New member - would love opinion/advice

Discussion in 'Journals' started by natalie, 4 Sep 2008.

  1. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Hi guys!

    New member, thought I'd show my 1st attempt at a proper planted tank. I've had plants in a tank before, but nothing aquascaped.

    The plants are as follows,
    Java Moss
    Java Fern
    3/4 different types of anubias (not sure about them though)
    2 Moss balls
    Salvinia molesta (I think)
    Lots of plants I have no idea about because they were in the LFS and on sale and didn't have a name tag Naughty I know.

    I know the pictures are fairly small but I'd really appreciate if someone could tell me what plants are in there!

    fulltank.jpg
    whiptailandrasbora.jpg
    corysmossball.jpg

    I would like to add a carpet of something on the left hand side, sweeping down from the plants waiting to grow out, forwards to the front left hand side of the tank to make a kind of half circle. Sort of.

    The lights are the Juwel ones, one is "nature", the other "day" and they're both 45W. I have a little c02 canister on there too, the Tetra one - aerosol type thing. I have noticed a difference in the plants growth, though there's no pearling.

    Looking forward to your comments!
    Nat
     
  2. SuperColey1

    SuperColey1 Member

    Messages:
    2,685
    Location:
    Lincoln UK
    from the pics you have echinodorus, anubias, Bacopa, Crypt Balansae crispulata, Java Fern, mosses and marimo algae balls. Not sure of many of the others. Pictures look quite green.

    Do you have only one bulb over the tank? Is it a daylight one? If poss could do with a pink light to balance the colour a little.

    AC
     
  3. TDI-line

    TDI-line Member

    Messages:
    1,535
    Location:
    Yaxley, Peterborough
    [posh voice on]

    Hello and welcome Natalie.
     
  4. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Thanks guys, and thanks to Supercoley for the plant ID.

    The lighting in the tank is the standard Juwel lighting, 45W x 2 bulbs, one is a "day" one is a "nature". All the lights were off in the room and I suspect the green is reflecting off the white sand a bit. Or, my camera is rubbish :lol:
    I was thinking about getting some different bulbs but they are quite expensive at the size I need and I'd need to do a bit of research first.

    Do you have any recommendations for a carpeting plant?

    Nat
     
  5. Garuf

    Garuf Member

    Messages:
    4,959
    Location:
    Leeds.
    Not many carpet plants will do very well with an optimat, pressurised co2 being the norm and industry standard if you like.
    Regarding lights many on this forum will endorse lampspecs for lights, there's even a thread somewhere on here about which are the best colours to pick.
    I personally really like your tank, I'd add some landscape rocks though and swap the java moss for fissedens fontanus.
    That aside, welcome to the forum.
     
  6. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Thanks very much Garuf!Fissidens fontanus is gorgeous looking, it's very delicate.
    To be honest, the only reason Java Moss is in there is because it's relatively cheap, the fish like it and it's very hard to kill. I thought it was best to start with things that were hard to kill or cheap so it didn't matter :lol:

    With guidance I don't see why I can't progress to more "difficult" plants. I was thinking about pressurised c02, however, it's the cost involved that puts me off
     
  7. Garuf

    Garuf Member

    Messages:
    4,959
    Location:
    Leeds.
    You could get a second hand regulator and a fire extinguisher for about £50. It's always the initial outlay that is the most expencive part. Infact I think I have a regulator going spare...
     
  8. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    I'm not sure if I'm ready to take the leap into pressurised c02, I'm quite scared of blowing up my living room! :lol:
    Do you think it's worth it with my tank setup and how much would you want for the regulator?
     
  9. Garuf

    Garuf Member

    Messages:
    4,959
    Location:
    Leeds.
    Now there's a point... What is your set up?
    Tank size:
    Filter:
    lights: 2x54watt
    substrate:
    fertilisation:
     
  10. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Tank size - not sure of the dimensions, but it's a Rio 180
    Filter - standard Juwel
    Lights - 2x 45W
    Substrate - Argos play sand :? (please don't tell me off, I didn't know about fert when I stuck it in! :lol: )
    Fert is a brand I bought the other day that I can't remember the name of - it's a liquid one that I dose once a week after a water change. I'm planning on getting some root tabs when I find some reasonably priced
     
  11. Dan Crawford

    Dan Crawford Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,266
    Location:
    Daventry, Northants
    Hello and welcome to the forum!

