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Plant Man
12-07-2010, 05:07 AM
So I tore my aquascape apart completely.

Last picture of the old scape, not so hot I know. The Java Ferns just got out of control.

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/Full1.jpg



I got the new pressure GLA Co2 system installed last week and am still dialing it in. I’m already getting more Co2 in the water then I “ever” have before with the DIY set-up. Everyday I turn it up just a pitch higher. Right know it’s at about 4 bubbles per second. I hope I don’t gas my fish! But to be honest the plants are my real babies. I mean if something had to die I’d rather see it be the fish.

The weeds,

Ludwigia Repens (new for me)
Ludwigia Glandulosa
Java Moss
Java Fern (I saved just one teeny tiny baby plant) see if you can find it.
Cryptocoryne “green”
Cryptocoryne “Tropica”
Dwarf Lobelia Cardinalis

The only somewhat difficult plant is the Glandulosa, it needs very stable high Co2 or the leaves twist at the tip. So I’m aiming at keeping it simple. Nice looking easy plants to start with.

1.8 watts T-5 NO
EI dosing
4bps GLA Co2
Nitrate 10-15ppm
Phosphate 2-5ppm

The new, I cleaned both filters (2217, 2215) and the water is just like glass!


http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape1.jpg

Plant Man
12-07-2010, 10:26 PM
Here's a pic of the Co2 set up and the limiest color Drop Checker color I've ever had.

Co2 comes on 1 hour before lights and goes off one hour before lights.

248bps (I took a 1 min video of the bubble counter and counted)
Dosing is super EI light to start with (1/3 EI)

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/Co2016-1.jpg
http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/dropcheckerpressure.jpg

Sarkazmo
12-08-2010, 12:14 PM
I like the 'before' more than the 'after'. :) Just my taste though. Both are very nice.

Sark

Rue
12-08-2010, 04:45 PM
I have to agree...I liked the before more too...I didn't think the java's had outgrown their space.

The after is nice as well...and will look even better when the plants grow.

IMO tanks look best when the decor is asymmetrical...

Plant Man
12-09-2010, 01:05 AM
I have to agree...I liked the before more too...I didn't think the java's had outgrown their space.

The after is nice as well...and will look even better when the plants grow.

IMO tanks look best when the decor is asymmetrical...

Thanks for the comments guys. I really appreciate any criticisms you may have. You know how you look at your own tank everyday and sort of lose perspective?

The before was a grown tank yes and as it was I did like it but I couldn't see it going anywhere or evolving past what it was. I also just got the GLA pressure Co2 set up and wanted to try something new. So I chopped it up an am trying a "slope" look. Right now the plants are all just babies. I'll be trimming and shaping as they grow. I am hoping to see it coming into my planned look in a month or so. Everything is already growing so fast. The Ludwigia Repens I bought just one week ago has already doubled in size. This pressure Co2 in conjunction with EI is just awesome!

Tank is flooded with nutrients via EI dosing, and so far zero algae. Cross my fingers! Co2 very high, lights 10 hours a day

I'll post a new pick next Sunday the 18th which will be 2 weeks from the first picture.

Thanks again,

Shawn


Some non-asymmetrical tanks, I am hoping to one day be able to create one like these. But I have allot to learn still.

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/Co26-1.jpg
http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/Co24.jpg
http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/328.jpg

smaug
12-09-2010, 01:08 AM
Very easy plants,nice small tank.Should look pretty good later.It looked better before though.

Plant Man
12-09-2010, 01:23 AM
Very easy plants,nice small tank.Should look pretty good later.It looked better before though.

Ageed! Right now it's still a pretty blank canvas. In a few months I'm hoping to mold it into something really nice.

mermaidwannabe
12-09-2010, 04:03 AM
Looks like I'm odd man out, here, but I like the second one better. More visual variety in the colors. Not all just green. And I like the wood that stands out more in the second one. The first tank has background plants so overgrown it's hard to see anything else in there except for plants. In the second one, there are more interesting things to look at. Of course, the plants will get bigger, but overall I think their placement is better in number 2.

