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About Me

  1. Hey everyone! I’m going to be setting up a 75 gallon tank soon and I’m looking for aquascape ideas or examples. I’m not trying to steal ideas because I do want to make it my own but I have no idea where to start. Thank you! Below is my current 40 gallon and the stock that’s going to mostly in the 75. Any constructive criticism is appreciated
  2. Where should I put the last few plants? Any other suggestions? Leave them here or on YouTube 🙂
  3. I'm just getting started with the early planning stages of my 55 gallon tank! Where do you begin with scaping? How do you come up with a theme? I'm lost when it comes to getting started! My first tank, a 29 gallon, was for me to play around with and just get my feet wet with the hobby. Now I want something with a more cohesive look to it. Do you buy hardscape pieces first and build around that? Do you go seeking hardscape to fit your vision, then build a plant aesthetic from there? I'm a complete novice to scaping. I'm using a natural color off-white sand as my substrate (inert) and Il'l be keeping the tank low tech. I want something that is low maintenance and easy to clean, and I'll need a little driftwood because I'd like to try a bristlenose pleco for this one.
  4. I have a couple of little 3 gallon rimless cubes that were housing some shrimp. The shrimp moved into the community Tanks and the little cubes were looking sad. I had some supplies laying around so on the spur the moment I decided to see if I could make one of these cubes look decent while I watched the live stream. I think it turned out pretty well. No fish, but some snails probably hitch hiked in. Plants are: Java Fern, Rotala H’ra, Baby Tears, Java Moss, Guppy Grass and Moss Balls.
  5. Planted Nano Pea Puffer Cube For the first time ever, I have a beautiful rimless all-in-one aquarium. Over the weekend, my partner and I picked up a Tideline AIO 11.3G, which is just under 14” cubed. Our eventual goal is to house a single pea puffer (and possibly some amano shrimp as cleanup crew). As a seasoned aquarist, I know this aquarium will take a while to establish before I can add our new tiny friend. In the mean time, I will be keeping a journal about its progress. Full disclosure, I did pretty much pull this entire post directly from my blog. I use the blog to share information with friends and family and document my journey, but it makes it rather easy when I can format it there and just paste everything over here to spark conversation. Hope you enjoy! 💚ALL PLANTS ARE FROM AQUARIUM CO-OP💚 The Process Substrate Egg crate structure with *Magic Mud™️ There are two additional layers of egg crate stacked in the back to create depth without using excess substrate. It also brings the nutrient layer up a bit so it’s easier for the plants in the back to reach. As you can see, there’s about 1/2” of space from the edge of the egg crate to the glass, allowing me to keep a clean edged look on this rimless tank. In the back, I have a total of 1.5” of nutrient-rich layer. This will help feed the Sagittaria subulata (dwarf sag), Ludwigia repens, and Helanthium tenellum (dwarf chain sword) without having to reach their roots through 4” of sand. Hardscape Initial substrate pour. Sand is Caribsea Super Naturals Torpedo Beach and accent gravel is Spectrastone shallow creek regular. Addition of hardscape. I am unsure what kind of wood this is, but it’s very splintery and the glue wasn’t holding very well. Instead, I chose to zip tie it temporarily to ensure it doesn’t disturb anything or shift when I filled the tank. The rocks are a grayish toned dragon stone. All hardscape and sand was acquired from Dallas North Aquarium, which is an excellent store and I do highly recommend them. Top-down view. As you can see, I chose a budget light, the Lominie Asta 20. I will write a full review once I have tested the light for a decent period of time, but so far I really like it. Planting Addition of Sagittaria subulata – contained in the back corner behind the hard scape. My hope is that the hardscape will keep it from taking over the tank. This stuff grows fast and I really don’t want to be yanking up runners every week. Cryptocoryne wendtii sp. pink flamingo in the front (I am so ridiculously excited about this plant, it’s so pretty!) and Ludwigia repens just behind. Althernanthera reineckii and Helanthium tenellum added, and some baby java ferns tucked into the holes in the rocks. We added some Anubias nana