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Discussion in 'Introductions and Greetings' started by kabriolet, Mar 21, 2017.

  1. kabriolet

    kabriolet Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I'm Karel, from Dendermonde, Belgium. I recently bought me a small tank (54 liter ,60 cm) to give the 3 year old daughter something nice to look at.

    Since I'm new at keeping fish, I started looking around for information before really getting started. I stumbled upon aquascaping and as a graduated landscape designer (which I don't do as a profession though), I was immediately intrigued by this form of art.

    Am trying to assemble as much information and inspiration as I can now, before really starting to set up the tank. My girlfriend is getting impatient, but it looks like I'll have to invest some more than we expected in order to get the tank as neat as we would love it to. In particular a CO2-set will be an investment we will have to make. I have no clue where to start on that matter. It looks really technical. Any advice is always welcome.
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2017

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  2. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    kabriolet

    Welcome to ASW will you fill in your Country and location in your profile please.
    If you get impatient that is where all the problems will start and usually ends up starting all over again.

    My advice would be cost every thing first as you already have a small tank this will control practically every thing you buy.
    Some will disagree but I will always advise starting of with a low tech tank then learn as much as possible before you take the big jump to High Tech.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  3. kabriolet

    kabriolet Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Thanks for the reaction. I will try to change my location in my profile if I find out where I can change the settings.

    I wasn't intending to go high tech immediately at first, but read somewhere that ground covering plants are hard to keep without addition of CO2. And we would love to use some of those in our tank.

    Maybe we should look for less demanding plants instead and keep it low tech for now. Or just try and see how it reacts in a low tech environment and learn from that experience.

    Verstuurd vanaf mijn ONEPLUS A3003 met Tapatalk
     
  4. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Kabriolet its located in Settings. Personal Details.

    Have a hunt in your area and see what is available as a starting point. There is a big difference between ground and low plants.

    That is always excellent advice to give to your self.

    I never had High Tech tanks its far cheaper and easier to maintain.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  5. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    kabriolet

    Both of these tanks are Low Tech

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  6. kabriolet

    kabriolet Aspiring Aquascaper

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    They're both looking good :)
     
  7. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    kabriolet

    I had to pull all my tanks down for health reasons only getting very close to 80 years young
    [​IMG]

    This is an old photo of the 5ft tank Terrascape I have not updated the photos for a while. Its far easier to look after and maintain than any Aquarium tank.

    I hope to start the 73cm Jebo Bow front tank very soon.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  8. kabriolet

    kabriolet Aspiring Aquascaper

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    A terrascape is nice, but we wouldn't have fish for the daughter then. ;-)
    We would just have wanted to add a little extra to the aquarium with a nice aquascape. But it's a challenge as a newbie. It will be a matter of not aiming too high at this stage.
     
  9. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    kabriolet

    My daughter has her own teenage daughter, my granddaughter even has her own children.
    Its the old saying "Been there done that"

    Near enough is not good enough, therefore good enough is not near enough, and only your best will do. Keith: many years ago.

    That is what I always do myself and taught for 26 years

    WRONG You can still aim very high no matter what type of tank you would like to create.


    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  10. kabriolet

    kabriolet Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Of course, what I meant is that I might have to limit myself to species which are adapted to low tech tanks. The ambitions can be the same, but I'll have to study a bit more to see which plants are suitable to achieve what I have in mind, and build the design around those plants. It's an extra challenge, but it's giving me more directions now.
     
  11. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    kabriolet
    At the moment you several ideas but no actual starting point other than Low Tech which is the type you want to do.
    By design I assume you mean Aquascape. Substrate, rocks, driftwood etc
    Suitable plants and plant foods
    Species is in reference to the plants?
    Inhabitants. Run a mile from the Daughter must have or that looks nice
    Filtration. type, eg HOB Canister and UGF or a combination
    Heating. Wattage
    Lighting plus timer
    Test kits Y/N I preferred to have my tested by the LFS as it was only minutes away plus over all it was a lot cheaper.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  12. kabriolet

    kabriolet Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I mean aquascape indeed. Substrate, nutrients, hardscape materials, plants, maintenance,... I have an (internal) filter and 50 W heater. Those came with the tank. Standard led lights included as well in the cover (very basic tank), but i cant find the strength of the light in the manual, nor can it be dimmed. That might be a weak point for a low tech tank.