-- mermaidwannabe

Sarkazmo
12-09-2010, 11:28 AM
I'm curious to see how this goes. You could take a shot of the tank from front center and make a movie of it growing. :)

Sark

Plant Man
12-10-2010, 02:00 AM
Looks like I'm odd man out, here, but I like the second one better. More visual variety in the colors. Not all just green. And I like the wood that stands out more in the second one. The first tank has background plants so overgrown it's hard to see anything else in there except for plants. In the second one, there are more interesting things to look at. Of course, the plants will get bigger, but overall I think their placement is better in number 2.

-- mermaidwannabe

Thank you, that was my goal and I appreciate that someone else has seen it. I want it to have more variety and be more complex and interesting to view then what I had before. I know I can grow easy plants very fast and healthy with EI and high Co2. The question for me is can I make it look spectacular! This is my goal. High Co2 and EI are making growing them very easy.

In the front left I’m hoping to get a dark green carpet of Crypts (I will keep them trimmed very low) with the back filling up with the deep red of the glandulosa. For the tree I’m hoping the tiny Java Fern will look like it is sprouting out of the Java moss, hiding the Java Ferns roots. For the right corner I will grow the “Tropica” Crypts fairly large and have the Ludwigia Repens growing out from behind them. I have read that in order to get the Repens to turn red I need to keep my Nitrates below 15ppm. But this is difficult when the tank eats up that much in 2-3 days. Right now the tank goes from 20-25ppm down to 10ppm (I am aiming for 10-15) at weekending 40% water change time and this is 1/3 EI. Right now at this early stage the tank is eating about 25ppm Nitrate per week. If I drop fertilizing levels any farther I run the risk of running to lean (running out!) and having an algae outbreak, which could set everything back 2 weeks.

I’ll take a picture every week.

Thanks for checkin’ it out,

Shawn

Plant Man
12-14-2010, 02:31 AM
A small update, I was getting some very slight green algae on the glass and very light surface scum. I asked at a dedicated plant forum and the suggestion was as I pridicted. I've dropped the light down to .9 watts per gallon of T-5 Normal Output.

We'll see if this makes the differance. EI suggests that it should. Light low, Co2/Ferts unlimited.

I want to post a picture right now but I'm going to wait the full two weeks. The tank has already grown so much sinse I took this last picture!

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape1.jpg

Australian natives
12-14-2010, 11:47 AM
i think the current set up will look much better than the first did. could use some more plants i think, and i think you could find a nice looking rock. but even still once current plants grow in it will look great. love that driftwood.
looking forward to seeing it in the future.
Peace

Plant Man
12-21-2010, 02:41 AM
Ok, so here's two weeks. After I took this picture I cut all the longest stems of the Repens and replanted. So it's much shorter but more bushy.

Right now I'm experiencing some light Green dust algae on the glass, some light Green Spot algae on a few Crypt leaves and light Brown algae on lower leaves. Very strange mix to have GSA and brown at the same time! I think it's a because of the rescape and the tanks dramatic drop in plant load (this is what I’ve been told) and to me it does make sense. Time will tell as the plant load increases.

There are absolutely no hair algae of any kind! Yay! and the other algae I mention are very light.

First shot after rescape,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape1.jpg

15 days later. Look at the repens! It's like tripled in size!

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape31020.jpg

Dacotah7
12-21-2010, 09:42 AM
Neither before or after looks bad, but I like the before set up. I understand the need to tinker and make things better and challenge one self.

According to the experts, you don't have have even half enough light, but it appears your plants don't know that.

Do you run a substrate heater in any of your tanks? Why or why not? Are they worth the money? What is the recommended size, watts, and length of the strip heaters?

Plant Man
12-21-2010, 12:35 PM
Neither before or after looks bad, but I like the before set up. I understand the need to tinker and make things better and challenge one self.

According to the experts, you don't have have even half enough light, but it appears your plants don't know that.

Do you run a substrate heater in any of your tanks? Why or why not? Are they worth the money? What is the recommended size, watts, and length of the strip heaters?


High Co2/high nutrients make for a very low algae tank with good growth. Also note that my lighting is T-5 and it sits right on the waters surface as close to the substrate as it could be.

No substrate heating.



According to the experts, you don't have even half enough light, but it appears your plants don't know that.


