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Herbal aquarium

maintenance, care, compatibility

Herbal Aquarium – a natural aquarium with live plants do it yourself with a useful photo video

Soil and substrate for herbalist and aquarium plants

Studying the information about the arrangement of the herbalist, I read somewhere that in such an aquarium there should not be a strong filtration. Why, it was not specified.

Thinking it over, I came to the conclusion that strong streams of water will take down the plants, and, moreover, a dense “herbalist” needs nitrates, if the filtration will remove them, the plants will “starve”.
Given this, I’m 110l. Aquarium took external filter JBL CristalProfi e401 greenline – 450 l / h. And what do you think!

His really missing.
Moreover, he noted that in the place where the flute is directed from the filter, the cube chemianthus and other ground cover is not growing.

It is worth noting that at night I additionally turn on a small internal filter. It basically works as an aerator, but it helps a little with filtering the herbalist.

Therefore, the recommended power range of the filter 450-600l / h for herbalist per 100l.

Design and decoration of grass, aquarium with plants

7 months

Very useful video about herbal aquarium, care and maintenance of aquarium plants

An aquarium with live plants is a very thin system, easily visible, requiring careful maintenance and at the same time has a stable structure.

Herbalist is a broad concept where you can include:

  • and ordinary home pond with lively vegetation without conceptual and geometric delights;
  • and the Dutch-type body of water is a real underwater park in which the plants are grouped according to the shape and color;
  • and aquascape – an artificially created fragment of the underwater landscape in accordance with the requirements of a particular style according to certain rules.

Common to all varieties of herbalist is the dominant position in it of the underwater flora over the fauna.

How to properly organize a grass aquarium, pick up plant species that can live in a common container, with similar environmental conditions of growth will be discussed further.

Dutch herbalist – the most popular freshwater biotope

What plant species are suitable for grass pond?

On the Internet there are a huge number of articles on the launch of the aquarium. Our site also has similar articles telling about installing an aquarium, about starting a large aquarium, about starting aquarium novice, and about the first month of life aquarium.

These materials, of course, are useful, however, have a narrowly focused character. In this connection, there is a need to write a full-scale material that would serve as a guide for action for beginners.

Let’s first determine the goals and objectives, stages of the launch of the aquarium, as well as the base equipment and the aquarium chemistry that will be needed.

The main goal is to show a novice aquarist that “that aquarium features are not scary as he is painted”! Additional, but equally important goals:

– Show that a beautiful aquarium with plants is in the teeth for everyone! What to create and maintain it is easy.

– Give step by step instructions.

– Make recommendations on the use of aquarium products and aquarium equipment.

– Teach a novice to “see your aquarium” and develop an unconventional way of aquarium thinking.

– Create a beautiful herbal aquarium.

– Show the dynamics of the development of the aquarium: one month, three months, six months.

– When arranging an aquarium, use the maximum possible palette of aquarium plants, which will provide an opportunity to see the development of a single plant and its reaction to one or another action.

– In spite of the abundance of plants that will be used, to show the basics of an aquascap – the basics of hardskape, the rules for using koryag and stones when building an aquarium composition.

– Show the procedure, the basics of care for the aquarium, as well as give a workshop on the use of aquarium preparations at start-up and the subsequent life of the aquarium with live plants.

– Coverage of related issues, nuances and tricks.

Equipment to be used in the review

Aquarian complex Tetra AquaArt Discover Line 60L;

External filter Tetra EX 600 Plus;

Curbstone for aquarium Tetra AquaArt 60l;

Aquarium chemistry:

Tetra SafeStart, Tetra AquaSafe, Tetra EasyBalance

Tetra bactozym

Fertilizer line for aquarium plants from the company Tetra

+Tetra Balance Balls

Installation of the aquarium:

choosing a place for an aquarium;

– installation and installation of aquarium cabinets;

Running aquarium:

– laying of an aquarium substrate and soil;

– Hardscape bases (placement of stones and snags);

– planting plants (basics aquascape);

– use of starting chemistry;

– peculiarities of the maintenance of the aquarium with plants nuances and tricks;

Care of the aquarium after launch:

– correct adjustment of biological equilibrium;

– care for the aquarium in the first month;

– use of fertilizers for plants;

– Aquarium lighting (daylight mode);

– temperature conditions for the aquarium;


This stage is quite simple and clear, however, a number of beginners make fatal mistakes at the very early stage of creating an aquarium world.

