Discussion in 'Aquarium & Aquascaping Journals' started by aibcarpentry, Dec 1, 2018.
that's what I wrote to you in #33 already:
"...Hard to give advice to you without seeing, what you will plant and how you will handle the plants at all and also the necessary cleaning of the water after trimming each time...."
I still think, the best for you is to begin with a pretty hardscape aquarium, with only a few plants, if this works, it will develope to more anyway.
If the fish can hide behind rocks and wood they are anyway more satisfied, than with a plant carpet.
This plus some anubias - ready and looking great and very natural immediately.
I am a hard person to make listen as you have realised @moss-maniac but I genuinely thought it was an easy enough option for me from previous experience with a carpet; things have just changed so the physical action and same repetitive action of my hand using scissors wasn't going to work like it used to - something I hadn't realised. I think it's better to realise this now than when I've started adding inhabitants.
There has been a hardscape I've loved for ages but have always hit a brick wall when finding suitable wood and then also add to that finding a sand/gravel/pebbles which have enough different grades or able to find ones that correspond has proved quite a headache which is why I gave it up. The ADA gravel he used is now only available in the small size
I'm not a fan of the way it's planted but think if you find an interesting enough piece(s) of wood then the planting could be kept simple. He has used ADA powersand and Aquasoil under the stones but I'm told this wouldn't be a good idea and his worked as it was so thin. Maybe it's time to search out that piece of wood and recommence the gravel search?! My big worry with sand/gravels is the way they almost always leave a dirty mark below waterline which is a right pain to keep clean. This leads me to question what I would plant in substrate so why not taper away to almost nothing but I'd like to leave myself the option.
Credit to Lauris for his 'Escape' hardscape
As a fully qualified trade teacher of 26 years that is an understatement. I know I could have changed that beautiful Aquascape reasonably easy with the bare minimum of plant trimming.
Before you can learn you must learn to listen through the mind and, be prepared to change what you want to do to rather what you should be doing.
I am very sorry if this is harsh I am positive you will realise all I am saying is nothing new to you.
A serious question Keith but what kind of thing would you have suggested? I still have the wood so when work's have been done it's not to say it can't go back.
Its a bit late now.
My aim would be to give it the natural neglected aged appeal.
RH side change all plants to a grassy look.
The wall is far to too good wreck more than 75%
Pathway original idea excellent new pathway age it make holes unsmooth the edges both sides all the way from front to back
Rocky fields piles of rocks
Small piles to single rocks note top no rocks
Large rock next to a small pile with grass inbetween
Big and small smooth areas
No rocks just un kept grassy areas
Narrow pathway no rocks different grasses .
Here are a few idea that could have been use and very little maintenance to be done.
If you were to start afresh I would strongly suggest the old reliable UGF easily hidden by tall grass and a few rocks and a dead trees.
The problem is the cutting action, this is what I found very hard work on my hands when I gave it an initial trim and using any kind of carpeting plant I don't see a way around this.
Thanks for the suggestion, I'm going to have a look into them and see what's on the market over here, it's not often you here of them anymore but I know my parents used them for years when I was a kid.
Most LFS in my area do not stock the UGF's any more the reason is very simple $$$$$ they do not have any after sales. I bought plastic air stones and all I had to do was clean them plus they were adjustable for the bubbles.
Check to see if they have the UGF's
Interesting to hear that.
I know I say I am looking to achieve a low maintenance aquarium which is what I am trying to do, as you know the reason is my health but the problem is it's so variable; one week I'm able to manage and another I'm not, the problem is which weeks I'm good/bad I have no control over. I might be fine for 5 weeks in a row but then bad for 5 in a row, on the other hand I might be good for 6 weeks then bad for 1 - no control.
I'm considering an all in one aquarium or even making one along with your suggestion.
Something you could build with reasonable ease I think given a piece of acrylic, a pump, some fittings, and a suitable aquarium. An example of a manufactured one running along the length can be found below and it seems very simple the LIFEGARD® Crystal™ Aquarium with Side Filter
You achieved a excellent aquascape so take that positively forward with you for the next I am thinking on the lines of really just hardscape (a large character piece of bogwod is a good thought) with minimum plants Java Ferns Mosses. Anubias perhaps an emergent plant. Many of the best contest ones have surprisingly few plants
Save all that DIY and use a simple UGF. Some say (never used a UGF) they are useless and impossible to clean WRONG. I cleaned mine every time a did the water change. I syphoned out the riser tube and this and it works perfectly. Plants roots block them up WRONG When I pulled mine down after about 5+ years I was surprised to how clean the filter plates were and under the plates were also clean.
This is exactly what I'm thinking. I have always loved the look of shallow, flowing streams with the gravels and pebbles. It's just something I have never really tried to achieve in the past.
Very minimal planting is the plan and would be moreso focused on the hardscape than planting.
I have images of smaller gravels running to bigger ones and the addition of maybe just the one larger feature stone teamed with that right piece of wood.
Bogwood is something I'm not a huge fan of and tends to just leach tannins forever, I'm thinking at looking more towards natural British species such as Beech or Ash and think it's the shape and style I am finding a hurdle at the moment.
I am also wondering the best route to take with my aquarium; All in one system within aquarium (purchased or DIY), standard rimless aquarium with standard fittings and external filter (I hate glass and can't seem to discover fittings I find visually appealing), standard rimless which I can drill to try and add fittings to one end that look better (in my opinion) and finally a system with an external sump.
I can see positives and negatives to each one is maybe a big part of the problem too!
The problem I have is here is I was considering running the gravel almost out to nothing at the edges and maybe not building it up enough to plant in at all.
There is one rule KIS otherwise there will have a tank full of concerns and will create more problems for you.
Keep It Simple by doing a very simple basic Aquascape it will always look great.
Thanks as always for your input; the main problem here is I don't like the look of it or the combination of gravels and soil as a substrate in the same aquarium.
I've concluded there are many great aquariums that I do like the look of; in reality some are just not realistic for me, a majority of the others that do follow the low maintenance theme are just not pleasing to my eye then others I'm unable to find resources for so it's about compromise.
The most likely route I will explore further first is to use gravels/pebbles/cobbles/small boulders keeping the same colour tones throughout.
I like this look, it will allow me to plant on/in the hardscape and if it doesn't work I can simply remove or suck the sand out, move the stone all without much fuss - I will of course have a play in the mock tank first. I'm going to continue on the hunt for wood as I would like to add some but if I don't like it then it's a waste really. If I find the right piece(s) then they can be added either at the same time if I find it before or a later date if I don't and still feel I want to add some. Gravel throughout prevents any of the mess with a soil type substrate and if the majority if not all of my plants don't rely on below substrate for nutrients etc then what am I to lose?
I can also source all of the hardscape materials for less than one piece of wood in some cases.
I've thought of all the things that I liked/disliked about any setup I've had in the past and it has led me to the ideal solution for my aquarium is one with a built in filter added onto one end.
You may say this is not following the KISS rule but I would say it is - I can explain if you'd like?
The KIS is a design rule and everyone is different in that interpretation. I would say you do what you think is best as it's you home.
The Discus chap I know follows the KIS as far as possible in the fish house only the wild Discus set up has stem plants as well as plants on wood.Every other aquarium is basically where planted plants on wood or rock, his tank in the house as just java fern mosses on wood with a sand substrate I guess in this tank they are the easier to keep German Discus which are more tolerant of water conditions Ph etc