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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 01:48 AM Thread Starter
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Question Riparium? LOTS of Questions!

I am new to planted tanks and such, but I really like the Idea of turning my 20g high Convict cichlid tank in to a easy maintanance, low cost riparium. I have seen several that look amazing, and I would like to MABEY try my hand at them. Since ripariums are pretty new, and their arent any good sites\books out their that I know of (other than hydro's blog!) I have several questions.
1. Are most hardy aquarium plants, hardy rip plants?
2. What are some hardy rip plants?
2. What is a good riparium plant medium, other than Riparium Supply's planting medium which will come out soon?
4. What type of fert's would I use with easy to care for plants?

These are just QUESTIONS! It is not a set deal, so dont expect a jounal soon! Thanks a whole lot! Jake.

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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 01:51 AM Thread Starter
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One more, how much would I have to pay to add riparium plants?

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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 02:11 AM
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Jake, Are you able to set up a hanging light fixture so that you can keep this tank open? If you can then you can probably fill it to 2/3 or so of depth and let the plants grow out the top.

If you cannot do this then you will only be able to fill tank to about 1/3 full because the plants will be restricted by the height of the canopy. In this case I don't know that that 7 gallons or so of water would be enough for a convict.
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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 02:13 AM Thread Starter
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I looked that up today, and I think I will be able to hang the light, mabey! Thankfully, coralife has a cheap hanging kit for their lights that would probably work.

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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 02:22 AM
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So long as you don't mind putting a couple of holes in your ceiling you could also probably DIY a hanger assembly for cheap with chain or steel cable from the hardware store. I had a blog post about doing that for a T5 striplight.

http://hydrophytesblog.com/?p=542

The riparium planter gravel isn't really anything special, although it will be offered in a convenient 4-pound bag. It is similar to Fluorite, SMS and other fired clay gravels already popular for planted tanks. You can easily use any of those products in the planter cups.
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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 02:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeJ View Post
I am new to planted tanks and such, but I really like the Idea of turning my 20g high Convict cichlid tank in to a easy maintanance, low cost riparium. I have seen several that look amazing, and I would like to MABEY try my hand at them. Since ripariums are pretty new, and their arent any good sites\books out their that I know of (other than hydro's blog!) I have several questions.
1. Are most hardy aquarium plants, hardy rip plants?
2. What are some hardy rip plants?
2. What is a good riparium plant medium, other than Riparium Supply's planting medium which will come out soon?
4. What type of fert's would I use with easy to care for plants?

These are just QUESTIONS! It is not a set deal, so dont expect a jounal soon! Thanks a whole lot! Jake.
I have found in just the short time, that crypts, hydros, polygonum, java ferns, hm, and lindernia sp. varigated do quite well. Most of the little indoor house plants like dracena, ivy, peace lilly, and such you find for like $3.00 seem to work well. Check out MrJG and Hoppy's ripariums for details.

Hydrophyte is using mineralized soil for a lot of the plants now. I am using turface in many of mine, flourite in others and his substrate. The turface is working wonders.

I am using a basic PPS Pro Fertilizer for mine and so far they are responding quite well to the dosing.

Watch out, you sound like me a couple months before I started my riparium!

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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 04:05 AM
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i'm using Flourite "Dark" as the planting medium in my planter cups now. I find it very easy to work with, and I assume it will grow plants well. I'm also now using Osmocote as a fertilizer in the planter cups - so far nothing bad has happened as a result.

I also fertilize the tank water, mostly for the nano raft occupants, using KNO3, KH2PO4 and CSM+B, roughly per the EI method, just as I would for a planted tank. I suspect that is a bit too little, but I'm not at all sure yet. My plants do grow so I'm satisfied.

It is really enjoyable to shop at a Home Depot, Ace Hardware or Target, looking at their little pots of houseplants, to find some that should grow well in a riparium. They are cheap, no shipping charges, each pot has 2-4 little plants in it, and if you guess wrong and the plant bombs, you only lose $3-$4. One sure problem - with 2-4 plants per pot, you soon have far too many plants for your riparium, so that means you need to set up another one, and that means another shopping trip for more plants for variety, which means you now have too many plants for 2 ripariums, so.....

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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by hydrophyte View Post

If you cannot do this then you will only be able to fill tank to about 1/3 full because the plants will be restricted by the height of the canopy. In this case I don't know that that 7 gallons or so of water would be enough for a convict.
20 gallons is not enough for a convict, much less seven.

Good luck with it though. Ripariums are neat; I'd love to set one up eventually.
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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 12:10 PM Thread Starter
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Reply!

Thanks alot for the feedback!
Ariel301: Thanks for the bringing that to my attention! I total forgot about that! I may keep a breeding pair though, and see how it turns out. Shoot me down if I'm wrong though!
Hoppy: So I could go shopping for riparium plants, at Home Depot! I will look at your rip (and the others) to see your plant selection, but what plants would be good for me? Thanks!
Hydropyte: I have read a little of you blog, but will read more today. Its really good! Thanks!
Sewingalot: I will try not to rush into it! But if mine looks like yours when you started, I will be happy!

Thanks! More questions to come!

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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 01:57 PM
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JakeJ, Just let me know if you might want any plants. I keep running out of room and I would like to send some more off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariel301 View Post
20 gallons is not enough for a convict, much less seven.

Good luck with it though. Ripariums are neat; I'd love to set one up eventually.
I have a single mature Cryptoheros cutteri in a 15-gallon, and that's plenty of room for that fish. He is very mellow. I can't tell from JakeJ's pictures if he has the regular convicts or "Honduran red points".
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post #11 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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They are normal covicts, at least I am pretty sure! I will probably PM you later today Hydrophyte.

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post #12 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 02:16 PM
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Oh I suppose that those would eventually need more space. I haven't kept them but I understand that they are more rambunctious than the Honduran red points.

Just fire away whenever you might have more questions.
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post #13 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 04:26 PM Thread Starter
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Can I use a 15watt Florec. light for my riparium?

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post #14 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 04:39 PM
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Do you mean one of those spiral compact fluorescents? A 15 watt spiral will work well with the right plant selection. Peace lilies and Pilea ought to grow under that light. I have extras of these plants too.
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post #15 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-01-2009, 04:41 PM Thread Starter
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Nope, it is'nt a spiral. Its a tube.

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