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Latest effort - now watch it mature

Discussion in 'Aquascaping' started by Gerryd, Dec 18, 2010.

  1. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    Well, here it is.......

    I am very happy with it just need to let it mature....

    Only decision left is up to the plants regarding which will be the carpets. Those that do well, will stay. Those that don't.....

    Contestants:

    1) Stauro repens 049
    2) Anubias petite and minima
    3) HC
    4) C.parva


    Just need to get some more darn fish in there....That is the real missing element.

    Can't even find a decent school of corys for it....

    I found the new large 8 lb rock in the back right just today and was the missing rock for me. A bit lighter in tone, but blends well I think. I may make teeny tiny adjustments to rock placement or position, but very subtle..I am noticing something disturbing in the middle rock..can you tell what I am thinking that rock looks like it is doing :)

    I used narrow java and some nice peacock moss to cover the needle wheel and tubing..helps that corner a lot with the rock. The java will look better soon, it was stuffed in the 45 gal for 2 months to dealgae..lol

    The current from the c02 will help straighten it out.

    Vid coming soon.

    View attachment 2019 View attachment 2020 View attachment 2021

    As always, comments, thoughts, and suggestions are all welcome.
     
    #1 Gerryd, Dec 18, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2010
  2. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    Gasteropelecus sternicla + Drosophila melanogaster = Big Fun

    Hi Gerry,

    I am with Green024, I am sure your stauro and blyxa will grow much faster, even with the reduced light, then you want. :rolleyes:

    {Warning: Taking any sort of design advice from an evil plant monster is a notoriously bad idea!}
    I think the C. parva, Anubias petite and minima combinations would be super. :cool:

    {Taking Critter advice from an evil plant monster is a very good idea.}
    Drop the water level 10 or 15 cm add 50-100 Common Hatchetfish, start culturing Fruit Flies (flightless is better than wingless)... Unless you have sense of humor...:D It just don't get much better than that my friend.:cool:

    What are looking for Cory-wise?

    Biollante
     
  3. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
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    Looks really good Gerry, no comments this time. ;)

    regards,
    dutchy
     
  4. nipat

    nipat Guru Class Expert

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    I'm with 2-3-4 contestants. ;)
    No other comment.
     
  5. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    I forgot contestant #5 - glosso!

    Bio,

    I got some cories. I would have been happy with any species, numbering around 15 or so. Mixed is okay as well, as cories of diff species will 'herd' together :)

    So, I lost about 15 of the new tetras, not sure why. All seem fine, then spinning for a bit, then a quick death. All others seem fine...

    I did a 80% wc today and will do 35-50% daily for the next 5-7 days to help the bio-bed and nh4 spike.

    I did get a short video up:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJaTPLzR2z0

    The hottonia may not last. The cards like to hang there and are more visible with less vegetation in the center back. Eventually I will replace with blyxa or parva...

    Appreciate any thoughts.
     
  6. Ekrindul

    Ekrindul Guru Class Expert

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    Very nice layout. The arrangement of the stones is especially good.

    Have you had any issues with the c helferi yet? It's hard to tell if the tips are turning yellow in the video and pics. I finally gave mine up to someone in the local plant club. Pruning the failing leaves got tiresome.
     
  7. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Ekrindul,

    Thanks. I think I need one or two smaller rocks on the left side......I think the right side looks pretty good, better in person of course :)

    Yes, the tips do get yellow/brown. But these are some of the older leaves, so will check as the new ones get taller.

    I love the look of them though!
     
  8. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    Well an update after 30+ days....

    Quick vid:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9hp16oezaI

    Fish:

    1) Gave away all but 5 of the cardinals. I will catch the other 5 later..

    2) Lost about 20+ of the alestes tetras...so I have about 30.

    3) Lost 4 of the 5 kribs. One lone female left. I will get her some company.

    4) Added 32 very nice size Tiger Barbs...they are really nice and show up very well....all very healthy and active.

    All fish are now doing well, active, eating a lot, etc. Everyone gets along.

    Plants

    1) Lost the HC, glosso, downoi, and the blyxa. All but the downoi were eaten by the tetras down to the nubs. Like little goats they were...

    2) Added some regular Java fern to each side of the middle back. These will eventually get very thick and creep along the wood/rocks.

    3) Added some Ludwigia Perunsis(?) to the left middle.

    4) The C.parva is wierd. I think it was emersed growth previously. It has lost MOST of the longer leaves and seems to just sit there day after day. But, I think there are new smaller leaves among the remaining ones. I think this may just take time.

    Overall the plant growth is nice. VERY VERY SLOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWW :)

    The stauro and anubias will take forever to carpet :) I have asked Tom for a stauro package to help fill in that huge gap to the left..

    The Cyperus helferi is doing well, as are all other plants. No algae that I can see or to speak of, just a bit on the glass every 2-3 weeks.

    I like it so far..I spend no trimming time, just trying to scape better each day...I have left it alone for the most part, except to try and spread the plants out a bit.

    Eventually will look really nice I think.

    I'll post a few pics later.

    Thanks!
     
  9. Hallen

    Hallen Guru Class Expert

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    Hey Gerry,

    Tank's looking great! Maturing slow but steady.

