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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
First ever journal in this hobby after having a number of tanks. I try my best to run a high tech setup and it will be fun to finally document a tank from start to finish. In this scape I'm using black lava rock, manzanita wood for hardscape, la plata sand and tropica soil for substrate. Livestock includes Ember tetra's, Harlequin rasbora's, Oto's, Amano shrimp, and Fire red shrimp. I'd appreciate any comments!

25g Seapora Cube tank
Eheim 2213 filter
10lb Co2 setup
Eheim 350 skimmer
Chihiros 45cm RGB LED

Plants:
Monte Carlo
Rotala H'ra
Rotala Green
AR Mini
Dwarf Hairgrass
Staurogyne Repens
Hygrophila Pinnatifida
Bolbitus
Trident Java Fern
Mini Pelia
Anubias Petite
Various Bucephalandra

Scape #1 2018


Some things I learned from this scape
- I only have 18x18x18 to work with so large or long growing plants overpower and throw off sense of scale
- Especially had problems with the Needle leaf java fern growing too long, reaching the glass then growing upwards
- Christmas & Pinna sort of created a canopy at the top of the tank and blocked too much light

Scape #2 2019
The tear down


Clean & ready to go


Wood & rocks in


Zips & substrate in


Day 1:


Day 35:


Day 52:


Day 64:


Day 77:


Day 130:



Day 326:



Some thoughts after..
- First time using tissue culture plants, the quality and quantity is amazing
- Need to work on the right side as some eggcrate is still visible
- Might add more small rocks + christmas moss to fill in
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Day 7 FTS



Corner Angle



Side Angle



One week of growth on the TC Rotala Green, H'ra & AR Mini




-Somehow had a massive die off of the Fire red neo's, was scooping a couple out every morning. Fish and Amano's are perfectly normal..
-Been doing 50% water changes every 2/3 days
-Trying a different co2 diffuser and flow pattern by moving the lily pipes and skimmer position
-Bumped up the light one intensity setting higher
 

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Your previous scape looks very nice. Great work in putting together a scape that suits the tank’s dimensions .

Looking forward to seeing how your new setup evolves.


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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I really liked your previous scape, can’t wait to see how this one grows in. Nice to see another Canadian too.
Gtaaquaria crew eh

Gorgeous tank! Loved the last scape, super excited to see this one grow out aswell!
Your previous scape looks very nice. Great work in putting together a scape that suits the tank’s dimensions .

Looking forward to seeing how your new setup evolves.


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Thanks everyone, will keep this thread updated on the weekly. Grow plants grow..
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
The tank at 19 days:



Everything is going well throughout the tank and I haven't had anymore shrimp deaths lately. All the stems got there first trim yesterday at around 2-4 inches to throw out double shoots and start creating the back bush. The H'ra is starting to show some yellow/pink colours and I replanted some trimmings to fill in any empty gaps. Now we wait..

I don't think I was getting the best co2 diffusion throughout the tank so I moved the diffuser to under the eheim filter inflow. Getting much better diffusion and seeing improved pearling which is a great sign. Don't know if this affects the filter in anyway but it does sort of burp every hour to let out excess gases. Anyway we'll see how it goes since its showing better results then blowing the bubbles around the tank. Really interested in setting up a co2 reactor of some sort in the future..





Hygrophila pinnatifida growing well + shrimp photobomb



Shoutout to some good looking nerite snails


 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Full Tank Friday update:



Tank is now 35 days old and the plants continue to grow well. Starting to see some nice green dust algae on some of the rocks and wood, I personally like the look as it gives it a more mature feel. Replaced the trident java fern with christmas moss and took out most of the srepens because it's the one plant that doesn't grow quite right for me. Monte carlo is spreading, stems are getting some height.. Pinnatifida kind of exploded and it's also growing much larger leaves compared to when I used it in my previous scape. Guess it has more room to grow so it's taking full advantage.

Only problem i'm having is BBA starting to grow on most of the slow growers.. Going to be removing all affected leaves and double up on waterchanges for a couple weeks. Lily pipes need a clean this week too.

Will post more shots this weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
So I broke my lily pipe inflow while cleaning today.. Thankfully it was at the tip where the inflow slits are so I attached a sponge and it still works for now. Co2 diffusion might even be better as no bubbles whatsoever get by and float to the top, all get pulled into the sponge+inflow.



A couple buce flowers



Monte carlo starting to drape down the rocks



Anyone know what these lines are in the H'ra leaves?

 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
The tank is coming along beautifully, keep the posts coming! I like the Hygrophila pinnatifida, nice looking plant.
Thanks, definitely in my top 3 favourite plants. Would love to make some sort of pinnatifida lava rock mountain scape someday.

Something like this:



Bump: Some critter shots:







Heavily cropped in just using a 50mm lens.
 

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I love the side angle photo. It shows the depth nicely.

Does your wood and sand develop GDA coating over time? How do you go about keeping them as tidy as possible?

I am about to transition my high tech stem plants setup to a low maintenance setup with lava rock, spider wood and slow growing plants. Livestock too will be very similar to yours.


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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I love the side angle photo. It shows the depth nicely.

Does your wood and sand develop GDA coating over time? How do you go about keeping them as tidy as possible?

I am about to transition my high tech stem plants setup to a low maintenance setup with lava rock, spider wood and slow growing plants. Livestock too will be very similar to yours.


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Only algae i've seen so far is the usual biofilm on the glass, GDA on the rocks/sand and some BBA on older leaves/moss.

When doing the weekly waterchange I try to waft out any detritus from the rocks/plants and stir the sand while siphoning everything bad out. I do 50%+ waterchanges and if you keep up with them you shouldn't have any big problems. You'll always have some small sort of algae in the end, it's all natural.
 

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Anyone know what these lines are in the H'ra leaves?

+1. I am also curious about this, as I have noticed a few of these on my H'ra. I assumed either damage due to fish, or maybe a nutrient def leading to increased fragility, as my tank is low tech and I don't measure all the micros, but your tank seems to be in top shape and still getting some. I'm interested to see if anyone else has experienced this or has any insight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Just got back from a week long trip..

Things have grown in a little more, and so has some algae. Did a minor trim removing decaying/bba leaves, a 50% waterchange and 2 days later did a 90% waterchange with a little h202 spray action. The bba had started to grow on some of the wood/rock surfaces and even on individual grains of sand. It's not too bad but i'll keep my eye on it.



 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
+1. I am also curious about this, as I have noticed a few of these on my H'ra. I assumed either damage due to fish, or maybe a nutrient def leading to increased fragility, as my tank is low tech and I don't measure all the micros, but your tank seems to be in top shape and still getting some. I'm interested to see if anyone else has experienced this or has any insight.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/...rs/1287949-lines-poor-quality-old-leaves.html

Been reading this thread and will be looking into adding Seachem Equilibrium to the mix.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Stems are starting to look great after the trim last week.



- Bought 7 more ember tetras to add to the shoal
- Bought 2 SAE's to help out with minor algae



Some examples of the bba thats growing currently. I'm confident with the hydrogen peroxide/SAE combo i'll have it knocked back eventually. Already seeing slight improvements.


 
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