Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Aquarium Update: Driftwood Removed

Over the past few days I've been staring at my 29 gallon tank (the one that I took the moss out of) and I didn't really like the driftwood. It was one of those purchases made way before I found any of the cool websites or forums devoted to aquascaping that frown on such hulking, man-made decorations, but I always held out hope that I could work it into something. Eventually, it was just enveloped by the moss and it disappeared. When I trimmed the moss though, there it was again, as ugly as ever. So I decided to take it out of the tank.

Easier said than done. You see, it was in the tank when it was placed on my tank rack and I never thought about what if I had to take it out in the future. I figured I would have to take off the lights hanging above the tank, which wasn't so bad. But when I tried to get it out, I realized the low clearance was going to be a big pain in the butt. You see, this isn't the real Malaysian driftwood that actually sinks by itself. This has a big slab of slate screwed to the bottom to hold it under. After some fancy maneuvering and some not so gentle coaxing, I managed to get the piece out.

I rearranged only a few plants (I'm going for the "island" look) and this is what I have:

Boy what a difference. The tank looks 10 times bigger. It looks brighter and wider and just nicer overall. I haven't decided what sort of ground cover to put on the left side, either dwarf hair grass like the right or something different. I think I may try Glossostigma elatinoides just to see what it looks like, and if I don't like it I'll rip it up. The left side needs to grow in a little, obviously since that's where the wood was, but I'm definitely pleased with the new scape.

A word of advice: Never buy driftwood with a piece of slate screwed to the bottom; it's not real driftwood, and chances are, it's manufactured and will always look that way.


  1. Hi there. Cool blog, nice pics, great setup.
    Sorry about posting it here - it is not really connected with your driftwood removal project - I just have a question about your DIY nano canister filter. I understand the powerhead is still in the tank, right? How do you protect the impeller from all the dirt, fry, baby shrimp, etc? Do you have some kind of a prefilter installed on your filter intake?
    Sorry if it's a bit choppy - gotta run. Thanks.
    Again - great projects!

  2. Well the AquaClear powerheads come with a large strainer over the intake (like you would find over any filter intake). This worked for me, but it would definitely pose a threat to fry, baby shrimp, and other small creatures. The impeller did not get clogged with dirt, although the tank is not extremely dirty. If you want to, you can just fasten a sponge from a filter (like the AquaClear Mini sponge media) to the intake, although this will clog quickly and reduce flow.



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