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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
here's my first attempt at a planted tank. started cycling nov. 9th, just completed the planting nov. 17th. livestock to be added as soon as cycling is complete.

20131117_233156.jpg
(bad phone pic)

tank equipment/stats
33gallon long
aquaclear 70 HOB
aqueon 150w heater
co2 injection (awaiting shipment)
39W x 4 - T5HO 6500k
Ada amazonia
EI dosing

plants
blyxa japonica
eleocharis acicularis
limnophila aromatica
lindernia rotundifolia
ludwigia lacustris
ludwigia repens

stocking consideration
30 neon tetras
10 amano shrimp/RCS

comments/criticisms always welcome and appreciated.

special thanks to rwong2k10, currietom, and pieces71 for contributing their awesome plants.
 

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very nice! I love 33G long tank! it can be a great shrimp tank! Are you thinking shrimp only tank?? very nice aquascaping as well. :)
 

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Great start! Looking pretty nice already! You should get cardinal tetras. Similar to neon but nicer (more red) and hardier in a fully cycled tank. Check with one of our sponsors, Canadian Aquatics. They usually have some in stock. Have fun planting! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Good job. How long did splitting and planting the grass take?
Tom, i started out real delicate, splitting into small bunches and cleaning out the substrate it was clinging on to. i think start to finish took me a good 4 hours.

Thanks everyone for the comments and encouragement. hopefully the red plants will fill in the background corners into a bushy bunch. when my co2 arrives and i start ei dosing i am expecting growth to really start to fill in.

as for stocking, cardinals are also on my radar. their red colour would be a nice accent to the green. i am not 100% set on neons (i know, so unoriginal), but i do want a nice school of very tiny fish to accentuate the scale.

this is too fun and too addicting!
 

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Very nice. That looks great! If you don't mind some feedback, for the future try creating some dramatic level changes with the substrate. Nice and high into the rear right and left corners. I know I've got to do a better job of this in my future tanks as well.
 

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Very nice. That looks great! If you don't mind some feedback, for the future try creating some dramatic level changes with the substrate. Nice and high into the rear right and left corners. I know I've got to do a better job of this in my future tanks as well.
Thanks Reckon. actually, i did have the right corner a bit higher. i even tried to use one of the stones at the rear right corner to retain some of the soil back their, but when i got to planting, the ada soil is actually very light and couldn't keep the slope i was trying to get, so it kind of leveled down from what i intended. good experience and better understanding of the substrate now tho. and actually i found with this sized tank (12"deep") getting a good sense of depth and height is hard to do. in future i may opt for something deeper, say like 18".

in some youtube vids i did see james findley of the greenmachine use some plastic dams to bank the soil up. maybe i should have tried that.
 

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I totally get what you mean with the sloped Ada sliding down. In both my big tanks in my journal the substrate is flat but when I first started they were pushed up fairly high into the corners. I did see the video where James Findley uses plastic dams to keep the slopes up. My main concern with that is it might be hard to push stem plants all the way down into the substrate without hitting or disturbing the dams.
 
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