petite, some Bucephalandra sp. Green wavy, and shoved some moss (Christmas moss? Unknown sp) into the splintery bits of the driftwood. The zip tie is a bit unsightly, but I would much rather have an unsightly zip tie for a month than have my hard work ruined by a stubborn piece of wood. I squeezed an established sponge filter over the tank, filled it, and started up the filter! After about 10 hours, the water is tannic, but no longer super hazy. The filter pump is a little too aggressive for my liking, so I have one on order that’s a much slower 80gph instead of 150gph. A single pea puffer isn’t going to need that much crazy filtration, and quite honestly the poor thing would probably get blown around by the flow. I’ll reserve the pump that came with the tank for another project. Final thoughts This scape turned out pretty great, and I’m really enjoying staring at it, even without livestock. I uploaded a YouTube short of the “sparkle” that happens in this aquarium that photos just can’t accurately capture. You can find that video here if you’re curious. *Magic Mud™️ is a product of my own design that I am still working on perfecting. Its main components are organic worm castings and natural red clay. The egg crate is simply there to keep everything in place and to avoid having the soil slide down to the edges of the aquarium, giving it a nice clean look all the way around without sacrificing a nutrient-dense base layer. Want to see more? Follow me @Nirvanaquatics on Instagram and Facebook!
  6. I was looking through some old photos I had. Some of these pictures were of the plants when I first got them. I relized when looking at some of these "wow, this has really grown!" Show off some pictures of that plant the day you got it to present day. Hygrophillia Compact | March 7 2021 Present Day. Its already split into 3 different hygrophillias. Cryptacoryne Wendetii Red | May 21st | Plant right infront of the spongefilter Present Day, its probably doubled in size! It hasn't even been a month.
  7. Good afternoon fellow Nerms! I have a quick question as I begin to set up my 10 gallon tank for my halfmoon Betta, Sakura. I've done some research and keep coming across conflicting answers. I was planning on using some small and medium-sized rocks to anchor some java fern and anubias to, as well as to help create a more natural-looking environment for him along with a tall, smooth piece of manzanita driftwood, and I love the look of dragon stone, especially when used with fine sand substrate. I worry, however, about it possibly ripping his fins. I wasn't sure if it would be ok since I'm only using smaller pieces at the bottom of the tank and not using big ones as center pieces like we see in those cool, fancy aquascapes. I'm also using them as "dividers" between my sand at the front of the tank and the little bit of Ecocomplete I'm using in the back of the tank for the stem plants to root in and enjoy. It's a 10 gallon column tank (don't worry, he has a coconut cave that will be suction-cupped towards the top and I'm using tall stem plants he can rest in and on as well), so I figure he won't be spending a whole lot of time at the bottom, which is going to be heavily planted around the rocks and bottom of the driftwood with different crypts and other smaller plants...Any advice?? Anyone have experience with Bettas living happily with dragon stone in their home? Or am I creating a fin rot disaster waiting to happen? I'm not dead set on dragon stone at all, I know Seiryu stone or large river rock stones would be cool, too. Totally open to suggestions as well. 😊
  8. The photo shows looks right now. With the exception of my having already removed the chunk of mopani that was in the left side of the tank, this is how it has looked for years now, with the exception of the plants coming out of the back and the duckweed, pogostemon, and monte carlo you can see in the middle area. Definitely time for a change. The pogostemon will be moved to a different spot, of course, don't want that right there in the middle. A lot of the crypts will come out. For now, I'll drop those into the QT I just set up. I'm waiting for the dragon stone I ordered, and I'll be ready to go to town on redoing this tank. New plants arrived from AC yesterday, and my new substrates are on hand. Just need the stone. I'm excited to redo this tank. I plan to part of the existing substrate in there as a base, as well as there being no change in the filter media, so it won't have to cycle from scratch.