LOL I don't know what "experts" you've been talking to but the ones I talk to say my lighting is perfect.

When the plants are not in a limiting environment and light is the only limiting factor you can grow most anything with very low light. Also, watts per gallon is “misleading” as different lighting bulbs/fixtures can have very difference efficiencies.

Dacotah7
12-22-2010, 05:05 AM
High Co2/high nutrients make for a very low algae tank with good growth. Also note that my lighting is T-5 and it sits right on the waters surface as close to the substrate as it could be.

No substrate heating.

LOL I don't know what "experts" you've been talking to but the ones I talk to say my lighting is perfect.

When the plants are not in a limiting environment and light is the only limiting factor you can grow most anything with very low light. Also, watts per gallon is “misleading” as different lighting bulbs/fixtures can have very difference efficiencies.

Which experts? Well, all over the internet including this forum. You know the watts per gallon rules and it being about as applicable as inches of fish per gallon. Everybody is always telling me I need to upgrade my lights, including the experts, the self-proclaimed experts and those that just repeat things they read often out of context. Thats fine, except it is not always helpful, sometimes confusing, and sometimes badly misleading, especially to those taking bad advice as the must follow rules.

I found a good site that explains lights and lighting, more than I understand so far: http://www.americanaquariumproducts.com/Aquarium_Lighting.html

Yes, I know the watts per gallon rule is outdated. The arm-chair experts solution to growing plants well, all to often is, More Lights, Better Lights or Spend more money on lights.

I think I may have basically the same lights as you have. Mine are Coralife T-5's. On my:
20g, one each, 2 foot fixture, spanning the length of the tank.
125g, two each, 3 foot fixture, sapnning the length of the tank.
Each of those fixtures has one each 6,700k tube and 10,000k tube.

The difference between my two tanks (effecting plant growth) is:
both with glass lids
20g - 30 lbs of flourite - light to substrate: 16" - Grows plants like crazy
125g - 150+ lbs of gravel - light to substrate 20" - Hornwort & Java Moss consistantly thrive, Bamboo ok, stays alive, goes nowhere, Annibus, Java Fern and a few others have flourished but always end up in trouble or dead.

Next month, after more research, planning, comparing and price shopping, I am going to re-work my 125g so it may grow plants better, starting with the substrate and maybe a substrate heater. I don't know if I am going to dose CO2 yet. If I do, I may experiment on a smaller scale with the 20g.

Plant Man
12-23-2010, 01:01 AM
The arm-chair experts solution to growing plants well, all to often is, More Lights, Better Lights or Spend more money on lights.


LOL, I totally agree with you!

I'm no expert; I have simply been following the basic concepts that have been put together by Tom Barr. The ideas are not his but the methods are. He has proven through thousands of hours of laboratory quality testing that EI (Estimative Index) works. As well, many other top aquascaping contest winners use the “basic” ideas with fantastic results. “Non-limit all nutrients including Co2 and keep the light as the plants only limited resource.”

Basically, if you set up your aquarium in such a way as to have light as the only limiting factor the plants will “outgrow” algae. Tom Barr has proven that plants do not compete with nutrients for algae, this is proven fact now. Since I started experimenting with EI I have completely eliminated any and all hair algae from my tank. Hair algae like BBA and Staghorn do not grow on healthy plants. GSA is caused by limited Phosphate and or to much light and diatoms (brown dust algae) are caused by high silicates and or very low light. These two can and will grow on healthy plants if light is very low (diatoms) and or you have limited to no Phosphate/high light (GSA) in the tank. I am experiencing this right now, it’s just slight but I have a bit of brown dust on some lower leaves and low on the glass. I need to up my lighting above .91 into the 1.2 to 1.3 watts of my current lighting and increase my dosing to full IE. I have proven to myself that lights that are to low can get you in trouble with diatoms.

But still, I have so many nutrients in the tank and my algae issues are just a joke compared to 9 months ago when I wasn’t running a non-limited nutrient tank. I need to get right up to the tank to see any algae at all. It’s really fantastic. But if I can fix my lighting I’m sure I’ll be looking at a tank that is 99.99% free of all algae. Right now I’d say I’m dealing with about 2-3% algae coverage, very, very light.

