Evolve 4 - Could use some suggestions! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-18-2013, 03:48 PM Thread Starter
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Evolve 4 - Could use some suggestions!

Hi everyone! This is my Evolve 4 so far....I hate it LOL! I am hoping to keep this a low light/low tech set up. I have been moving stuff around and changing things for about a week and just can't seem to find a look I like. I was thinking of adding a stem to the back and moss to the Monapi wood, then some Marimo Moss balls, but IDK. I am ready to scrap it again and start over. I had so much fun doing my Spec V, but am having issues with this tank for some reason.

Other than the plants in here I have some Taiwan Moss on order, I have a small Ozelot Sword, 3 Banana plants, and a Bronze Crypt I can use. I also have 2 diff pieces of Monapi wood and a fake Japanese Lantern ornament (which I was hoping to give away and do a more natural look instead....I am also open to getting some new/diff plants. Any suggestions?

Oh and as far as livestock goes, I am thinking once all done and cycled it will be a Neo Yellow Shrimp tank with maybe a snail. Open to suggestions here too though.

Last edited by Rilly10; 05-31-2013 at 02:46 PM.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-18-2013, 07:47 PM
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I think adding moss to the the monapi wood is definitely a good start.

I am short of suggestions for now, but one recommendation I do have is to search this forum for other Evolve 4 tank builds. I'm not saying you should copy somebody else's tank, but it might just give you some ideas for yours!

I literally love my aquarium(s).

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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 02:44 AM Thread Starter
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Ok I tore everything apart and started over....On the wood now is a whole bunch of Anubias Nana "Golden" plants. I tried to add some Tiawan moss between the Anubias wherever there was room, then X Mas Moss on the slate which I really hope will take off and fill in a lot of the open space.

I am hoping when the moss fills in it will look a little less empty. Also, if it does take off, I will remove the Marimo Moss balls. What do you guys think? This will be a shrimp tank, should I add something to the right side? If so what would you add? Do you think this is an ok start for a Neo Shrimp tank?

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 02:45 AM Thread Starter
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OH!! LOL! Forgot to mention this is now an Evolve 8! I upgraded to the bigger size! And, I also forgot to add, I am also hoping to add some Dwarf Water Lettuce on top
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 02:47 AM
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Evolve 4 - Could use some suggestions!

OMG where did you get those tiny little moss balls? What's the plant to the left? Try and find a driftwood piece that can resemble a tree stump and tie moss all over that


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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 02:55 AM Thread Starter
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The plants on the left are Anubias Nana "Golden". I got the Nano Marimos from ebay

I am not sure if the moss tree would be a good fit for this shaped tank, although I do LOVE them. I like them in the longer tanks where it looks like they are part of a landscape! Such a pretty look....maybe someday!
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 05:49 AM
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Evolve 4 - Could use some suggestions!

You have no defining hardscape. It needs a vertical element badly.

Also make sure it goes through a cycle. This as is could house shrimp once that's done.

I just am aquascape critiquing.

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 06:12 AM
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Yeah I agree with mabj. The substrate is also too flat. Need to maybe have a slope in one of the corners and let it run flat as it reaches the front glass. Work that piece of wood as if it is a tree stump stuck in a bank side. I'm obviously not trying to tell you what to do, I'm just saying what I would do. Hope this helps

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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 11:00 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks a lot guys! That is the type of advice I was hoping for! This is my first attempt at aquascaping and I feel like I am majorly failing! I have tons more plants and two more pieces of wood....maybe I will add another piece of wood that is similar but wider and flatter to the other corner to create more of a valley? Or would that be too symmetrical? It is hard to do much with the substrate although I will try...it is the shrimp stratum, and if I try to pile it up it just rolls down :/
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 11:54 AM
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Do what you want. So far you have made good upgrades. I like that nana golden stuff, looks really good. I wouldn't have tried to put moss in it though. You should cover a diff piece of wood with moss.

You need something else too. I suggest Bacopa Carolina... but then again I am obsessed with it now. LOL.

By the way, what happened to your 4?


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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 12:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! I really like the idea of covering a second piece with moss. When My son is napping I will try a few diff things out. The only other moss I have on hand is the Marimo Ball Moss, so maybe I can break them apart, but I am not sure how that would look. I like Flame Moss too...that could be cool.

The Evolve 4 is currently acting as a catch all for all the plants I have not used or decided I din't like at the moment LOL! My husband said no to 3 tanks so for now I will probably just store it and use it as a back up/quarantine/hospital tank in the basement. Maybe when my son is a little older I will set it up in his room. He is only 16 months though and WAY to obsessed with the "bishy" (my Betta in my Spec V) to not accidentally kill anything!
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 12:12 PM
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If you use it for a Betta, there are a ton of great ways to reduce the flow.

I wouldn't break down the moss balls. I think it would look good with one piece of wood like you have it now and one covered in moss.

Although now that I am using driftwood for the first time, I do not know if I am going to put moss on it. I originally was going to cover it in moss, and now I am not sure I want to cover it up.

Also, look at ways to upgrade your filter. It is actually very easy. On the Evolve 4 I just used the sponge, biomax, and carbon inserts for an Aquaclear 50. I imagine the Evolve 8 would take the same three items from an Aquaclear 70 or 110.

Congrats on the Evolves. You have a 4 and an 8, you should get a 2 just for the heck of it to have all 3 sizes LOL.


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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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LOL! Thanks! I did modify the 4 for a Betta, but then he died, so I decided to change it to a shrimp tank. The motor was VERY loud though so I called Aqueon and they offered to send a replacement motor. WHen he asked me what size I had I told him and he said they actually have a smaller one, so I asked for that instead. I actually have the smaller motor in the 8 now and it is great! I also added biomax, carbon, and purigen to the filter, plus the sponge that was in the 4 to help seed it. I stll plan on cycling totally before getting any shrimp to be safe though since the 4 was never fully cycled.
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 12:47 PM Thread Starter
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Ok just tried a few different things....I didn't mess with the substrate height much yet, just wanted to figure out positioning of the second piece of wood first. These are the only two pieces I have at the moment that are not in use.

Any of these seem like it could work? I have a favorite, but want to see what all the experts think! If none of these work I am open to getting something else, just hoping to not buy MORE if possible LOL!

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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 01:32 PM
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I like the first and third pic the best.

And I was unaware that there was a smaller pump option. I believe the pump that comes with the 4 is the same as the 8. I always wondered what it would be like with maybe the pump from the Evolve 2. I wonder if I should look into this instead of the modification I did. I guess not, but finding the right flow that works for a betta and still does well for the plants is tough. My pump isn't loud at all, so I guess I will stick with what i have for now.


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