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Old 07-13-2011, 09:49 PM   #1 
Bettawolf19
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Natural Planted Tank

Bit of an update on my older post: http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=72522

So far I have the plants ordered the tank soiled and in the submerged stage. For soil I used Earthgro's Potting Soil and washed(like 3 hours worth of washing) play sand. I have the lighting all good just have to edit a piece of arcrylic I got to hold the lights because they are a few inches short from holding on their own. I also have a 20 gal back up tank as well as a 10-15" Driftwood centerpiece for the 10 gallon.

My list of plants:
1 10" Melon Sword
2 x 6" Amazon Swords
16 Water Wisterias
3 x 3" Sagittaria Sublata Dwarf
16 8" Ludwigia Arcuata
16 Hygrophilia Angustifolia
16 8" Rotala Indica
1 Cryptocoryne Moehlmannii

Pictures so far:
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Old 07-13-2011, 10:29 PM   #2 
youlovegnats
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Sounds like it will be super cool!! I can't wait to see when it's finished! :D
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Old 07-13-2011, 10:29 PM   #3 
Alex09
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It's hard to tell from the pic but it looks like you have mud and water in the tank? I just recently converted my 2.5 gal into a NPT and that was my first mistake. When I poured in the gravel all the muddy brown water went to the top and the tank was a mess. I just dumped everything out, put in dry dirt, capped it with gravel, and SLOWLY and GENTLY added water. Water was crystal clear :)
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Old 07-13-2011, 10:31 PM   #4 
RobertTheFish
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Good luck fitting all those plants in there.

Keep us posted, I'd love to see how it turns out. I just started a natural soil myself. Over a week later and my water is still tea colored, but I'll live.
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Old 07-13-2011, 10:39 PM   #5 
Pitluvs
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Interesting! I plan on doing this with my 45g we're setting up over the winter :) Keep us posted, that's a lot of plants (well to me, I don't own a single live plant!)
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Old 07-13-2011, 10:57 PM   #6 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex09 View Post
It's hard to tell from the pic but it looks like you have mud and water in the tank? I just recently converted my 2.5 gal into a NPT and that was my first mistake. When I poured in the gravel all the muddy brown water went to the top and the tank was a mess. I just dumped everything out, put in dry dirt, capped it with gravel, and SLOWLY and GENTLY added water. Water was crystal clear :)
I'm using what OldFishLady told another here:http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=72157&page=2

"Once you get your plants-remove as much water as you can-plant the stem plants then cap with the gravel to help keep them in place-fill half way with water-drain-repeat until the water is clear...be sure and add the dechlorinater on the finial fill....gotta be really careful with filling with water so not to disturb the soil bed...."

It might be different for me because i'm using sand instead of gravel as the top layer for my Cories. So the water will be less "dirty" I think because of the sand blocking out the holes and cracks that gravel doesn't. It will be challenging don't get me wrong lol I have a 10 gal and its in the basement so gonna take a bit but its worth it :).

As for the number of plants the stems will only be in there until the tank picks up its natural filter. Plus I have 5 other thanks that would be good to have more plants in(ranging from 3-20 gals). I like plants XD all of my tanks have them in there ranging from Java fern to a dwarf lily that I got from one of those bulb packages you see all the time at Walmart and the like. Also note that most of the plants are stems that dont take very much room at all. That and i'm debating weather or not to put the 10" Melon sword in the 20 gal or not.
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Old 07-14-2011, 08:55 AM   #7 
Shimizoki
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How are you going to fit 70 plants in that little tank? If you can do it I will be amazed, and I bet it would look AWESOME. Best of luck in this endeavor.
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Old 07-14-2011, 12:19 PM   #8 
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As Bettawolf knows already...with soil based tanks it is important to start out with lots and lots of stem plants....at least 75% or more of the floor needs to be stem plants and 25% floating until the tank matures and this can take about 3 months....then it is nearly a self contained ecosystem.......but since its a closed system it still needs some help from us.....

I don't rinse my dirt or my sand that I cap the soil with...I use sand for caps not gravel, however, small diameter gravel can come in handy in small amount around the base of some plants to keep them in place until they root or a big rock...I have used both...it depends on how dense the soil layer and how deep the sand cap-once it is filled with water the soil can suspend slightly under the sand layer until it becomes water logged and held together with roots.....these are the only type of systems I keep and 70 plants are not as many as you think........but Bettawolf.....be aware your sword plants are going to outgrow the 10 gallon pretty fast....I would only use 1 sword....not to mention the mass root system these guys can have....

Its important to have clear water in the beginning too.....otherwise you can have poor light penetration and this can affect plant growth....active plant growth is what keeps the livestock safe.....

Look forward to following your NPT......
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Old 07-14-2011, 12:36 PM   #9 
Pitluvs
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I am being told on a tropical forum that you need some sort of water agitation, and to have a powerhead on these type of tanks. True?
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Old 07-14-2011, 12:49 PM   #10 
Oldfishlady
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I use filters for the first 2-3 months and then remove them on tanks smaller than 10gal...on my bigger tanks I like the water movement but they are not needed per se......on my 25g, 55g- I remove the filters- but I do have a sponge in one 20gal, a canister in another 20gal and an HOB on my 75gal....but they are for water movement not filtering per se...the plants are the filter....IMO/E filters are optional on NPT.......
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