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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I just dry started a 10 gallon today kind of on a whim. I purchased 4 new tanks during petco's $1 per gallon sale. Most of them will be emersed growth tanks but this one will be to create a colony of blue dream neo's.

I also went with dirt with a sand cap on this one. Now I may have broken a cardinal rule by not minerilizing the soil :0( I can already see the water level has high amounts of tannins. I used white-ish sand for the cap; should I worry about the tannins staining the sand? Take a look at the picture below and tell me if you think I should remove some of the water. The water sits about 1/4" to 1/2" above the lowest point of sand. The slope is more drastic than it looks from the front.

Substrate
Dirt
White sand cap
Osmocote+ (lightly used)

Plants (how I planted sucks. These both came out of an emersed grow tank where they were planted directly in soil so it was a major pita separating all of it out. I know I just made it a much longer grow in time but whatevs)
Micranthemum Monte Carlo
Dwarf hairgrass

Hard scape
Black lava rock

Lighting
Clamp shop light x2
23 watt t2 6500k bulb x2
I will reduce to 1 light when I flood the tank and go from there. I may end up putting the second one back on after a while. I know I will have some algae battles at first due to the soil so I will take it slow

I will be running pressurized co2 as well
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Update:

I flooded the tank. Was getting bored lol. Ideally I would have let it go for about 2.5 months but only did one month. The hairgrass spread out some but nothing crazy. I made a mistake by letting too much water in at first and got some nasty blue green algae. I also left it vented too long on a couple of occasions which the Monte Carlo didn't like at all and about half melted pretty bad. I am cranking co2 with full lights so I'm assuming it will come back slowly, some already has.

Warning for others; dry starting has its merits but remember, do not put too much water in at first. Keep it under the substrate level to avoid BGA.

I'll post a flooded pic tomorrow after I clean up the BGA
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Lookin good could I suggest one smaller rock (it can be really small) at the front just to bring you to odd numbers. It's a bit symmetrical right now because it's like split it the middle. Which shrimp you planning to stock?


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Yeah I know the rule of odd in this type of setup. I probably will add another smaller one somewhere. Those two were all I had at the time. I have Rilli Jellys and Blue dream neos (bright blue with black on them) in my 20. I'm thinking I will put the blue dreams in this tank and let them colonize.

Quick update:
The BGA was way worse than I thought. I removed it in sheets from just under the sand. Super annoying. Ended up removing most of the Monte Carlo :/

Here are a few pics. The sandy area in front had a fair amount of Monte Carlo that I had to remove and quite a bit of hairgrass had to be removed as well when I was removing the BGA. Hope you all like my ghetto fab light stand
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
I would be careful with how much light you're pumping in there 'Monte Carlo' don't need that much. Maybe put some floaters temporarily as well.


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Yeah I'm curious about how much light I really have going on here. I was thinking somewhere around 60ish par but I don't really know. 2 Phillips 23w t2 cfls. I just added some duckweed. Should spread pretty quick to help control the light. I can also raise the lights about an inch at a time if need be.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Update pics

Was getting a little green spot or dust algae on glass. Finally put the lights on a timer; split 6.5hr total time.

Having to do a lot of water changes to reduce the tannins. This soil I used is bleeding them out Ike crazy. I wonder how long that is going to last.

I also gave the hairgrass its first trim. Hopefully that will get things spreading faster. I am thinking about some ar mini in the middle back but I'm going to let the grass grow more first and see how things go

Added 3 rocks. Trying create depth with the one on the back left and some smaller ones in the front.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Update: decided to tear down this tank and start over with another ten gallon aqueon. This one I took the black rim off of. Looks great, hopefully it holds water. Doing a water hold test now on it in the garage.

The reason for tearing it down was that I filled the dry start up too high with water which became stagnant and was perfect for BGA. I spent almost everyday since picking it out. Very annoying. I thought I had it completely out. But then I woke up today with 30% of the tank covered and 50% by the time I got home from work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks. The new one is in place now. Trying to decide on how I want this one to be planted. The other one was getting to be a little too plain for me anyway. So far I just have thrown some sand in and am playing with hard scape ideas. I'm going to try to use the same lava rock but also incorporate some small driftwood from my other tank.
 

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