how to plant


Guru Class Expert
Sep 6, 2008
between Sac and Reno
I have this jumble in my head of what I want for my tank. When I ask others opinions on the other forums. I don't get replies. I am not looking for a Champion ship tank just a nice tank I can handle.

I am not sure how to start. I don't want to burden anyone with my learning curve. I read the stuff here and find it interesting. I am amazed at what you have learned with and without a degree. I have not seen to many tanks in real life, just online.

I have new plants I have soaking in alum. As you say more is better when dealing with plants and algae. I would like to find ways to bring some plants closer to the light to see if they would color up more. Right now I am using a pumice rock for this purpose.
I will start simple and just add the plants in more normal places and watch what happens. I do not want to use CO2. I will use Excel with some sort of EI approach.
I have a habbit of mixing to many types of hard scape along with my plants. Don't know when an item needs to be bigger, taller or removed. I have only taken two pics of my tank as I change it.

Project one:
To take Subwassertang and do moss ropes (spypet from TPT) I thought doing two using L bracket at the top to keep it so my discus can swim behind them. I used a slate tile but it took up to much room and was not tall enough.
I have seen kind of a tower in moss on this site but was not sure how they secured it. Do you have any other idea's that migh work to help balance what I have?

See sig for plants in tank

Plants I am adding:
2 HC potted
2 bunches of Limnophila hippuroides
2 Crinum natans
2cups packed Subwassertang
4 frawns of Bolbitis

This is the tank before the heater over heated. The next is how it is now




Plant Guru Team
Lifetime Member
Sep 23, 2007
South Florida

Not really sure what you are asking here:

1. Is it just general advice on how to aquascape?


2. How do scape specifically your tank with the plants you have/are purchasing with some unknown jumble in your head :)

However in general taller plants like your limnophila and crinum should go in the back and sides. Lower plants like your HC in the foreground.

Bolbitus will do better in some current if you can place it so it can receive some. You can easily use thread to attach the bolbitus to driftwood or rocks and it will use it's roots to latch on after a while.

I would switch the h.difformis on the driftwood with the bolbitus. Plant the hygro in the gravel as it will do much better than attached to wood or stones. Using it AROUND wood and stones makes a nice contrast as the difformis is very ferny and feathery against the solid stucture.

The difformis should get tall and bushy and send out many runners. If things in the tank are well, this plant will soon make itself a nuisance and is a good benchmark.

You can push gravel together to make mounds in the substrate that are higher than other areas. You can then plant those specimens that need more light or that you are trying to get 'closer' in these areas. It will help a bit.

It will also give you some valleys in the substrate. IMO these look more natural than a totaly flat surface and a flat edge.

You may want to fill in the back and sides, so the discus can get some cover. Leave the front of the tank clear and have an open space that is 'hedged in' if that makes sense.

This leaves an area for the fish to swim in the open and display to each other. It also provides a nice contrast to the plant filled (someday) back and sides.


You may also want to concentrate on learning how to grow plants well. This is in itself quite a challenge, based on your goals. Lots to learn, but also lots of good information is readily available. Just time and effort mostly (well, some $).

Even the nicest scape will not look good if the plants are not healthy.

As the plants grow, note their growth patterns and how they will change over time.

Hope this helps.