Plant Man
12-23-2010, 01:20 AM
Tom Barr interview,

http://www.google.ca/imgres?imgurl=http://acuariorosa.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/fontenalislips.jpeg&imgrefurl=http://acuariorosa.com/2009/11/04/interview-with-tom-barr/&usg=__xeRuvt1TELL2JjHpIu-vH_UDdbY=&h=691&w=1024&sz=148&hl=en&start=5&zoom=1&um=1&itbs=1&tbnid=3lSCsD3hDd5t2M:&tbnh=101&tbnw=150&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dtom%2Bbarr%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26sa%3D X%26rlz%3D1W1ADFA_en%26tbs%3Disch:1

Dacotah7
12-23-2010, 08:17 AM
Tom Barr interview,

http://www.google.ca/imgres?imgurl=http://acuariorosa.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/fontenalislips.jpeg&imgrefurl=http://acuariorosa.com/2009/11/04/interview-with-tom-barr/&usg=__xeRuvt1TELL2JjHpIu-vH_UDdbY=&h=691&w=1024&sz=148&hl=en&start=5&zoom=1&um=1&itbs=1&tbnid=3lSCsD3hDd5t2M:&tbnh=101&tbnw=150&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dtom%2Bbarr%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26sa%3D X%26rlz%3D1W1ADFA_en%26tbs%3Disch:1

Thanks for both responses. Makes sense. I have a lot to learn, and a lot to try.
I can't wait to get started in ripping my 125g apart and starting with good building blocks, starting from the ground up, the substrate.

I can't wait to get started but will not until at least late in January. I'm just too busy over the holidays and at year end; than we are traveling Jan 7-15th. The project will require a temporary home for the fish and 2-3 days to tear-down, sterilize, clean and rinse+ all the equipment, filters & hoses; than start re-building, planting, cycling etc. The good news in the cycling department is I have bags ceramic noodles in nylon stockings in the 20g now getting seeded. Those get rotated thru the AC-70 so they are directly in the flow at least part of the time.

Plant Man
12-23-2010, 11:48 PM
Thanks for both responses. Makes sense. I have a lot to learn, and a lot to try.
I can't wait to get started in ripping my 125g apart and starting with good building blocks, starting from the ground up, the substrate.

I can't wait to get started but will not until at least late in January. I'm just too busy over the holidays and at year end; than we are traveling Jan 7-15th. The project will require a temporary home for the fish and 2-3 days to tear-down, sterilize, clean and rinse+ all the equipment, filters & hoses; than start re-building, planting, cycling etc. The good news in the cycling department is I have bags ceramic noodles in nylon stockings in the 20g now getting seeded. Those get rotated thru the AC-70 so they are directly in the flow at least part of the time.

Nice, sounds like your cycle will be short. Good luck with everything.

Plant Man
01-03-2011, 05:29 PM
I think I may have solved my lighting issue. Instead of have either 1.9 watts or .91 watts of NO T-5 I bought this new fixture. it has 2 HO T-5s that put the tank at 1.7 watts that sits slightly farther from the substrate. I really like the bulbs too. 6,700K and a 9,000K gives great color that enhances the plants color very nicely. The light is not on in this picture.

I've also added a school of Hatchet fish Marbles and Silver, 10 ghost shrimp and 4 Ottos.

As well I've added some Eleocharis acicularis (Dwarf Hairgrass) around the rocks. We'll see if it grows? It is supposed to need high light.

New growth picture coming this Sunday.

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newlight017.jpg

Wild Turkey
01-03-2011, 06:58 PM
I think you'll enjoy the light PM, I have a virtually identical one over my 40 and I love it. Running all 6700 though. I think you have a decent shot at the hairgrass with 1.7wpg HO.


Dacotah, you wont need to cycle your tank again, just move the filter to the temporary home with the fish and move it back when the fish go back, easy peasy.

Plant Man
01-05-2011, 02:15 AM
I think you'll enjoy the light PM, I have a virtually identical one over my 40 and I love it. Running all 6700 though. I think you have a decent shot at the hairgrass with 1.7wpg HO.


Thanks, I hope so to.

