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Hello fellow fanatics! New here!

Discussion in 'Introductions and Greetings' started by Will, Oct 10, 2013.

  1. Will

    Will New Member

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    My name is Will, and I am completely new to aquascaping. My first tank was African Cichlids about 6 months ago, and man were they fun. But today I want to talk to all of you regarding my new finding...aquascaping. I love the art and freedom, as well as growing live plants under water, just fascinating. My tank is 29 gallon, 3ft long. I had LED on there earlier but realized that wasn't going to grow anything. It did grow algae in my cichlid tank though.

    I cycled my tank with bacteria. I am using sand and an inch of soil which one cannot see. I have a pump pushing water and that is it. I am going a completely natural take on this ecosystem I am establishing. No Co2 either... I do not want to hear criticism on that point...It is something I want to try for myself..but! I would love to know what you all think of the current setup! Should I move some plants? I am thinking of plants in the rear center.

    Also, I have CFL lighting as my lights...Again, I am trying it, and have seen some serious GREAT success with CFL alone. But I am wondering if the same wattage applies? Should those be 2 40watt lights?


    Thanks a lot! Here is a picture.
     

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  2. greenfinger 2

    greenfinger 2 Active Aquascaper

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    Hi Will, Welcome to ASW:) Great you have done some research first (y) I like your scape layout too maybe move the red plant on the RH side over to the LH side with the other red plant ;) But a great start
     
  3. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Hello Will

    First welcome to ASW can you fill in your location please.

    Does that mean no filtration or heater?
    Just a little warning its not easy I strongly suggest you do all your research and then ask the experts for advice mistakes can be very costly.
    1ins of soil can you give us more information please it might not be the correct substrate or deep enough for rooted plants.

    Lighting is only one part of growing plants successfully, plants also require the correct water parameters, substrate, and fertilisers.

    There is a massive difference between "light" and the "correct" lighting for your tank

    [​IMG]

    Your Aquascaping to me looks like two separate Aquascapes but very similar on each side..

    The left side, if that was a small tank it has great possibilities the rock shapes, sizes and positioning.

    The right side its flat and uninteresting, the three front rocks in a row do nothing for the aquascape.

    Over all it lacks height especially the substrate there are little bumps and humps but I am referring to a 5-6ins deep back left or right corner and gently sloping it to the 3ins front opposite corner ( that is just a general guide)

    My other suggestion is do a lot of research on Aquascaping here on ASW and Google and it will not be long before you have a very well designed Aquascape.

    Finally ask plenty of questions that is one of the best ways to learn without making too many costly mistakes

    Keith:):)
     
  4. John N.

    John N. Administrator Staff Member

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    Welcome Will!

    -John N.
     
  5. Will

    Will New Member

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    I have a heater in the right corner and I do not have a filter. It is currently keeping the tank at 76 degrees F.

    I have 3-4" of clean sand on top of 1" of Fox Farm organic soil.

    What about a huge slope on the RH side, to give that side some height? I definitely agree with the dullness of the right side though. Thought the plants would help with that. This doesn't seem like a tank that would look good with bogwood either.

    I love this site and the great scapes you have all done. I appreciate the advice, and will continue my research. Thanks Greenfinger.

    One question I do have would be concerning the lighting. They say these bulbs are equivalent to 50 watts. So they are giving out 50 watts of light each, is that correct?

    Thanks for the tremendous help Keith!
     
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  6. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Will
    Is there any special reason you do not have any filtration?

    http://www.foxfarmfertilizer.com/
    If its a garden potting soil it "might" not be suitable for a planted or a fish tank.

    The "sand" looks like a very fine substrate, if you intend to glow rooted plants it could compact and crush the fine roots.

    [​IMG]

    This is a very rough think tank sketch.

    High LH side and the major rocks (not in a row) sloping with the main slope.

    Keith:):)
     
  7. Will

    Will New Member

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    I just kind of wanted it to be a self sufficient ecosystem without the use of a filter. It makes sense if the plants can process the bio-load that is within the tank. I am sure it will take time to acquire that balance, but I am up for the challenge. Definitely will measure the levels to make sure everything is ok within.

    The soil advice is coming from this website...I can't post links, but it is under the substrate section of the website...and dustins fish tanks on youtube and his website.

    I mean, it is not that small, larger than conventional sand...don't know exact diameter, but larger than I have seen for some planted tanks that have shown great success.

    I have to break up the granite I brought and washed from Lake Tahoe in California to get some smaller pieces...should have got some smaller ones while I was there. I have been thinking about this tank for several months now. Wanted to use some of the reds and colors I saw from Tahoe, and make it a Tahoe themed tank. I think it is a start and your advice is already helping out a lot. Here is what I have done so far today. Hope you like it. Definitely cloudy from just moving everything around...

    Thanks
     

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  8. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    [​IMG]

    Will

    Re that soil I am in Aust and not familiar with that brand at all I know several that have use potting soil successfully and others have had massive problems.

    Thank you for the information and the photo it helps a lot to know where you are up to.

    The red line as you can now see you do have a natural sight flow.

    1 I suggest you part bury a rock here as there could be a little substrate slippage.

    2 Just for balance no other reason

    3 I would prefer to see that red plant at the back LH corner it would then become a focal starting point not like a red stop light it could become.

    If possible try to have all the rocks a similar colour preferably the same as the substrate so that every thing blends in together.

    From this point onwards I would leave that tank alone and let it develop slowly.

    During that time do as much research and planning as possible for your next aquascape and use this tank as a learning curve.

    Keith:):)
     
  9. Will

    Will New Member

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    That sounds awesome. I think it looks pretty darn good right now. Again, thanks for the advice. I have a 10g that I am going to have some fun with. Just waiting for it to establish. Ill take some pictures again in time and hopefully everything is still alive.
     
    greenfinger 2 likes this.

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