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Kitchen Tank

tam

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5 May 2011
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I don't have a concrete plan yet, but step one: check tank fits is complete (it does just, down to the mm)

Tank is 30Wx76Lx31H

My very rough plan is currently sticks and crypts on the bottom and emersed out the top

Next on the agenda:
Attempt removal of black plastic trim
Work out how to light it - I want a high up light for the emersed growth
Background - do I need to frost it to hide any annoying drips that go down the back as it's tight to the wall?

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tam

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Popped off the black trim. Brought a piece of wood today - I think I'll get a few small bits too. Nice flat section on the back of the top though for some emersed growth. I think I'll need a taller lamp, perhaps wall mounting would work better. I've got a bag of sand for the front, fine gravel for further back - not sure whether to add something underneath - maybe some plant substrate as I'm think crypts.
 

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tam

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Got the substrate in, tropica substrate at the back, capped with fine gravel and sand at the front. Ended up flipping the wood around. Got water in too, then ran out of time. Need to sort more lights, plant plants and nick a filter out of my other tank.
 

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Tyko_N

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That's some pretty driftwood, love the texture on the bit poking out of the water. May I ask what you have planned for the emergent part?
 

tam

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I'm not 100% sure yet. I'm going to hang a peace lilly in the water just behind the wood but there is a lovely textured flatish area that I think wants something smaller so it's not completely hidden. I think I might start with some garden moss and go from there.
 

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Tyko_N

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I would be careful with peace lilies unless you have a particulary small cultivar, at least for me they tend to like that kind of placement a bit too much and try to overshadow everything else. For the wood a small orchid might look nice, especially if you have the patience to guide the roots so that they follow the grooves in the wood. But yes probably best to start with moss and take it from there, I'm looking forward to see how it turns out.
 

shangman

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Where the wet areas are on the wood you could place Christmas moss - it's especially pretty and dense out of the water on a moist area. I've had lots of success just placing a stem of ludiwigia red or hydrocotyle (any of them) on moss out of the water and they grow emergent and into the water in a very natural way.
 

tam

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Added Christmas moss today to the parts of the wood that are damp- thanks for the suggestion @shangman

Also added in some red root floaters. Under the water the crypts/swords are all melting dramatically, but with enough hints of new growth I'm not worried.

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I'm on the fence about the peace lilly, might be to big. Not sure about an orchid though, I have the impression they can be kind of tricky!
 

Tyko_N

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I'm on the fence about the peace lilly, might be to big. Not sure about an orchid though, I have the impression they can be kind of tricky!
Yes I would avoid the peace lilly (like I said before), it would be a shame to hide such a nice piece of wood. A standard Phalaenopsis orchid is pretty hardy as long as you don't get water in the rosette or expose it to low temperatures, being common doesn't make the flowers any less pretty though :) Might be easiest to mount it in a good spot and then mist the roots daily until they reach the water line, after that it will take care of itself and new roots will crawl along the wood anchor it properly.
 

ScareCrow

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Personally I like peace lilies and they're easy to divide if they get too big. I do like the overgrown look though, which I appreciate isn't for everyone.
My current favourite is Calathea lancifolia it has a really nice pattern to the top of the leaves, purple underside and very interesting roots.
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