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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey everyone,

I thought I'd share my Cubus with the world. I'd wanted one of these little tanks for a while, but never pulled the trigger. Plus right now I'm gathering bits for my Aquatop "Eurostyle" 8.7g Bowfront, so I wasn't planning on starting on any other projects until I finished with that one. But as we all know... *insert preferred quote about best intentions*.

Anyway, a few weeks ago, I was walking through my apartment complex going to get the mail, and I saw a white box sitting on the curb in front of a dumpster. As I got closer I saw the Marina Cubus box, and was intrigued. I honestly expected the box to be empty, or filled with dog poo, but NO! Inside was the .9g cube, the lid, and the original light! I COULDN'T BELIEVE IT! Other than needing a little cleaning, everything was PERFECT. Needless to say, I forgot about the Aquatop Bowfront, and went cube crazy! I always imagined how cool one of these would be, lushly planted and home to a few cherries. Ohhh, the possibilities!

I know I want some kind of carpet up front, just not sure what (HC?, glosso?, marsilea minuta?) and I'd like to re-home my c. parva into the Cubus. Oh, and I also picked up an Anubias Nana Petite for it.


Tank: Marina Cubus (5.9" x 5.9" x 5.9")

Substrate: Certified Pre-Owned Aquasiol Amazonia mixed with Aquasoil Power Sand (thanks Sumer!)

Lighting: Deep Blue Professional SolarFlare Micro LED (3W 6700K)

Flora: c. parva
Anubias nana petite​
Elocharis acicularis (Dwarf Hairgrass)​
(Ludwigia arcuata (Needle Leaf Ludwiga)​

Fauna: Cherry Shrimp... eventually

On to some pics.

Initial scape with what I had lying around. meh.



Added some sticks. more meh.




I wanted more depth and more elevation variety, so I decided to start over. I went for a walk and found some cool rocks...







Getting better, we'll see. I like the strong leading diagonal line that the rocks make (ugh, I can feel all those design classes swirling in my sub-conscious. Stupid BFA degree).

I hope to get it planted this weekend. This will be my first DSM attempt, so we'll see how it goes. Please let me know what you think!

Josh
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks, the scape is really growing on me! I got my light today (actually it came yesterday, but my neighbor thought we were still out of town so she grabbed the box). I think I'm going to be really happy with it, it's exactly what I was hoping for, and should be more than bright enough for whatever I throw in there.

I also picked up some Ludwiga arcuata (Needle Leaf Ludwiaga) from a friend to use as a background plant. If it grows as fast as it did in one of my old tanks, I'm going to have to trim it everyday, lol.

Lastly, I settled on a foreground plant, elocharis acicularis. It's been a very long time since I've had Dwarf Hairgrass in one of my tanks, so I decided to give it a shot. I actually bought it from Petsmart (*hangs head in shame). I never buy plants from there, I always go with a LFS or a local member, but they had a package of the tissue cultured DHG on clearance for $2 so I took a shot since it was already growing emersed. The package is half brown, but I'm pretty sure I'll have more than enough to plant the front section of the tank and still have some left over.

I'm hoping to have some free time tomorrow to get the tank all planted!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Somebody just left a perfectly good pico out?
I know, right? :confused:

Oh... I bet they tried keeping goldfish or something and totally failed...
But you have a great scape going with those rocks!
I was thinking the same thing. Someone probably wanted something they could put on their coffee table and forget about, and just gave up eventually...


i really like the way the last pic is. i can see something awesome with the lay out of it
Thanks! I like it a lot, I hope to have some new pics soon. I think it's going to look really good with plants.

Agreed, that last hardscape is awesome
Thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Started planting finally, better late then never, right?

Anubias Nana Petite is hidden in a dark corner, and the C. Parva is positioned to get the most light, right under the fixture.



Started in on the DHG. I have a newfound respect for anyone that has ever or will ever attempt to plant stems individually. It looks good, but wow is it tedious! And this was just in a 2" x 5" area!!! Now I'm dreading planting my 8.7g. I want a nice big HC carpet over about half of it, and THAT is going to take forever to plant! The things we do for the hobby, haha!

*separate stems with tweezers, make a hole in substrate with chopstick, plant DHG in hole with tweezers, pray DHG doesn't stick to tweezers, refill remaining hole, separate stems with tweezers, make a hole in substrate with chopstick, plant DHG in hole with tweezers, pray DHG doesn't stick to tweezers, refill remaining hole, separate stems with tweezers, make a hole in substrate with chopstick, plant DHG in hole with tweezers, pray DHG doesn't stick to tweezers, refill remaining hole, separate stems with tweezers, make a hole in substrate with chopstick, plant DHG in hole with tweezers, pray DHG doesn't stick to tweezers, refill remaining hole,...:hihi:*




I just have to finish planting the DHG (maybe tonight, but most likely tomorrow), and get the Needle Leaf Ludwiga planted along the back wall. Almost there!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Won't quarters be a bit tight to get some scissors down there?

