Can I ask you, to do the introduction honors for us? Sure! Welcome to the wonderful world of aquascaping! Beautiful world! [Balazs] Yeah! [Laughter] He likes me! Shake hands! This was 50th, this was 46th. On photo it looks dangerous. The drawing came first? Yeah, the drawing came first, and then I did the tank based on that. Welcome to the beautiful world of aquascaping! Guys, I’m really excited today, because we’re gonna have probably the most exciting event, or one of the most exciting events at Green Aqua. We’re gonna have the Aquascaping Legends Series, to continue today. And our main guest today is non other, than probably the most successful aquascaper alive. He has 7 Grand Prizes, 2 of them are IAPLC Grand Prizes. He has numerous one-digit winnings. His name… Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Josh Sim! Welcome to Green Aqua! [Josh] Hello everyone! Very glad to be here today. Setting up a tank at Green Aqua is a dream of every aquascaper. I’m very honored today, I’m invited today here, to fulfil my dream. Today, we’re going to recreate my 2017 Grand Champion tank, Congo. Framing a tank is a technique. So I’m gonna place too big woods on the two sides. They will guide the audience’s attention to the places I want them to see. First. Secondly, I want to get rid off all the distractions at the sides. This cutting, this surface is not nice. So we have to camouflage it a little bit. [Balazs] How much liquid superglue do you use there? As much as I need. I managed to cover the flat cutting surface. This wood is gonna be here. This will be our first frame. [Balazs] Aren’t you afraid that there’s not enough gap between the glass and the wood, so we are not able to… [maintain it] That is not my problem! It’s my problem from now. Yeah okay, I give you 1 centimeter. [Balazs] Thank you so much! [Josh] The Congo tank is a tree composition – left, right and center. This piece… I’m going to put it slightly towards the back. These two pieces will be in the front. The end point, or my focus point will be roughly here. And when we say Golden Ratio, it is normally a two and three division – at that line. But you never need to measure it. Just don’t do it too centered and don’t do it too much to one side. I like your scissors. [Balazs] – Trading scissors.
[Josh] – Yeah okay. Oh, this one is so much better! [Laughter] We really like to use the ADA curved scissors and they are really nice . You should always trim all these tangling bits. They do nothing to your scape! So we’re gonna tie this one and this one. Wet the wood a little bit, so the moss can stay on it easier. Try to tie it as thin as possible. In fact, I want to say, gluing is fine actually. I’m just a very old-school guy and I don’t like gluing so much. [Audience] Is there any concern at all, that the first layer of moss might rot? Where I put on the second layer, I’m not having a first layer. I’m just putting the second layer on the spots that I did not cover during the first layer. Don’t mind the sound! [Laughter] Nice sound! [Laughter] Remember, only 1 centimeter for him, not more. If it floats, that is on you! [Laughter] You failed! [Laughter] Has to be lower, because we will have one more layer of soil on top and remember that we don’t want to cover this thing. [Balazs] Maybe you want this. I’m a dirty guy! I like to feel the material. [Audience] I’m just wondering, what could be a substitution for the bottom layer of a substrate? The substitution is not for the nutrients, but for the airy parts. [Audience] Yes. Use lava rocks, to provide some air to the soil. And then you save some soil. Soil is expensive. [Balazs] You are covering the background. [Laughter] I will find a piece of wood, to camouflage this surface. [Balazs] Josh, do you believe in the odd and even numbers in the tanks? This rule, to use the odd numbers is more important for Iwagumis. I told Tommy, that I want it to be leant forward, because I want this place to be dark. And this will be bright. So it is having a good contrast. [Balazs] You do not have the end though, cause you just covered it with a… [Josh] Eeh… [Laughter] Congo has two paths. One to the right, one to the left. Two paths are okay, but we should not have two open areas at the end. So I will leave this one open, totally open. On this side, I’ll try to cover it with something else. I give you one more chance! [Laughter] I’m just putting in some smaller woods, to make the woods look