Photo 1: Lettuce and Nasturiums growing in my re-purposed aquarium
A small crack developed near the top of my acrylic aquarium rendering it useless as an aquarium (See Photo 2). Instead of throwing it away, I decided to re-purpose it as a greenhouse.
First, I removed the filtration system. Then I used pea gravel to create a one-inch drainage layer (See Photo 3). I normally use hydroton clay balls because it weighs next to nothing, but I had some excess pea gravel from another project. Next I placed screen mesh on top of the pebbles to prevent soil from settling into the drainage layer (See Photo 3). Lastly, I added organic gardening soil and planted some seeds. I am currently growing nasturtiums and lettuce for my pet tortoise (See Photo 1 & 4).
My fish tank is already equipped with a fluorescent bulb light fixture, which gives me the option to grow plants even in the dimmest corner of my home. I currently have mine placed in front of a window so I am not using the light at this time. If you do need to use the light, I recommend purchasing an automatic timer so you can easily provide twelve (12) hours of light per day without the hassle of remembering to turn the light on and off.
Photo 2: Old aquarium
Photo 3: Screen mesh placed on top of layer of pea gravel
Photo 4: Seeds germinated three days later.