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226 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So back in 1999 I bought a 125g acrylic tank and my 1st Eheim filter and Eheim Co2 rig and made my 1st planted rainbow tank. I ran 4x65w VHO lighting and even though it was technically high tech, I didn't dose anything and I knew little about the chemistry of it all. It eventually evolved into a rainbow/predator tank with Archers, Marbled sand gobies, and a geophagus surinamensis. Long story short I had to tear it down in 2002 and the tank sat empty until August of 2014.

1999(this is only pic I have left from way back then)

Last August my son wanted some turtles so I told him he could use the 125 and get a couple painted turtles. Started very low tech and I used the old 4x65w lights that had been sitting for a decade. When he didn't want the turtles anymore 5 months later, we found a nice pond for them to move to and re-purposed the 125.


Tore out everything and bought some eco-complete, hooked up the old Co2, and bought a bunch of plants to see what I could get to live.


There is so much more available these days than there was back in the 90's. So many more available plant species, cheaper equipment, and more information than I could imagine is now easy to find so I went to school and started slowly upgrading everything.

Upgraded to BML Dutch 6300, GLA Co2 system, added another filter to my Eheim Pro 2 2028 that is still humming along. Bought some ferts from GLA and started PPS dosing. Then I started fighting algae trying to find my balance.

I bought a 10x10" emersed glosso mat off the evil bay and started swapping out plants here and there. Old ones were sold or ROAK and most new ones were bought here on TPT.



4/5/2015 (was going to make a pearl weed carpet in the middle but changed my mind and let glosso take over entire foreground)


5/4/2015 (replaced red lotus w/ petrified wood I found in desert and swapped out a few more plants)

Pic of my embers


Peacock gudgeon



5/28/2015 (glosso is going crazy)

6/6/2015 (trimmed glosso)

More to come.

226 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you all for the kind words.

I wouldn't exactly call this the end product though, i'm sure you know what I mean. lol
Planning a fairly significant rescape in the near future.

What a cool story, its amazing to see the progression. The end product is ideal if I might add.

Thank you for sharing this :)

226 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Got sick of trimming the baby tears ball every other day. It always covered my petrified stump so I did a bit of a rescape to show off the little hardscape I have in there.

I want to cover the stump with a moss of some kind, probably fissidens, mini fissidens or flame moss. Would like to hear some opinions on which to use.



226 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Sure not a problem. Meant to get around to it at some point so why not now. Fauna list will have to wait though.

Currently I have the following:

glossostigma elatinoides
AR Mini
Blyxa japonica
Pogostemon erectus
Pogostemon helferi
Ludwigia sp. red
Ludwigia repens x arcuata
hemianthus glomeratus
hydrocotyle leucocephala
hydrocotyle tripartita japan
rotala colorata
rotala rotundifolia
rotala H'ra
rotala macandra
rotala indica (ammania sp. bonsai)
limnophila indica
cryptocoryne lutea
Lindernia rotundifolia
Lloydiella Green
fissidens fontanus (very tiny bit)
microsorum pteropus windelov (just a baby i found hiding during rescape)

226 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thought I would post an update on the progress.

Rotala colorata pearls

rotala macrandra & CPD (swimming above)

Wasn't real happy with my light coverage and the colors I was getting out of my plants so I made a little upgrade. I replaced my 2 x 65w CFL lights in my hood with this bad boy.

60" BML Dutch 6300 w/75 deg. beam angle

Did a little trim and rearranged some plants and I saw an immediate change in the colors.

Tom Barr told me to mow the glosso to the ground.... so I mowed the sh!t out of it! Btw... found all my PFR shrimps :hihi:

Good news is lighting is getting me the colors I wanted but now I have a long wait until I have a carpet again.


226 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Absolutely love your tank! Very nicely done! What's your secret? Lol

Goregous tank!
Haha, don't know that I have any secrets really. Just invested a lot of time and money. Here's what I'm running:

SeaClear 125g tall 60" x 18" x 24" w/ extra large top openings
60" Dutch BML 75 deg - Foreground to mid-ground coverage
48" Dutch BML 90 deg - Background to mid-ground coverage
GLA GRO-1 Co2 system
Eheim Pro II 2028 w/Biohome mini media
Marineland C360 w/Biohome mini media
Odyssea 18w UV Sterilizer
300w Eheim Jager heater

PPS PRO dosing - (12ml micro + 12ml Macro daily) and O+ root tabs
Water changes - 4mo since last - top off when I get annoyed with water level
Photo period - Lights on at 11:00am, off at 10:00pm (11hr on 13hr off)
Co2 sched - On at 9:00am, off at 9pm (12hr on 12hr off)
Temp - 76-82 (depending on time of day and external temp)

Haven't tested the water in a month or so, so I'm not sure about my specs but this should be pretty close:
GH - 225ppm (last I checked)
PH - 6.8-7.0
KH - about 30-40ppm
Nitrites -null
nitrates - usually around 40-50ppm.

226 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Fauna List (6/28/15):
(20) Cardinal Tetra
(14) Harlequin Rasbora
(13) otocinclus
(8) sterbai corydoras
(9) Ember Tetra
(6) Chili Rasbora
(3) Celestial Pearl Danio
(1) Peacock Gudgeon
(3) Siamese Algae Eater
(1) Flag fish
(3) Mollies
(30+) Painted Fire Red shrimp
(2) Bamboo Shrimp
(10+) Assorted Nerites
(3) Assassin snails
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