I have become inspired by the Iwagumi style of aquascaping, because of its simple, naturalistic rock formations surrounded by plants, giving the tank a garden appearance. I am trying out the Iwagumi approach to planted tanks, and hope for the end result to be successful.
I'm using a 5 gallon tank, with Tetra's 'TopFin 10' filter. I have in there roughly 1" Eco Complete, getting higher towards the middle (there is a little hill that I scaped to the right of the rock). There is one 24 Watt 50/50 compact florescent fixture above the uncovered tank, with a 23 Watt screw-in florescent workshop light angled at the tank as well. Since the half of the light coming out of the main lighting fixture is actinic and useless to plants, I figure the total lighting of the tank is roughly 35 Watts, which is approx. 7 watts per gallon.
I do not have CO2 in this tank, although I will be rotating dosings of Potassium, Nitrates, and Flourish. Once I get Excel, I will add that to the dosing schedule.
The plant stocking will be Hemianthus callitrichoides and Dwarf Hairgrass, with the HC as the foreground plant, and the Hairgrass in the background of the tank.
Here, the tank is filled up with the filter running. I later emptied the tank in order to get ready to put in the Eco Complete substrate.
I have scaped the Eco Complete, and chose the rock I shall use as my centerpiece for the Iwagumi-styled tank. You can see a little hill I made with the Eco to the right of the rock, which I think will have an interesting effect when covered with HC. The actinic lighting makes it hard to see the true color of the rock, which is actually a rosey, subtle pinkish color.
This is a close-up of the rock, where you can see some of the pink color. We actually brought back a bunch of these rocks from South Dakota on our trip to Mt. Rushmore a few years back, and are predominately found in the black hills. Its called 'Rose Quartz'.
I added some trimming's from my main tank to the Iwagumi tank, which are not going to stay there for long. They are just there to test the lighting of the tank, in order to be sure everything is working properly before I buy the permanent plants. You can see the main lighting fixture (50/50) over the tank, and the workshop lighting angled over the tank.
I did recently stock the tank with shrimp from my main tank, and I think they have adapted nicely. This is one of my more larger and bolder Red Cherry Shrimp, who recently gave birth.
Here is another one of my adult shrimps, next to a little juvenile. Another reason I am temporarily housing some of my plant trimmings in this tank is to make the shrimp comfortable until the main plants arrive.
This is the tank progress so far, I hope to update it as soon as my plants arrive. I am open to comments and criticism.