How I Upgrade My Aquariums

Michael Langerman
6 min readJun 15, 2020

I make different aquariums to check new ideas and to test them under different conditions.

Most of what is in the old aquariums gets moved into new aquariums.

In this example, I move this outdated 2 liter plastic bottle nursery into a larger, 3 liter jar.

I like to keep my aquariums on wooden bases.

The jar comes with a cover that I will use to make a planter for an aquarium garden.

I wash gravel from old nurseries and then reuse it in new aquariums.

A tilted background makes all aquariums prettier.

Fill the new aquarium partially with dechlorinated water.
About 1/4 or so would do.

First, I move the floating Frogbits and duckweed from the old aquarium.
Put it temporarily into some other nursery to keep it out of my way.
I use spare plants to make fish food or share them with my friends.

Here you can see my growing underwater Pothos.

I want to check how it grows in a larger aquarium.

So, let’s start moving.

Here I move Hornwort.
Anchor it with a seashell.

My dwarf guppies can be transferred between tanks using a pipette.

It is the safest way I can think of.

Use a fish net to transfer larger fish.

I also move top water from the old tank into the new nursery.
Avoid picking up waste accumulated at the bottom of the old nursery.

Now I move the Pothos.

Clean up plants as necessary.
I move plants in the order that is easiest to pull out.

I anchor both Pothos with one seashell here.
Here they go into the new nursery.

Next is Elodea.
It is an interesting plant in many regards.
I need to put it in a separate nursery for further observation.

Check my previous videos for more details about all the plants and everything else shown in this video.

The next is growing underwater land moss.
I want it in the new nursery.

Here comes a different type of land moss.
It also grows underwater.
Though, it is less pretty than the first one.
Let the waste settle down.

It’s easy to catch guppy fry in an aquarium without plants.
Once again, I use a fish net to transfer large fish.

Here is Hairgrass.
I like this plant and grow it in all my aquariums.
Let’s just clean it up a bit.
And here it goes into the new nursery.

Add more water from the old aquarium.

I add seed shrimp (Ostracoda) and pond snails in all my aquariums.

Now I can put the cover upside down to reduce evaporation.

Or better yet, let’s use the cover to make a planter.

I have showed how to make this and other types of planters in previous videos.

This planter reduces evaporation and serves as a base for aquarium garden.

There are many different land plants and herbs that grow with their roots in water.
I even have cactuses growing in my aquarium gardens.
That is the upgraded nursery on August 11th, 2019

And here is the same nursery two and half months later on October 27th

That is how I upgrade all my aquariums.
I prefer to call them nurseries.

The new things I learn from my nurseries, I use to improve the old, reusing as much as I can.

And so it goes.

Have fun and happy aquariums :)