Below, let’s look at the rules for installing an aquarium:

– The aquarium is installed in an area where direct sunlight does not fall;

– The aquarium is installed away from the aisles and doors. The best place is a corner of the room or a niche.

– Aquarium should not be placed on fragile surfaces.

– The aquarium should not be installed near the central heating radiators, near other heating appliances, in close proximity to household appliances, as well as on the window sill.

– The aquarium is installed taking into account the convenient placement of power outlets.

– Aquarium aesthetically and comfortably looks on a specialized tank cabinet.

Educational film about the launch of the aquarium for beginners

And so we chose the place. Getting to the immediate installation of the aquarium. In this review, we used a tank stand for an aquarium. Tetra AquaArt 60l.

white color. This cabinet was delivered in durable, branded packaging and despite the fact that it was delivered by a transport company from Moscow, all its component parts, including the glass door, were safe and sound.

The cabinet itself is standard, with two shelves and a specially designed rear wall design for convenient supply of aquarium equipment. The bollard is easy to assemble.

The complete set of accessories is included in the package. And what is especially pleased: the kit included the necessary furniture key.

Probably, many of our readers were faced with the problem of lack of keys when buying furniture, which forced us to run around the hardware stores in search of the right hex key. In this case, there was no such problem; the pedestal was assembled in 20 minutes.

The next step is to install the tube on the selected place.

nightstand tetra nightstand tetra

IMPORTANT. Any tuba, any surface on which the aquarium will stand, must be leveled with a building level. The larger the volume of the aquarium, the more carefully you need to approach this issue.

Any deviation of the aquarium from the horizontal is fraught with uneven load on one or another wall of the aquarium.

It should also be noted that the aquarium tube should not be installed close to the walls. It is necessary to observe the indents for convenient supply of cords and hoses to the aquarium.

Installing an aquarium. In this review we will install the aquarium complex Tetra AquaArt Discover Line 60L. This complex includes all the necessary equipment that is needed to start the aquarium:

pan for aquarium;

convenient aquarium cover;

lighting + reflector;

– internal filter mounted;

– he aquarium 60l. net volume;

– and also two bottles of starting chemistry (TetraAquaSafe, EasyBalance) + TetraMin feed.

Of course, all these components can be purchased separately. In this case, the company Tetra relieves the novice from a difficult choice of aquarium equipment – everything is ready to launch!

The order of installation of the aquarium:

installation of an aquarium

installation of an aquarium

– It is necessary to unpack the aquarium. Remove the lid.

Remove all components of the complex.

– Check the walls and edges of the aquarium for cracks and chips that may have occurred during transportation of the aquarium from the store to the house.

– Further, if necessary, you need to paste the background. If a film is used as a background, the easiest way to fasten is to secure it with transparent tape to the outer rear wall of the aquarium.

Note that the film must be mounted on a dry surface. The film is attached with tape on all sides! This will save you from distorting the background image caused by moisture between the glass and the background.

Additionally, see the article – How to glue aquarium background?

how to glue the background of the aquarium how to glue the background of the aquarium

– Install the aquarium on the cabinet. The bottom of the aquarium should be completely on the surface of the bollard.

After that, we check once again with the construction level whether the aquarium is exactly installed.


After the preparatory activities, the most enjoyable stage begins – the launch of the aquarium.

Laying aquarium substrate and soil.

A beginner aquarist needs to take the issue of laying the substrate and the soil very seriously. After all, they play a crucial role in the life of plants and the aquarium as a whole.

The substrate of the aquarium bottom is also a source of food for plants and a natural biological filter in which colonies of beneficial bacteria of nitrifiers settle.

The choice of substrate and soil is specific, individual and depends on many factors. It is impossible to give a clear recommendation.

Each aquarist, on the basis of his own requests, must personally determine for himself what kind of substrate, what kind of soil he will need in a particular case. Below, we will try to highlight those aspects that the newcomer must pay attention to:

1. It is necessary to distinguish the substrate for the aquarium from the aquarium soil. The substrate is a nutrient substrate that contains the necessary nutrients that the plant incorporates through the root system.

