In the distant times of the USSR, when aquarism was only born in the country, the problem of aquarium design was not particularly focused, because there were much more serious problems, for example, to provide suitable living conditions for fish and plants. Due to the lack of suitable equipment and the lack of information on the design of aquariums, many fans generally contained empty cans with fish did not even dream of anything more.
But in the modern world, when all work on the provision of lighting, filtration, feeding and maintaining the required temperature is assumed by automatic devices, aquarists have a lot of time to come up with various beautiful styles of decorating their aquariums. Many styles of design were born: “equator”, “grotto”, “psevdomore”, etc.
In Japan, the famous photographer and designer Takashi Amano put forward a whole direction in the design of aquariums called Aquascape, at the heart of this concept is a natural aquarium.
Aquascape is very popular nowadays and the point is not in fashion, but in the fact that it is eternal, but our nature is eternal, it is the design of aquariums in a natural style that repeats the landscape of lakes and rivers of different parts of the world looks most natural, especially if the corresponding fish species from these regions. Rarely does a self-respecting aquarist have plastic locks in a bank, bright plastic primer or artificial plants, nature takes precedence over fashion and all plastic from the aquarium is successfully superseded by natural stones and soil, tree snags and live plants.
Although in some styles of design it is permissible to use one or two artificial plants, if they are outwardly indistinguishable from the real ones (thank the progress and new production technologies).
Before you begin to design your own aquarium, it is advisable to determine the style of decoration, in the same Aquascaping there are several types:
- Natural aquarium.
- Park style.
- Dutch aquarium.
- Open style, etc.
In my subjective opinion, the natural aquarium is the most beautiful, this style implies a design of an aquarium only from natural materials and living plants. At the end of the article will be posted some photos of the design of aquariums, as they say it is better to see once …
So proceed to the very design of your cans yourself. First you need to install your aquarium in a permanent place where it will be in the future.
The color of the soil does not really matter, here everything is to your taste, but if the aquarium is in a natural style, then the soil should be “natural”, i.e. dark brown, but certainly not bright unnatural. We distribute it in a uniform layer throughout the bottom.
Set the background, of course, if you want to set a volumetric background for an aquarium, then this must be done before backfilling the ground. Film background can be set at any time.
When choosing a film background, you should not forget in what style you want to decorate your aquarium, if it is natural – then in no case should you take the background with plants and stones painted in the background, as This is completely contrary to the concept of a natural aquarium. The ideal option in this case would be monochrome blue or matte film.
In the next step, we will need stones, both large and small. If you are going to buy them at the pet store, please note that this will cost you a lot of money, but if you are lucky with your place of residence and you can find a lot of large boulders or rock near it, then you can cancel the trip to the pet store at this stage.
Prepare a couple of large stones and smaller stones, if you found them yourself then it is worth checking them for the presence of lime in the structure, drop some acetic acid on them – if a hiss appears then these stones are not suitable, if the vinegar does not hiss – you can safely treat them by boiling or in the oven, after which they are ready to be placed in a jar.
If you place stones in an aquarium, then stones of the same texture and style will look most beautiful, i.e. either this is rock or rounded cobblestones, but the “salad” made of stones does not look so attractive anymore, consider this when making the design.
When designing an aquarium with your own hands, keep in mind that there is no symmetry in inanimate nature, so you should not place stones in the center of the aquarium or symmetrically around the sides. Next to the high large stones should be placed a few small ones.
The number of large stones should preferably be odd: 3.5 or 7, depending on the size of the aquarium.
Before installing the stones in the aquarium at the intended location, collect the soil in the mounds, so that large stones “drown” in them. The deeper into the ground the stones will be buried, the more naturally it will look, if the result does not satisfy you, arrange the stones otherwise.
Feel free to do this process for an hour or two or even a whole day, because at this stage it is easiest to do this.
Another rule in the design of an aquarium with your own hands: do not place high stones strictly vertically, a slight slope will create more naturalness and the illusion of water movement.
All stones are tilted and create the effect of the flow of water.
Snags in a natural aquarium are not necessary, moreover, it will be difficult for a beginner to choose a snag that fits nicely into an aquarium, and if money is already paid for it and not small, it will seriously upset you. Another thing is when you can get for free various stumps, for example from the shore of a lake or a small river, and try on how they will look in your tank next to stones, twist in different directions, break off unnecessary branches, etc.
– Let’s continue our decoration of the aquarium with our own hands; now it is necessary to pour a small amount of water into our jar of soil and stones, exactly to the height of the soil, and you can start planting. The choice of plants depends on several factors: the design style, your experience in aquarism, the power of lighting, etc.
If you are a beginner – then it is better to be content with inexpensive hardy plants, as a rule, they are the cheapest in the pet store, because they grow fast and unpretentious.
Although it may well be that in your pet store only those will be. We take several species, not less than 3 and they should differ in height. The lowest we sit in front, high behind and of course the average height in the remaining space.
Try to avoid symmetry!
Among the stones, you can plant low plants, they will give more “naturalness”.
If there is a snag in your tank, you can decorate it with Javanese moss. Takashi Amano created the most beautiful compositions of snags and this moss.
The unusual design of snags resembles trees growing out of the ground.
In the process of planting and until the moment water is poured into the aquarium, we do not forget to periodically spray them with water so that the delicate leaves do not dry out.
The last step in the design of your aquarium with your own hands will be the pouring of water, since all of our decoration is already ready. This process will have small features. First, it is necessary to cover our decorations and plants with an oilcloth so that they will not be washed away by water flows.
It is necessary to fill it very slowly, it is advisable to do it through a watering can, but in the absence of that, an ordinary bucket will do, in one hand you can hold the plate near the bottom and pour it out of the bucket onto it, a thick stream of water will break on the plate into many smaller, weaker ones. When the water level above the ground exceeds 15 cm, you can be bolder to fill the aquarium.
After the bank is filled – remove the oil from it.
In this article, I cited only general principles on how to design a home aquarium with your own hands, because many nuances, depending on the different design styles, can drastically change and understand what suits you only by trial and error.
Finally, the promised photo design of the aquarium:
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