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Planted Vase

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  • Planted Vase

    Hi everyone, most won't know me here but I joined a couple of months ago and have spent most the time lurking around, not saying too much. However I'm Josh, from Newcastle, and have a 3' planted tank and 'maintain' my girlfriend's 15L betta nano. Recently I came across Bardus' planted Walstad Pico and got inspired to finally put one of my own together, which I've been thinking of for a while now.

    Today I headed to Target and picked up this glass vase for $7. I'm not sure of it's volume, I'll figure that out when I fill it up properly but it's relatively small. Then I went for a walk through the bush, looking for DW. Didn't find anything too nice and the mozzies were killer, so I collected a bunch of twigs that I'm hoping might go nicely.

    Next up I got my substrate out of the shed that I used on my 3' tank. I used a mix of blood and bone with organic garden soil, and I'm planning to cap it with what I think was sold to me as 'river sand', but it's just plain old sand from the Stockton dunes nearby.

    I went to add some water to it to moisten the soil so I could cap it a bit easier but added a bit too much, so I just filled it up and am waiting for it to settle before I take off the floating detritus and drain it again to cap.

    So that's where I'm up to so far. As far as the scape goes, I think I'll leave this in the outdoor entertainment area and will receive full sunlight for a few hours a day. At the moment I have some hairgrass that is surviving in the 3', but not doing much more than that (not enough light). I plan to move that to this vase where hopefully it'll do better with more light. Additionally I might move some of my pennywort over and let it float, and possibly some wisteria for the startup, as I have far too much of that in the other tank.

    Flora is most likely going to consist of shrimp, snails and maybe a couple of small fish from the local creek that I believe if just gambusia, but I'll get some help on here to ID when I collect them

    So I'm planning to keep track of my progress with this thread and I'll keep you all updated
    Last edited by Jtez; 28-12-13, 02:38 PM.

  • #2
    Mate that's 10/10 for effort and execution!
    Can't wait to see this evolve into a thriving mini ecosystem !
    Well done. Next instalment please


    • #3
      I am not sure but feel like emptying it, cap with 3cm washed sand and refill...


      • #4
        Haha jtez, you mean fauna. Anyhow, what is the height and diameter of the vase? I have a Tynte vase measuring 20cm across and 45cm tall which I have been thinking of doing something like that. I already have a piece of thin DW (3cm thick) with a fork which I plant to put in the vase. Like you I plan to put it outdoors in the entertainment area which gets northerly sun year round.
        Planted Community Jungle.
        Planted RCS Vase.


        • #5
          Originally posted by plants View Post
          I am not sure but feel like emptying it, cap with 3cm washed sand and refill...
          Yes I suggest this. Otherwise you will get a heck of a diatom burst.

          Also try and avoid direct sun as this will make your vase very very hot!


          • #6
            Hey Josh, I haven't been active here in months and it was a nice surprise to log in and see this thread this morning! Happy New Year by the way.

            The done thing with Walstad picos is to not have the potting mix more than 2cm deep lest it get anaerobic pockets. Cap it with 2cm of sand/gravel. Also, a floating plant is necessary, such as Frogbit. I have a bucketload of it here if you want some, but I am moving house at the moment (obviously procrastinating right now!). I'll shoot you my mobile number. If you help me move a 4' and 2' tank, I'll give you anything I own ��
            Bardus's Scape History Photo Album


            • #7
              Sorry, another point is that the addition of B&B is unnecessary, and may be too many nutrients leading to algae issues. It would be a good experiment to do one with and one without B&B side by side to see how it goes though. You'd just need an extra vase, or three
              Bardus's Scape History Photo Album


              • #8
                Hi again everyone, update time!

                Many thanks to Bardus for his generosity with donating me some plants, I have gotten this thing up and running for the time being.

                First things first though, I dropped the vase the day that I made my first post, it shattered and putting me back to square one. So I went and bought a new one, and found one that was 5cm taller. This gives me more water volume and more height to work with

                Secondly, I've added far less dirt this time round, as it was proving to be more of a pain than anything. It's still there for its benefits though, don't you worry about that.

                So today I ducked around to Bardus' place, not only getting a grand tour of the tanks but also about a bucketful of plants that I plan to use on 3 different tanks. For this vase I'm using his HM, frogbit and another plant which I forgot the name of but I quite like. I got that many plants though I'll almost definitely be getting some more tanks or vases to play with.

                I also had a look at my house's front garden hedges, finding some dead areas. I had some inspiration that the branches of a hedge may be more interesting looking than adding lots of twigs into the jar to work like a tree. Turns out I was right

                So with that in mind I planted today and am relatively happy with how it's turned out. It's bit of a fiddly vase to work with, it'd be handy to have tweezers or aquascaping scissors to help out, but I got through it eventually. I'm also going to have to find a new spot for it, as I think the dark retaining wall that gets midday sun won't be ideal. Hopefully it'll fit on the kitchen windowsill. As is quite necessary, here are the pictures:


                • #9
                  MTS. I can see it a mile away

                  Nice work jetz. Keep posting pics!
                  Bardus's Scape History Photo Album


                  • #10
                    Update Time!

                    Nearly 4 months from set up and the plants have grown like crazy. Ended up moving the vase undercover after algae outbreaks and crazy temperature changes. Since then it has stabilised, no signs of algae or detrimental effects to plant growth.

                    Still got algae issues around the roots. Could well be due to nutrient imbalance or something similar, with the dirt and blood and bone in the substrate.

                    Finally did a trim today because the HM was getting out of hand, had taken over the whole vase and growing out the top. Whatever the substrate is leaching into the water is doing an amazing job, the frogbit is much greener and larger than what I've been able to grow in my own tank or in clear containers in the sun.

                    A close up shot, still not sure what the small bushy plant growing through the HM is. Near impossible to see it in this photo, but this is the right hand side of the vase from the original pictures.

                    Got a nice photo of it in the afternoon sun, now that sunlight can penetrate past the outside stems.

                    Last edited by Jtez; 05-04-14, 04:14 PM. Reason: typo


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