  9. I have one female juvenile guppy that managed to survived my tank reno. I removed gravel substrate and replaced it with Eco-complete and Fluval stratum for planted tank. I added driftwood and plants (will continue to add as I find healthy specimens of anubias, crypts, fava fern and/or amazon sword). I cycled it so and it's now ready to add fish! So I'm looking for stocking suggestions and/or feedback on the following: Shrimp (6ish?) - Amano or RCS not sure yet Corydoras (6) Guppies (10ish?) Aaaand a bright, flashy schooling fish... Cardinals? Rasboras? I've had good luck with Serpae tetras but worry about fin-nipping with guppies. Today I'm thinking of adding the 6 corys and a male guppy. I don't want to increase bio-load too quickly.
  10. New here, almost decided to trade all my fw fish in since my 10 g reef tank is a fraction of the trouble of my fw tanks. Here is my 1 yr old 75 g about one year ago, just starting with red algae and bba: And here it is today, substrate removed and replaced with inert sts. Algae and cyano is about half as bad as it was 2 mo ago: I'm planning on pulling the co2, removing the (despised) fluval canister, and placing a sicce silent 1.5 behind the fake rockwall, running the return along the top of the wall like a very wide, trickling waterfall. Tank will be 2/3rds full of water. Nothing but the sicce wire coming into the tank. Matten filter foam on the edges of the rackwall closing the 3/4" gap. Right now my black marbled angels live behind the rockwall due to bullying from the panda angels. Flora will be java ferns, anubias, etc on the wall and in the water. Maybe a few ocelot sword. Also I have a 6 g fluval edge with the top removed Id like to turn into a pond tank. Also have a mostly softy reef tank that is being slightly remodeled 1st!
  11. I started this 55 Gal tank around 15 years ago. Its had good times and bad but about to redo it with the largest change it has ever had. I want to get more live plants into it. This has proven to be a bit of a challenge. Last year I added some plant friendly substrate and purchased a a kit of live plants. What I got was a few bags of substrate several small puck size containers that contained plant clipping and a bottle of fertilizer along with some other assorted tools. The Duckweed lasted just over a month before all of it died, of the rest of the plants only some of the moss survived even that long. My Pleco's would not let them alone to allow them to root and since they are as old as the tank I am not getting rid of them. Where I live in South Eastern New Mexico the water here is just about the hardest in the country per the USGS. The water stains on the back should be some indication of how hard the water is as I clean them off every few months. The air here is also very dry. I tend to add 7 to 10 gal of water every other week or so. I have not added fish in about a year and most in the tank are 7 or older. The pregnant Zebra Danio is probably 7 or 8. My question is this, with the goal of making this tank more plant friendly and perhaps more friendly to other types of fish, hard water is hell. What steps should I take and what plants are going to be advised.
  12. Got my stand built and into the second week of "fishless" cycle. Looking forward to adding plants and my driftwood (that's been in a bucket for 4 days and still wont sink)
  13. So i ended up just getting some fake plants and pulling them off their weights bundling them all up to create a fry Nursery for when my guppies drop. This will have to work until I can get some live floating plants
  14. Sword plant melted 😞 so i went and got a different plant from local aquarium store instead of online. Changed my lighting a little bit moved acouple stem plants around. hopefully plants thrive. 🙂
  15. One of the benefits of being in the freshwater hobby is that most things don't tend to deteriorate and poison the water like they do in marine tanks. I've taken this to heart and wanted to share a few of my applications: All of these decorations below have been in the tanks for six months or more, with no ill effects. (I name my tanks after fictional worlds to make them easier to refer to in conversation.) 