Probably, like me, many of you gave up on aquariums years ago, unless your kids are enthusiasts. The last one I had contained two newts. (They were really sweet.) When they finally died—of old age, no flushing!—over ten years ago, we never got a new one. Gardening has more than replaced most of my indoor hobbies, unless it is the hobby of indoor gardening.
Clearly, these aquaria are about the plants, not the fish. I mean, what do they have in there, a few tetras? Just to provide movement? And from what I understand, most of the maintenance for these is plant maintenance: pruning, fertilizing, and, yes, grow lights. But at least in this case, the grow light set-up would be in support of something that could easily be a gorgeous focal point in the living room, not hidden in the basement. The plants eat the fish wastes, and you need to have algae-eating animals of some type, though probably not snails. To be honest, the whole maintenance routine sounds like a pain. I’d probably want it in some imaginary luxe office, where someone could come in and service it. Still, plants, water, and fish are a beautiful thing indoors, especially in February.Posted by Elizabeth Licata on February 15, 2008 at 12:00 pm, in the category Taking Your Gardening Dollar.