like “this is another dimension”. Can you tell us, what is your relationship with Fukada San and Dave Chow? Fukada yes, I’m very close to him. He is still a Master to me. But of course we don’t show each other our tanks. [Balazs] Why not? Emm.. He doesn’t want to show it to me, so I don’t show him. [Laughter] With Dave, it’s not so much about scaping. We talk about other stuff. [Balazs] Like girls. [Josh] No! I can’t say that on camera, so no! [Balazs] So what is your purpose with these small rocks? These rocks will help to stabilize the woods. What I’m doing now is that I’m trying to shape the path now. [Balazs] What kind of sand would you like to use? I’ve chosen the La Plata, because I think the grain size is nice. I don’t like to use a type of sand that is too fine. [Balazs] Basically, if you’re looking at the tank now, it looks like it’s covered all in sand. I cannot even see – maybe one or two spots of Amazonia in the background. I like to use the sand to fill out all the gaps. And the sand is free. Today. What I’ve done during this lunch break, is that I added the roots. This is to add some more details. And what I’ve done also, is that I added these few woods. So I want this portion to be a little bit more compact. I brought this from Malaysia. This has some vines. Rongsu is the name. The skin is not very lasting. It will start to peel. But it doesn’t matter. I think once it starts to peel, it adds a little more detail to your tank. So normally I like to twist it aroud the main root. Just like what I did here. At home, I just put on a cable tie, because I know that it will be above my water level. But in Green Aqua, we cannot show cable ties. So I will glue it. Along the rock, there will be hairgrass. Above the hairgrass, there will be moss. The Anubias will mostly be covering the head of all these trees. [Balazs] How densely do you want to plant in the beginning? [Josh] I think it’s always good to plant as dense as possible. In the beginning, the algae problem will be easier to control, if you have more plants, because they help the water to to get cycled very fast. [Balazs] Why do you use weeping moss on the top and Christmas at the bottom? At the bottom, I wanted a cover. The weeping moss, cannot make a cover. It cannot cover a large area, it is just growing straight down. One string. And when we are putting the moss inn, we try to cluster them. The first layer is always the white sand in front. The second layer is the rock layer. And then this tree, the big chunk of wood, is the third layer. Some plants here, as the fourth layer. And of course the endpoint is the fifth layer. These plants, you can just slot them into all the cracks that you find. Cryptocoryne wendtii ‘Green’ It will grow this tall. So I’m gonna plant it slightly towards the back. The planting has to be balanced. Mr. Amano told me, whatever plant you have on the left, you must have it on the right too. For example, on the right side you can plant more of it. On the left side, you can plant just a little bit. Hairgrass, I will plant a little bit along the rocks. And if you noticed the way I planted the hairgrass, I never plant them in a line, a straight line. And if you check my IAPLC tank, if you count, or if you see the IAPLC booklet about how many plants I use. It is always thirteen. [Balazs] Thirteen? Thirteen. [Balazs] That is your lucky number?! Yes. [Audience] Why did you use so much Amazonia, if you plant in the sand. Amazonia – even if you don’t plant it -, it releases nutrients. And Amazonia soil is also a very good buffer, it keeps the water acidic. It looks like Vallisneria to me. They are different. [Balazs] We have made a mistake and you have to take it out, because we don’t want… [Josh] Yeah! [Balazs] …and you spotted that it’s not Cyperus helferi. It was a test for Josh. You passed the test! You are going to test us on the next week, when you will have the IAPLC seminar. And we are testing you today before that. Okay, fair! [Balazs] And also guys, you have to know, that next week, Josh is going to help us on the YouTube channel. He is going to have the best tutorial in the Green Aqua history so far. So stay with us next week, contest tank seminar coming up from Josh. Done! Master Josh Sim! Congratulations again for your 2109 IAPLC prize, it’s great! So we’ll see you next week! Subscribe to the Green Aqua YouTube channel, if you didn’t do so yet! And until next week, goodbye! Bye! [Applause]


