The Dood's 10G - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-20-2015, 03:50 PM Thread Starter
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The Dood's 10G

Intro
Hello and thanks for visiting my Super Newb 10G thread. This thread will contain the documentation for what I hope turns out top be a successful 10G low tech planted tank build.

I had a few nice freshwater aquariums years ago but did not have the time to care for them so I sold all the equipment. A year ago my wife and I decided to buy an aquarium for cichlids. A year later I have 3 cichlid tanks and a fourth 10G that was given to me for free that will be the home for the fauna in this build.

I have a general love of science which is what draws me to aquariums. I enjoy the technical side of aquariums and I struggle with the aesthetics piece of the puzzle so we will see how this turns out. I have 0 artistic ability and that's what planted tanks are really is works of art.

I like to re-purpose things so I am always open to diy ideas. One example is I have two dead hob filters, they died in less than 6 months. I am filling one with lava rock and plumbing my canister output to the hob and running the water through lava rock for additional bio filtration. The lava rock is rock I have recycled from a landscape and boiled until the water boiled clean.

I plan to convert my 55G that currently holds Labidochromis sp. "Hongis" into a planted tank for my Altolamprologus calvus. If anyone is interested I have one Red Top Hongi I would trade for plants.

Materials
20 x 10 x 12 10G aquarium
Dirt from a wooded are near Lake Shelbyville in Illinois.
Black Diamond for the cap
Bacto-Surge sponge filter (this is probably a little big for a 10G but I am going to try to incorporate it some how into the design or hide it behind some taller plans)
Clamp on light fixture
23 Watt 5000k daylight cfl
Dead wood from Lake Shelbyville area
Possible piece of granite - small
Home made 2x4 stand. I made on for my 55 that I am going to enclose and finish when I take it down for plant setup. Will do the same here but finish first. I may build on to the 55 stand since where it is being moved to I would have the room for both next to one another.
Our water is hard here. I am going to get a quality report this week. Its very hard I know. My established aquariums never drop below 8.5 ph and kh and gh hover around 200. I need to test the water after its been standing because I do have limestone rocks I gathered from a quarry in those tanks to buffer the numbers for my cichlids.

Zoological Fauna
Red Cherry Shrimp
Blue velvet shrimp
Snails?? Those burrowing snails that I need to look up the name for.

Botanical Flora
Java fern
Java moss
Anubias (Recommendations?)
Some type of grass for low tech (suggestions?)
Unknown plant that my buddy has that just grows like the dickens in gravel and standard cheap kit light should do well here. When I get some I will upload pics and maybe get an identification on them
I would like to incorporate some local aquatic plants. If anyone has suggestions for this and where (Illinois) I can harvest some that would be great.

I will be prepping my soil, substrate, and wood today. Pics will follow. Thanks for reading and suggestions.

Last edited by thedood; 12-13-2015 at 01:39 PM. Reason: Title Update
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post #2 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-20-2015, 08:52 PM
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Looks like it will be a great setup. I think the snails you are talking about are MTS.

I built a 2x4 stand for an old aqrylic 180G i used to have, this can save you lots of money and will be much better quality than any Ikea ish stand.

My tank journal

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post #3 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-20-2015, 09:08 PM Thread Starter
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@rragan Thanks for the reply. I am looking forward to getting this built. As I type this I have a pan of soil ready to bake and my dead wood is on the stove boiling. Hopefully this week I will start putting some plants in it.
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post #4 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 01:54 AM Thread Starter
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Update:
I am going to get the green plant behind the peace sign in the pic below. Can I get an i.d. on this plant?

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post #5 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-24-2015, 02:55 PM Thread Starter
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Hello all. Last night I got my substrate all setup. I have about 3/4 inch of good clay yard soil and 3/4 inch of Black Diamond as a cap.