    I noticed a few things that perhaps will help your already good looking scape
    - 1) The regular Microsorum on the branches will grow quite big. They will become big focus points and distract you from the really good hardscape. Personally i'd replace them with the smaller ''narrow' species or leave them out. Another option is to only attach them to one of the wood pieces, left or right in which i'd pick left, I believe you tried that in one of the videos on your youtube chanel . In your first pictures and video the wood looks beautifull without them.

    - 2) Your hardscape suggest the 'flow' in the tank moves from left to right, your c. helferi is pointing to the left in the video. If the c. helferi where to point to the right the'd enhanche your hardscape (like on the pictures in your opening post)

    - 3) I love the placement of the rocks towards the big branch, which in turn is a main focus point (9 square rule). This is very well done. The foot of the branch is showing tho, I'd hide this with a crypt or a slightly bigger Anubias until the minima/petite grow in.

    - 4) When the stauro fills in there will be a hard line between it and the Ludwigia, you might wanna soften that line with a medium sized plant so it blends in to the scape as a whole.

    Once you see the skull in the wood you can't unsee it haha, nice little detail in this tank.

    It's kinda hard to explain these 'scape' things and English isn't my native language, so if I was unclear on anything please do tell!

    I love the tank as is, and please don't see this as critisism just as some tips to consider :)
     
    #9 Hallen, Jan 27, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 27, 2011
  10. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Hallen,

    Thanks for the compliments and the advice. Allow me to reply to your excellent suggestions:

    1) This is an experiment to see how it would look. The java is most likely as tall as it will get as they are very tall already.. Your points are well taken. The java on the right is tied to a small manzy branch that is hidden behind the large root/wood and can be easily removed. It was NOT part of the original wood scape... I do have some nice java trident and am growing out my needle leaf variety as well. I will try some trident here instead.

    As far as one side or the other, I was going for the 'path through the woods' effect... Another failure :) At least the fern is nice and I can use in my non c02 tank. I may leave some of it as it is nice..was the best looking mat at the lfs...$20 for all you see PLUS another bunch I gave away..

    Yes, I tend to overcover wood at times and this scape is an attempt to CURB that tendency lol I will probably redo this, but again this is all learning/experimentation for my 20K gallon tank LOL

    2) Right on. I have a lot of flow and will have to play with it to get the helferi to ALWAYS blow from left to right...I agree that is how I want the wood/scape to flow...

    3) Thanks, but have no idea what the 9 square rule is :) Noted on the branch and will place maybe some windelov there for the time being.

    The look I wanted here was to show the passage of time with the wood/roots 'splitting' the rocks over the centuries....it will look much better I think once the anubias fills in a bit more..

    4) Yes, was hoping to use blyxa here for this purpose, but the goats ate it all..

    Yes, is nice when folks come over and see the 'skull' for the first time....is like one of those 'trick' pictures...

    I understand perfectly what you are trying to convey..Your articulation is fine :)

    No worries. I was asking for opinions and appreciate the time/effort you put into the observations and critique.

    I am working on some of these suggestions and hope to have something new next week or two....

    Thanks again!
     
    #10 Gerryd, Jan 30, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2011
  11. fjf888

    fjf888 Guru Class Expert

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    Your growth is slow and steady, i suspect that is just as much because its new as it is the lighting. I think the lower lighting with ample CO2 really helps at the startup (especially with algae). I expect things will pick up speed in the next couple months.

    I haven't seen tiger barbs very often in a planted tanks, but they look really good in your setup. Not sure you really need the moss on the right side on the wood, if the needle leaf java fills in that would look really nice. I like the java fern where it is in the middle as long as it doesn't grow too much more. Java fern was a real tank buster in my 72G, it took over a got absolutely gigantic.

    What's your plan with the foreground? Your approach to it is the same as mine, I planted Glosso, Dwarf HG, microsword, and Stauro, and a little saggitaria sublata (from my low tech) for kicks, and wanted to see what would take. In my case the glosso died out (but it was in bad shape when i bought it), but the Stauro, which has been in there for a few months now is just starting to spread and it seems to be picking speed spreading all of a sudden. The microsword is also starting to spread, the dwarf hairgrass is slow and steady. Ironically the Sag is growing slowly, but also much lower than in my low tech.

    I think the stauro filled in on the left would be great perhaps backed up by a hairgrass type plant. I wouldn't change a thing on the right side foreground, I like what you're doing.

    I think you have the makings of a really nice setup.
     
  12. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Fred,

    Thanks! How goes it? Long time no post :)

    Well it has been 3 months setup since the move, so not that new anymore.. but I take your point and will be more patient...

    I have always liked tigers and had them as a kid (barbs that is)...I think they really show up well as my tank is large and open...many of the smaller tetras I like get lost even if 60 of them..these stand out as they are high and wide bodied and the stripes are terrific!

    The moss is just to cover the c02 clear tubing and the needle wheel pump..I will be cleaning this up soon, but the narrow leaf is what I want over there....just waiting for it to grow out is all...

