There are some good threads on here about these, but they are years old. I'm converting 5 of my aquaclear filters into planted HOB's. I'm also trying to get some emersed set ups going. I'm sure it is easier than I am making it, but I'm sure most others have questions when they start as well.
I finished my first planted HOB last night. It's an AC50 and I just set it up on my 11.4 Gertrude breeding tank. The AC replaced a 2213 that had been on there for several months. Not only did I want a planted HOB, but I needed to make room for a C02 tank. It is in the cabinet under my 150.
On top of the regular filter sponge I filled a bag with biomedia from the 2213. On top of that I placed a course sponge that I cut to fit. I poked several holes into it and pulled the Ludwigia stems through. I then tied some HC Japan next to it. I cut and shaped some stainless steel mesh to make the spillway. I tried to attach vesicularia mini, but it's mostly just placed on there with a bunch clumped at the "lip" at the end.
I've had a problem with the Gertrudes jumping out so the mesh is necessary until I get some glass cut.
I also installed a 20w fllodlight to light the HOB.
The upper stems of the ludwigia are kind of wilted and laying over so I trimmed them and laid them in other areas to hopefully take root.
For the moment I am out of trimmings. I also need to buy floodlights for the other HOB's and determine how I will mount them.
I have 3 other AC70's and an AC110 I think.
Am I on the right track here?
I will use a moss "spillway" on each HOB, but I was thinking of doing lobelia cardinalis mini and Marsilia Hirsuta on the next sponge.
I will update with progress pics. If anyone would like to share what they have done or pics please do so.