I'd like to start a nano Iwagumi - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 04:25 AM Thread Starter
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I'd like to start a nano Iwagumi

So here's my thought. A planted Iwagumi tank in a 2.5g marine land aquarium. Any recommendations on a plant to use as a carpet? I'm thinking maybe microsword. I just want a plant that'll stay relatively short and cover the bottom of the tank. I was also considering some moss balls to get the zen garden feel. Also, any plants out there that have the irregular structure found in a bonsai tree? I'd really love to get something like that. Thanks for the help!
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 05:50 AM
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Microsword gets too tall. Try hc or glosso
You can make a "moss tree" that looks like a bonsai

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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 10:32 AM
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In an iwagumi layout, the way the rocks are setup are important, as they create a major part of the impression of the tank. The plant selection has to accentuate the feeling of the rocks and place emphasis on them. For example a tall growing carpet overshadows small stones and the emphasis of the setup turns more towards the plants and away from the stones.

One of the major flaws of Iwagumi designs commonly seen are stones that are 'dull' or placed incorrectly and thus impact the rest of the way the layout flows. Working with only stones is difficult - since you can't really put mosses or anubias, etc directly on the stones like you can with driftwood (which with driftwood tends to eccentuate their 'natural' feeling), because this detracts from the stonework. Cool looking crevices and nooks covered with moss/anubias/etc detract from the stones impact in typical cases.

I've gone into a couple iwagumi setups with a plant selection in mind, only to almost completely take those plant selections away once the layout was setup. It's very easy to make rocks look boring, even the most interesting rocks by messing up the way they're placed. I think it's honestly harder to make an interesting Iwagumi setup than it is to make an interesting setup that involves driftwood.

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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 02:33 PM Thread Starter
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Well, I was thinking about it last night, and have an idea as to the layout of the tank. How would I make a bonsai similar to the one in like clwatkins10 post? It's awesome!

Here's what I was thinking in terms of tank layout.

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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 04:39 PM
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That's a nice idea for the layout.

My friend is working on a layout right now, but i urge the substrate to be more sloped so it looks nicer, have it sloped towards the tree so that it's slightly higher, and have the rest going a bit downhill.

As for fish, i'd say Swordtail koi.
The other one i don't know what that is but i'm gonna assume it's a koi or a gold fish , and that won't work out too well.


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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 04:43 PM
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I think both of those fish kinds will be too big for this tank size. Goldfish get huge, and the swordtail koi's get to about 4" or so, and they need space to gallop.

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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
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Hmm, I guess you're right, so I'll have to reevaluate the fish I choose. Maybe I'll just go with some sort of betta.

Wait, so are you suggesting that the slope is from the front of the tank to the back of it, or the other way around?

Also, does anybody know how I could make a bonsai out of driftwood and moss? I'm unsure as to how I would do that. Thanks for all the suggestions so far!

I've gotten a little more concrete on tank details though, so for those interested:

Tank: 2.5 Gallon Marine Land
Light: CurrentUSA Satellite 18w 50/50 Actinic bulb
Filtration: AC20 w/ Refillable media bag & chemipure elite
Powerhead: Stock power head from a Biocube8. (Should I just get an AC70, so that the flow is much higher and not put a power head in the tank? what do you guys think)
Substrate: Eco-Complete Plant Substrate
Plant for tank carpet: Hemianthus Callitrichoides
Accent Plant: Moss Ball
Rocks: Unsure of what type, any suggestions?
Fish: ?, It's up to my Dad. His tank, just helping him plan it out.
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 05:27 PM
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The CurrentUSA sattellite fixture will work but you'll need a bulb to replace the actinic - actinic is worthless for growing plants.

I'm not sure how to make a bonsai out of driftwood+moss, as I've never really worked with wood extensively yet. But from what I've read and seen you'll basically look for the "roots" of a small tree to point upwards so they look like a tree. Bear in mind though that using driftwood means that the setup isn't an Iwagumi (Iwagumi is a pure rock only setup).

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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 05:27 PM
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AC20 is already pretty damn strong for a tank that size, so i highly reccomend you don't stick both the powerhead AND that in there, none the less an AC70.
Also 50/50 Actinic Bulb is crap for planted tanks.


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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 06:30 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Francis Xavier View Post
The CurrentUSA sattellite fixture will work but you'll need a bulb to replace the actinic - actinic is worthless for growing plants.

