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50G Aquascape: 3 Weeks In

November 29th, 2008

It’s been about 3 weeks since I first planted my new 50G aquarium. Since then, I got my 4x39W T5 lights from Catalina Aquarium, which are fantastic, and have tweaked a number of things in the tank. The biggest thing so far is that I removed a few pieces of the manzanita wood, which I decided were breaking up the flow of the aquascape from the left to right. As you can tell, the plants are all growing, but unfortunately, you can also see that I have a fair amount of algae. Part of the reason for this is that until this weekend, I didn’t have an extra timer to run the lights separately, so all four bulbs were going for 10 hours straight.

50G - 3 Weeks In

Now, only two are running, with the other two coming on for a mid-day burst of light. Hopefully that will clear things up after a bit. Despite the algae, the plants are growing well, and there’s lots of pearling going on. I changed up a few of the plants, taking out the Echinodorus sp. ‘Vesuvius’ , replacing it with Limnophila sp. ‘Mini’, and in the center mid-ground, I added Najas grass. All of the plants need a good trimming, but at this point, I’m still trying to propagate the stems a little bit more so that I can replant them. After that, I’ll start bushing them out via trimming.

Blyxa japonica

In addition to the plants, I also added a group of some fantastic Black Morpho Tetras, or Poecilocharax weitzmani. They’re still young, and quite skittish, so it’ll probably be awhile before I can get a decent picture of them, but there’s a fantastic photo of one on Aquahobby.com. They also seem to be growing, and I’m sure they love the acidic nature of the Aquasoil at this point, since they originate from blackwater streams. So, right now, it’s still just waiting game before I can really start fine runing the plants. Comments welcome!

5 Responses to “50G Aquascape: 3 Weeks In”

  1. Phillip Brown Says:

    This is coming on really well and I like the idea of experimenting with different lighting intensities during the day. Great series of articles from the Convention by the way. Some lovely pictures of the tanks in latest Aquatic Gardener but you really took us into the thinking behind the judging.

  2. guitarfish Says:

    Thanks Phillip! I wish the convention was more often than every year or two! I’m glad to be able to share my experiences.

  3. Mark F. Says:

    Yeah, this is coming along nicely; I like seeing the actual implimentation of the ideas you discussed earlier – very different (more lush) than I expected! The reduced amount of manzanita definitely makes for a smoother, more naturalistic feel to the scape.

    The manzanita root ball doesn’t seem as reddish in this photo as it did in your first photo of this tank (w/unplanted hardscape). I guess this is just the result of stronger lighting? Still makes for a nice counter-weight to those Rotalas, though – which, I might add, are perfectly placed!

  4. guitarfish Says:

    Thanks Mark! It’s definitely a work in progress, but I like where it’s headed. I do actually have a pathway in the middle of the scape, but it’s hard to see in this picture. When I trim some of the Najas grass, and the stems on the right side become more defined the pathway should be apparent. In truth, the reddish coloration in the first picture was probably from poor camera work on my behalf. I think this one is a little more color accurate. I also intend to lessen the impact of that huge root ball with moss once I get my hands on some more of it.

  5. PaulS Says:

    Looks great Kris.

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