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Bite the bullet


18 Jan 2016
After 2 years it was time for a change. So Stig of the Sump (https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/stig-of-the-sump.48558/) is no more.

Fish have been moved to the sump. Plants either floating in sump or for sale.

Spec has changed a little.

Tank: Signature 900

Filter: sump

Light: aquaone plantglo

Co2: yes

Circulation: CP1

Hardscape: Locally collected limestone (from an old wall). Possibly Heather too.

Substrate: TBC. Probably a bit of John innes no3, some tropica soil and cosmetic sand.

Planting: not sure yet. Will use some old plants, anubias, java fern, some crypts maybe.

Here's where we are so far.
Interested in this one! I’m currently soaking a shed load of heather,

Most of it was fired last year, but some was still green, so I stuck it in a friends kiln for 3/4 hours!

Dry as a bone!

I haven’t stripped all the bark off, I’ve just scrubbed at it with a brush! Quite like the different colours! Just hope it doesn’t do anything to the water?!

Have you used it before?

Just wondering about the limestone, will it not change the water hardness and up the PH?

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Limestone will harden you're water and raise the ph i used this in my malawi tank and it kept the ph around 8.5

Not used Heather before. It's been sat in the back garden most of the year, I'm just going to put it in as is. There's very little bark so I think the bioload from it will be quite low.

In terms of the stone, I'm informed by @dw1305 that because it's 'old' limestone it should not have too great an effect. My water is very soft and I'll be doing weekly water changes. I'll suck it and see.

Hi all,
Limestone will harden you're water and raise the ph
Yes it will leach some calcium carbonate and raise pH, dGH and dKH.
because it's 'old' limestone it should not have too great an effect.
<"Carboniferous age"> (~350,000,000) years BP.

All really old limestones are hard, and won't effect water composition very much, if they weren't so hard they wouldn't have lasted as long. Have a look at <"Ingleborough....">, the glacial erratic photo shows how much limestone has dissolved in rain-water during the last 12,000 years. This is the same limestone outcrop, just further east.

An easy way to look at the effect on water chemistry (of soft water or RO) is to look at conductivity, if the <"level doesn't raise very much"> in a week then you haven't added many ions.

A granite cobble won't change the conductivity at all and a lump of cuttle bone will change it a lot.

cheers Darrel
You've made the right decision. The hardscape is great. Has an epic feel to it. Whenever you think its time to change the scape....its always time to change the scape. Everythime i have done that (we are probably at over 30 times and ive only been fish keeping for 1.5 years lol), the next scape has always been better.

Continual improvement and that is definitely happening here.
I'll admit I thought you were mental for taking down such nice aquascape but that is going to be stonking when you get it planted.
I like the Wood and the rock work, what kind of Wood is that?

Hi, it's heather. Collected locally, just dead broken bits.

I thought you were mental
I've thought the same! But nothing ventured, nothing gained. Fingers crossed it looks ok planted and doesn't 'go bad'. I've resused a fair amount of the old plants so hopefully a smooth transition...
I've planted it up tonight. Thanks to @buttons and @Ryan Thang To for the moss and rotala, frankly huge mass of plants.

Not really used rotala before in a big way. Having just planted I've realised I probably should have trimmed the stems shorter so the grew in more in shape and didn't shadow so much. I may also have planted too densely?

Should I trim now, or give it a couple.of weeks for them to establish and root first?

Plants in are:
Anubias nana petite
Java fern narrow
E. Tenellum
Various crypt
H. Tripartita
Fissidens fontanus
Weeping moss
And there's marsilea hirsuta and some lileopsis to come.

Advice welcome.

Loved the root sections of your hardscape but now they're all hidden with the planting :(:lol: