My First Aquascape: DSM for Monte Carlo, Questions - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-04-2019, 10:36 AM Thread Starter
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My First Aquascape: DSM for Monte Carlo, Questions

Hello!

I'm new here and Iím starting a new tank with my Waterbox 10, and trying out an aquascape with a Bonsai Driftwood I got a hold of. This would be my first proper aquascaped tank and Iím giving the dry start method a go for my Monte Carlo carpet. Iím mainly doing the dry-start so that when I add the water the MC wonít float up. Anyways I have some questions about how to go about things.

Iíve started by planting the MC and spraying water until thereís a little puddle at the front of the tank (bottom of the slope). Then Iíve glad-wrapped the top of the tank, so its been humid with a lot of condensation occurring. Itís been 5 days and Iíve also just noticed a lot of spider-webbish fungus on my Bonsai.

1. How dry/wet should the tank be?

2. Should the tank be covered or not?

3. How long of lighting period should I have?
Iíve currently got it at 5 hours day (for the aquarium light). However ambient room lighting is on for much longer, would this affect the tank?

4. What should I do about the fungus on my Bonsai (if i have to do anything at all)?


I've attached pictures of the tank


Thanks!
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Last edited by WaldoDude; 09-23-2019 at 07:01 AM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-04-2019, 09:13 PM
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Mist it daily - just enough to keep everything moist.

Keep it completely covered so you don't lose humidity.

Your photoperiod should probably be 10-12 hours for plant growth. Adjusted, of course, once your tank is flooded.

Don't worry too much about the fungus on the wood. It'll go away on its own.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-04-2019, 11:59 PM
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Try to avoid stagnant pooling of water, as it can lead to more mold/algae growth. The soil being moist is enough to grow the roots. And if you're worried about the back slope not getting enough moisture, you could put something under the front of the tank to tilt it back slightly, so the water settles in the back.

The tank should be covered to keep humidity but let it air out everyday for like 10 mins to circulate fresh air, or you can cover it up but leave a tiny opening in the corner. Depending on the ambient humidity of where you live, you should be able to find a method that works best for you. I live in a very dry area, so I did the 10 min air out rather than leave a small opening. And my photoperiod was 12 hours for maximum growth.

Not really sure about the fungus on the bonsai though, so can't say much about that.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-05-2019, 02:10 AM Thread Starter
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Ah thank you both, I uncovered the tank overnight to let the water dry up a bit and syringed any remaining puddles. And I increased the lighting period to 12 hours, im not sure where i got the 4-5 hours in the first place, maybe i got it mixed up with the lighting period of a cycling tank.
I took the tree out as well and rinsed it under hot water and its now soaking in hot water. I'm planning on adding either Taiwan moss or Willow moss for the bonsai, and I figured they can be grown emersed as well, so will add them soon.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-05-2019, 02:19 AM
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Sounds like you're already getting the hang of it. Just try not to over-think things and you'll be fine.

When I dry start tanks that have slopes, I sometimes use a syringe or pipette to move water from the front of the tank to the slopes a couple times a day. Just suck up a bunch and drop it all over stuff in the back when I'm misting.

Some people make a hole in their plastic wrap to allow for air exchange but I've never found it necessary. Like waterblossom said, it only takes a bit of air flow each day. I've found there's usually enough just from the couple minutes I have things open for misting sessions.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-05-2019, 07:40 PM
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I'd suggest you check periodically under that lowest stone for cyanobacteria colonizing the substrate.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-30-2019, 08:44 AM Thread Starter
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Update: Filled up tank, added Mini Pellia to Bonsai

Hey all,

so just a little update after 4ish weeks. 4 days ago, I filled up my tank, and decided to go with some Mini pellia for my bonsai. After about 2-3 days i noticed the white fungus on the tree returned as you can see in the pics.

I've also noticed that some of the Mini Pellia are greening again after becoming brown quite quickly after filling up the tank. There are also these green little wisps growing from the mini pellia, does anyone know if this normal growth?? Kinda excited if it is, hoping its not algae.

Speaking of algae, they starting to quickly appear on the glass and rocks, which i believe is to be expected after recently filling up a tank. Should I reduce my lighting period from the 12 hours I had for the emersed growth?

Monte Carlo seems to be doing fine.

Thanks to all that responded before, much appreciated.

Last edited by WaldoDude; 09-23-2019 at 07:01 AM.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-02-2019, 04:12 PM
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Depends upon the tank but the majority of mine run from 8-10 hours. Some run for 6-ish hours because they get a tiny bit of daylight. Others run for a full 12 because they're in total darkness and are super-low light.

You'll just have to experiment with what works best for you.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-02-2019, 04:28 PM
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From my experience you never want to run 12 hours at startup, which in your case is when you flooded it. The plants are going to transition some and growth will slow. It also doesn't look like your using co2, so that will have an affect as well. The excess light with any organics will simply get the algae process started sooner and stronger.

Once flooded is when you should have switched to the 4-5 hr duration and slowly bumped it up if the tank was doing well. Right now my advice would be to shorten the light cycle and do many water changes to rid the tank of organics.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-03-2019, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Ah ok I see, thank you I reduced the lighting down to 4-5hrs and cleaned up my tank since the algae appeared everywhere within 1 or 2 day, and yes Im not using Co2.
Any ideas about the growth from the mini pellia? they have grown longer and are now starting to look like algae.

Last edited by WaldoDude; 09-23-2019 at 07:01 AM.
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aquascape, bonsai, dry start method, fungus, monte carlo

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