Fish Keeping and Aquascaping Blog

March 30, 2010

Aquascaping a 50 Gallon Tank

Filed under: Uncategorized — Prabhu M @ 8:47 am
Tags: , , , , , , , ,


I was rescaping my 50G tank this week-end and thought about posting it .

Here are the tank specs.

Tank : 3 x 1.5 x 1.5  –>  8 mm glass   on a custom made wooden stand

Light : 2 x 36 W PLL Aquazonic fixture

Filter: Dolphin Internal Powerhead Filter

Had this tank running from the past 3 years,  so had to empty the tank first.  Moved the fish to my  4 footer while emptying the tank.  Here is how the empty tank set looks.

Wanted to aquascape it using the driftwood I had collected at Srirangapatana. ( Did not want to spend a lot on buying drift wood J ). Here are the pieces of drift wood I had in stock. The bigger one would be my main piece.

Thought of dividing the setup into 2 portions. A left bunch ( bigger & main view ) and a right bunch ( smaller view) . While the tank was being emptied, I tried the placement on the table. Picked up the below placement as the better  one among the various combinations I tried. Wifey gave the thumbs up too J

Decided on using Laterite as the base.  Would have loved to use ADA Amazonia, but Could not afford it  L Here is about 40 kg of laterite going into the tank…….

Wanted to give an elevation to the left, where the bigger and main view would be. A slighter ramp to the right where the smaller view would be……… Here is how it looked after it was shaped.

Tried to put the driftwood exactly as I had setup on the table overnight…… though had to change it slightly. The tank with the wood in place.

The plants that will go in. Had some plants from my old setup.

The tank after the ferns and moss went in…………….

Then The crypts ……………………..

Started filling the tank………… The flow from the pipe moved the gravel a bit from the front, but was able to set it back as before.

This is how it looked after filling it with water………..

Final inspection and seal of approval from my 1 year old kid……

Setup the CO2 at 1 bubble per sec….. This is how the tank looks after 1 day ….

Currently cycling it with 1 Black mollie, 1 red-flame gaurami, 1 swordtail and 1 Ram.

Comments, criticism, suggestions………….all are welcome.


Prabhu M

Update : Here is the tank after 1 month of setup, as of May 1st week.

Tank as of Aug 2012 :






  1. A carpet would look lovely. A beautiful green carpet on the aquarium floor!!

    Comment by Vinay Joshi — March 30, 2010 @ 11:51 am | Reply

    • A carpet of HC or glassostigma would need very high light. I don’t think my 72W can sustain a good carpet.
      Will look for some medium light carpet plants. Riccia ?!

      Comment by linelogic — March 30, 2010 @ 3:41 pm | Reply

  2. Nice work i can say 🙂

    Comment by Prashant — March 30, 2010 @ 3:14 pm | Reply

  3. Nice to see the stage by stage pics of Aquarium.. nice work..where to get this aqasonic fixture from? cost? Isit from any Electrical equipment shop?

    Comment by martin — March 31, 2010 @ 2:12 am | Reply

    • The AquaZonic fixture is an fixture meant for aquariums only. You need to buy it from an Aquariums supplier.

      Comment by linelogic — March 31, 2010 @ 5:08 am | Reply

  4. Great going bro! Full resolution pics are looking great! Add some more textual details so that aqua enthusiasts can get some valuable tips!

    Comment by Pavan M — April 1, 2010 @ 3:54 am | Reply

  5. Hi Prabhu – Its nice to see the passion in you for aquarium and fish still remains the same since primary school. I know how much you love keeping an aquarium. your set up seems to be really good. It would have been really nice if you had shown some photos with few fish in it.

    Comment by Dr. Ravi k — April 1, 2010 @ 4:39 am | Reply

  6. hey very good work…how do u keep ur aquarium running? how long do the fishes live? we havent yet been able to establish the ecosystem for them. they dont live for more than 1-2months. but reading this i realised we dont hvae airfilter or bubbler. is that must?

    Comment by sapna — April 3, 2010 @ 2:29 am | Reply

    • Sapna,
      Some of the fish I have in my other tank have been with me from the past 2+ years. Some have even bread in my tanks and I have raised their babies to adulthood too.
      You definitely need a filter, if not an aerator ( bubbler ). Do not tell me that you have your fish in a bowl……

      Comment by linelogic — April 4, 2010 @ 4:46 pm | Reply

  7. Hey Prabhu, nice aquarium.. we had 2 goldfish and kept them in a fish bowl(:-D). One of them died in a week because he did not eat well. The other one lived for about 15 months and survived a house move and multiple location changes and finally gave up after my hubby cleaned the fish bowl too well one day 😉 not too bad for a walmart 22c goldfish though

    Comment by rani — April 7, 2010 @ 8:15 am | Reply

    • Definitely an achievement from a 22c goldfish rani…… 🙂

      Comment by linelogic — April 7, 2010 @ 8:35 am | Reply

  8. When are you starting out man ?

    Comment by prashanth bhat — April 21, 2010 @ 2:51 pm | Reply

  9. ಚೆಂದಾಗೈತೆ ಮಗ…ನೀಲಿ ಬಣ್ಣ ಸಕ್ಕತ್ತಾಗ್ ಕಾಣಿಸ್ತೈತೆ ಮುಂದುವರೆಸು


    Comment by Bharath — May 19, 2010 @ 4:45 pm | Reply

  10. Hi Prabhu,
    Nice tank…. think time has come for you to put updated pics…. had a query though, are you using a solenoid valve for your CO2? If not how are you controlling the turning on-off of your CO2 at lights-out? Are you not turning off the CO2 on lights out?

    Comment by Nilanjan Das — May 17, 2011 @ 5:17 pm | Reply

    • Nilanjan,
      I switch off the CO2 in the night using a ON/OFF ball valve connect inline to the CO2 supply.

      Comment by Prabhu M — May 17, 2011 @ 9:26 pm | Reply

  11. I have a similar tank with same dimensions. I want to grow HC cuba and dwarf grass. What light fixture will I require? Should I go for T5 lights?

    Comment by Dr.Dheep — November 2, 2012 @ 11:34 pm | Reply

  12. What is the purpose of using co2 in an aquaium?… As far as i know fish needs oxygen and not the co2″… Is co2 is for the plants use only or for both fish and plants?… Just want to know… I have no idea on it… Pls. I need reply.. Thank u…

    Comment by Rockybert — March 20, 2014 @ 6:07 pm | Reply

    • CO2 is for the plants. In short, The plants use CO2 for their photo synthesis and in the process release Oxygen, which serves the fish requirements.

      Comment by Prabhu M — March 21, 2014 @ 9:16 am | Reply

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