I can say this, the crypts don’t hate it. I trimmed the Repens for the second time just three days ago, it's growing so fast! LOL After I trimmed it I noticed that it has sent out at "least" 3 new side stems per stem and up to six on some in just 3 days! I trimmed every single stem (about 7 or 8) and now I have over 30 new tips growing off them!

I've started the tank on full EI this week and she's really starting to take off. Last week I had some light multiple algae issues happening (surface scum, Diatoms, GDA) but this week every issue I was having is getting better. Surface scum/GDA is clearing and the light diatoms are almost completely gone.

I think the tank may have a high gas exchange rate at the surface; I do have a fair amount of surface movement. I want to make sure the tank has enough Oxygen, as much for the plants at night as for the fish. I am being extra careful now. I have a fair amount of livestock in the tank and I really don’t want to gas them. So far the fish have seemed completely unaffected by the super high Co2. The drop checker is even more yellow then in the last shot I showed of it. When I run just a regular PH test the test fluid is completely yellow without even a hint of green. But the drop checker in the tank is still lime colored. Things look good right now so I think I'm done turning it up. Cross my fingers.

Thanks for reading, I’ll post a full tank shot this Sunday.

Shawn


http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/repensfirsttrimandtidy3.jpg

Plant Man
01-05-2011, 02:40 AM
Fish list,

3 Clown Loaches
3 Ladder Loaches
2 Dwarf frogs
3 Marble Hatchets
6 Silver Hatchets
12 Cardinal Tetra’s
2 Leopard Danios
10 Ghost Shrimp
6 Cherry Shrimp

3 African Filter Shrimp (very cool), they sit on the Koralia or the filter intake and filter microscopic particles from the water rushing straight into them. Very cool to watch, I’ll try to post a video if anyone is interested in seeing them.


http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/bambooshrimp.jpg

Plant Man
01-09-2011, 10:48 PM
Ok so here is one full month of growth with pressure Co2. I'll be doing a redo on the "tree" in a few days.

First day after rescape,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape1.jpg

Four weeks, I trimmed all the tops off the repens and kept a couple of the trimmings (for now) by the tree at the back

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape41020.jpg

Plant Man
01-18-2011, 10:59 PM
I altered things a little bit and consequently ended up cutting out more. I had five new stems growing from the base of the Glandulosa which only had only two long stems so I cut it right down to the substrate, it should grow in with 4-5 new ones. I’m hoping. The Repens is clearly the easiest plant I’ve ever grown, it’s truly a weed, growing easily twice as fast as the Glandulosa! And I thought the Glandulosa was a fast grower. I rescaped the base of the tree, adding another root and lifting the substrate up towards the back with an entire bag of regular Flourite. I added the grass last week and it to is doing well, it has already began to spread, sending out single grass strands from the groupings. Five weeks into the new scape and I no longer know where I want to with it. I think I’ll just let it grow and see what happens.

Maybe I should add another plant, any suggestions? The Glandulosa will grow back in the middle with at least 4 stems. Can anyone suggest something new for the left or right of it?

Thanks,

Shawn

Pics,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/Repens.jpg
http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/Glandulosa.jpg
http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/grass.jpg
http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape51020.jpg

CassieLEO
01-18-2011, 11:37 PM
More and more beautiful as time goes by!!! :D

dragoonwoman
01-19-2011, 02:32 PM
I'll be very interested to hear how the Hairgrass does for you. I had it in my 46 and it was an algae magnet to the point of growing a "fur" coat. Ulitmately I pulled it all out because it looked so nasty.

I wasn't running CO2 or EI dosing when I had the Hairgrass before, so I may give it another shot. My fixture is 154 watts of T5, mix of 6700 and 10000 Kelvin, so the stuff had plenty of light. It just didn't have the other "goodies" it needed, like CO2 and ferts!

I recently started EI dosing on my tanks, and even without CO2 I'm seeing good growth and no algae. My 46 has had DIY CO2 for about 6 weeks now, and I'll be adding it to my 10g very shortly (like, this weekend). I expect the crypt in my 10g will FINALLY DO SOMETHING, other than barely survive.

Rue
01-19-2011, 03:14 PM
Tank looks wonderful! thumbs2:

Plant Man
01-20-2011, 01:16 AM
I'll be very interested to hear how the Hairgrass does for you. I had it in my 46 and it was an algae magnet to the point of growing a "fur" coat. Ulitmately I pulled it all out because it looked so nasty.