1. ENDOR This 6 gallon Marineland Portrait houses 2 pea puffers that are getting along for now (I'm watching them closely and may be separating as they mature). The two Imperial walkers you see are Micro Machines toys, and I gave them a light wash in watered-down black acrylic paint and wiped it all off. This had the effect of bringing out some details. To enable them to stand up in the gravel, I superglued a half-inch of plastic drinking straw to the bottoms of the feet. 2. DAGOBAH (See a trend starting here?) This is a 38-Long, stocked with Congo tetras, serpae tetras, and a single platinum angel. It's on continuous drip water changes (future post about that coming). The vines come from the floral department of Hobby Lobby. I glued them into floating foam using a technique The King of DIY demonstrated recently. The crashed spaceship is a brand-new Hallmark ornament. I drilled some holes in the bottom to allow water in so it would sink. 3. SPACEBALL This 20-Long has no live plants in it, so my water changes are frequent! With some assorted tetras and a single moonlight gourami as a centerpiece fish, this is my strangest tank. The floating planets come from a kids' educational solar system "mobile". The crystals came from eBay, and the astronauts are part of a Mega-Bloks Halo toy set. They don't fall over because I superglued a half-inch of drinking straw to the feet. I also gave them a light black acrylic wash to bring out detail. And for that extra alien touch, I mixed in a bag of rainbow glass beads into the black coarse aquarium sand. 4. ATLANTIS: Also a 20-Long, this tank houses a colony of multies with rummy nose tetras who stay out of the way. These statues are called the "Argonath" from Lord of the Rings. They're really a pair of resin bookends that came with one fo the DVD sets, and you can find them on eBay now. I drilled holes in the bottom to let water in, so that they would sink. So there you have it. What unconventional decor have you put in your tanks? Thanks for reading! Bill
  16. I planted the monte carlo in my 5 gallon to see if it would carpet without co2. Its been a few months and nothing yet. Now time to try something esle. I need help on choosing what kind of plants to put in here. It houses one betta named Hugo. Floating plants are illegal where I live.
  17. Hi Everybody! My name is Lisa. I am from Summit County, CO which has mining, skiing and tons of snow. I started my aquarium 2 years ago because I was told, “No more house plants!” by my hubby. So, to expand my plant knowledge, I began studying aquascaping. Thanks to Aquarium Co-Op my underwater garden is thriving. I’m here to learn even more. I started with a 5 gallon and a year of dialing in my well water and tank I ended up dialing in a smoothly running established tank that ran for nine months with out changing. But then disaster struck, when, while getting new carpet, my bed frame fell, bouncing off of me and falling diagonally onto my tank. Long story short I now have upgraded happily to a 10 gal. I do also have a 3 gallon at work, that really only has Java fern overgrowth, drift wood and nerite snails for cleaning. Why only two aquarium? Well remember that sweet loving hubby of mine. We all make compromises, but with that being said I do have a passion for my main tank and am hoping to reestablish that ecosystem I had in this new tank. Current Plants: -Java fern, both windelov and traditional -Java moss, what can I say, it’s quickly becoming a girls best friend. -Anubias nana petite, yea it’s coming along...I think... -Hydrocotyle tripartita ‘Japan’-just got this sucker but it’s perfect! -Radican Marble Queen Sword, growing some new leaves after the stress of the move -Ruffle Sword also got a massive trim and coming back. -Red Dwarf Aquarium Lilly, my absolute favorite! and tons of Marimo moss spread out on my driftwood. I do have a few fish: -mustard gas betta- you saw it coming. His name is O.D.B. He was chosen and named by my man. -a golden mystery snail-the chef Raekwon -a clown pleco- inspect the deck -a nerite snail- method man I do plan on completing my Wutang tank here in the future with the extra room but am waiting for everything to get established before doing that. With all that being said, Thank you all for the knowledge. Now, for the learning cycle to continue.
  18. I am new to live aquarium plants and bought a handful of hardy ones to try. I’m a bit hesitant to plant the Monte Carlo as I am understanding it will take over the floor . I would prefer to have small areas of it and attach it to a piece of wood. Is this possible to do? Would it stay in a pot or still end up all over the place?
  19. I have some guppy grass and some small pieces of Rotala Colorata and i have having problems getting them to stay down. I know guppy grass can just float around but I have an area I would like them to stay at in my tank. Was wondering if this would be an ok idea or would it just kill the plant starts. I was thinking of using very small amounts of the super glue gel and attaching a small piece of gravel to them, just enough to hold them down and hopefully they will put roots down that way. Thoughts? Opinions? Better ideas?
