Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

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Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Mon Aug 13, 2012 1:58 am

Hey everyone,



While at my local pet store the other day I found a large, fake, log for use in aquariums. I thought "Hmm, how cool would it be to have roots running all down that?" So I bought two in hopes of doing that, one with a Ficus natalensis, and one with a Tigerbark Ficus. I'm sure many people will disagree and tell me not to do it for odd reasons, but I thought why not. Here's the stump:





It was suggested to me that I use a younger tree with a smaller root system for this project, so that the roots grow down in naturally follow the crevices. If I do that, do I need to keep the roots pressed against the stump? Or can I just tie the tree to the stump and bury it in some good soil? Any comments are welcome.

Ryan
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Aquarium Decoration

Post  bonsaisr on Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:17 am

Nick Lenz does that sort of thing all the time. You can find many tchotchkes in the pet store suitable for bonsai. The pond in my rock planting tray is a lizard's water dish.
Did you see that project of a miniature Angkor Wat?
Iris

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:25 am

bonsaisr wrote:Nick Lenz does that sort of thing all the time. You can find many tchotchkes in the pet store suitable for bonsai. The pond in my rock planting tray is a lizard's water dish.
Did you see that project of a miniature Angkor Wat?
Iris


Ah yes, that's right. Nick Lenz has some great, humorous creations. Love looking at his work.

I did see that project, by Jun correct? That is incredible and I can't wait to see how it looks a few years from now.

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Mon Aug 13, 2012 12:45 pm

Not sure why this has been moved to the lounge? It involves bonsai and had questions pertaining to ROR.

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  fiona on Mon Aug 13, 2012 2:00 pm

I have moved it back for you and edited your title so that it is more clear that it is a question.

Do you actually have the trees you mention already or are you just gauging opinion before attempting to find suitable material?

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  rock on Mon Aug 13, 2012 4:26 pm

Ryan wrote:Hey everyone,



people will disagree and tell me not to do it for odd reasons, ...
Ry,
Cant think of an odd reason...so you have my permission...proceed
ThumbsUp

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Guest on Mon Aug 13, 2012 4:34 pm

Hi Ryan

Am I wrong if I say you are about to make a tanuki.....tree growing together with deadwood?
I can not see you are showing us a stone...is it petrified wood?

Kind regards Yvonne

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Mon Aug 13, 2012 4:56 pm

Thanks Fiona. I've got the trees already, just trying to work out a few kinks.

Thanks Rock cheers

Hi Yvonne, I wasn't exactly aiming for tanuki, but more of a Ficus in its natural environment, with the roots "strangling" the stump. It's not a stone nor is it petrified wood, it's just a hollow piece of plastic Laughing

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Guest on Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:01 pm

Ha ha ha

The idea is good enough...but has the "root" quality enough...does it look good in a VERY closeup?...this tree will be worked on for many years, and if the paint vanish, or you can see it is plastic, is it then worth it?

Kind regards Yvonne

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:07 pm

Yvonne Graubaek wrote:Ha ha ha

The idea is good enough...but has the "root" quality enough...does it look good in a VERY closeup?...this tree will be worked on for many years, and if the paint vanish, or you can see it is plastic, is it then worth it?

Kind regards Yvonne


Thank you Yvonne. I don't know if the paint will fade, as this is made for aquariums where it would normally be sitting in water 24/7. People probably won't be able to tell that it's plastic, I mean you couldn't right Wink


What I'm really wondering is if I take the roots and place them over this decoration, do I need to keep the roots pinned against it, or will simply wiring the tree to the decoration, then covering with soil be enough? I, of course, want the roots to stay pinned to the decoration, but I feel only covering the roots with soil won't keep them pinned to the decoration and will cause them to grow outward into the soil. Does this make sense??

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:15 pm

Here are some close up shots:


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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Guest on Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:51 pm

Hi Ryan

It looks pretty, and it is your decision, if it is worth trying Smile
If you take a ficus with thin, fairly new roots, and place the tree and roots in a nice way on the "root/rock", do you have to make sure they dont move.....if you use vire will ugly marks soon appear....I found out cottonyarn for knitting is very nice in use....cover the roots as much as you like with the yarn, water will still reach the roots...cover the roots deep in the soil, and train the tree as wanted...after one year is the cotton rotten, and no marks will be left on the roots....as soon as the roots are well dawn under, were you want the future soilsurface to be, can you begin, to inbetween remove the soil from the roots above, all the way dawn to new soillevel...remove unvanted roots...place new, you can do this quit often if you take care. Cower with soil again afterwards, untill you are happy with the result, and keep them exposed.

