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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my dad & I have decided to start a riparium this Summer! Surprisingly it didn't take much convincing lol.

So we bought a 30 gallon tall tank: 24.25inch X 12.5inch X 24.75 inch

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We have to clear the area where we plan on setting it up so currently, we are still in the planning process.

Lighting: We already have T5NO (I think they're NO) bulbs. Four 20watt bulbs, 2 2700K and 2 6500K that we've been using to start seeds. My dad built a box painted white around it for better reflection.

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Can anybody give me any input on the usage of these lights that we already have? If not these, what about LEDs?

Filtration: I was thinking some internal filter from [Ebay Link Removed] It wouldn't let me post the link.

Heater: Some heater from ebay


Hardscape: Malaysian driftwood and river rocks. Don't have them yet but that's the plan.

Substrate: Pool Filter Sand. Haven't gotten that either haha.

Flora: We want to keep it simple. Sweet Flag is a big candidate because we have extra of that. Anything we can find at a local nursery or hardware store would be ideal. We're not trying to lead the hobby. Suggestions would be most welcome. We want to have submerged plants too (annubias, dwarf sag, crypts, maybe java fern). We haven't even ordered the planters yet.

Fauna: We're a long ways from that.
 

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If I were you I would set that up as a high-humidty riparium and get some awesome emersed crypts, Anubias, Java fern and stuff like that going. A 30 High is a pretty nice shape for that. I have done several setups like that already and I can make a list with some of the best plants if you want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
If I were you I would set that up as a high-humidty riparium and get some awesome emersed crypts, Anubias, Java fern and stuff like that going. A 30 High is a pretty nice shape for that. I have done several setups like that already and I can make a list with some of the best plants if you want.
Yes please! That would be Great!
 

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OK here are some suggestions...

In hanging planters:
  • Cryptocoryne pontederiifolia
  • C. wendtii 'Mi Oya'
  • C. wendtii 'Tropica'
  • C. walkeri "lutea"
  • C. usteriana
  • Spathiphyllum 'Golden Glow'
  • various other Spathiphyllum
  • Lagenandra thwaitesii - cool collector plant if you can find it

On trellis rafts:
  • Anubias barteri var. nana
  • Microsorum 'Windelov'
  • Fittonia
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Okay so now I need to show that I'm totally serious about this riparium lol. So this weekend, Dad & I cleared the space on our shelves, pulled them out, vacuumed the area, cleaned the windows above and added support.

Today I got a piece of wood. $76 from my LFS. Cost almost as much as the tank. It kept sliding down for the picture causing me to take a terrible picture, but I do plan to prop the wood more upright. Waiting on the heater, and filter. Then we can add the sand and water. Still need to order the planters.

CIMG3529.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Today, progress was made. Yesterday, we went to a local nursery and picked up some garden plants, as well as 3 riparium prospects. The heater and filter came today and so immediately we washed some play sand, put the three things in and started cycling.

Pics:

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As far as plants go, we're still not 100% about what's going in. We're still waiting on the Riparium Supply planters (shipped today according to e-mail). We're not trying to lead the hobby with this 30 gal. This is simply "version 1." We're not trying to impress our friends/family about how rare and special certain plants are etc. We're going to wow everyone with what's locally available and easy to obtain. Look for another update next week :)
 

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That box shipped out yesterday. I hope you will see it early this coming week.

It's important to be really careful with nursery plants because they often come with insect pests. Of those ones that you got the fern probably won't make it as a riparium plant. The Draceana might grow OK. That pink plant looks like a Hypoestes. I tried that once, but it didn't want to grow in the water.

Can you find any crypts at your local LFS? This tank would be really cool as a high-humidity setup with crypts and stuff like that and you can have a lot of fun with those kinds of plants. I just resurrected this how-to thread that I started last year....

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/general-planted-tank-discussion/115353-riparium-how-high-humidity-setups-2.html

I hope to add more to it soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for the tips. We're willing to take a chance on the Draceana. We have pink ribbon grass in our water garden in the backyard so the Draceana will kind of be the indoor version of that. Thanks for the heads-up about the fern. We may implement it in the area outside of the riparium. The Hypoestes splash will also be a gamble.

My LFS sources will have crypts for sure. This Tuesday I'm going on a big plant shopping spree in San Francisco. I'm also getting a black background, a thermometer and root tabs. The C. Wendtii I remember seeing potted submersed for $15. Is that a bad deal?

