3.5g Pico Igwami - Help needed - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 07:11 AM Thread Starter
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3.5g Pico Igwami - Help needed

This is a 3.5g tank, and my first Igwami attempt. Arranged the rocks, and used ADA Amazonia. Right now only have done the hardscape, and waiting to tidy it up before adding plants this weekend.

Light used is a 16.5 watt LED unit.

Filter is a HOB with 160L/ hour flow rate.

The plants in mind - HC & Dwarf hairgrass

Need help for you guys for certain questions:
1. Is the light sufficient for the plants (source is about 14 inches from the lowest surface and 11 inches from the highest surface I want the plants on).

2. Do I absolutely need DIY Co2, or liquid carbons will do? If yes what is the suggested dosing schedule?

3. Water temperature in my low tech covered tank usually stays between 30 - 35C (86 - 95F), and this being an open tank the temperature is likely to be a couple of degrees of centigrade lower due to evaporation, so my question is, should I add some cooling method for the plants or they will do fine?

4. I want to do dwarf shrimps in this tank eventually as the cycling will be completed, and will add a mesh guard on intake before that to prevent shrimplets from getting sucked in. Is my filter ok in respect to both my choice of plants and the shrimp?

5. I want to add a third plant (preferably red) for highlighting some parts of this scape, but want to have something "in right scale" as I want this tank to look much bigger than it really is. Any plant suggestions keeping my equipments, tank size and temperature in mind?

Any other inputs will also be very much appreciated as I only have experience with very low light (0.5 watts of LED/ gallon) and low tech tank (no co2 or liquid carbon, weekly liquid ferts) and have grown almost all species of Anubias, Marselia hirsuta, Java Moss, Java Fern, Crypts & Sword, but nothing other than these.

Here is a picture of the tank I'm working on (only the hardscape is done, tank is dry) -
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 07:30 AM
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I think you mean iwagumi?

So far the hardscape looks promising!

1) Watts is a really bad indicator to know if your light is sufficient. PAR is nice for this but this meters are expensive. Do you know how much lumens your light unit has? for something like HC and dwarf hair grass I would aim for like 30-40 lumens per litre. Not really accurate but gives you an 'idea'.

Be sure to apply the golden ratio with focal points and a 'main' stone which is 2/3 of the height of your aquarium.

2) I wouldn't grow HC and dwarf hair grass w/o co2 IMO. These plants love co2 and liquid carbon is better than nothing but not the same. These plants need some serious lighting and w/o co2 you gonna get a lot of algae.

3) If you use dwarf hair grass mini (dhg belem/ eleocharis acicularis mini) as I recommend in a 3,5g, I heard this plants does better in lower temperatures. I wouldn't go much higher than 25C but that's just my advice.

4) With a HOB filter you gonna waste a lot of CO2 in the water. A cannister filter with lily pipes would be 'better'. An eheim 2211 filter with some valves to throttle it down works fine.

5) Red plants don't really suit in an Iwagumi. But it's up to you.

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 08:28 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks a lot for the input and for correction. Iwagumi it is.

I don't know about the lumen or par. The light came from a Chinese seller, and it came without any retail packaging, and no papers of any kind with any details were provided. 16.5 watt is the data I got from that item description. But the light looks really bright and illuminates all the parts of the tank pretty well. The reviews for the light was good, and the tanks looked promising, so went ahead and bought one. Is there a way to find out those measurements without using expensive equipments?

I was thinking of using a Sunsun 603B Canister filter rated 400L/ hr I have (as considering to upgrade my low tech 15g tank's filter to Sunsun 304) for the filtration, but even after all attemps to reduce flow, it is still very high for a 12 - 13L tank to possibly uproot the newly added plants. The valves are not available here, and most experienced aquarist from my regional online forum have suggested not to temper too much with flow rate by obstruction as that may damage the motor eventually. So for low filtration rate external filter this one was the only choice I had.

Can I add a set of 2 aquarium fans here for the cooling? That should bring the temperature down to around 25 - 27F as per I was told by a friend who uses those for his pico reef. That would probably be helpful for my shrimps too.

