Bubble Bowl BEST ONE! (around 10gallonish) http://amzn.to/2sgcPsZ
Bubble Bowl Similar size as mine (around 7 gallons) http://amzn.to/2usPypx
Bubble Bowl Similar size as mine 2 (around 7 gallons) http://amzn.to/2usYVW8
Desk lamp (I used the clamps to mount it) http://amzn.to/2svkS9s
GE CFL light bulb (14w 6500K) http://amzn.to/2tAPVQo
The exact bulb I used (osram 14W coolwhite) I can’t find it…sorry https://goo.gl/75Ri9j
Philips CFL 13W T2 Daylight 6500K, 4-Pack http://amzn.to/2H67BrI
miracle gro organic choice potting mix http://amzn.to/2tyHm9g
2~3mm gravel 20lb bag http://amzn.to/2gJ5tOl
2~3mm gravel 5lb bag http://amzn.to/2y3e3ih
Mini round shape magnet scrubber http://amzn.to/2zx6k8D
50W heater http://amzn.to/2tAQOsy
Heater cover so plants won’t get burned http://amzn.to/2sw42ap
Tiny thermometer http://amzn.to/2tAwFmg
Magnetic thermometer https://amzn.to/2LRCrXd
(I’m using the tiny thermometer with a small rubber band to hold it in its place.)
The book that I read to make this aquarium:
Ecology of the Planted Aquarium by Diana Walstad(Hard cover) http://amzn.to/2tB4xiZ
Ecology of the Planted Aquarium by Diana Walstad(digital) http://amzn.to/2svT0Sy
A tutorial of how to initially setup the soil:
It’s not the bowl, but I setup the bowl exactly the same way.
This was my very first attempt at Walstad method setup right after reading her book – first hearing about the book through one of Dustin’s Fish Tanks videos.
I actually did this bowl around 2 years ago. The videos are taken from my other youtube channel that was about this bowl. It’s kind of abandoned now, since I don’t have the bowl anymore. I put together all of the videos and decided to put it here, so I could share my experience with all of you. Hope this helps.
Walstad method setup is great when it works. However, as I have mentioned in my previous video, it can be difficult and time consuming for the first 2 months or so, until the plants establish themselves.
After 7 months or so, vallisneria took over the entire tank, and there were hardly any space for my betta to swim around in. Also, the bowl just looked way too overgrown.
I trimmed the vallineria, and it didn’t recover very well. It mostly turned brown from the tips and started to melt.
So, I decided to move my betta to the 5 gallon one that most of you have already seen :
The above link’s tank has all of the details about light, substrate, plants list, and everything else in the description.
It is the same setup as this bowl – 50W heater with heater cover so the plants wouldn’t get burned, 14W CFL coolwhite, light duration, organic soil, 2~3mm cap gravel…etc.
For the CFL, I’m going by 2~3 watts per gallon rule. that’s only for fluorescent. anything higher will most likely cause accelerated algae growth.
I did give it some controlled amount of direct sunlight. I have blinds and the window is facing west, so whenever I had time, I would let the bowl get 1~2 hours max of sunlight. It was not every day, just whenever it was sunny or maybe weekends. It’s not a requirement to give it sunlight. It did not cause more algae growth. It actually made the plants grow faster. But I think you should give sunlight only when the plants are already established and thriving.
WATER CHANGE: I didn’t do water change for the first week. then I couldn’t wait and put in my betta. that was a mistake. It takes average of 2 months for this kind of setup to get established. Only then, is the water “safe” for livestock, IMO. The plants are the filter. If the plants aren’t doing well, the livestock won’t do well.
So, after putting in my betta, I did water changes often. nearly daily of 5~50%. but also, I put such a thin cap gravel, which was another mistake, the soil leached out too fast. so I had to add more gravel.
I did 5% when there was surface bio-film. I did 50% when the water became too brown. I rarely did 50%. the usual daily water change was around 10~20%. after 2~3 months, I only did weekly water changes of 10~25%.
While all this was going on, my betta did get fin rot, b/c I put him in too early. He did recover completely, but it took a while. I should have put him in around 2 months mark. maybe even 3 months.
IF you don’t put any livestock, you don’t need to do daily water changes. Only do water change if the water becomes too brown. maximum of 50%. If your cap is thick enough, water should get too brown around once a week. if your water gets too brown in 2~3 days or earlier, you cap gravel size is too big, and/or it’s too thin.
after 3 months or so, water hardly became brown.
I put a 1cm thick polyurethane mat under the base of the bowl.
This bowl’s diameter is about 39cm or 15 inches. around 7.5 gallons, or 30 liters. I got it at a local gardening store.
Played by Kevin Macleod