Kind regards Yvonne

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Mon Aug 13, 2012 7:01 pm

Yvonne Graubaek wrote:Hi Ryan

It looks pretty, and it is your decision, if it is worth trying Smile
If you take a ficus with thin, fairly new roots, and place the tree and roots in a nice way on the "root/rock", do you have to make sure they dont move.....if you use vire will ugly marks soon appear....I found out cottonyarn for knitting is very nice in use....cover the roots as much as you like with the yarn, water will still reach the roots...cover the roots deep in the soil, and train the tree as wanted...after one year is the cotton rotten, and no marks will be left on the roots....as soon as the roots are well dawn under, were you want the future soilsurface to be, can you begin, to inbetween remove the soil from the roots above, all the way dawn to new soillevel...remove unvanted roots...place new, you can do this quit often if you take care. Cower with soil again afterwards, untill you are happy with the result, and keep them exposed.

Kind regards Yvonne


Great thinking Yvonne, thanks so much! I like your idea of using yarn, I will definitely do that. It was suggested to me that I use a tree with a smaller root system so that the roots grow down the decoration and all throughout the crevices, making it look much more natural. I figure that could work well, especially with the rapid root system of Ficus natalensis.

I'll work on this tomorrow and keep you all updated.

Ryan
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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Tue Aug 14, 2012 7:00 pm

I keep getting conflicting advice about whether or not I need to keep the roots pinned against the decoration. What is your opinion, should I keep them pinned against the decoration or will simply placing the tree on top and slightly tying it to the decoration enough?

Ryan
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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  bucknbonsai on Tue Aug 14, 2012 7:58 pm

I have the same plastic roots in my several of my aquariums and know that they will break down, I would imagine much faster in sun (yet you dont grow yours in the sun right?) I also think that up close they do not look real, why not use natural wood? It could be a lot of work and time to invest just to undo it after the plastic breaks down or you decide it looks to artificial.

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Tue Aug 14, 2012 8:02 pm

bucknbonsai wrote:I have the same plastic roots in my several of my aquariums and know that they will break down, I would imagine much faster in sun (yet you dont grow yours in the sun right?) I also think that up close they do not look real, why not use natural wood? It could be a lot of work and time to invest just to undo it after the plastic breaks down or you decide it looks to artificial.

Nah mine stay under lights. I don't have access to wood like this, and my carving skills are close to nil, so I just figured why not. I don't find it to look artificial at all, so I'm fine with it. If it breaks years down the road, oh well. That's that.

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Hans van Meer. on Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:06 pm

Yvonne Graubaek wrote:Hi Ryan

It looks pretty, and it is your decision, if it is worth trying Smile
If you take a ficus with thin, fairly new roots, and place the tree and roots in a nice way on the "root/rock", do you have to make sure they dont move.....if you use vire will ugly marks soon appear....I found out cottonyarn for knitting is very nice in use....cover the roots as much as you like with the yarn, water will still reach the roots...cover the roots deep in the soil, and train the tree as wanted...after one year is the cotton rotten, and no marks will be left on the roots....as soon as the roots are well dawn under, were you want the future soilsurface to be, can you begin, to inbetween remove the soil from the roots above, all the way dawn to new soillevel...remove unvanted roots...place new, you can do this quit often if you take care. Cower with soil again afterwards, untill you are happy with the result, and keep them exposed.

Kind regards Yvonne

A example was so near! Smile HERE!
Hope that gives you a idea!?
cheers,
Hans van Meer.

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:14 pm

Hans van Meer. wrote:
A example was so near! Smile HERE!
Hope that gives you a idea!?
cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Beautiful Hans. When you first placed the tree on the rock, did you keep the roots pinned to the rock? Or did you just place the roots on the rock and bury with soil?