I wasn't running CO2 or EI dosing when I had the Hairgrass before, so I may give it another shot. My fixture is 154 watts of T5, mix of 6700 and 10000 Kelvin, so the stuff had plenty of light. It just didn't have the other "goodies" it needed, like CO2 and ferts!

I recently started EI dosing on my tanks, and even without CO2 I'm seeing good growth and no algae. My 46 has had DIY CO2 for about 6 weeks now, and I'll be adding it to my 10g very shortly (like, this weekend). I expect the crypt in my 10g will FINALLY DO SOMETHING, other than barely survive.

154 watts, over your 46? That’s like over 3 watts of t-5 per gallon. I think WAY to much light may have been your issue there, yes?

Are you using a drop checker to measure your Co2 ppm or just a PH test kit and comparing to KH/PH chart from the net?

So far (crossing my fingers) the Hairgrass is doing well. spreading and becoming a darker green then when I first put it in.

Yes, the crypts in my old scape and this one too are doing very well. If you’re getting Co2 into the water you’ll definitely get improved growth. Just keep that Excel handy when/if you get a BBA/Staghorn outbreak from inconsistent Co2 levels. I just couldn’t avoid it with the DIY, you may be luckier then I was.

Light is the ultimate control dial for our aquariums. The more light you have the more of everything else you'll need, especially when it comes to Co2.

Plant Man
01-20-2011, 01:20 AM
Tank looks wonderful! thumbs2:


More and more beautiful as time goes by!!! :D

Thanks, thanks very much!

I just need to find another stem plant or two for the back wall. Something easy to grow, I don't want to mess with anymore difficult plants like the Glandulosa. Something that will help fill in the back.

Any suggestions?

dragoonwoman
01-21-2011, 07:16 PM
154 watts, over your 46? That’s like over 3 watts of t-5 per gallon. I think WAY to much light may have been your issue there, yes?

Are you using a drop checker to measure your Co2 ppm or just a PH test kit and comparing to KH/PH chart from the net?

So far (crossing my fingers) the Hairgrass is doing well. spreading and becoming a darker green then when I first put it in.

Yes, the crypts in my old scape and this one too are doing very well. If you’re getting Co2 into the water you’ll definitely get improved growth. Just keep that Excel handy when/if you get a BBA/Staghorn outbreak from inconsistent Co2 levels. I just couldn’t avoid it with the DIY, you may be luckier then I was.

Light is the ultimate control dial for our aquariums. The more light you have the more of everything else you'll need, especially when it comes to Co2.

Yes I use a drop checker, with a 4dH solution and pH reagent, because that's what's most accurate, I believe.

As I said in the middle paragraph, I didn't provide the right mix of CO2, ferts and light, so of course I got algae. I just didn't know WHY I got it. Now I do.

Cassandra
01-21-2011, 08:11 PM
I totally agree with mermaid...the first aquascape was nice but I really like the arrangement you have now. The wood looks really good off to the side too instead of kinda being overpowered by the java ferns. I cant wait to see how this tank progresses.

On a side note, not sure if you got my message but I saw you did a thread about CO2 and lighting and it really helped me to kinda plan for what I want and need to do with the new tank Im setting up. And if you dont mind I might be asking you a lot of questions. :ssmile:

Plant Man
01-22-2011, 09:42 PM
I totally agree with mermaid...the first aquascape was nice but I really like the arrangement you have now. The wood looks really good off to the side too instead of kinda being overpowered by the java ferns. I cant wait to see how this tank progresses.

On a side note, not sure if you got my message but I saw you did a thread about CO2 and lighting and it really helped me to kinda plan for what I want and need to do with the new tank Im setting up. And if you dont mind I might be asking you a lot of questions. :ssmile:

Yes of course I'll help anyone in anyway I can. I can only help you with what has worked well so far for me and that really has been the teachings of Tom Barr. It's basically EI (Estimative Index) that has sent me on a whirlwind of success. And it’s not just dosing what Estimative Index suggests for your specific tank it’s more modifying it to suit each tank that works the best. I started at exactly what it asked for and then started dropping the dosing as I tested. Test for Nitrate, Phosphate and Iron. Getting the dosing a little tighter simply saves you from needing to buy more fertilizer prematurely.