    I'm making a longlist now of plants that are not too demanding and am also trying to make a selection of possible fishes. Both lists will be narrowed down later. They should be in balance with each other. I think I need to know what fish we would like to keep first, so I can research what kind of environment they like and than how I want to create that environment for them.

    I'm not sure yet if i will test the water at home or at the shop. There aren't many specialised shops in the immediate environment, so it might be faster to test it myself, even though it might be more expensive. Still need to figure all of that out. That's why I'm here. To find the matching pieces of the puzzle. ;-)
     
  13. Wendy1B

    Wendy1B Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Welcome, and congratulations on your daughter and your first tank! I agree with Keith, much better to start low-tech (lower light, leaner fertilization schedule, non-pressurized Co2options, slower growing plants), and once you have that mastered and are pleased, then consider delving into the high-tech world. I did just that, and am very grateful I faced the challenges and found the solutions which worked for me in the slower changing low-tech tank I used to have. In high-tech, once a problem starts, you have less time to solve it because it just explodes all over your aquarium in a very rapid progression. Do you happen to have any link to the set up you bought? Or could you post a picture of that light you're wondering about? I'm sorry, I don't have time right now, but I will show you pictures of two low-tech plants I was very successful with as a ground cover. One is a Valisneria, and the other is Anubius nana 'Petite'. I also just received a new to me Anubius micro which I think is lovely and will be even lower growing than the 'Petite' variety.
     
  14. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Wendy has given you some excellent advice
    http://www.aqadvisor.com/ That WWW will help you with selecting your fish use it as a very good guide.
    At the moment do all the research and do not buy any thing check with us first.
    Can you check that out with where you bought the tank.

    If its a kit tank they are usually sold at a price not with high quality fittings, which naturally cost more.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  15. kabriolet

    kabriolet Aspiring Aquascaper

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    It's a kit tank indeed. Can find some information about the filter and the heating element, but the led light only mentions 50-60 Hz, 10 Watt. The shop can't provide me anything. It's a supermarket that had this as a one day offer. Normally they don't sell aquaria
     
  16. Wendy1B

    Wendy1B Aspiring Aquascaper

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    sagittaria subulata.jpg
    Here is a video about the Sagittaria subulata (sorry, I called it a Vallisneria in my earlier post) I grew well as a carpet in my old low-tech 55 gallon aquarium. I love this plant because it makes you feel like a master aquatic gardener right away! It really is a hardy little plant.

    Also, here is a picture I found of how one hobbyist used it as a carpet in his tank:
     
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  17. Wendy1B

    Wendy1B Aspiring Aquascaper

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    An even shorter low-tech plant you could use to achieve a carpet-like effect is these beautiful little Anubius barteri Nana 'Petite'. They like their roots to attach to rocks and driftwood. So, if you have any rocks or driftwood (also called 'Hardscape') in your set up, you can tie these plants to them with cotton thread, and in as little as a few weeks, or maybe as long as a few months, they will attach their roots to the rock/wood and you can cut the thread away. They are beautiful, and a great contrast against the Sagittaria:
    Anubias-petite-johnniesgarden_zps6f28992b.jpg anubias-barteri-var-nana-petite.jpg
     
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  18. Wendy1B

    Wendy1B Aspiring Aquascaper

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    And here is the Anubius 'micro' which I didn't know about when I had my low-tech tank, but I have it tucked away in a shady spot in my new high-tech set up and it is beautiful and I think it would make a lovely little carpet in front of the Sagittaria or the Anubius nana 'Petite', as it is very low-growing with tiny leaves about the size of a pencil eraser. I would tie these to small pieces of flat driftwood if I wanted to use them as a carpet in my tank, or have a coarser gravel on top for their roots to attach to. I like this 2nd picture as it shows how another hobbyist used it successfully in a nano tank as a foreground plant ANUBIUS MICRO.jpg anubius micro in tank.jpg :
     
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  19. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Wendy

    Over the years I discovered the slower growing Anubia eg Petite and the smaller leaf nana preferred to be attached to older and softer DW. Once established they will travel across a more open substrate 1-3mm river stones.

    What I also found was they liked plenty of water movement.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  20. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    kabriolet

    Can you post a photo of what you have. The biggest concern with "Kit" tanks they are built for a price. I would use this tank as a fast learning curve then progress to a better quality tank with all quality fittings, when you think you are ready to upgrade and, the "Kit tank" can be used for on growing plants and fry fish.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     

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