  1. cristian chan says:

    again…. more detail jungle theme… such a beauty from world Champion…

    and others… i bet he is Hokkian peoples… his accent… ohh damn… same here… another idol for me..

  2. Gail Cousins says:

    This was Awesome! It was great for you to have the World Champion Josh Sim to speak and show rules of having a beautiful Aquascaping!

  3. P T. says:

    Wow this tank is simply beautiful

  4. Pierre Schoonraad says:

    Awesome. Just shows why he has won so many prizes. A master at work doing a complicatedscape, like that, in only one day

  5. NaCoAO Parn says:


  6. Sammy Dendoncker says:

    My god..its a masterpeace! I enjoy these types of videos, we can learn so much of the little tips he’s given.

  7. Zimrian Zimrian says:


  8. Charlie Bright says:

    Wonderful inspirational scape made even better when you put in some of my favorite corys.😎🌴🏴‍☠️🐠

  9. Gaurav Verma says:

    OMG 😍 what an excellent work with so simplicity… It gives perfect competition to Dev's tank😋 learned alot from his session plss guys nxt time make a longer video of this kind… Hey Balazs i think u can swim through 1cm😂😂

  10. NAscapers Acuarios Naturales says:

    Wow. Thank you very much for sharing the video friends. Many greetings to the whole team and to sensei Josh! Best regards, Albert Escrihuela.

  11. Andrew H says:

    Would be very interested on updates on how this tank progresses.

    PS: GreenAqua has some very stunning girls 😉

  12. Beth Brycki says:

    Wow, I think this is my favorite one yet, incredible, just, breathtaking!

  13. Alex L. says:

    How do you keep cory from bringing all the sand down? Or how do you keep the substrate from becoming flat? Do you continuously move it back up?

  14. Bentley Pascoe says:

    I can't wait for next week! This was quite the insightful look into aquascaping from Josh. Going to have to watch this a few more times.

  15. Sandip Datta says:

    Which light is being used for this tank?

  16. Benedek Bálint says:

    A workshop óta ma jártam nálatok először, látszik hogy még kezdeti fázisban van Josh tankja de szépen alakul… 1-2 hónap És perfekt lesz 👌👌👌
    És a Balázs által épített versenytank 😍😍
    Egyre szebb És szebb 👍
    Imádom,hogy az ösvény keresztül megy a fán, zseniális alkotás!

  17. Just Doin Florida says:

    Great workshop! I really hope we can see a biotope series on this channel soon.

  18. Wintergoldhähnchen says:

    Wow, really great inspiration that tank.
    And again I can't stop thinking about: Where can I place such an aquarium without my wife noticing that I build another tank 😉

  19. Dean Robinson says:

    Wow what a tallent, amazing work

  20. Greg's Stuff says:

    17 minutes of absolute excellence and knowledge with a side of fun 😀 AMAZING!!!!! I always had a special place in my heart for the tank that was replaced by this, and you know it well why… But this is a truly amazing successor in the same nature like fashion! LOVE IT

  21. John Formstone says:

    Wow!! what an absolute treat. He is such an amazing talent and very charismatic too. I cant wait for next week. Thanks so much for sharing. 👍

  22. John Arnold says:

    Awesome is the word im using, makes me want to copy that one, by the way when ido steep slopes i have put little plastic vertical sheet barriers in soil below the surface to stop sand shifting down i didnt see josh do this, will the sand stay or will you need to keep banking it up?

  23. Sergey Moskalenko says:

    Ooooh guys, it's really cool job 😉

  24. AQUA neptun says:

    As always at the highest level, well done !!!

  25. steven wallace says:

    amazing, I can just zone out to this. great music and scenes

  26. Jake Sid says:

    Amazing! Thank you! Learn so much from these videos

  27. Terry Williams says:

    Wow, wow, wow, what an amazing layout, absolutely awesome.
    Such a talented person and happy to share it with us all. Thank you so much.

  28. Gb J says:


  29. tanpec says:

    I learned so much again!!! Love this series 💚

  30. SoulLexiol says:

    Don't the corries destroy the scape?

  31. Myzri says:

    Great scape, and another awesome guest. I love how light hearted and quick to laugh all the masters seem to be

  32. E H S says:

    Very pleasing and educational to watch. Thank you.

