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330 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So today I broke down my 10g of 15 months and upgraded to a 20g tall! I turned the 10 into a dsm tank, moved the goldfish into our pond, and the plants into the 20g. It's a dirt tank with a little twist which I'm half expecting to get ridiculed for. It's a ton of fun setting up a new tank!

20g tall 24X13X16
Miracle Grow Organic Choice Potting Mix, eco-complete capped with carib sea black sand from petsmart.
Odyssea 20", 2x18W T5HO (soon to be 4x18W)
paintball CO2 with aquatek premium regulator, glass diffuser
Aquaclear 70 (kinda noisy?)
50Watt heater (for now. Will obtain a 100W)

Crypt Wendtii 'tropica'
Narrow Leaf Microsword
Water Wisteria
Val nana (2 sprigs of it)
Staurogyne sp. Porto Velho
Alternanthera Reineckii
Rotala Singapore
Rotala Rotundifolia
Hygrophila Kompact
Dwarf Sag
Anubias barteri
1 sprig of a young Java Fern on the wood.

Going to let it cycle for a month. Then we'll talk fauna.

I definitely need more hardscape. Maybe I'll "obtain" some nice landscape rocks from the neighborhood.


So I took a different approach with the substrate. I trimmed and inserted a seed starting tray in the tank (20X10) and I put eco complete around the edges (good CEC) and I put the potting soil in the tray.
Wood Interior design Flooring Floor Gas

Hood Automotive tire Rectangle Automotive lighting Grille

Rectangle Urban design Font Water Space

I want to plant vals in the eco complete section so they will only send runners outside of the tray.
Water Liquid Fluid Rectangle Yellow

Then I put some black mesh over the top of the potting mix-mud, and pressed it down.
Rectangle Grille Hood Wood Automotive exterior

Capped it with this:
Liquid Fluid Drink Ingredient Gas

Planted and filled:
Plant Light Grass Terrestrial plant Wood

Water Plant Vertebrate Light Green

Plants will be droopy for a bit until they figure it out.

Plant Light Leaf Botany Terrestrial plant

Still need to buy the background. I'm happy with the plant locations. I did slide the amazon sword over and there was no drama with the soil and sand. However there are air pockets underneath and bubbles occasionally rise from one specific area of the substrate. I guess it'll take time for the air from under the sand to disappear.

Any comments, suggestions, criticisms are most welcome.

330 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
12/1/12 update

Boom. Massive growth. I've also added livestock:

6 Glowlight Tetras
2 Ottos
3 Amano Shrimp (I've only ever seen 2 at a time since releasing them)

^I'll add more glowlights, amanos and maybe another schooling species.

Plant Plant community Natural landscape Terrestrial plant Organism

Plant Terrestrial plant Aquatic plant Grass Marine biology

Plant Water Leaf Terrestrial plant Grass

Plant Natural landscape Terrestrial plant Aquatic plant Grass

Dealing with BGA, Rhizoclonium, and thread algae. It's not an infestation, but it's all part of the fun.

533 Posts
Lovely tank, Have a 20 tall myself. Just a heads up, hope you have a larger tank or a plan for when the SAEs get bigger. I had some in mine and was informed wrong, and they got larger by the day and were really rowdy and tore my tank up. Keep it up
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