Back from the brink - 150ish litre learning journal. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-17-2008, 09:55 PM Thread Starter
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Back from the brink - 150ish litre learning journal.

It's finally dawned on my that I'm being far to obsessed with a good looking scape, when I really haven't concentrated on my abilities to run a tank, and grow plants successfully. So, on my "big" tank, which has been spiraling into neglect, I have decided to rescue it and start planting, and growing, not giving a massive amount of thought to the scape itself.

I'd already tried to scape this tank before it got neglected, so there is a little structure to it. But I'm going to now concetrate on the plants, and their needs.

Some stats:

91.5x38x50cm (external)
Tetratec EX1200 - 1200lph
Eheim 2213 Classic - 440lph
3x24w T5 SilverSun lumiaire
Sand and fine gravel mix on top of Tetraplant Complete substrate
Pressurised CO2 via 5kg FE and glass diffuser.

OK. Here is the tank in it's current state:







Currently housing some pots of Ludwigia Arcruata for another tank.

Anyhow, current planting (from right to left) is:

Up front:
Staurogyn sp.
Various crypts (parva, becketii I think)
Hydrocotyle Sp (few plants that keep freeing themselves)

To the rear and on the wood:
Microsorum "Needle"
Bolbitis
Hygophilla Diformis
Anubias "nana"
Microsorum "Narrow"
Microsorum "Needle" again
Crypt "Balansae"
Crypt "Retrospirallis"
Vallis "Nana"
African Lotus
Tiger Lotus (tiny at the moment)
Also some Weeping moss not doing so well on the upper branches (algae coated).

I re-installed pressurised CO2 yesterdaym and also a power head to get better distribution. I'm going to have to play with this some more. My EX1200 has a spraybar which mounts 3/4 of the length of the tank and it does give a good flow front to back, for the most part. But I don't think it's actually working. I'm limited by what I can put on the left side, as the tank has a lot of bracing built into the top, for where sliding panels used to be etc. Luckily the right side did have a glass panel, but it wasn't attached. I managed to break this when I got the tank :lol:

Currently I have 10 pentazona barbs, 7 harlequin rasbora (mix of coppers and another more red type I think) and 2 ottos. Also about 6 amano shrimp.

I'll post some better photos/close up as this progresses, and no doubt be asking for plant/fert suggestions. This is really just to get a journal up and get me thinking some more.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-17-2008, 10:31 PM
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It looks like a great tank already!

If you can get those plants to grow in (which eventually they will with some dedication) it will look amazing! The scape is very, very, very promising!

Good luck!
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-18-2008, 01:04 AM
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Ditto ^^^^
It looks really good. Keep on going. Are you planning to plant those plants in the pots? JJ. I'm sure it will turn out great.

Thanks
Jonathan/SeaSerpant


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-18-2008, 08:05 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the encouragement guys

The Hygro on the right has been trimmed once so far, hence the lower growing stuff on the left. I might trim it a little more to get it all a bit more even.

The pots of Ludwigia are supposed to be for an 80cm that I want to set up, but I'm not sure when I'll get to that, so I might just use them in this scape, so they keep healthy, and use cuttings in the new tank (got a 9l bag of AS Amazonia waiting to go in the new tank ). If I do plant it I'll have to re-jig a bit on the left side, where I have a large microsorum "narrow". I could bring this forwards I think.

The bolbitis is a little bit shoved in. I might have a go at re-tying that a bit lower, and even spread it a little, as it's quite a large mass!
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-20-2008, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
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I've planted all the Ludwigia infront of the crytps in the back left, trimmed the hygro a bit more to even it out and shuffled the java fern over a few inches to the right. I haven't done anything with the Bolbitis like I was thinking. I'll do that another day I think I also moved 4 or 5 vallis plants to the back left, slightly spaced out and I think it'll work. I may repeat that accross more of the rear.

I've also got my solenoid back onto a timer, set for CO2 to come on 2 hours before lights on and off 1 hour before lights out. I managed to move the powerhead over to the left rear corner directed into the left side so that it deflects off and takes the CO2 bubbles from the diffuser, which is now in the front left corner, accross the front of the tank, where it's caught by the flow of the spray bar and travels to the right. It seems to direct the bubbles into the middle of the tank and they travel onwards to the back right.

I'll post pics tomorrow hopefully, I still have Hygro floating about waiting to go into the post to be sent to Garuf
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-20-2008, 10:30 PM
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Sounds like it's improving. I hope you do good on all the tanks that you have/will set up.

Keep up the good work
SeaSerpant

Thanks
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 12:38 AM
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Looks great so far, definitely want to see where you go with this.

-Matt

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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 08:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks It looks a little neater now that I've had a tidy up and planted the Ludwigia. I can't wait for it to grow out!

Incase anyone is wondering what the line is, just below the spray bar, it's my background. I stuck greaseproof paper on the back of the tank to give a frosted effect. Because the wall behind is a sort of burnt orange colour the pale brown tint of the paper looks OK. It really does disguise any cables hanging down at the back! I just wish I'd put an extra piece on at the top

On my other tanks I'm going to try tracing paper as it has no realy colour too it. It will just give a frosted look and diffuse anything behind the tank. I'm not a fan of solid backgrounds, as I like light to be able to diffuse onto the wall behind the tank, which I think adds to a scape
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-23-2008, 05:42 PM Thread Starter
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A couple of pictures:

Ottos making a rare appearance whilst the lights are on:



Full tank shot after the re-planting and stuff:



I've moved the diffuser to the back and directed the powerhead to blow accross the back of the tank, sending CO2 along the back. It is then blown back forward and seems to diffuse quite well. I'm going to move the drop checker around the tank to make sure I'm getting CO2 to all areas.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-23-2008, 07:49 PM
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WOW. That looks so good. And it looks even better without those plants in the pots. Keep up the good work!

SeaSerpant

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