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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
...But the catch is, there will be no CO2, compressed or DIY. I'm looking into experimenting with non-CO2 setups now and I have a 2.5 aga I've setup with a nice petrified wood hardscape, and now I just want to carpet the substrate, to show off the hardscape.

So my options as I understand them are to go with:

1) a Marsilea spp. (probably minuta, as that is the smallest leaved variety I think?)

2) Lilaeopsis mauritiana (which I'll have to give regular haircuts, to keep it down under 1" in height)

3) Some kind of moss, maybe Fissidens?

4) UG that is allowed to grow emersed and fill in prior to submerging

5) HC that is allowed to grow emersed and fill in prior to submerging

6) HM that is trained to grow horizontally and receives lots of haircuts


For the record, I am pretty much expecting to be dosing Excel regularly in this tank, so hopefully that allows such possibilities as HC or UG. And oh yeah, this tank will have a 27w home depot desk lamp over it.

Thanks for any advice, suggestions, whatevers. :)
 

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I don't think UG really needs CO2 or Excel to grow so long as you jump-started it with a dry-start. I've grown it floating in a 2.5 gallon tub with no ferts and 18W of light. Food for thought.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Okay, wow, that's good to know! When you first started carpeting your nano with UG, did you use UG in its already-emersed state, or did you start off with submerged UG that you emersed?

Because I don't have much of my submerged UG left anymore, and I don't want to take a chance on it melting away. I'm thinking maybe I should just order the "terrestrial form" of it over at carnivorous plant nursery.

Thanks for chiming in, UG!
 

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I also have UG that I dry started growing submersed without co2. I planted it in a large patch though, I believe that it gave it a head start. It was submerged form and never really converted.

I also get told that "OH MY GOD YOU'RE GROWING IT IN POTTING SOIL?!" (larger emersed tank) and "WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON'T HAVE CO2?!". So evidently my batch of UG was the exception rather than the rule.

I'm also growing HC without co2 but it's growing very, very slowly.

Personally I would go for a fissidens carpet, if only because a. It makes a cool carpet and b. I've never seen a full moss carpet done in an iwagumi.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Okay. Just to be sure, when people suggest fissiden, are we talking about Fissidens fontanus? I think that's the kind I'm thinking of, but I'm not much of a moss expert (yet). I remember a user named MrAl had a moss tank and he had a beautiful collection of fontanus in his tank. It left a lasting impression on me...
 

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Okay. Just to be sure, when people suggest fissiden, are we talking about Fissidens fontanus? I think that's the kind I'm thinking of, but I'm not much of a moss expert (yet). I remember a user named MrAl had a moss tank and he had a beautiful collection of fontanus in his tank. It left a lasting impression on me...
I grow Fissidens fontanus in my 60P endler/shrimp tank and while it grows very nicely wedged between crevices in rocks and between rocks (and spills out from there) I cannot see it easily carpeting as I doubt it will attach and grow on substrate. It only just seems to barely attach to rocks, in my experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well that's poopy. :( Does it float around messily, or does it sink into the crevices and so forth?

Any other suggestions of a non-Java moss that I can carpet with?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Okay so I'm starting to get a different idea of the way the moss should be, to carpet properly. I'm still learning, but for now I think I've narrowed down the choices to ordinary java moss (just because it's fool proof), weeping moss, or xmas moss. Basically, I think the "fronds" need to be droopy and have weight to them, in order to stay flat and not just grow up like a green afro in the tank, but I don't know.

Any thoughts anyone?
 

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I have had good success with HC in a non-co2 nano. I had a 1 Liter pico tank with just HC and Eleocharis parvula which did well, until the parvula spread unchecked and choked out the HC....

I haven't had any success as UG in a nano as a carpet plant. Floating, UG has enough atmospheric CO2 to work with, but I think submersed it does need CO2 injection in the long run.....it can melt on you in a couple of days if its needs aren't met....

Any of the moss species will work for a carpet, you can tie it to stainless steel mesh, or even plastic craft mesh or sandwich it between gutter guard weighted down with lead strips. Mosses can easily be trimmed to keep a 'lawn' appearance, it will 'creep' on its own with good trimming. I wouldn't recommend the Taxiphyllum species (Taiwan or Java moss) as they will go through your mesh and attach to the substrate, making it a mess down the line if you need to lift up the 'lawn'. The Vesicualria species tend to do this much less.....

That is a very cool Fissedens carpet on that link! Honestly though, I would think you need to grow it out in a high-nutrient/high CO2 environment to get it into a 'carpet' form in any reasonable amount of time. Without those, I suspect it will take a couple years to fill out as a carpet!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
^ I actually already think that would be a perfect plant, but the problem is simply that I already have tenellus in my 45g, and I don't want to use the same thing in this one. I'm really starting to think that moss is the way to go for me. But I don't know how I feel about making the wire mesh and all that work! I think I'd rather go with a moss that will attach to the substrate. If I ever get tired of the carpet, I'll rip the substrate out and everything, I don't care.

So it's really down to what type of moss I use. I'm even open to the idea of using java moss, since it's so readily available to me. Does anyone have any pics of nice looking scapes with java moss carpets?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I just looked at a bunch of pictures of it, and I agree it looks very nice. Now this thread has me thinking... are there any mosses that are known to "hug" its growing surface more than other mosses do? In other words, mosses that will just grow horizontally and creep across the substrate?
 
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