#415: 83.4L Dutch Aquascape Community

Gavin Carew Seattle, United States

Awards and Comments

First Place
This is lovely and you clearly have paid attention to the rules. I would have liked to have seen your “street” made from a plant that you could bring up diagonally toward the back rather than in the low angle of the Lobelia.
— Karen Randall
After a struggle of the conscience I in the end picked this one as my personal winner. And that simply is due to the classic Dutch Style atmosphere this tank breeds. It even has a old fashioned street of Lobelias!

But overall it also ticks all the boxes of Dutch Style. If I would be very strict I would have 2 comments to improve: next time take care of the water level in the tank as it now seems the tank is not fully filled. And the giant Vallisneria could maybe better be replaced by a smaller variant for this tank size.
— Marco Aukes
Moss wall - check.
Restraint with red plants - check.
Two appropriately placed focal point plants - check.
Curtain plants - check.
Contrast and variation in leaf types - check.
A little elbow room between plant groups - check.

Looks like someone has been reading up on Dutch style planting rules. :-) And it shows!

Yet it's not in my top 5. And here's why:

- don't let the street get so dominant. It should taper and disappear behind a taller bush of plants/moss/driftwood. This tapering and disappearing part is what imparts a sense of depth. To me this Lobelia street feels like a diagonal bush than a street.

- trim and then wait a couple of days before photography.

- the Ammannia is tip stunted - toss it and use a simpler plant that you can easily grow. Remember that you get awarded very few points for growing rare or difficult plants. When one of the two focal point plants is in poor condition it hurts the whole tank no matter how much attention was paid to compliance of Dutch styling cues. The Dutch category more than any other is about horticultural expertise. So the stunted Ammannia takes this tank off the top 5 for me.

- Pennywort is a great curtain plant but it needs to settle in. Hygrophila difformis is poorly trimmed. Use a smaller Val species than this.
— Vin Kutty

Aquascape Details

Dimensions 91 × 30 × 30 cm
Title Community
Volume 83.4L
Background Mini christmas moss
Lighting LED (Chihiros WRGB)
Filtration Oase Biomaster 250
Plants 1. Hydrocotyle leucocephala
2. Myriophyllum "Guyana Mini"
3. Alternanthera reineckii "Variegated"
4. Rotala macrandra "Green"
5. Lobelia cardinalis
6. Ammania pedicellata "Golden"
7. Hemianthus callitrichioides "Cuba"
8. Hygrophila difformis
9. Vallisneria spiralis "Tiger"
Animals 14 x Hyphessobrycon amandae
10 x Corydoras pygmaeus
5 x Tanichthys albonubes
Cherry shrimp, otocinclus, and pond snails
Materials None
Additional Information All plants, livestock, and equipment were procured through members of the Greater Seattle Aquarium Society and GSAS sponsors. This is both a community tank, and a tank very much built by the community.

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