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A Rocky Garden

Discussion in 'Aquascaping Journals' started by Culprit3, Apr 24, 2017.

  1. Rachel Jo

    Rachel Jo Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Hi Culprit, if your budget for a Co2 setup is limited then I would check out the possibility of using a Co2 extinguisher and a suitable regulator solenoid combo. Ive been running a set up like this successfully for over 5 years with no problems.
    I think The regulator was from ebay for aprox £40 and the extinguisher was a refurbed unit from a fire protection company for £20 supplied full and without a horn.
     
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  2. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Culprit

    Rachel has given you some information worth thinking about.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  3. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Mainly the problem with my CO2 is I don't have a regulator or solenoid. So the amount I inject varies from day to day as pressure goes down and I have to adjust the needle valve. Currently I'm saving up for a regulator and solenoid for about $40 from ebay which will make everything far easier.

    Kieth

    I am making a lot of mistakes, but I'm trying very hard to learn everything I can from them. As it continues to grow in and mature and I keep thickening plants, and planting more it should start looking better. Hopefully this next tank I'm building for my neighbor will come together far more smoothly. It will also help to have a far higher budget.
     
  4. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Culprit

    That will have to be perfect as you could be fully responsible for setting it up and maintaining it until its fully established.

    I am still learning after 50 years, you never stop learning.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  5. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    It should be. I'm hoping I can steer her away from a dwarf baby tears carpet and into a dwarf hairgrass carpet. Having a far larger budget means far easier with the right equipment. 5 lb. CO2 tank, all the plants immeaditly instead of trying to propogate them like I am, solenoid for CO2, higher light, ect.

    I turned on my light this morning on moonlight when it was still dark to take a peek at it in the dark. It was really cool just how much the plants close up at night!
     
  6. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Culprit

    So far so good. With her Aquascape get to choose and help you that way she cannot say she is not happy with the Aquascape.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  7. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I've been fighting with bba and gha, and after a few h2o2 treatments and rigourous maintnence plants are making a comeback and growing lots of new healthy growth. Carpet is the only plant that isn't doing well. The left side is covered in gha, peeling up, turning brown, and little shoots are constantly just coming off for no reason. If it doesn't recover soon I'm going to start replacing it with monte carlo or dhg. Might go for dhg as I think it will look better with the scape I have. Got 2 more nerites and 3 otos. Was going to get a SAE for gha and bba but they were all large and thats when they get large they get lazy and don't eat algea anymore. Also was going to get 4-5 amanos but at $7 each it adds up quick and I had some other stuff I needed to get at the fish store. The otos are super cute lol. As soon as I get a decent colony of rcs in my shrimp tank going i'm going to add over a good amount of rcs for cuc.
     
  8. Zeus

    Zeus Active Aquascaper

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    Sounds like fluctuating CO2 issues, which considering your hardware would be the most lickly culprit.
    You are treating/fighting the algae which is the wrong approach which we all make. What do the plants need to make them grow better and be healthier? whats the main issue with CO2 injected tanks? poorly implemented CO2 injection and flow and too much light.

    Getting livestock to get the aglae under control is the wrong approach in CO2 injected tanks, get the CO2 and light right.
     
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  9. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I really just need to get a proper solenoid regulator but I keep putting it off. Will it help to reduce lighting to 50%? I'm seeing lots of fresh healthy algea free growth on all plants except for baby tears. Even good algea free growth on the AR mini. So IDK if the baby tears are just that more sensitve? Im tempted to get a pot of dhg and see if it does well. If it does I'll just rip out baby tears and use dhg instead.
     
  10. Zeus

    Zeus Active Aquascaper

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    Cleaning you filter out regular will also help. Also what filter media do you have?
    It may be worth reducing the filter media esp the ceramic as that will help improve the flow.

    Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
     
  11. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I have lotsss of filter media. Stuffed full. Starting from the bottom going up. First tray, large cell black sponge, then a smaller celled white filter floss but not floss, it holds together like a sponge. Second tray halffull filter floss then felt polishing pads. I have a bag of ceramic biomedia on top of that, along with some extra bioballs. Third tray is a bag of seachem matrix and then filled full with bioballs. Probably too much but.... I have the filter size to handle it (265 gph).

    I clean it once a month. Always nasty but such a big job
     
  12. Zeus

    Zeus Active Aquascaper

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    So its reducing the Flow, just been trying to find the thread But cant ATM. But basically we dont need much Biological filtration as we have lots of plants and not many fish so our filters dont need the Big surface area,we have lots of plants which do the filtering, plus we do lots of big WCs frequently, got told off myself about how much i had so took 75% of my ceramic media out as it just clogs up the filter and reduces flow and my filter wasnt stuff. Leaving it a month between cleans is too long IMO High tech tanks produce x10 the detritus as low tach tanks so i've been advised.

