2nd January 2015
The tank is all set up, I've given it a dose of ammonia and added some stress zyme to get some bacteria into the tank, giving it a kick start while it's empty. Once the plants are ready to go in I'll do a complete water change and start cycling properly before adding the shrimp.
Current levels are:
Ammonia - 0.5ppm
Nitrites - 0ppm
Nitrates - 0ppm
pH - 7.4
I want the tank to be quite heavily planted but still have some sort of structure. The Fluval Spec III light isn't fantastic, so the plants we've chosen are easy growers in low/medium light. I have a lovely Redmoor wood root ordered to help break up the 'green' of the plants and provide some hardscape. It is roughly 30cm tall so will go from the substrate to the top of the tank. Thanks to my boyfriend for the fab drawing!
1. Microsorum Pteropus Narrow
This will go at the front as it doesn't grow too high, maximum 20cm, but does get quite bushy! It will add some depth to the tank without growing too big - perfect for the small space we have.
2. Egeria Densa
I love the Egeria Densa! It has a large surface area without taking up loads of room, providing places for algae to grow and shrimp to feed. It is also a nutrient hogger and will help to battle algae growth. it can grow anywhere between 20cm - 100cm so may require a bit of pruning to keep it under control! But it will cover the grill in the top left corner of the tank,
3. Hygrophila Polysperma Rosanervig
Another tall plant to fill space at the back of the tank. The leaves of the Hygrophila Polysperma Rosanervig turn red in high light. As this will be planted right under the light, hopefully the leaves at the very top will start to change!
4. Vallisneria Asiatica
This will be planted in front of the filter nozzle, which should provide a nice effect with the spiral leaves in the water flow. It grows 40cm+ so will reach the water surface and start to lean over.
5. Lindernia Rotundifolia
Another small bushy plant to fill in space at the front of the tank. This will be planted around the small root sticking out to the right.
6. Java Moss
Java moss will be planted around the front of the tank to provide a stage and break up the substrate. Also a must have for a tank that will be home to red cherry shrimp! It will provide a good food source for young shrimp.