  33. MONA ANGELA says:

    Wow. Thanks guys for bringing him at the gallery. He is amazing. 🙏😍❤️😍🙏

  34. Darryl Moore says:


  35. Pedro Morais says:

    Can´t wait to see it fully grown …will be a nice relaxing living painting!

  36. Matt OConnell says:

    Yes!!! This is where my aqua scape should be heading

  37. Christopher says:

    This is some seriously high quality, original aquascaping content. The rapport between Balazs and Josh was super entertaining…Josh is a great guest to have on the channel and I'd hope to see him on youtube more often. I wish I could attend these types of events in person but I'm glad you guys are creating and sharing these videos for us. Keep up the great work!

  38. Sofishticated says:

    Really great Aquascape!
    Your plants list misses the number and kind of the used Anubias 😉

  39. AquaMoment says:

    9:13 …no… I misunderstood… I realy did not hear that ^^

  40. jlrens Online says:

    One of the most seriously and fun-at-same-time scape-video i've seen so far on youtube. Really like the way Josh is explaining his view on a tank.

  41. Kim Farrison says:

    That was amazing thank you


    Very nice

  43. Ryan Campbell says:

    wow that was good! best vids on YouTube. no kidding.

  44. Xavier Shen says:

    It is not helpful, but just … SPECTACULAR. The best aquascaping channel ! In world. So good advices ! Just can not wait next week vlog. Congrat’s from FRANCE !

  45. Taner Taskoy says:

    Wooooowww where good

  46. Richard Pezall says:

    All I can say is Awesome!

  47. Chelms Ford says:

    Amazing talent.

  48. Oscar Jimenez says:

    Excelente trabajo.!!! 🤟

  49. Alexander Boscan says:

    Demasiado natural felicitaciones muy buen trabajo

  50. Vinnie Judilla says:

    Can't wait for the next installment guys👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍

  51. Balamurugan balakrishnan says:

    Thanks to green aqua for sharing us the learning program from great aquascapers

  52. Andrew Sharp says:

    I feel so bad for maintenance crew… all that DHG will spread runners through the sand, across the paths and every which way, they will be constantly lifting and trimming runners, and the valisneria will do the same, at least it's large runners tend to be above the substrate where you can find them early. These two plants can be a lot of work for the team in the long run, but it looks great already. How long will they be able to keep it up?

  53. Istvan Szilard Konczol says:

    2 things.
    1st A magyar lányok a legszebbek!😃
    2nd What kind of corydoras do you have in the tank?

  54. Renan Ogiwara says:

    What a cool guy… top video.

  55. Jones says:

    I am deeply grateful that you share/teach & inspire!

  56. Rommel R says:


  57. yusri yusoff says:

    proud to be malaysian,tq green aqua…great tutorial from Josh sim

  58. Aqua Splendor says:

    Fantastic work from everyone, well done, it was a blast to watch!

  59. Nguyen Di says:

    like ,He's cool.

  60. Seamus Cinneade says:

    God damn that’s beautiful.

  61. Enterpreneur ndeso says:

    cool and nice

  62. 410bimz says:

    Invite yoyo prayogi he is win this year 😆

  63. Nicholas Asselin says:

    WOW! I like this a lot! 👌👌

  64. Mr.Apriza Yutama says:

    This explanation video is so advanced.

  65. Peter xxx says:

    such a cool and talented guy 😉

  66. Tomasz Lasek says:

    Flawless!!! What’s amazing is the ease and flow he keeps while building the scape. It’s OK to bend the rules.

  67. Hai Long says:

    He's fun guy :D. Thank's for sharing your exp. Love GreenAqua from Vietnam

  68. Green Happiness says:

    Thank Josh Sim and Green aqua, you shared alot of experience and so much fun :X

  69. Justin Law says:

    love the documentary – good insights and useful info. Got me thinking of my next tank!

  70. Benji Davis says:

    Mindblowingly speechless!!!!! Beautiful !!!!

  71. Thennoob36 says:


  72. jithesh a says:

    Best scaping.