Soil is a substrate that may also contain useful elements, but its main function is to cover the aquarium bottom.

2. Nutrient substrate is used only under the root system of aquarium plants. It should not be laid on the entire surface of the aquarium bottom, if the plants, say, are only located in the corner, in this case, the substrate is placed only in the corner.

Or, for example, if you have a small number of 5-10 plants, you can and even need to do without a substrate.

Often in the aquarium forums you can see the following dialogue:

Newbie: I applied such a substrate, planted 5t plants.

The answer is offline: Vanguyu you algal flash and greening aquarium. Since the substrate in the first month will be very fonit “.

What does it mean? All aquarian substrates are a nutrient substrate, in simple language it is “earth, black soil”.

The compositions of the substrates are different and the concentration of fertilizers in them is different.

From this, we can conclude that before you buy a substrate you need to clearly understand what exactly will be in your tank. If we put a substrate in the aquarium and at the same time do not plant the aquarium with a sufficient number of plants, the substrate will “fade”, that is, it will donate nutrients to an empty one, which will cause an outbreak of algae – the lower aquarium world.

3. If a small number of plants are used in the design of an aquarium, it is possible to feed them through the root system without a substrate. For example, placing pills under the roots of plants Tetra PlantaStartand Tetra crypto.

It will be quite enough for plants.

4. Ground for aquarium plants should be light, porous, it must be checked for “hissing”. See the article for more details. soil and nutritional substrate for aquarium plants.

In this article we will use the substrate Tetra CompleteSubstrate. In our opinion, this substrate is optimal for a novice aquarist.

It is balanced, contains all the necessary world elements and at the same time will save the novice from excessive concentration of fertilizers in the aquarium.

In addition, this substrate company Tetra, unlike others, can always be found in any city, in any pet store.

So, open the bucket, pour out the substrate and evenly, using a ruler or a construction spatula, distribute it along the bottom of the aquarium. Please note: if the substrate is distributed over all areas of the aquarium, you should try to distribute it so that the thickness of the substrate is minimal at the front wall of the aquarium (1-2 cm), and at the back wall of the aquarium, on the contrary, more.

This is done, firstly, in order to visually add volume to the aquarium, and, secondly, as a rule, plants are not planted in the foreground (except for ground cover plants).

After the substrate is laid, you can additionally make a layer of drugs that will “strengthen” it and / or make the aquarium substrate more “attractive” for colonies of nitrifying bacteria:

– crumble a few tablets Tetra PlantaStart and evenly scatter them along the bottom, reinforcing the substrate;

spread the granules Tetra InitialSticks;

– apply granules Tetra NitrateMinus Pearls;

– sprinkle the required number of capsules Tetra bactozym.

– you can even use baby tourmaline.

At the same time, we draw the reader’s attention to the individuality of each aquarium. All of the above drugs can be used both together and separately.

For example, when launching an aquarium in this review, we did not use Tetra NitrateMinus Pearl because in the future we will use the new Tetra Balance Balls. We also took into account the fact that nitrate (NO3), although it is poison and the last link in the chain of the nitrogen cycle, at the same time, NO3 is an important macro-fertilizer for plants.

We also did not use Tetra InitialSticks, this was done intentionally, firstly, in order to protect ourselves from possible excessive concentration of fertilizers in the first month, secondly, it was decided to use Tetra PlantaStart and Tetra Crypto to feed the plants, through root system and, thirdly, we will use liquid fertilizers Tetra plantamin, Tetra PlantaPro Macro, Tetra PlantaPro Micro, and Tetra CO2 plus. Thus, by such actions we push the care of our aquarium with a herbalist to a more complex, but at the same time more “advanced level” – translating it “into manual mode” when we ourselves, based on the behavior of the aquarium, will adjust: increase or decrease the concentration this or that fertilizer.

Before laying the ground, we only scattered Tetra Bactozym capsules. A detailed description of this drug you can read by clicking on the link that was given above. Here we briefly say that Tetra Baktozym is a drug that promotes the rapid growth of beneficial nitrifying bacteria, the drug creates an invisible film that is “settled” and which bacteria feed on.

