Nano Tank 11L

This project has now been abandoned as I found the tank too small to do what I wanted. I have a new 30cm cube, details coming soon.

I have had my nano tank for many years but was relegated to the loft when I upgraded tanks, however, I have decided to use it for my first attempt at aquascaping.

The tank holds 11L and is 21 x 21 x 26cm with a flat glass cover. There is a narrow section at the back which is supposed to be for a small pump and filter medium but over the years this has proved to be ineffective so I will be filling it with ceramic beads from my main tank filter and filter sponges which have been soaking in bacteria enriched water for a week. I’m hoping this will speed up the cycle. The tank came with an integrated light which was good years ago but it is failing so I managed to take it off and I’ll replace it with a new one, details below.

For my first attempt I am going to build a no filter, no heat, no Co2 tank and rely on the plants, light, frequent water changes and bacteria to keep it balanced.

I bought a few small pieces of driftwood from Amazon (all prices are at the bottom of the page) which I had to soak for a few days to remove the tannins, this didn’t help much so I boiled them for about three hours before leaving them in a bath of water for a couple of days. This seems to have stopped the leaching but I’ll see how that goes, if they continue to leach frequent water changes will eventually help. I played around with different positions before settling on this format.

I attached one pot of Tropica Taxiphyllum barbieri (Java Moss) to the main piece of wood using silk thread which I think should hold until it grows and added enough Tropica Aquarium Planted Tank Soil to about 5cm at the front sloping up to about 8cm. I bought a 3L bag and I have some left for another project. Then it was all about positioning the wood ensuring they were secure.

After adding an inch or so of water the planting was next. For carpeting I used two pots of Tropica Eleocharis acicularis mini (Dwarf Hairgrass) which I cut into small sections before planting quite close together along the front, sides and in the spaces of the wood. I bought one Cryptocoryne Beckettii which split nicely into three plants which I placed around the second piece of wood.

Once I was happy with the smaller planting I filled the tank up to the top with water from my main tank to make it easier to plant Hygrophila polysperma. I got seven plants out of the one pot which I placed along the back of the tank. I had kept the larger plants in my main tank for a few days and the Hygrophila grew quite leggy in those few days so I pruned each plant down to about half and planted a few of the cuttings too. I’m hoping these will become bushier because they are looking a bit sparse at the moment and I’d like them to cover the filter holes in the back wall of the tank. After a few days I decided the Hygrophila polysperma was too leggy for the height of this tank so I have ordered Bacopa caroliniana which I’m hoping will be more suitable.

I dosed the water with the suggested dosage of Microbe-Lift Special Blend and will do this weekly for another four weeks before switching to a maintenance dose. I also added some TNC Complete fertiliser which I am coming to the end of, going forward I will use Flourish Excel which contains bioavailable carbon.

Here are some photographs of the build process, click here to see the progress of the tank.

Plant Details

Once the tank is cycled I want to add some wildlife in the form of Cherry Shrimp and Yellow Rice Fish