The left side slanted big rock being the Oyaishi is almost ending at 2/3rd height (a little lower), the right hand side rock formations are being Fukuishi decided to keep it at about 1/2, and kept some Soeishi too at both the sides. Planning to add the Suteishis after adding the sand.

I really want to add some highlighting plants at some parts, if not any red plants, what else do you suggest that will be "scale-matched" but of a little bit different than the carpet plants in colour and pattern?
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 02:53 AM
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hey @shrayan ,very nice arrangement...
but i think u need more substrate? like at least 1 inch height?

HC is difficult plant to raise coz they need lots of light, co2 and other requirement...
how bout glosso, Marsilea Hirsuta , Eleocharis sp.
what do you think @Nigel95?


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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 06:54 AM Thread Starter
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Hi Richie,
I was also thinking the same about HC, and was contemplating on Glosso/ MC.

Marsilea leafs being larger is out of my options as the main carpet, but thanks for the suggestion, may use it on both sides of the "river" as a third plant.

Planning to use white sand in front and middle areas of mimic look of a river that is flowing between two of those rock "ridges", thats why no amazonia there, will be using sand directly. The area of planned planting has 1 inch to 2 inch substrates. Till now not 100% confirmed about the look of the scape, so browsing through the photos of ADA tanks by Amano and other famous aquarists before finalizing it, while seeking for all the help I can get from this forum to decide plants and equipments I need to make this successful.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 08:36 AM
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You can throttle the flow down on an eheim aslong it is on the outflow; then it doesn't harm.

Monte carlo is definitely easier to grow.

Yes you can use a fan to cool down the aquarium. Just put a meter in there and you will see how it goes.

Maybe use some pearlweed and let it grow tall. If you don't like it you can also trim it short.

It's good to take your time about the hardscape. Once planted it's hard to change.

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 08:55 PM
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Shrayan,

If your trying to go for a grass like foreground you could also try Utricularia graminifolia.

Utricularia graminifolia is a grass-like bladderwort species from the Asian tropics that grows into a lush bright light green lawn. It is thus quite popular in aquascaping, too. It is not always easy to cultivate, but under favourable conditions (lots of light, soft water, CO2, macro- and micronutrient fertilisation) it is a fast grower.

Kind regards,

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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-07-2017, 10:23 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks a lot for the suggestions guys. Some plants that you guys have suggested are hard to get here, so going with the common floras only.

Finally decided to take the Co2 route, have ordered a kit today.

Zeroed down on DHG, but still swinging between HC & MC as of now, and the final decision will depend upon seeing both the carpets in flesh at the LFS. The third plant is still undecided though.

Getting the remaining equipments, supplies and the plants this weekend.

Planning on doing a dry start and then will flood after 3 - 4 weeks to avoid algea issues and to make a dense carpet. Will make a journal here for the whole process.

Fauna is yet to be finalized, and have plenty of time to decide on between a pair of some smaller variety of Killis (Clown?), a good quality crowntail/ Halfmoon/ Koi Betta, or a colony of shrimps. Have plenty of time to finalize that as of now.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 04:42 AM
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3.5g Pico Igwami - Help needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by shrayan View Post
Fauna is yet to be finalized, and have plenty of time to decide on between a pair of some smaller variety of Killis (Clown?), a good quality crowntail/ Halfmoon/ Koi Betta, or a colony of shrimps. Have plenty of time to finalize that as of now.
I wouldn't get fish for a tank this small usually. Clown killifish prefer groups they're not like other Killis, and they definitely need a tank which at least 8 gallons. There are some options for fish in a tank this small but they are not so easy to source, I think some of the other Killifish might be okay but you'll have to research it. I guess a Betta would be okay but some may disagree, I think it's pushing it a bit, a 5 gallon would be better for them. A Betta may also decimate your shrimp population, some Killis may too.
The safest option IMO would be to just go for a shrimp only tank.




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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 02:11 AM
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Have you considered marsilea crenata? I've used it in small tanks to great effect (different look than DHG and MC) and its way smaller than the other marsilea types.
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