The Overview

In the heart of Australia, you might find some exotic and extraordinary sights; but not as awesome as what Brad Turner has in his personal quarters. With a CADE rimless aquarium, some substrate, and 1 foot of Ohko stone rocks – He creates a realistic and breath-taking aquascape within 25L (6.6gallons) aquarium.

Within a year, Brad entered his aquascape into the 2014 IAPLC (The International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest) as well as the 2014 AGA (Aquatic Gardeners Association). While he didn’t get any comments or ranking in AGA 2014, he did come in at rank #299 with IAPLC, which is huge from 2,320 entries.

The Equipment & Hardscape

The 1ft Cube Ohko Rock Tank is a CADE aquarium with CADE light setup plus underglass that held in place by the tank. With Ohko stones and ADA amazonia aquasoil being the main building blocks; Brad built up his hardscape to create a mountainous valley with pockets for aquasoil.

For equipment – This tank uses an Eheim 2213 plus small insta reactor and inline heater. Whereas he did swapped out his supposedly NAG Lily Pipes to Cal Aqua Labs pipes for better quality. Brad also installed a stainless steel mesh intake filter later on in the build for baby shrimplets.

The 1ft cube ohko rock tank is equipped with a CADE light that is 2x24w which is considered high lighting. For optimal growth, this tank has Co2 set a 1-2bps and dosing liquid ferts 0.5ml ada step 2 and K each daily.

“This tank came in at rank 299 in the 2014 IAPLC. Very pleased with the result. ” ~ Brad Turner

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The Plants

Gotta Keep it short, and Brad did just that – with instinctively picking some of the shortest growing foreground plants and mosses – he was able to give depth to his aquascape like they are some humongous mountains with shrubbery pointing into the sky.

The Dwarf Hairgrass was placed here and there around the ohko stones; giving it a rugged look. Whereas Hemianthus Callitrichoides (HC) dwarf baby tears was carpeted in the upper valleys; like a meadows in the hills. Mini Pellia and Rose Moss was fishline tied to various ohko rocks for more greenery where the roots couldn’t take hold.

Other Aquatic Plants

The Fauna

With only being 25L or 6.6gallons, there is a very limited amount of fauna you can put inside a tank. As well as if you are going to add any sort of shrimp – if adding any predatory fish, they will enjoy a very expensive dinner. Having said that, the 1ft Cube Ohko rock tank has an assortment of Red Cherry Shrimp, Crystal Red Shrimp, and Golden Bee Shrimp. Although the clean-up crew wasn’t keeping all algae in check; there was some diatoms forming and Brad wanted to add an oto catfish to put it back in check. Why oto’s? because they are herbivores and shrimp aren’t afraid of them; pretty much a match made in heaven.

The FAQ

Are those NAG pipes?

I think they might be, not 100% sure what they are. They weren’t pricey.





How many pounds of ohko stone is that?!

I started with a lot of ohko rock, about 15kg (or 33 pounds). This gave me lots of choice, and the luxury of being able to smash up a few and hope the fragments look cool. The amount I actually used was about half.





Can you tell us more about your stand? How much was it and where you get it?

The tank/stand/light combo is a CADE mini. It cost $350. From what I’ve heard, they are made in China, sent to Singapore then brought over to Australia. Only one store sells them here in Western Australia. The brand CADE (yes, it’s spelt in capitals) has been in Australia for about 4 years now. They’re essentially an ADA knockoff, but a good one; low iron, minimal silicone and unlike the ADA solar, the light swings back and forth. ADA is still pricey here (e.g. a 90-P costs $2234, and doesn’t come with a stand). CADE is a little better than half the price, and their tanks come with a metal stand with glass panels. I have a 2ft CADE like this. Pretty cool imo.





That is a good price indeed, did the lights bulbs come in the package deal too?

Yes, it came with 2x 24w PL tubes. I believe they can be swapped out with the Aquaone brand PLs. Not sure about the colour temp, I’d guess around 7000k. They are a little more white than giessmann midday, but much more more yellow than an aquasky.





I really like this. I would think belem would look great in this tank personally. That light looks great, what is it?

Thanks. Dwarf hg would be nice and I have a lot in another tank I could use. Migt plant it up the felt hand side, front to back.

The setup consists of a stand, tank and light. It’s a CADE Mini. The light is 2x24w PL.





do you find that your h.c. leaves grow evenly in size or unevenly?

They seem pretty even to me, always have. Cut them low, really low, give them even light spread. i’ve always had better luck growing old hc that’s been in a tank for a long time (e.g. a year) rather than new store brought stuff.





how much CO2 are you injecting? I've always had bad luck with CO2 and shrimp.

Co2 is set at 1bps, it’s going through a small Ista reactor. But i’ve been meaning to increase it a little due to an increase in algae (gsa and bba). The light is 2x 24w, so the co2 demand is pretty high for approx 25L.





What type of filter are you using?

Using a 2213 + small ista reactor + inline heater.





Which extensions are you using ?

The cheapest ones out the on da bay. I paid less than AUD$7. They’re being used with the standard 18-55 kit less. They don’t allow for aperture change or auto focus. But shutter speed and ISO can still be changed. More expensive tubes have the electronics run through, like Kenko tubes.





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