    Have only course and medium sponges and about 1KG of ceramic media (did have 4kg plus some fine filter floss) been that way for months no problems, when i find the thread I will post a link.

    Flow is king in planted tanks
     
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  13. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I will take out all biomedia except for the bag of ceramic biomedia. I have very light stocking, 3 otos 2 tetras and 6 corys. Planning on getting rid of the corys when I can.

    I'll keep the coarse and medium in the bottom, then some filter floss in second, and the bag of ceramic in third. Sound good?
     
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  14. Zeus

    Zeus Active Aquascaper

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    Filter floss creates a lot of resitance and reduction in water flow. I dont use it and tanks super clear. Only time tank isnt clear is when I stir up the detritus on bottom of tank on WC day

    So next to no fish in real terms for size of tank, small fish also, your like me your in it for the plants/scape
     
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  15. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Going to be a big rescape coming soon. I've been playing around a lot with hardscape, and found one I love. I also invested in a 7 lb CO2 tank with a quality adjustable regulator and solenoid. I will be rehoming the pesky corydoras that have been digging up the HC Cuba and trading them in for neon tetras. This will not have any shrimp eating fish. Now that I've been getting baby RCS (Bloody Marys) in my shrimp tank I will be putting those in and getting a hopefully thriving population. There will also be nerites and Amano shrimp. This time I'm going to do it right. As soon as I can go to the fish store and rehome the corydoras, I will be starting the rescape. Its basically the same scape as I did for my neighbor, except it will have a sandy path running up it, creating depth. I will post pictures of the hardscape for critique as soon as I can. Planting will be HC Cuba, Blyxxa Japonica, Rotala Rotundifolia, Dwarf Hairgrass, S. Repens, Limnophila Aromatica, Hydrocotyle sp "Japan", Alternetha Reinekii mini, and Bacopa Compact.
     
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  16. lucasgg

    lucasgg Active Aquascaper

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    Sounds like fun. Make sure to buy enough substrate for that extra height at the back. It'll look so much better that way

    Sent from my HTC6545LVW using Tapatalk
     
  17. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I will. I'm actually really really happy with this scape. I'm wondering what ya'll are going to think about it. I've had no help, just been playing around. I impressed myself with the mini rockwork. It was easier then I thought. I scattered big chips around the base, then medium and small and tiny just around it, petering out to tiny

    P1050992.JPG
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    P1050999.JPG P1050998.JPG
     
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  18. Tim Harrison

    Tim Harrison Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm liking it too, nice hardscape. All you have to do now is transfer it to an actual tank and plant ;)
     
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  19. Culprit3

    Culprit3 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    planting ideas for right now:
    - carpet of Dwarf Hairgrass - no dry start. If it doesn't work out, I will use Monte Carlo.
    - Blyxxa Japonica right behind the main rock. Do you think a bit of rotala right there in front of the blyxxa to catch your eye there would be good?
    - On the right side of the scape on the mountain, where the path turns to the left for the last time, Bacopa Compact. It will be trimmed right up to the path and stop abruptly, so it keeps your eye trying to move up the path, creating depth.
    - Alternetha Reinickii mini on the left side of the main rock, in between where it leans on the little rock, and the larger rock behind the little one.
    - S. Repens around the bottoms of the rocks, blending into the DHG.
    - Hydrocotyle in some of the rocks
    - Moss in the cracks, softening and blending

    Thanks Tim!! I'll be rehoming the pesky Corydoras (even though I love them) but I can't have them in a newly rescaped tank. I'll just trade them in for neons. Stocking plan is 10-15 neons, 4 otos, 4-5 Amano shrimp, and a colony of RCS.

    Right now the aquascape I have I've weaned it off CO2. The HC died but I was just waiting to get CO2 so I could rescape. I will be reusing most of the plants. Am I good to just take the plants that are used to no CO2, and flood it and just inject CO2 at normal levels, or, should I slowly start adding CO2, and raising it just a little every day right now, so they're up to normal levels when I rescape?

    I've got a question. I'll put the base layer of Aquasoil in, then the large rock and surronding rocks, then fill in the large gap behind with lava rock, and then fill in with Aquasoil. How do I keep the path seperate and clean of the aquasoil underneath?
     
  20. Tim Harrison

    Tim Harrison Moderator Staff Member

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    Sounds fine, it's good to experiment with planting anyway. There is nothing wrong with swopping plants out and changing things around later. It's essentially what gardening is all about, and the best way to learn.
    As for CO2, you don't need to worry, just inject normal levels from day one; your plants will prefer it that way. You only need to ween when you're shutting the CO2 off.
    Haha, you don't, it's becomes a PITA; continuously sorting it out wears thin very quickly. I think the alternative is to try and separate the two areas with small rocks and just use sand for the path with no AS underneath.
    The DHG should grow to soften or disguise the harder lines.
     
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