  73. Gray Kardinal says:

    Can you take a picture on the side of the aquarium. I wonder how steep the substrate has made

  74. Samuel Chua says:

    wont the corys in the tank disturb the substrate and expose the amazonia soil?

  75. MD Fish Tanks says:

    I really enjoyed that guys and I love Josh's sense of humour. Similar to my own.

  76. Inês Silva says:

    hey what happen to my message?Whatever,i love everything! =) Good trip to Japan Guys! Balazs, try some miso soup 😉

  77. Jonathan Wong says:

    Go Team Malaysia! 😀

  78. sys434 says:

    actually, how about a video on how the competitions work? The Tiers of competition, eg. is IAPLC the biggest? what's the second biggest etc. Requirements for entry, entry fee, prizes, how many winners? How placement works? Who judges? What judging criteria they use etc etc. The only reason I know of IAPLC, and I assume it is a top tier competition, is because of the green aqua videos

  79. Micheal Jure says:

    really Balazs, hats off to u guys…the scape is wonderful and the level of details u add to the videos are even better…u even displayed the Malaysian banyan tree….no doubt u guys deliver the best aquascaping tutorials 😃😃😃

  80. Arizal Maulana says:

    Can't say a word, i'll just leave a comment as i always do

  81. Panji Martiandaru says:

    Oh…. it's beautiful….
    It will be even more so after it's grown a bit. I can't wait to see the update of this tank! Please make video after several months.

  82. Dark Lador says:

    Can you do an discus aquascaping please ?

  83. kiddoutdoors says:

    simply unbelievable aquascaper. excellent video. thank you greenaqua

  84. obzympal2305 says:

    Great workshops and a beautiful tank. Respect for Josh Sim!! But AQUAGIRLS ROCK could finally create something…

  85. Christophe Teirlinck says:

    What a great video again … So many helpfull tips from Josh Sim on how to make a champion layout . These are the videos every scaper should see , because we keep on learning and with this comes better result and higher lever of our aquascaping too . Thank you guys at Green Aqua for sharing this every time again and I'm looking forward to the long tutorial !! Btw Balazs , you have a great sense of humor , but you've got some strong competition here with Josh Sim 🙂 Keep on going guys and thx again for sharing !!!

  86. Fidoo Ellen says:

    truely enjoyed this video. loved every second of it. 5/5 video, feels like a tv documentary

  87. Dariusz M says:

    Amazing, Awesome, Beautiful

  88. Adrian's Aquatics says:

    No wonder he's won so many times! What a scape 😍👍

  89. Noorshin Rahman says:

    u guys rocks man

  90. Actarus says:

    Mi sembra chiaro anche se non si vede xchè il sacchetto lo tenete girato che il substrato sia della ADA!!!!

  91. Club Plantados EC says:


  92. Keith Canivet says:

    Great video, and a beautiful tank. Can we get a plants list? I see a few, but not sure I caught the 13 varieties. Where would everyone rank this tank as far as difficulty with maintaining plant health and overall maintenance level?

  93. Christian Sakai says:

    As a hobbyist how can I be on this skill level!

  94. Ice Man says:

    Wow! Congratulations Mr. Josh Sim for winng the Grand Prize for 2019 IAPLC contest you are truly a master of aquascaping btw I am watching it live from YouTube now. It's live on ADA channel

  95. Gray Kardinal says:

    So this is the secret mr. Sim is the champion this year. Congratulation to Green Aqua to have gest like him.

  96. dhaivat chaudhari says:

    There's a reason why he's a world champion !! Learned so much from him ! Thanks a ton for this video green aqua !! 🙏

    Can't wait to see fully grown tank !! Awesome aquascaping as always!! 🙌

  97. Flowerhorn F says:

    Thank you green aqua for all the wonderful videos put together

  98. Sannive F says:

    As always the inspiration you guys and your guests provide is amazing 🙂

  99. Charles Lales says:

    Really cool, funny and highly instructive video, congrats 😉

  100. Aquatic Specialist says:

    Thanks Green Aqua for the video. It's great to see a master of his trade at work.

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