#38: 210L Aquatic Garden Dragon's lair

Stephan Mifsud Paola, Malta


Attractive but busy aquascape. Everything looks very healthy with a lovely sheen to the foliage. The generally small plantings and intergrowth causes the aquascape to lack focus. Thoughtful planned trimming and careful removal of some species will help bring the design together. Also the rusty colored background is very jarring against the brightly colored plants. A darker brown or black background would help as would a moderately bright blue. The darker colors would be unobtrusive while the brighter color would match the vibrance of the plants.
— Phil Edwards
Pretty frothy layout.
— Karen Randall
The background does not look nice.
Middle ground was too strong. I think Nymphaea should have not been used here.
— Takashi Amano

Aquascape Details

Dimensions 108 × 45 × 40 cm
Title Dragon's lair
Volume 210L
Background Background: Contact paper
Lighting Light 3 x 30watt, 1x12 watt fluorescent
Filtration Filter: Internal, ceramic filled
Plants A. barteri var nana, Echinodorus bleheri, Microsorum pteropus, Monosolenium tenerum, Micranthemum umbrosum, Cryptocoryne wendtii, Marsilea hirsuta, Alternanthera reineckii, Vesicularia dubjana Christmas moss, Hygrophila polysperma, Echinodorus bleheri (small), Nymphaea lotus red.
Animals Paracheirodon axelrodii Cardinal tetra,
P. innesi
Poecilia latipinna
P. reticulate
Rasbora heteromorpha
Otocinclus affinis
Crossocheilus siamensis
Materials drift wood
Additional Information Age 2 years
CO2 none
Substrate, normal gravel with build-up of mulm, and ferric precipitates (from repeated use of Ferrous sulphate)
Water changes 20% every 3 months
Fertilisation: JBL Ferropol every couple of weeks
Pruning every fortnight or so (mainly the Hygrophila)

I wanted and now mantain a tank with these characteristics:
1) very low maintenance requirements and low running cost
2) plants with different colours and forms, excluding strap or fine leaved plants
3) drift wood to offer darkened areas for contrast and attachment points for plants
4) a front lawn with a low light carpeting plant

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