Nutrient ranges

Carbon (Co2)………25-30ppm
Nitrate (N03)………...5-30ppm
Phosphate (P04) …….1.0-2.0ppm
Potassium (K+)………10-30ppm
Iron (Fe)………………0.2-0.5ppm or higher

Higher numbers won’t hurt anything but it is a waist of fertilizers as you’ll just be dumping unused firts down the sink at week end water change time.

Plant Man
01-22-2011, 10:11 PM
EI relies on a few key elements,

1) That the tank has very good water flow, meaning you'll need at least one powerhead just to push water around.

2) Firtilizers that are ALWAYS available to the plants (in an always excess state)

3) This is the one that needs to be "dialed in", the right Co2/light balance for your tank. You can make this easier on yourself if you start with lower light and 30ppm of Co2

Plant Man
01-23-2011, 09:33 PM
So here we are, six weeks in and things are continuing to do well. Although, I think I may have a fungus growing on the Java Moss! I’m going to try the Excel syringe treatment on it.


Day one,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape1.jpg


Six weeks,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/newscape61020.jpg

You can't see them yet but the five glandulosa stems (they’re behind the rocks) are growing well; I just can’t wait to see a nice 5 stem Glandulosa so I can cut it down again and get 8-9. I mean, I think that would really look fantastic! Crossing my fingers.

The changes include moving/adding rocks to balance them more. Cutting the Glandulosa down, adding a bag of flourite and another root of the tree. this changed the Crypt placement somewhat that also cuased me to remove one and of course the addition of the grass around the rocks.

Plant Man
01-23-2011, 09:40 PM
Some closer shots.


Left side,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/javaalgae.jpg


Right side,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/6thweekrightside019.jpg


Repens close, I’ll be cutting the tops off on Monday and moving some just to the back left of it. Fill it in, in the back left a bit.

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/6thweekreponsclose.jpg


I always forget the name of this plant; it looks like it’s doing well though.

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/6thweekplant.jpg

Plant Man
01-29-2011, 10:00 PM
7 Weeks in and I’m “mostly” pleased with it. I do have 1 issue that has been plaguing the Java Moss. I have searched around and been informed that the Java has freshwater creatures on it, from a distance the Java Moss looks like it is covered with some kind of algae that is pure white in color! If anyone has had experience with these creatures and defeated them, I would like to here from you! Please.

Now the good stuff, I did a 32L water change last week using demineralized water. My thinking was that my tap waters high GH (11) might be a part of the problem regarding the freshwater creatures. After the water change my tanks GH went down to 9 (from 11 tap/tank) and KH 6 (down from 7-8 tap/tank). It had no effect over the week on the creatures but the plants definitely liked the difference, the roots got ALOT whiter and much cleaner looking and also grew a little faster as well. So this weekend I did the same thing and now the tanks GH is 6 and the KH 4. I have a feeling that this will make a big difference but I don’t know how pleased I will be keeping the conditions like this over the long haul. I’m hoping 50% demineralized and 50% regular tap will set it right around GH 5-6 and KH 3-4. So far the softer water “seems” to be having a positive effect on the plants.

Here are some pics from today,

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/7weeks2.jpg

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/7weeks1.jpg

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/7weeksleftside.jpg

Plant Man
01-30-2011, 03:46 AM
I read somewhere that crypts tend to grow there leaves flat across the substrate, not mine, every morning every crypt leaf is pointed almost straight up towards the waters surface. And slowly throughout the day they drop to a little below 30 degrees.

I've also noticed that with clipping Ludwigia Repens if you clip of the 2-4 leaves that are on the stem left in the tank the buds that grow after the clipping will get more light and grow much faster because of it.

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/7weeks2.jpg


Repen buds all over it from last weeks trimming!

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/7weeks4.jpg


This little Java Moss was floating throught the water 4 days ago and got stuck on the wood all by itself. 4 days ago it was a tiny Y shaped peace and in 4 days it has grown like 100 time larger!

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p296/TheMailman6666/7weeks5.jpg