Having scattered the Tetra Bakozim capsules on the substrate, we kindly politely invite the beneficial bacteria to move into the soil as quickly as possible.

We proceed to the next stage – laying ground. It is carried out according to the same rules as for the substrate (the thickness of the front wall is less).

Let’s pay attention only to the fact that not every soil is suitable for plants. Aquarium soil should meet the following criteria:

1. It should be easy – it will contribute to the good development of the root system of plants.

2. Must be sloping – this will negate the possible formation of oxygen-free zones and levels the likelihood of acidification of the soil and the substrate.

3. Must be porous – this will contribute to the development of a larger population of beneficial bacteria in the soil.

4. Soil should not “hiss.”

All of the above requirements are met by the ground. Tetra Active Substrate. This soil is a novelty in the line of Tetra products and preparations for aquarium plants.

That is why we will use it and test it in practice.

The basics of hardskape – placing stones and snags.

Harscape is the skeleton of an aquarium design, manipulating decorative elements until the aquarium is filled with water. See the article for more details. Hardscape in Aquarium Design.

Any aquarium is a corner of nature, a microcosm that lives according to the laws and rules of Mother Nature. The harmony of the world is embodied in everything that we see in every bush and every branch.

An aquarist must learn to see the beautiful, to borrow from nature its rules and laws.

On our site there are wonderful articles that will help you take the first steps in the world of harmony, we strongly recommend that you read them:




In this review, we used diabase as stones, and also used an intricate snag as the main design element and surface for growing moss.

It is necessary to pay attention of the reader that stones, in the same way, as well as soil should be checked for “hissing” – they should not increase hardness of water. Diabase is a mountain volcanic rock and in different areas the chemical composition of this stone is different – one diabase “hisses”, the other is not.

Be sure to try to check the “stone decor” vinegar on hiss. Hissing stones, hissing soil can only be used in aquariums where there are no plants, and for fish that love hard water, such are most African cichlids.

In a question of use of kryag, there are also nuances! Details about them are described in our form branch – Snags in an aquarium: how to prepare, soak, boil, dry, sanitize.

Here we note that you should not use the first log in the aquarium. Take a closer look, choose a snag, think about how it will look in an aquarium, how it will be combined as a whole in an aquarium composition.

Also, before the embodiment of the design idea, we recommend that you make sketches of the desired (at least schematically) – this will greatly facilitate the realization of the idea.

Planting plants in the aquarium.

In this review, we intentionally used an incredible number of different plants:

Hediotis Zaltsman;

Bliksa Japanese;

Hemianthus micrantemoids;

Hemianthus Monte Carlo;


Cryptocoryne Parva;

Rotala indica;

Rotala Myanmar;

Bacopa Caroline;

Ludwig Ovalis;

Ludwig ordinary palustris;

Alternater Colorate Ed;

Atonogeton viviparous;

Eleoharis vivipara;


Hygrophilus balsamic;

Pogostemon erectus;

Moss Phoenix;

Moss Flame (Flamemoss);

Queen moss / S.P .;

Willow moss;

Java moss and others.

Such an abundance of plants justifies the use of the substrate and will allow us to show the reader that the cultivation of any, even the most fastidious plant is not such a difficult task. In the future, the list and the number of plants will be adjusted.

Below are the general rules of planting plants:

the photo shows the rules of planting aquarium plants

This design style is based on copying the most striking natural landscapes, both underwater and terrestrial. Aquascape may look like a miniature ridge with grassy slopes. Small architectural forms in this style are of great importance.

The design uses 3 concepts: convex, concave, triangular.

The convex shape – otherwise called the “island”, here the plants go down from the center to the edges, forming an island in the center of the aquarium.

The concave shape – involves reducing the size of stones, plants to the center of the edges of the aquarium, to a specific target focus.

The triangular shape is called the golden section of the design. The focal point is shifted 2/3 to either side of the aquarium.

It should be noted that for many aquarists, a homely reservoir stuffed with plastic plants is absolutely worthless. A completely different look emerges – it’s like plastic products on the kitchen table.

Try to create a miracle from living vegetation and living organisms. First you need to learn that the whole composition, the entire design should not only look beautiful, but also look natural.

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