    I really like your tank so far, just a couple of ideas that may or may not enhance the scape....
    Personally i'd do away with the moss balls or move them to just in front of the base of the wood. The swords in front of the wood could be moved back to behind the wood and maybe replaced with some crypts?

    The Green Machine have an offer on Tropica Root Tabs at the minute and maybe you could think about dosing TPN+ too.

    Cheers

    Dan
     
  12. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Hi Dan and thanks!

    The swords are actually behind the wood at the moment. Where it looks like the wood is hidden behind the plants to the right, it actually stops. It's almost like a triangle shape. I've got a crypt to the left (you can't really see it) and I think the addition of some crypts/different long-leafed plants instead of the swords is a really good idea. I'm not so fond of the swords in all honesty, they're a bit frail. Although it's probably my lack of knowledge about them.
    Thanks!
     
  13. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Tank size: 180l
    Filter: Juwel standard
    lights: 2x45watt
    substrate: Argos playsand
    fertilisation: Nutrafin Plantgro liquid
     
  14. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth Member

    Messages:
    3,955
    Location:
    worksop, nottinghamshire
    get rid of the plantgro and replace it with something else. I tried it and it was rubbish, it must of been really diluted, did the plants no favours at all.
     
  15. beeky

    beeky Member

    Messages:
    879
    Location:
    Chippenham, Wiltshire
    The problem with the common swords is that they just get too big for an average tank. Just one plant can take over most of a 2 foot tank. Nice 'scape though.
     
  16. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Ah, well that's not the look I'm going for. To be honest, I'm not sure what kind of look I'm going for, but it's not a tank full of swords.
    I'll have to see what else I can find to put there instead. Ta beeky!
     
  17. a1Matt

    a1Matt Member

    Messages:
    2,518
    Location:
    Bromley
    Nice tank :D

    I actually like the plain sand look, it works well with your layout . As such I wouldn't hurry to get a carpet :)

    There are so many facets to the hobby you could spend all day every day reading up and still learn somehting new. A good place to start might be with this fert article. viewtopic.php?f=34&t=1211 It takes a while to get your head around it, but once you do, it is easey peasey and a LOT cheaper to use dry ferts than buying any bottled mix.

    If you do jump into CO2 be prepared for everything to get a lot bigger! I had my first 'real' planted tank for a year before I took the plunge and have never looked back!
     
  18. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Thanks! I've thought about EI before but it looks quite daunting even though it's not really. I spent £7.99 on a bottle of fert that I'm pretty sure isn't really doing anything much to the plants.
    I'm going to take the plunge into pressurised c02 when I get some extra money together, but even the cheap stuff is quite expensive. Mind you, all my hobbies are expensive - I'm an artist as well as an aquarist and that can get pretty pricey too. I really love the idea of a carpet, although I'm aware it's probably out of my league at the moment.
    Thanks for the compliment and advice!
     
  19. vauxhallmark

    vauxhallmark Member

    Messages:
    568
    Wow, for your first planted tank you've got a great eye!

    You will probably replace every piece of equipment that you've bought, and most of the plants, and possibly even the tank as you get more and more into this branch of aquarium keeping, but with the flair for the overall shape, balance, and design that you're demonstrating already, it's really just the icing on the cake.

    Don't worry about using swordplants, even if most of them won't work in your tank long term (some others might, quadricostas or tenellus for example). It's great to see tanks which don't stick to the 'big 5' plants, or the current trendiest/hardest/newest plant. I'm guilty of doing both those things. It's hard not to look at some of the great tanks on this (and others) sites, and not think - 'I must achieve that effect' - so it's always good to see someone coming at it with a completely fresh mind.

    Congratulations!
     
  20. natalie

    natalie Newly Registered

    Messages:
    15
    Thanks very much!
    I've had to physically walk away from the external filter section of my LFS as I know that I'm going to end up buying one if I'm not careful. I could get rid of the internal Juwel one then - more room for plants!
    I've got to admit, it's a constant struggle not to buy new stuff. I've already got a small list of stuff that I think would help out a lot or make the tank look better - for instance the carpeting plant that I've set my heart on, or the root balls (that are quite expensive) and so on.

    Thanks for the compliment! I wasn't going for something that was wholly natural I suppose. It's more of a sculpture type tank. Don't get me wrong, I love the different styled tanks that the guys here do, it's just that I don't think I'd be very good at maintaining half of them! I'm really glad you like the tank, thanks again!
     

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