The Aquatic Gazette

Fat Guy’s ADA Mini M (1)

In Build on May 14, 2011 at 00:01

In nano aquascapes, less is always more, simplicity a virtue. We are always tempted to add all our favourite plants, rocks and wood  into our nano tanks, but it usually gives us an aquascape without a focus, without a purpose. Here, Fat Guy shows us how it is done.

Fat Guy: Here are my technical specifications.

Tank: ADA Mini M | DIY Garden Mat | Customised Glass Cover
Lighting Unit: Solar Mini M | 8/10 hours daily
Substrate: Power Sand S | Aquasoil Amazonia | Amazonia Powder | Clear Super | Bacter 100
Filter: Eheim 2211 | Cal Aqua 13mm Lily Pipes | Clear tubing
CO2: 2.3kg cylinder | 1 to 1.5 bps | Aqmagic Nano Diffuser | DIY Drop Checker
Hardscape: Ryuoh stone
Daily Fertiliser Regime: Flourish Potassium 1ml | Flourish Trace 0.5ml
Water Change Regime: 50% daily | 33% weekly after plants have established

I started with placing a layer of Bacter 100 and Clear Super before I added Power Sand. Then I used a good amount of Power Sand to aid in making the large slope at the back of the tank. I made sure to keep the Power Sand a couple of centimeters away from the front of the tank. Next, I added a little more Bacter 100 and Clear Super and on top of that, I added 3 litres of Aquasoil Amazonia, sloping it with a baking spatula. I then placed my rock setup which I had been contemplating for months (believe it or not), found a scape I enjoyed, aligning it to the golden ration of 1:1.618 and finished everything with a little Aquasoil Powder.

The tank is mainly HC. However, I found some really sexy glosso at Pacific Aquarium and decided to plant the glosso in the back left corner in the photo. I didn’t plant too much glosso, but I mixed in some HC with it as well. I think it may give the tank a nice contrast in depth and colour. I have been experiencing some water clouding the past couple of days. So I’ve been Just doing daily water changes and replanting the HC or Glosso that comes loose and floats to the top. I planted the HC in clumps of three or four, the planting was a little more difficult than I had predicted. It took a lot of patience, especially trying to maintain the slope while planting, misting and slowly filling with water. But once the water reached the tank’s brim and the substrate resettled from the vigorous planting, I was happy with the initial outcome. I honestly spent hours yesterday watching the water circulate and the plants pearl.

(10 days later, from establishment)

I will be waiting for a month before introducing any fish in this tank. I’ve also been turning the co2 off at night and raising the lily pipes. I noticed that the output flow of the lily pipe seemed a little weak so, I took the top off the filter and cleaned off the filter floss type stuff that came with it and hooked it back up. The flow increased dramatically. Amazing how dirty that section of the filter got. I’m thinking about getting a solenoid and hooking it up to a timer. I don’t mind adjusting things manually, but in the long run, it seems like just an all around smart purchase. Everything has been growing very well. Nitrites are high, as expected and I noticed some copepods on the glass today. This first week I am doing 50% water changes, after that, I will be doing water changes every other day. I’ve also been trimming the stems of glosso in the back that were starting to grow tall. It’s amazing how quickly that plant sends out runners. I’ll probably end up pulling it out and just making the tank HC, but for now, I enjoy monitoring its growth and trimming it short. The water in the tank is almost 100& clear now, after a couple days of aquasoil cloudiness. I really really enjoy this tank.

(16 days later, from establishment)

I did a little bit of a rescape today. The glosso and the HC were growing so well that I felt a little trepidation when I stirred up the aquasoil, but I wasn’t satisfied with my original rock arrangement so I made a sacrifice. A strand of glosso came loose during the rescape and the roots were over two inches long, that’s pretty wild! If any of you have followed my edge thread, you can see there how often I move things around. Although I felt trepidation at the start, I think I have made a step in the right direction. I added some more height and depth to the aquascape by manipulating the larger rock. I also added a little more Aquasoil Powder to connect the new arrangement and just a little bit of Clear Super. Got a little nervous moving the rocks after spending so much time before on the original arrangement, but I think that was my issue, I thought about it too much. So this time I just let it rip and didn’t spend more than 5 minutes on it, after this, I’m not gonna mess with the main rock arrangement anymore. I’m am going to let the plants grow and add the fish in a week or two, I think it’s going to look pretty cool once the white clouds move in. I may add some cherry shrimp just for good measure too.

Thank you for reading and if you would like to continue to the next Edition, click on this link:


credit: Fat Guy

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