Just wondering for when I try something similar.

Oh and your hard scape has finally given me inspiration on a fluval spec that's been sitting in a corner that I picked up off Craig'slist on the cheap. Thanks.
Yeah, it will be difficult. I'm hoping that I'll be able to get in there with some small wave scissors, like these. Otherwise, I was thinking of trying some Candlewick Scissors. I'll just have to cross that bridge when I get there, I guess. Any one else have any suggestions?

Glad I could pass on a little inspiration to you. Good luck on the Spec (which size is it, btw?), I hope you'll post pics!
 

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I keep seeing more of these little cubes popping up! I have two Marina cubes, the one you have, and another that's about 1 inch larger in all dimensions (both free-bees from my nieces' betta keeping attempts). I'm really getting an itch to seriously scape and plant them now! Currently they are holding tanks for left over mosses, marimo, and grow out for java fern plantlets sooo not much to look at...

Be sure to keep us updated with photos as you add plants and watch it grow in ^^

I'm curious as a no-tech(?) how often will you do water changes? Does the substrate you have leech ammonia to self-cycle the tiny tank, or will you do pure ammonia add in, or fauna in cycling?
 

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Once you add some substrate and hardcape there is actually very little water in there, so you'll have to add probably once a week. I do that on my no tech pico setups. A few of my Cubus setups can be found here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/sets/72157632431047441/
Holy craps those are beauitful!! What are the different lights used on those?

I was curious about cycling/keeping ammonia levels low for fauna like shrimp as I've never kept anything live in a no tech pico yet (excluding pond snails that wonder in... but those could survive anything for water conditions it seems).
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Once you add some substrate and hardcape there is actually very little water in there, so you'll have to add probably once a week. I do that on my no tech pico setups. A few of my Cubus setups can be found here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/sets/72157632431047441/
Wow, those are all great scapes! I especially like "The Bluffs" and your Nano Moss Cube. Beautiful work. I agree with you on the w/c frequency, especially here in CO where it's so dry. Some of my smaller picos need water almost every other day. I think with the Cubus I'll be able to stretch that into once a week.

I keep seeing more of these little cubes popping up! I have two Marina cubes, the one you have, and another that's about 1 inch larger in all dimensions (both free-bees from my nieces' betta keeping attempts). I'm really getting an itch to seriously scape and plant them now! Currently they are holding tanks for left over mosses, marimo, and grow out for java fern plantlets sooo not much to look at...

Be sure to keep us updated with photos as you add plants and watch it grow in ^^

I'm curious as a no-tech(?) how often will you do water changes? Does the substrate you have leech ammonia to self-cycle the tiny tank, or will you do pure ammonia add in, or fauna in cycling?
I've seen your no-techs before, the one with the moss balls could be very interesting if you were to scape it. That's also how most of my picos usually start, as a small holding tank for clippings or newly sprouted plants, and then eventually I get the itch to do something.

As far as the substrate, it's Certified Pre-Owned :icon_wink Aquasoil from another members tank they took down. I know Aquasoil will leach ammonia when new, but I don't know about this stuff since it's used. I might have to jump-start the cycle, but definitely no fauna-in cycling. With such a small water volume, I'd worry about drastic water chemistry swings happening too quickly to fix.

I was curious about cycling/keeping ammonia levels low for fauna like shrimp as I've never kept anything live in a no tech pico yet (excluding pond snails that wonder in... but those could survive anything for water conditions it seems).
Having it heavily planted and keeping up on water changes is key. I've had even smaller pico's stocked with Cherry Shrimp go for months with no problem (usually by that time, I get the itch to try something else and tear them down). I think the biggest danger is having a shrimp or fish die and the resulting ammonia spike if you don't remove it soon enough. As such, I keep count of how many Cherry shrimp are in each of my picos and count them when I do a water change, just to make sure I haven't lost any.

I just added my tank journal to my signature. Enjoy. Now to go buy stuff for this Chi.

Candle wick scissors. Brilliant! I have a really hard to reach place and this would fit perfectly!
I just took a look at your journal, really nice. I've always wanted a Spec, especially the Spec V. Maybe I can sneak one into the house one day. I'm curious to see how well the candlewick scissors will work for trimming. If you end up getting some before me, let me know how they work for you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I finished planting (actually I finished on Tuesday), I just haven't had a chance to get pictures up. Here ya go:









A cool shot showing the elevation difference and rock wall.




After I took most of these, I threw some Christmas Moss on the wood, and a little on the big rock in the back. I didn't tie it, so hopefully it will attach on it's own over the next few weeks. Thanks for looking!
 

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Looks good, do you know what type of wood that is? just something you picked up outside?
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Looks good, do you know what type of wood that is? just something you picked up outside?
It's just a piece of branch that I've had soaking for a few weeks. I honestly have no idea what it is, but it hasn't developed any fungus while soaking and it sunk fairly easily, so it's ok in my book.:thumbsup:
 
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