Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Apple Valley, MN
I set mine up, planted it immediately, and did 50% water changes according to the usual schedule (every day 1st week, every 2 days 2nd week, every 3 days 3rd week, etc). I seeded in mature media in the 3rd week and turned up the temp and was fully cycled by the 4th week. Could have cycled faster by adding the mature media earlier.
Even if you cycle it quickly (can consume all ammonia and nitrite) it'll still leach ammonia and send your nitrates high for quite a while. I added fish in the 4th week, but had to do 50% water chances 2x a week for quite a while to keep nitrates down even though there was no ammonia or nitrite.