be using for this yet. I'd like to use a japanese red maple, but it's a bit more complex because it needs that dormant season). The only downside that I can see with this design is that the bonsai can't be used to help leech up nutrients for food and clean the water because it's mostly isolated from the rest of the tank. The lighting issue shouldn't be too bad because I'll be using suspended T5HO lights over the tree that will also provide light for the plants in the actual tank. I think this covers all the planning I've done so far. Feel free to add insight or comments on it. Or just tell me it's an awful idea haha.