I'm not sure how to make a bonsai out of driftwood+moss, as I've never really worked with wood extensively yet. But from what I've read and seen you'll basically look for the "roots" of a small tree to point upwards so they look like a tree. Bear in mind though that using driftwood means that the setup isn't an Iwagumi (Iwagumi is a pure rock only setup).
What type of bulb should I get? Thank you for the correction. I will stop calling the tank an Iwagumi, and rename it a "zen" tank.
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 06:40 PM
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Go to home depot grab a 27w CF desklamp for like $20.
Should come with a 6700k bulb.


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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 06:46 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Go to home depot grab a 27w CF desklamp for like $20.
Should come with a 6700k bulb.
Would it fit properly into my CurrentUSA fixture? I'm pretty sure that I have a double pinned ballast. The bulb is a 50/50, one side of it is actinic and the other white light, meaning that while It's a single bulb, it really has two in it. So, yah, do desk lamps usually come with double pinned bulbs?
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 07:49 PM
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Whoa Whoa Whoa.

First of all,

Lighting:
Do you already have the Current usa fixture?
If not: Don't bother, go buy a cheap desk lamp that takes screw in spiral compact fluorescent bulbs, get a 13watt 6500k(elvin) (or "bright/blue white") bulb and just use that, it will be plenty of light for a 2.5 gallon nano

If yes: you'll want to find a 6700k OR 10,000k bulb to replace the actinic with. You will probably have to find this online. like this
http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...k10000k821118w

filtration:
An AC20 is WAY TO BIG for a 2.5 gallon filter, you should try and find a red sea nano (also known as an azoo palm filter)
http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...anofilterclear
That will be plenty, and there should be space to place a very small diy bag of media besides the filter floss in there.

I would also get a hydor mini heater, if you get the right size it will actually fit in the side of the red sea nano with the top off, it'll keep the tank warmed by a few degrees above room temperature. http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...ariumheater15w

Fish:
with 2.5's you're pretty much limited to a betta, or two or three guppies, here's a list of nano fish by tank size. http://www.freewebs.com/nanofishlist/suitability.html

finally, Bonsai tree:
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/aq...driftwood.html
I can probably find you a minature manzanita tree that will fit in a 2.5 gallon in a bonsai shape.

Wabi Kusa is just an Aquascape Katamari
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 08:36 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dollface View Post
Whoa Whoa Whoa.

First of all,

Lighting:
Do you already have the Current usa fixture?
If not: Don't bother, go buy a cheap desk lamp that takes screw in spiral compact fluorescent bulbs, get a 13watt 6500k(elvin) (or "bright/blue white") bulb and just use that, it will be plenty of light for a 2.5 gallon nano

If yes: you'll want to find a 6700k OR 10,000k bulb to replace the actinic with. You will probably have to find this online. like this
http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...k10000k821118w

filtration:
An AC20 is WAY TO BIG for a 2.5 gallon filter, you should try and find a red sea nano (also known as an azoo palm filter)
http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...anofilterclear
That will be plenty, and there should be space to place a very small diy bag of media besides the filter floss in there.

I would also get a hydor mini heater, if you get the right size it will actually fit in the side of the red sea nano with the top off, it'll keep the tank warmed by a few degrees above room temperature. http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...ariumheater15w

Fish:
with 2.5's you're pretty much limited to a betta, or two or three guppies, here's a list of nano fish by tank size. http://www.freewebs.com/nanofishlist/suitability.html

finally, Bonsai tree:
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/aq...driftwood.html
I can probably find you a minature manzanita tree that will fit in a 2.5 gallon in a bonsai shape.
Lighting: Yes, I already have the CurrentUSA fixture, it's being used for my SW tank right now.

Filtering: I am also using the AC20 right now for my SW nano. The idea is to have a good amount flow, which I do have.

Heating: I'm going to be using the 50 watt tetra submersible heater which I've already purchased.

Bonsai tree: I'd love a minature manzanita. From what I saw from the thread it looks like they're dead. If I put one in my tank, I'd still have to tie glosso on top of it, right? Could you find one that would fit in my tank, and still not take up too much space?

Thanks for the lighting advice though.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 09:17 PM
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Well you need alot more flow in a SW than you do a FW.
Red Sea Nano gives off a perfect amount of flow for the 2.5g.

And you don't tie glosso on the tree it's a carpet plant, moss is what you tie onto a tree, because the moss doesn't gorw outta nowhere on it's own, and stuff doesn't randomly appear like in SW tanks.
The wood is supposed to be dead , otherwise it'll start rotting and make your water go bad...

Go with the light Dollface suggested, and buy her wood.


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