Crypts will definitely be on the shopping list. Along with Java Fern, Dwarf Sag, Vals (or some kind of tall grassy thing) and anubias.
 

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Thanks for the tips. We're willing to take a chance on the Draceana. We have pink ribbon grass in our water garden in the backyard so the Draceana will kind of be the indoor version of that. Thanks for the heads-up about the fern. We may implement it in the area outside of the riparium. The Hypoestes splash will also be a gamble.

My LFS sources will have crypts for sure. This Tuesday I'm going on a big plant shopping spree in San Francisco. I'm also getting a black background, a thermometer and root tabs. The C. Wendtii I remember seeing potted submersed for $15. Is that a bad deal?

Crypts will definitely be on the shopping list. Along with Java Fern, Dwarf Sag, Vals (or some kind of tall grassy thing) and anubias.
If you want to put the Hypoestes in there I would recommend planting it on a trellis raft. I don't think it will root at all in a planter.

Vals or Sagittaria could be good for the underwater area, but I wouldn't grow them in the emersed portion. Vals can't really grow at all emersed and dwarf Sagittaria is a puny plant and not very full emersed.

Please look at that list of selections that I suggested for the riparium portion. Those are all real good ones and tested already. You will have much better luck using the tested plants that grow well in ripariums. If you don't you might not get much of a result at all.

Underwater-grown crypts will do just fine so long as they have some nice rhizome. You can expect much of the foliage to melt back if you plant them in riparium planters, but just give them some time and they will resprout with new emersed-adapted leaves. Be sure to use good root fertilization with crypts in planters. If you get potted crypts with lots of rhizomes all grown together you should tease the little divisions apart, trim the roots and plant several spread apart in each planter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
If you want to put the Hypoestes in there I would recommend planting it on a trellis raft. I don't think it will root at all in a planter.

Vals or Sagittaria could be good for the underwater area, but I wouldn't grow them in the emersed portion. Vals can't really grow at all emersed and dwarf Sagittaria is a puny plant and not very full emersed.

Please look at that list of selections that I suggested for the riparium portion. Those are all real good ones and tested already. You will have much better luck using the tested plants that grow well in ripariums. If you don't you might not get much of a result at all.

Underwater-grown crypts will do just fine so long as they have some nice rhizome. You can expect much of the foliage to melt back if you plant them in riparium planters, but just give them some time and they will resprout with new emersed-adapted leaves. Be sure to use good root fertilization with crypts in planters. If you get potted crypts with lots of rhizomes all grown together you should tease the little divisions apart, trim the roots and plant several spread apart in each planter.

I apologize for not making myself more clear. The Dwarf Sag and vals will not be emersed. The plants I mentioned that I was planning on buying was for the submersed part of the riparium. The crypts and anubias may go under the water or above. Dwarf Sag, Vals and Java Fern will go submersed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The Riparium package came today!

I was just leaving class when my Dad texted me. I immediately went into a LFS and picked up a black background and thermometer and rushed home.

I encourage anyone thinking of starting a riparium to document your setup and support Hydrophyte's Riparium Supply business. With our order he added some potting mix, gro soil tabs and two plants! It came to us in Northern CA very quickly and so far things are looking promising.

I immediately opened the box and planted the two plants. Spathiphyllum 'Golden Glow' and Lagenandra thwaitesii, an emersed crypt.

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The Golden Glow is not pictured that is the Lagenandra thwaitessii.

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Detailed directions on how to assemble the plants in the planter

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I topped it off with more potting mix than that but I'm pretty damn sure that's what it's supposed to look like.

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Boom. Ready for action.

We had some issues with water clarity so we did a 90% water change and are starting a new cycling period with that. So far the water is much more clear but we'll have our eyes on it. I really enjoy this part of starting up a riparium or aquarium. The blank canvas where your mind runs wild with ideas. Tomorrow is the big plant shopping day when my LFS get their new stuff in. Stay tuned.
 

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Hey I'm glad that stuff got there in good shape. Sometimes shipping to California can be kind of slow for some reason(???).

Nice work planting that stuff up. That looks perfect. Those plants were both on the small side, but just give them some light and they should grow for you. You might see the Lagenandra melt back some, but it will grow back. I have some here that I started a couple of months ago in planters and they are starting to fill out nicely. Now that you have the Lagenandra in there it will be good to keep the lid on the tank to keep humidity up.
 

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