Here is the plant list I would like to use:

Dwarf sagittaria
Vesuvius sword
Ludwigia repens
Staurogyne repens
Bacopa caroliniana
Needle Leaf Java Fern
Christmas moss
Peacock moss
Subwassertang
Hygrophila Pinatifida
Anubias Nana Petite
Italian Val
Java moss
Unidentified plant from the pic above

Crystal Red shrimp
Blue Velvet shrimp
Crystal Red shrimp
Malaysian Trumpet snails
Other fish as suggested
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post #6 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-27-2015, 12:32 PM Thread Starter
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I have my 10G up and going! I bought a little java fern, java moss and an anubias from the lfs. I have more plants coming which should be here monday. Looking forward to members opinions on the scape and what else I should do. I still need an i.d. on the plant above if anyone can help with that. This was fun and educational. Thanks all who have answered questions.

I seeded the sponge filter by setting it in an established tank for a few hours. I used aquarium water from the same established setup. One thing I noticed and found odd. After putting the water in the 10G the ph went up a half point to 9 and the ammonia went up to .25. I expected there to be ammonia present as the dirt for a few days with water in the tank. I expected the organics in the soil would start breaking down but I didn't expect the ph to go up. I will be testing again today. Nitrates were at 40ppm and nitrite was 0.



I think I have the wife convinced that I need to plant our 55 and move our calvus over to it and stock it with some dithering fish. I am thinking non-jumbo cyps but the lfs (which isnt so local as I have to drive 2 hours) guy is recommending zebra danios which are a lot cheaper.
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post #7 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 02:34 AM Thread Starter
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I added more plants today. We will see what happens. We will see how this goes. Opinions please.

x0769 and x0769 like this.
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post #8 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 03:05 AM
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What's the red plant?
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post #9 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 03:14 AM Thread Starter
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Alternanthera reineckii "rosaefolia". Its a cool looking plant. We will see how it will do in this rig.
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post #10 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 04:04 AM
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500K bulb is ok, but i would suggest to change the bulb to 6500K. it could make a difference for plants.

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CAPS - Chicago Aquatic Plant Society
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post #11 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 04:08 AM Thread Starter
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@alphabeta I'm going to get a different light for it and fixture. And a timer I think.
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post #12 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 04:20 AM
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Some people will hang that light from a bookshelf bracket on the wall behind the tank.
With just the cord wrapped around the bracket and the clamp removed.
Also seen them spray paint it black on the outside. But the least amount of algae is had
by using the 13W bulbs.
The Alternanthera reineckii does better if it's placed in an established tank. Someone
gave a link on here a while back of a study which showed that some plants give off a chemical which inhibits algae growth. But the Alternanthera reineckii wasn't on the list
given of those tested. Mine quickly got it's leaves covered/w GSA. I had no faster growing type plants established in that tank at the time.
Not all that good of a picture to work from, but I think your mystery plant is a wisteria.
If so it's one of the faster growing plants that will require more potassium than other plants. Fish food/waste and regular large(50% or more)water changes per week can/will
provide nutrients for a low number of plants, but mostly if those are all in the slower growing type. IF that's a Wisteria likely it will bump you out of that category of not
needing to add ferts. BTW half a dozen stems of floating Anacharis will help out/w algae.

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post #13 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 04:29 AM Thread Starter
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@Raymond Thanks for the tips, much appreciated. I like the bookshelf idea. I think the mystery plant is out anyway, not much room left.

Bump: Now the fun begins to see if I can get this tank thriving.
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post #14 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 05:01 AM
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If you're not going to be in shock at my unorthodox tank "style" I'll give you links to various stages of the main tank's growth from beginning to now.
There are 14 kinds of plants in there now. 10g tank/w EI ferts/Excel/one T5HO bulb.
Start up:
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/pi...ictureid=43385
Way too much light phase/Cladophora on everything.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/pi...ictureid=47129
Still trying to make it work/w too much light.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/pi...ictureid=60930
Just got rid of the excess light.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/pi...ictureid=73618
Things finally starting to work out better.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/pi...ictureid=81193
Last month.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/im.../pg_12001e.jpg

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post #15 of 59 (permalink) Old 09-29-2015, 05:04 AM
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5000K CFLs are terrific plant bulbs, Im running a few myself going on a couple years now. The only reason to change would be if you prefer the slightly cooler look of a 6500K.

You may want to consider going to a lower wattage though. A 23W in a dome reflector is incredibly high par, especially if you have it clamped onto the side rather than suspended up a good bit.


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