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September 2017 - Canyon Island

Lost in isolation, this island of jagged rock formations rests in contrast to the skies and the deep blue sea. What was once a formidable archway has now given in to the elements and has caved in to create a canyon. As the foliage grows alongside the rocky surface, the structure maintains its monolithic presence.

Themed Aquarium of the Month September 2017 - Canyon Island
  • Themed Aquarium of the Month September 2017 - Canyon Island - Rocky Hill
  • Themed Aquarium of the Month September 2017 - Canyon Island - Jagged Stones
  • Themed Aquarium of the Month September 2017 - Canyon Island - Jagged Cliff

The rock formations are placed with the aquascaping technique known as “Iwagumi”. This technique involves using a focal point stone placed 2/3 of the way of the entire length of the tank. The direction you choose does not matter. After that, the secondary stone is placed in a fashion that typically protrudes out of the focal point rock on either the left or right. In this occasion, it is pointed to the right. The tertiary stone is usually placed next to the focal point stone as an accent. It is typically smaller than the focal point stone to allow the monolithic look of the stone it is beside to stand out. In this design, one was placed beside the focal point stone and the secondary stone. The last stones are the sacrificial stones. Despite the name, it is not as gruesome as it sounds. These stones are typically placed away from the main rockwork and are stones that would not work well on its own. This design used another larger stone (the other half of the broken archway) to create a triangular look to the aquascape.



Having the jagged rocks alongside pointed and sharp plants keeps the jagged theme together. This effect allows the feeling of crumbling rocks setting into formation rather than smooth edges that would indicate erosion over time. The tan color of the rocks allows for a larger contrast with the vibrant and lush greens and yellows that are present in the plants. The rounded and large pebbled gravel allows for a rocky beach look and its tan coloration creates even more of a contrast with the pointed and sharp lines of the rock and plants.

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