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zeon
12-29-2007, 03:55 AM
Okay one down and more to go. :19:

I bought three 20lb bags of Eco Complete today. I have had my largest piece of driftwood in the tank for a month or so now. I want to have the driftwood and the tannins of course. I want to have at least medium light plants if not high light plants. I have already shown hubby several plans for building my DIY CO2 :hmm3grin2orange: Just so he is ready to build it when I need it.

Here are the questions. (and I treasure all your advice, You guys have helped me and taught me more in a few months than I have learned on my own in almost seven years! That is sad so dont laugh, to hard anyways. )

Is the three bags of EC enough for my tank?
What is latterite and why should I put it underneath the EC? What purpose does it serve? And how much latterite?

How helpful is the thingy you run under the EC and gravel that keeps it warm. I am thinking I might need it just because of our situation to keep the temperature up for the plant roots.

If it were your tank and wanted to get maximum growth and vitality for your plants, what bulb would you use? Assuming High light. It is a single 24 inche fluorescent tube.

I know I am going to put at least Cherry barbs in there. I am making my son's 29 gallon a planted community tank.

I am aiming for an even pH of 7.5 if not a tad lower for overall happiness. I use R/O water for my water changes. I am in the middle of lowering the pH, GH and KH to achieve optimal parameters. I do weekly water changes, and I do have master test kit and test my water weekly. How do I test for phospates? I am lost here. lol

If I have missed something here that you guys need just let me know. I appreciate your time here.

Lady Hobbs
12-29-2007, 04:14 AM
You don't need laterite with what you have. That's a clay base and helps hold in nutrients but not needed with Eco Complete. The laterite is good for sand tanks or just gravel.

I would try to get at least 2 watts per gallon......like a 65 watt.

You don't want to use all RO water but half RO and half tap water because the suppliments have been stripped from all RO.

The heat strip is nice under the substrate if you have the extra money for one but I think you will do fine without it.

The Eco Complete should be plenty. Bank it higher in the back of the tank as that's where your larger rooted plants will be and sloop it forward.

Dave66
12-29-2007, 04:25 AM
Okay one down and more to go. :19:

I bought three 20lb bags of Eco Complete today. I have had my largest piece of driftwood in the tank for a month or so now. I want to have the driftwood and the tannins of course. I want to have at least medium light plants if not high light plants. I have already shown hubby several plans for building my DIY CO2 :hmm3grin2orange: Just so he is ready to build it when I need it.

Here are the questions. (and I treasure all your advice, You guys have helped me and taught me more in a few months than I have learned on my own in almost seven years! That is sad so dont laugh, to hard anyways. )

Is the three bags of EC enough for my tank?
What is latterite and why should I put it underneath the EC? What purpose does it serve? And how much latterite?

You're aiming for about two inches of EC in the front sloping to four inches in the back. That makes the waste roll down to the front of the tank for easy removal. Laterite is a clay that's harvested from the banks of tropical rivers that's rich in chelated iron and other macro and micro nutrients that are good for plants.

How helpful is the thingy you run under the EC and gravel that keeps it warm. I am thinking I might need it just because of our situation to keep the temperature up for the plant roots.

Its a low wattage (25 or 50 watts) cable heater equipped with suction cups that you put on the dry bottom glass of your tank. You put the laterite and EC on top of it.


If it were your tank and wanted to get maximum growth and vitality for your plants, what bulb would you use? Assuming High light. It is a single 24 inch fluorescent tube.

Were it me, I'd aim for 4 watts per gallon of 6700K power compact bulbs, so about 120 watts.

I know I am going to put at least Cherry barbs in there. I am making my son's 29 gallon a planted community tank.

Cherry Barbs are great fish. You could easily house a dozen in your 29.

I am aiming for an even pH of 7.5 if not a tad lower for overall happiness. I use R/O water for my water changes. I am in the middle of lowering the pH, GH and KH to achieve optimal parameters. I do weekly water changes, and I do have master test kit and test my water weekly. How do I test for phospates? I am lost here. lol

Hobby-level test kits are available to test for phosphate, however, they don't read low enough to the natural level of .01-.02 of natural phosphate. Unless you have problems with algae, I wouldn't worry about buying a test kit.

If I have missed something here that you guys need just let me know. I appreciate your time here.

I hope this answers your questions.

Dave

Lady Hobbs
12-29-2007, 04:33 AM
Isn't 4 watts a bit much unless she wanted flowering plants? Seems like a lot for java, mosses, ferns, anubius, etc. Or should a person decide what plants before figuring out the wattage?

Dave66
12-29-2007, 04:36 AM
Isn't 4 watts a bit much unless she wanted flowering plants? Seems like a lot for java, mosses, ferns, anubius, etc. Or should a person decide what plants before figuring out the wattage?

LoL that's why I said were it me, Hobbsy. Of course, zeon would need that much if stem plants were on the horizon. She could do 60 watts and keep swords and whatnot.

Dave

zeon
12-29-2007, 04:38 AM
You don't need laterite with what you have. That's a clay base and helps hold in nutrients but not needed with Eco Complete. The laterite is good for sand tanks or just gravel.

I would try to get at least 2 watts per gallon......like a 65 watt.

You don't want to use all RO water but half RO and half tap water because the suppliments have been stripped from all RO.

The heat strip is nice under the substrate if you have the extra money for one but I think you will do fine without it.

The Eco Complete should be plenty. Bank it higher in the back of the tank as that's where your larger rooted plants will be and sloop it forward.

Thank you Lady Hobbs. That is helpful. I am in the process of bringing down my pH and hardness levels in this tank. I have well water cause I live in the country and it is so hard GH and KH. So I am doing it slowly. I have NitrAtes coming out of the tap at 5ppm even. So I am trying to get the water to the proper levels I want by doing the R/O only water changes. The tank was full of tap water. So it has the buffer it needs. I test my GH and KH often so I know how much it goes down. I prefer not to use the buffers and additives you can buy for this. It has worked well with my other aquariums, just takes time. I would rather do it natural. And when I reach the right levels with the R/O I do the mix of about 75 percent R/O and 25 percent of my tap water. This has kept an even pH and GH and KH in the right levels to buffer. Also I had forgotten about the sloping of the substate. Great tip. Makes total sense. So as you can tell I am not in a hurry to get this tank done. I am taking it slowly. Thank you again for your advice.

zeon
12-29-2007, 04:42 AM
I hope this answers your questions.

Dave
Yes Dave you have answered many of my questions tonight. So very helpful. I am thinking I might have to change hoods for that tank. I dont know. I will look at my LFS for types of bulbs available to me and hope that I dont have to buy a new hood just for the right amount of wattage. I am trying to do this tank right and slowly. I know at least 3 watts per gallon is good but for all plants..low light to high light. the 4 watts would be prime. Thank you man. This really helps!

Lady Hobbs
12-29-2007, 04:42 AM
You know that as soon as you get this tank all set up you will start planning on the next one? Very, very additive and heck, you need to place to put all those new cuttings from those plants now, don't you?

zeon
12-29-2007, 04:45 AM
You know that as soon as you get this tank all set up you will start planning on the next one? Very, very additive and heck, you need to place to put all those new cuttings from those plants now, don't you?

I have my eye on two more tanks a 75 gallon and a 100 gallon. rofl. AA means aquariums anonymous didn't you know. :luxlove:

And Yes I am looking at doing stem plants in this tank, not just java ferns and/or moss. I want it be peetty! :11: