Difficulty with my first planted tank
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Old 12-04-2012, 07:32 PM   #1
Algae Grower
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Join Date: May 2012
Location: Los Angeles, CA
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Default Difficulty with my first planted tank

Having issues with what I believe to be algae and some kind of nutrient deficiency with many of my plants. I'll list the specs of my tank and hopefully an expert here can point me in the right direction since I'm obviously doing something wrong!

Tank: 90g (48" x 18" x 24")
Water: Quite hard, low-to-no nitrites/nitrates/ammonia, mild pH, 81F
Filter: Aquaclear 110 (with filter pad, filter floss + biomax rings)
Substrate: 3-4" of Eco-Complete
Lighting: 3x 54W T5 HO (all 6500K), on timer for 6hrs a day
Fish: 6x Rosy Barb, 8x Glowlight Tetra, 1x Bristlenose Pleco (eventually going to be a Discus tank with 5 adults and Barbs removed)
C02: Originally had C02 injection using this DIY system, but found it too annoying and expensive to have to make a new mixture every several days. Now dosing with Flourish Excel every 2 days.
Water Changes: 40-50% every 2 weeks
Fish Food: twice daily (bloodworms morning, flakes night)
Plant Food: using root pellets once a month and Flourish liquid plant food once a week.
2x Red Melon Sword - Not doing well. Leaves have brown spots all over them and eventually rot away.
10x Cyperus Helferi - Not doing well. Some stalks have brown/yellow spots on them, almost all the tips are brown, and I'm pruning them faster than new growth so they are getting thinner every week.
15x Crinum "Dwarf" Onion Plant - Mostly doing well, but getting fuzzy black algae on the tips (BTW does the white "onion" portion need to be above or below substrate? Mine are below)
10x XXL Balansae - Existing leaves doing OK, but no new growth, and smaller leaves tend to rot away instead of grow. They have thinned out considerably since I put them in my tank.
2x Anubias Nana - Only green plants doing well.
6x Red Tiger Lotus - Doing great!

Other notes: I keep the tank as full of water as possible so there is minimum surface agitation with the HOTB filter. I've got a glass top with about 1.5" of open space in the back.

Last edited by steagle; 12-04-2012 at 08:39 PM.. Reason: added more parameters
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