Ryan
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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Hans van Meer. on Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:41 pm

Ryan wrote:
Hans van Meer. wrote:
A example was so near! Smile HERE!
Hope that gives you a idea!?
cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Beautiful Hans. When you first placed the tree on the rock, did you keep the roots pinned to the rock? Or did you just place the roots on the rock and bury with soil?

Good question? Would you believe that I dont realy remember! Mad Very Happy Old age I guess?! And I did look for old photos, that I know that I have, to go along with my Ficus post, but....... you guessed it! I cant find those eather! affraid
But I know for sure that the roots that disappear into those holes, were just dropped down into them and than simply covered with soil. For the roots to fill up those holes took more than 15 years though! They grow so slow in our climate and it sadly spents most of the year inside, in the attic, underneed a roof window. It's only outdoors for 4 mounds, if it's a normal Summer! This year and the year before we had strange Summers! It stayed outdoors until mid October! And that is one full month longer that normal! Any way, those roots that grow down those sides were probably (I think) hold into place against the rock, by thin aluminium wires coiled around the whole stone. And then covered by the same soil! I removed a big chunk of the soil level as soon as I saw that the roots were thickening and doing fine! Roots thicken and age faster when exposed to air and sun!
I will post the pics when I find them, but I cant promise anything! Very Happy
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.


Last edited by Hans van Meer. on Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:43 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : I forgot! :))

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:44 pm

Hans van Meer. wrote:
Ryan wrote:
Hans van Meer. wrote:
A example was so near! Smile HERE!
Hope that gives you a idea!?
cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Beautiful Hans. When you first placed the tree on the rock, did you keep the roots pinned to the rock? Or did you just place the roots on the rock and bury with soil?

Good question? Would you believe that I dont realy remember! Mad Very Happy Old age I guess?! And I did look for old photos, that I know that I have, to go along with my Ficus post, but....... you guessed it! I cant find those eather! affraid
But I know for sure that the roots that disappear into those holes, were just dropped down into them and than simply covered with soil. For the roots to fill up those holes took more than 15 years though! The grow so slow in our climate and it spent most of the year inside, in the attic, underneed a roof window. It's only outdoors for 4 mounds, if it's a normal Summer! This year and the year before had strange Summers! It was outdoors until mid October! And that is one full month longer that normal! Any way, those roots that grow down those sides were probably (I think) hold into place against the rock, by thin aluminium wires coiled around the whole stone. And then covered by the soil! I removed a big chunk of the soil level as soon as I saw that the roots were thickening and doing fine! Roots thicken and age faster when exposed to air and sun!
I will post the pics when I find them, but I cant promise anything! Very Happy
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Thanks Hans! That's not a problem, that was quite a while ago Very Happy

Hmm, I still need to decide whether or not to pin the roots. I probably will pin them with yarn as Yvonne said, then just bury with soil.

Ryan
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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:06 pm

I think I'll just end up pinning the roots. However there aren't many roots right now, so I plan on growing out the roots in this two foot long PVC tube. Shouldn't take long with the rapid root system natalensis has.



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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Fri Aug 17, 2012 12:40 am

I am considering using driftwood now, if I can find a good piece.

Ryan
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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:32 pm

I think for now I'll just go with a non-plastic piece, so I purchased this big piece of wood:

Front:


Back:


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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Guest on Thu Aug 23, 2012 10:28 am

Hi Ryan

Is there no reason why you dont want to use a regular nice rock????.....the deadwood will give you a tanuki to work with, witch is a diffrent type of style...I am sure you can find information on tanuki here on IBC...... The deadwood will soon decae in the humid inviroment you give the tree.

Kind regards Yvonne

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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

Post  Ryan on Thu Aug 23, 2012 2:30 pm

Yvonne Graubaek wrote:Hi Ryan

Is there no reason why you dont want to use a regular nice rock????.....the deadwood will give you a tanuki to work with, witch is a diffrent type of style...I am sure you can find information on tanuki here on IBC...... The deadwood will soon decae in the humid inviroment you give the tree.

Kind regards Yvonne

Hi Yvonne,


I'm shooting for an epiphytic style tree, as Jerry has done in this article:

http://www.bonsaihunk.us/EpiphyticCreate.html

Ryan
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Re: Aquarium Decoration - any use for root over rock?

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