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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Guys!

I have a 4ish gallon vase that's just taking up space and I want to turn it into a shrimp tank.

I found a really nice piece of driftwood:


The vase is not really big, about 10 inches diameter, 13 in tall.

I'm thinking about making it an island configuration with large river pebbles around the edges and a sort of valley in the middle with planted substrate, maybe attach some plants to the top of the driftwood and have them grow emersed.

Suggestions on plants I should use?

For lighting I'm using a Marineland double bright that I ended up not using in another tank. Substrate wise I'll use some aqua flora I bought but just in the middle part in a sort of hole/valley outside I'll just leave pebbles to avoid plant growth. Not a huge fan of sand.

I'll use a 10G rated internal filter creating a circular flow. Not sure if it would be better to do a dry start or just dose high CO2 during the first few weeks to jumpstart growth (it will not have permanent CO2, it's going to be fairly low-tech).

What do you think guys? Any suggestions on plants I should use? As anyone used rotala on a dry start method?

What would you put on top of the driftwood emersed? do you know any plant that looks good emersed with nice flowers?

Thanks for reading! looking forward to your suggestions.
 

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I say go for it... IMO use
5-7watts 6500k led light
Substrate fert tabs only or dry ferts under substrate
small grain substrate or sand of anykind
Plants planted on each side of the wood, but leave a small space in the front open.
Drop in a small sponge filter or just air tube for water flow
Change 5% of water twice weekly, small water changes often are better then larger ones less often.
Add shrimps and call it a day :)

I say this based on my own experance with a few vases ive had, incl my current 7x7x8" shrimp vase...

Post photos often..
 

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Discussion Starter #6
OK, I'm kinda settling down on this hardscape. Decided on the pebbles substrate since the driftwood is heavy and I need something to hold it in place. Not my ideal but don't really want to put epoxy on the tank. Will add some aqua flora substrate on top of this and plant some crypts and perhaps some rotala. Above the water line I'll add a paludarium type plant to scrub the water. Not sure if penny wort, money wort or maybe some sort of lily.







 

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Just to verify: this wood has been previously scrubbed/rinsed/boiled or otherwise cleaned to ensure no nasties are left in it from when it was out in the wild?
 

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I always thought it would be really cool to attach an orchid to emmersed driftwood. You could just spray the roots with water a couple times a day and it would grow well because the tank would cause humidity around the plant.
 

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This is going to make a great display!
You may run into the issue of detritus buildup using large river rocks as the only substrate; I would recommend adding something smaller underneath it.
 

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I don't like the pebble look to be honest. What lighting are you going to use? I'm struggling to find a lamp that doesn't look like an erector set.
 

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Looks great... if you dont wanna use the large stones. you can use Hot Glue Gun to keep the driftwood from floating and its still easy enough to remove if needed.

search ebay for MR16 leds or GU10 leds.. 1pcs 4 watt 6500k will give you enough light. unless you plan to use CFL.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Just to verify: this wood has been previously scrubbed/rinsed/boiled or otherwise cleaned to ensure no nasties are left in it from when it was out in the wild?
Not yet, this is a mockup, the tank hasn't been flooded yet.

I'll boil the wood to sterilize and get as much of the tannins out as possible. then cure for a couple of weeks in a bucket of water.

The wood is malaysian mangrove from a very good LFS, it's supposed to be cured already but I'm not taking chances.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
This is going to make a great display!
You may run into the issue of detritus buildup using large river rocks as the only substrate; I would recommend adding something smaller underneath it.
The pebbles are for weighting down the driftwood as it's not very stable by itself. I'll probably add aqua flora substrate on top.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I don't like the pebble look to be honest. What lighting are you going to use? I'm struggling to find a lamp that doesn't look like an erector set.
Going to cover the pebbles with plant friendly substrate. I'll hang an 18 in Marineland double bright that I bought for other tank and ended up not using. It's getting enough light as it is since it's on a very bright room with huge windows. I'll have to add frogbit as a nutrient sink to keep algae in check.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I always thought it would be really cool to attach an orchid to emmersed driftwood. You could just spray the roots with water a couple times a day and it would grow well because the tank would cause humidity around the plant.
Been thinking about it but I'll stick to something faster growing that can act as a water scrubber. I'm sifting through the paludarium builds to see what could look good hanging in there.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The tank has been flooded!

The winners for stocking were Rotala Rotundifolia and Brazilian Pennyworth. Was looking for some wisteria but couldn't find anything.











I'm tempted to stick a ball of moss or smoething like that to the protruding dirftwood and turn it into a wabi-kusa top.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
what is that tiny thing plugged in to the tank?? a tiny filter of some sort??
Aqueon 10-Gallon QuietFlow Internal Filter Mini with the bio-media canister removed.

Had to make some modifications to make it quieter. Added some hairnet to the inlets to make it shrimp safe as I plan on adding Amanos and RCS. Removed the bio media cartridge as the cartridge was being too loud banging against itself. The tank will have very low bioload so I think I can get away with only the pump part.

Is essentially a small, quiet, cheap Powerhead that creates a gentle flow.
 
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