The Planted Tank Forum banner

1 - 20 of 45 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone,

I just found this forum and it seems to have a lot of information. My only experience with aquariums is breeding tanks years ago (bettas and guppies)

I set up a 10 gallon tank in my office at work and its nothing pretty. Bare and looks like a breeding tank since that’s all i have experience with. I currently keep important Japanese guppies in my 10 gallon tank and plan to eventually move them over to the new aquascape once I get everything dialed in.

Aquascaping has intrigued me for a while but it always seemed like too much work and can get expensive. I have enough expensive hobbies that my wallet doesnt need anymore, but I finally got tired of looking at my bare tank at work.

I found a 29 gallon Top Fin set up with a stand off of craigslist that i bought for $30 so that’s what I’m going to try starting with. (I like that a stand was included)


I know the lighting sucks (24 inch 18w T8 florescent bulb), but since I’m going with a low light plant set up at first, i might be able to make due until i get some experience and know what 'I’m doing before upgrading everything. Trying to keep costs as low as possible for now while i make my mistakes.

Right now I’m looking at substrates (would like something black) and taking the recommendations of a previous thread keeping my plant species down to 4 low light species.

I’m looking at the following plants
Java moss (already have in my tank)
Java Fern (Windelov possibly)
anubias nana (or a similar leafy type)
cryptocoryne wendtii
microswords
chain leaf sword

in regards to substrate I’m using Seachem Flourite and i plan to go with a island type design

im looking at one of these two pieces of driftwood (obviously cut down to fit)






theres also this third piece that fits right on top of the island


Any suggestions so far would be great. I hope to update this thread as i progress with the tank. constructive criticism is welcome.

Thanks in advance
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
512 Posts
Pic 1 is the better of the 3 IMO. You can always cut it up and position the branches how you want if your feeling restricted. 2nd piece is cool but too bulky, 3rd doesn't even look like wood to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks for the suggestions.

i like 1 because it can look like a tree at the top of the island
2 is cool if i cut it in half. i like that it has a lot of grooves for plants to grow around/in

one of the downfalls of the drought in CA is that there is plenty of driftwood exposed out on the lakes
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I like 1

You can always flip upside down and grow moss or fissidens or many other plants along the branches.. it'd look like mangrove roots ..
didnt think about going upside down

im planning on planting anubias plants to the wood if that helps
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
tank is planted. now i wait. ive read i should change 1/3 of the water every few days from the beginning. is this true?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,262 Posts
I know the lighting sucks (24 inch 18w T8 florescent bulb), but since I’m going with a low light plant set up at first, i might be able to make due until i get some experience and know what 'I’m doing before upgrading everything. Trying to keep costs as low as possible for now while i make my mistakes.

Right now I’m looking at substrates (would like something black)

I’m looking at the following plants
Java moss (already have in my tank)
Java Fern (Windelov possibly)
anubias nana (or a similar leafy type)
cryptocoryne wendtii
microswords
chain leaf sword
For lights new check out Pet Blvd. For Med light I favor the Coralife T5NO 36W light strip.

For a black substrate cheapest is black diamond blasting sand. Can be found at Northern Tool.] Cost was 9.53 for a 50Lb bag[URL="http://www.northerntool.com/"]

The microswords and chain leaf sword won't survive in that light. They cryptocoryne will if you have rich substrate.

Cheap of rich substrate is Scott's Hyponex Potting Soil. I am topping it with black diamond blasting sand some day. If you decide to do a dirt tank check APC El Natural section.

tank is planted. now i wait. ive read i should change 1/3 of the water every few days from the beginning. is this true?
Test water at least 2x/week. When nitrate is 0ppm Ammonia and Nitrites 0- do a 50% water change, feed the bacteria again and check the parameters again the next day. If have 0ppm Ammonia and Nitrite- the cycle is DONE -
Feed it with fish food or cocktail shrimp (By fishbreath)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,262 Posts
thanks for the tips. what nitrite test kit do you recommend?
After 3 months you won't need to test. Thus it is more economical to take some water (in vile or bottle or plastic bag) to a pet store. They test for free. That is what I do now. For my test kit is out of date.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
171 Posts
I think it's worth it to keep a good liquid test kit for several reasons: You never know when you're going to need to test, especially if you have fauna in the tankl; not all stores test for free; stores often use dip strips, which can be unreliable; store employees may not perform or interpret the test correctly, and of course you have to take a water sample to the store when it's open.

I use the API freshwater master test kit, which is popular and a solid value.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
another week another picture. the crypts in the front to the left of the wood melted. hopefully they come back around in the next few months...
ammonia is 0ppm nitrate 5ppm nitrite 2ppm
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
can anyone identify if this is fuzz algae and should i be concerned? i notice it growing on my java moss


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
That white "thing" on your java moss is something that comes to almost all new tanks. It disappears with time as the tank settles. I think it has something to do with the bacterial growth.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,334 Posts
those are diatoms, perfectly natural in new tanks. it will go away on its own or a few otto will clean them right up.

lovely scape by the way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
those are diatoms, perfectly natural in new tanks. it will go away on its own or a few otto will clean them right up.

lovely scape by the way.
thanks

another week another pic. i think im going to upgrade the lighting to a finnex planted+...

im hooked



plant list
java fern
anubias nana petite
anubias nana
anubias congensis
anubias lanceolata
anubias nana gold
cryptocoryne wendtii
cryptocoryne parva
narrow chain leaf sword
microsword narrow
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,051 Posts
The planted plus is an awesome light. Just be careful about adding too much light. Do you plan on keeping this low tech for a long time? If you'd ever consider going higher tech and adding co2 and such. You'd probably want to change out your filter for a canister filter. But honestly unless you really want to go high tech, you should be fine with the setup that you have. Although swapping out your light for the planted plus definitely won't hurt. Tanks looking swell by the way!
Good luck with this new adventure!
Joshua
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The planted plus is an awesome light. Just be careful about adding too much light. Do you plan on keeping this low tech for a long time? If you'd ever consider going higher tech and adding co2 and such. You'd probably want to change out your filter for a canister filter. But honestly unless you really want to go high tech, you should be fine with the setup that you have. Although swapping out your light for the planted plus definitely won't hurt. Tanks looking swell by the way!
Good luck with this new adventure!
Joshua
thanks for the advice.
i dont think im going to venture into CO2. maybe a filter down the road but im tying to still keep this low maintenance as much as possible.

i've already invested more into the tank than i was expecting but i think a better light will help with the plant growth
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
393 Posts
co2 is the best investment you can make in this hobby. It gives you the ability to have your plants reach their fullest potential. I've always remembered this quote "without co2, is like painter that can't use all of the colors" (something like that, but you get the idea).

If you definitely up your light, be prepared to have an algae attack without co2. My best recommendation, pick up a 10lb tank on craigslist, order a regulator with a solenoid, and you are set for your entire fish tank career. You can start with a paintball co2 setup, but the pricing of refilling paintball tanks will equivalent, if not exceed, the capital cost of a legitimate co2 injection system.

Happy planting ;)
 
1 - 20 of 45 Posts
Top