Another Way to Garden – Aquascaping

A rapidly growing beautiful hobby

There is a beautiful hobby that many of us aren’t aware of.  It’s a type of gardening and landscaping that requires artistic abilities, science, and dedication – aquascaping

What exactly is aquascaping?  Aquascaping is basically gardening underwater.  Design and layout is crafted by arranging aquatic plants, as well as rocks, stones, or driftwood, in an aesthetically pleasing manner within an aquarium.

Aquascaping has been around for many years, but wasn’t made popular until the arrival of Takashi Amano – a Japanese landscape photographer.  Now, no longer is creating beautiful sceneries restricted to the yard or the pot.  It has now expanded into the underwater world of the aquarium.

I have been immersed in this hobby for many years and love it to an obsessive extent.  My wife sometimes says I pay more attention to my fish tank than her.  I wish I had many aquariums and all the resources possible at my finger tip to create beautiful aquascapes, however, I am restricted to space and income. 

The photo you see below is that of my first aquascape which I made in 2011.  It took months and months of nurturing to bring the aquarium to this state and it was still far from complete.  I entered this into the IAPLC (, International Aquatic Plant Layout Contest, – the world’s largest nature aquarium and aquatic plants layout contest.  This aquacape placed 603 out of the thousands of aquascape scapes that were submitted into the contest.

I wanted to come back the following year and create something even better, but with a drastic move in both location and job my hobby had to be put on hold.  It is now 2014 and I am just getting back into this beloved hobby with a small 8.5 gallon aquarium, a large step down from my previous 55 gallon aquarium.  Below you will see the new aquascape I am working on.  The aquascape is stil in developement and far from completion.

Pictures of tank on day one after planting:

Pictures of tank now (3 months after planting):

When I create an aquascape, I take the fish into consideration, after all an aquarium without fish is just not right for me.  I create aquascapes for both my fish and me.  I want my fish to be happy as if they were in thei natural habitat but also look visually appealing.