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11.4g Riparium

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I've been wanting to set up a riparium since I first saw them here on TPT, and after one half-hearted attempt with a shower caddy and a peace lily I decided to do it the "right" way. A couple weeks ago I bought the Mr. Aqua 11.4 gallon tank then began talking with hydrophyte. He quickly came up with a combination of supplies and plants for me and answered my questions. My package arrived in the mail today so I got the actual riparium part of my riparium set up.

Eqipment
Mr Aqua 11.4 gallon tank
Up Aqua in tank filter (basically works like a sponge filter, the only reason I got it was because the sponge filters the store had were huge)
Archaea 25w heater (may be too small in the winter, but it's what I stuck in there for now)

Hardscape
Black sand
River rocks from a landscape supply store
Driftwood

Flora
Ruellia 'Katie'
Asclepias Mexican Milkweed
Phalaris 'Strawberries & Cream'

Pennywort
Pilea alluminum plant

Anubias nana
Java fern 'trident'
Blyxa japonica

Fauna
HMPK Betta
Ramshorns

Initial setup:


Brooder lamps with 23 watt cfl bulbs for lighting. I think I'll switch them out at some point for a T5HO or a Ray 2 using the same hanger:


Goodies from Riparium Supply:


Planted and ready to go in the tank (bonus points if you spy Rocky sleeping in the background):


Planters and rafts in place:


FTS:


There's some definite wilting, especially the Asclepias. I'm assuming that's normal from the shipping, planting, and lights. They should perk up soon though, everything was definitely healthy.

I added a couple little stems of pennywort to the rafts, but it wasn't emersed growth so it probably won't make it. If it doesn't I'll snip a little h. japan from my wabi kusa and use that.

Hmm, what else. Oh, I planted a few stems of blyxa, but I don't think I like it. Or at the very least I need to add something else as well. Something taller.
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Wow that looks great! Nice job planting that stuff.

How does the aluminum plant look? If you see very much wilting from it you can make a temporary cover for the tank with saran wrap while those cuttings grow new roots. Aluminum plant roots pretty fast.
 

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Looks really, really nice!! I think that if you can find a nice background plant to hide some of the planters, it will be a wonderful looking set up. Always nice to see a fellow ripariumist!

I would suggest some root tabs and some Hygrophila Kompact? It would get nice and full without getting ridiculously tall and would not require constant pruning, unlike it's brothers and sisters in the Hygro "family" of plants. If you are looking for some contrast, a few stems of an Alternanthera species would also look great, and would grow emmersed from the aquarium helping things blend in well.

Really, though you have a ton of potential options though, as you probably well know. For root tabs, I have to recommend Devin's line of GroSoil.
 

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That is so pretty and so is your Betta. :D

What is the pipe holding your lights?
 

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AWESOME TANK!!!

Can't wait to see it grow in!!! I have never thought of doing a smaller riparium like this. I really like what I see! After I rescape the Living Room I might have a empty corner to put something just like this!!!

Subscribed!
Drew
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Wow that looks great! Nice job planting that stuff.

How does the aluminum plant look? If you see very much wilting from it you can make a temporary cover for the tank with saran wrap while those cuttings grow new roots. Aluminum plant roots pretty fast.
Thanks, and thanks for everything else too! That was a ton of plants.

The aluminum is a little wilted but not too bad. I'll try the saran wrap though, I hadn't thought of that.

Looks really, really nice!! I think that if you can find a nice background plant to hide some of the planters, it will be a wonderful looking set up. Always nice to see a fellow ripariumist!

I would suggest some root tabs and some Hygrophila Kompact? It would get nice and full without getting ridiculously tall and would not require constant pruning, unlike it's brothers and sisters in the Hygro "family" of plants. If you are looking for some contrast, a few stems of an Alternanthera species would also look great, and would grow emmersed from the aquarium helping things blend in well.

Really, though you have a ton of potential options though, as you probably well know. For root tabs, I have to recommend Devin's line of GroSoil.
Thanks for the suggestions. I actually have some hygro kompact, but it always gets little pinholes and loses its lower leaves. I don't know if it's some kind of deficiency or not enough light or what. I'll try it again though and see if the combination of root tabs and the dry fertilizers I just got helps. Devin sent me some of his root tabs for the potted plants, but for in the tank I have some osmocote and root medic ones I want to use up before I get any more.

That is so pretty and so is your Betta. :D

What is the pipe holding your lights?
Thank you. The pipe is electrical conduit. I got two straight pieces and four 90 degree bends with connectors to make the shape. I've seen people make the same kind of thing with one piece and a pipe bender, but I took the easy way out. Haha.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Oh wow, a bunch of people posted while I was writing the last post. That's what I get for watching tv and posting at the same time.

Anyway, thanks everyone.

Nubster, I think I paid around $60 for the tank locally, so marine depots price with shipping isn't bad at all. Check out this one too: http://www.cadlights.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=52&products_id=233 If I had seen this before I got mine, I probably would have gotten it instead.
 

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Nice job also with that light bar! I'm sure the plants will enjoy the light from those CFL lamps, but the whole deal will look more sleek if you do upgrade to a strip light later on. It would probably look nice with a couple of PAR38 LEDs, too.

Those Ruellia 'Katie' will spread out some more with this nice foutnain-shaped foliage...



The Phalaris 'Strawberries & Cream ribbon grass will fill in more, too. This plant grows really fast when it's happy.

 

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Great setup. I'm diggin the size and scape of this riparium you got going. I got to try something like this soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Great setup. I'm diggin the size and scape of this riparium you got going. I got to try something like this soon.
Thanks, and you definitely should. You've got quite the collection of tanks too. You could do a tiny one in that schuber wright tank you have!

very nice!
Thanks Han!

How are those plants doing after one day? Have they started to perk up?
I can't wait until mine fills in like yours. The foliage on the Ruellia is very pretty, I love the deep green. And yes, the plants are definitely looking better. The milkweed is turning towards the light instead of drooping like it was in the initial photo. I ended up misting the aluminum plant and draping Saran Wrap over it which really seemed to help. I'll take another picture in a day or two to show the difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Nothing but good news today. Plants are doing great, there are even some buds on the milkweed. The aluminum plant is doing well, roots are already about 1/2" long and it's much less wilted. I had the saran wrap over it for a few days, but took it off yesterday. A few of the leaves are still a little droopy without it, but not bad. Haven't messed with the underwater part yet so I didn't bother with a fts, but here is a shot from the top:


And the buds:


There's another one where you could actually see the orange flowers already, but it was too close to the light to get a picture. I need to raise them up a bit since the plants are already as tall as them.
 
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