New planted discus tank ideas - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-12-2004, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: London UK
Posts: 148
New planted discus tank ideas

Hi all,

right... i have decided my discus tank aint big enough.... so i have come up with a cunning plan. a bigger tank. i just want to run some ideas past you folk to hear your input (if you have any)

tank = 60"x24"x30" deep bout 150 gal (180 USG) open topped, with an additional 6" surround to stop jumpers
filtration = eheim 2226 to CO2 diffuser, eheim 2026 to fluid bed filter
lighting = 8x55w pll compact fluorescents on over tank pendants
substrate = sand and flourite as a bottom layer

thats the basic plan for part one... going to be planted up with the usual swords, crypts and vallis... as the tank will be open topped, i am also after suggestions for other suitable amazonian plants that will grow above the water line (emergant forms). stock will be 10 or so discus, some corys, large shoal of cardinals, splashing tetras, ancistrus sp.

phase two is where it gets interesting....

using the idea of the algae scrubber from the DPH site, i plan to pump tank water into a tray above tank level, where i will hopefully be growing orchids, bromeliads, aglaonemas, Caladiums and calatheas hydroponically. i will have another 220W of compact fluoro lighting for this, and using an expanded clay pellets substrate. the tank water will then flow along the sloped tray, where some will get wicked by the clay to provide water and nutrients to the terrestrial plants growing. this will then be returned to the tank via another line at the far end. As the DPH system, the idea is to use these plants to help maintain water quality, and also to provide a complete amazonian type surround to frame the tank. Hopefully some of the plants (philodenrons or maybe passiflora's) will grow down toward the tank to make it look like one setup. These will also act as a spawning site for the splashing tetras.

the above hydro section should hopefully strip nitrates from the water, as well as helping to oxygenate the water as it passes over the porous clay pebbles, although i realise it will also remove the CO2 from the system, but the flow rate shouldnt be so high that i have problems mainatining the correct CO2 concentration

if anyone has any comments then please let me know... all suggestions / critsisms welcomed.

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-12-2004, 12:49 PM
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Rex Grigg's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Portland Orygun
Posts: 9,600
Normally nitrate removal in a planted tank is not a problem. In fact the vast majority of us end up adding nitrates to the tank. Also oxygenating the water is not normally a problem in a planted tank.

Your idea sounds great but to me it seems that your basic concept is flawed.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-12-2004, 01:12 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: London UK
Posts: 148
ok... i see your point about the nitrates, but even if i end up adding nitrates to the setup to keep things in balance, it still 'should' result in the same result... a nice healthy planted tank with a surround of hydro terrestrial plants... i will just have to wait to see how the nutrient levels go as to whether i will be adding nitrates or not.

and i have had issues with oxygenation before. with very little surface movement and the high temps i keep my discus at, there can be a lack of O2 at night (not a probelm in the day when the plants are pearling). but this should help with that also.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 07-13-2004, 12:48 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Portland Orygun
Posts: 9,600
If you are getting low O2 levels at night then turn off the CO2, or use a controller. Or you could put an air injection system on a reverse timer. Or my favorite solution is a Bio-Wheel Pro filter.
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