    Foreground:

    Left side will be filled in with stauro (incoming from Tom) and I want to use blyxa behind it and between the cyperus helferi..I think it will look good.

    Right side will simply fill in with more anubias..I want to get some for behind the wood as well...other than that I will leave it alone.

    I removed all the large Java fern and will post a pic later..I also incorporated some of Hallen's excellent advice...

    I like the changes but want to wait until the new stauro is planted so it looks even better :)

    It looks more like my avatar again with the left wood more seen...I just used some java trident in the middle rocks as well.

    Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.

    I will have a much better scape thanks to all of your comments. Please keep them coming...

    I have to admit I like this scape a LOT....
     
    #12 Gerryd, Feb 2, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 2, 2011
  13. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    I would like to share an update or two..

    I received a very nice plant package from Tom yesterday that included a ton of stauro and blyxa....

    I immediately rinsed and trimmed the stauro a bit and planted it all..

    The stauro was absolutely beautiful and was sufficient to cover a very large bare area and replenish my current stock..

    The blyxa was also nice and planted with deep root systems...All looked nice when I went to bed.

    So, I come home from work today and the blyxa is GONE except for the stems which were totally bare...

    It appears that it is irresistable to my alestes and the tiger barbs....

    The alestes did it to my other blyxa but I thought that with the amount Tom sent I would be spared...

    No such luck...

    The stauro however looks great and remains untouched....

    I incorporated some of the advice given recently by other members...

    So, here is a new video...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpxkpR2dDUw

    and a pic:

    View attachment 2088

    I don't think the c.parva in the center is going to cut it even if it evers starts growing.....I need something to break up and blend the two sides....too much green I think..

    Suggestions? Leave bare substrate or a small brown/reddish crypt?

    I hope to get something nice from the GSAS acution via seattle aquarist (thanks!) so we will see how that goes..

    I think just about 10-12 more of each main species (alestes and tiger barbs) will fill out the fish community nicely.

    Appreciate any thoughts or comments..
     
    #13 Gerryd, Feb 4, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 5, 2011
  14. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Gerry,

    I like the tank. I'd change the parva for some brown wendtii, that will make a nice contrast.

    Saludos de Colombia,

    dutchy
     
  15. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    dutchy,

    Thanks...I notice you have less to say when you like my tank as opposed to when you don't.....:) So, I guess the less I hear the better you like it? lol

    How goes the time in SA so far???? When do you return??

    Seen any wild altums, discus, or anything cool?
     
  16. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    I was able to find some small crypt (wendti most likely) that has red, brown, green, and mottled leaves. Very attractive. I replaced the c.parva with this and what a difference.

    I think it blends very well with the rocks and will soon shade darker and look even better...You can see the rise from front to back now...

    I may have used too much as it does cover some of the middle rock, but from my seat on the couch, it looks pretty awesome to me :)

    But, the rocks are very vital to the scape so must be seen. I will do some selective trimming of the large leaves against the rocks...

    Am uploading video now...

    Here is a pic link:

    http://s248.photobucket.com/albums/gg182/gerrydirish/Latest%20Scape/?albumview=slideshow

    The stauro from Tom and this crypt have matured my tank by six months lol

    I am really digging this look.

    I got 3 more kribs for my existing female. I think they may be all males, so 1 may go back. The female and biggest male have already started to exhibit display behavior so am hoping something good will happen soon. The female has a very red, fat belly so is a good sign. I doubt any young will survive between the barbs and tetras as they are ravenous and very very fast..

    But, some may survive in the hardscape and plants. Will be easy to tell if I ever count more than 4 kribs LOL

    Need to get a better camera and learn how to take better pics.. I think the scape is coming in fairly well and is mostly what I had envisioned. You will have to take my word for that........

    I should have more narrow java and stuff soon to help hide the rio c02 pump...

    I don't really see me doing much more than that and letting it grow....

    Will be interesting to see how the new crypts adapt in terms of color and height. They will be thick, but how high and what color?

    I have found that trying these different looks over the last several weeks has really helped to learn what looks better and what I like...

    Most likely drives you folks nuts, but that is how I learn. The basics first, get the principles down, and then keep trying :)

    Appreciate any and all comments and suggestions.
     
    #16 Gerryd, Feb 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 7, 2011
  17. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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  18. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Gerry,

    Seems like you already know me....;). The stauro could have more of a street design fading into the back in stead of a carpet, this could give more depth.

    I'm returning home next weekend, did some fishing a few days ago and caught some very nice fish. Just for sports and consumption puproses, nothing small we could put in our tanks. I hope my tank is still doing well at home.

    I'll send some pics through PM after I get home.

    regards,
    dutchy.
     
  19. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Would losing the rock and switch the wood on the Right to the other corner look better to you?
    The other wood can be repositioned on the other side, or add part of that same left hand side.
    What do you think about that?
     
  20. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Another thought would be perhaps considering the Starou as a street and a meandering path(say a loosely S shape) going from the front on the L to the rear in the back, with some height difference, raised gravel level(12" if possible).
    A piece of wood could be placed to match this border to give a nice edge effect contrast.

    Something like this:

    [​IMG]

    Not quite this, but you get the contrast and idea.
     
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