  20. Since I rehomed the territorial pleco who had one of my 29g tanks tied up, I can redo that tank. Woohoo! It's been set up as it is for 5 years next month! The photo is how it looks as of today. I did a trim on the crypts day before yesterday. They were crazy-wild and had taken over. They're still some coming up in places I don't want them, but since I want to redo the tank, I left them where they are. The trimming was mainly to cut back the ones that had leaves covering the water surface. I didn't want them cutting the light so much that the other plants I put in recently wouldn't get enough light. Anyway, I've been hankering to redo this tank, and now I can since it's unoccupied. I think I have the plants I want, though if I need more, I know where I'll be getting them. 😁 I plan to populate the redone tank with swordtails, cories, and zebra danios, with possibly a blue, gold, or dwarf gourami (my favorite) - a combination that's worked really well for me in the past. I'll be ordering those online, which means they won't be ordered until spring. So I don't have to hurry through this "remodel". Right now, the tank contains a big hunk of mopani driftwood and a Top Fin cave decoration, but I intend to remove the mopani and replace it with rock hardscape and some manzanita. Whether I leave the cave decoration in or not depends on the rock I end up using. What I can't make up my mind about is the stone/rock for the hardscape. I plan to reuse the existing substrate, which is gravel and sand with eco-complete underneath. (Photo below.) Needless to say, with the combination of colors in my gravel, I have a lot of leeway for rock colors. Every time I look at options, though, I get overwhelmed. So many choices, and I'm not sure if any of them have drawbacks. I'll be ordering them online from an aquarium hardscape supplier, so I'm not worried about getting a type that's not aquarium safe. So, what's your favorite stone to work with? Why is it your favorite? Are there any you do NOT like? If so, why?
  21. Hey everyone, I used my old too small betta tank to do an aquascape and make a nursery for my baby mosquito fish from my pond where they would have gotten eaten. Thought I would share. 😆
  22. Water sprite, hairgrass, Anubias and wood was sourced from Aqua Co-Op. Aqua Hana Cherry Shrimp.
  23. Hi I'm new around here 👋. Sorry for the length of this but im trying to give as much detail and my thought process as I can! Honest thoughts on this please? I can't quite envisage how it's going to look long term. My plan was the Java fern growing bigger out the wood and eventually blocking out the sight of the filter on the right hand side. The wood has lots of little gaps to jam plants into. The cave in the corner has that massive bit of Java attached, could be split individually if required. Should I add something other than Java fern to the wood to mix it up a bit? There is 2 caves hidden up the back where my pleco lives with water wisteria planted in-between them, I'm hoping this will fill out and give a bit of a backdrop to that part of the tank behind the larger pieces of the wood and provide cover for the caves. On the left, the sponge is an experiment with the Elodea Densa and moving to another tank. I'll explain at the end 😉 I have some Vallis growing over here which is spreading quite well so far, I'm hoping to fill that side of the tank with that, also have anubias on a piece of wood towards the back corner. I did try the Elodea planted over here but it was messy looking so removed it. The small plants in front, I can't remember what they are, chain sword maybe? It's not showing any signs of spreading anyway I also have a couple of questions.. How much space does the filter need around it to work most efficiently? Can I plant closer to it? Seems like wasted space. Will there be issues with the anubias being so close to the sponge filter on the left? I know they like shady areas. What are the two plants I've pictured, is one a chain sword right enough? The Elodea is a bit of an experiment I'm trying, I'm hoping it will attach to the sponge filter and grow though that so I can easily move it around since it's a weighted bottom. The stem on the wood to the right was to see if it would attach and grow up through the wood however I'm having second thoughts about this as I type, looks a bit out of place. I've added pictures from all angles so you can see what I have exactly. Should I change anything? Add anything? I'm welcome to any and all suggestions please! Thanks if you got this far 😆 and yes Barry does like to photobomb every picture I take 🤦‍♀️
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