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Old 12-05-2012, 08:09 PM   #181
ad3hybrid
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Is 15W enough for the plants? I've been aiming that bulb for my Archae 27W replacement bulb.
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:00 AM   #182
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Is 15W enough for the plants? I've been aiming that bulb for my Archae 27W replacement bulb.
the bulb I'm using is 18w and for a 5.5gallon I think it's just right. my plants seem to be responding positively. And if you are a believe in wpg rule of thumb, that's about 3.27wpg compared to the former which was 4.9wpg. I think the reduction in intensity also provides a little more room for error. We shall see.
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Old 12-10-2012, 06:17 PM   #183
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glosso seems to be growing well. Changed the bulb to the 18w 6 days ago. Am noticing a difference. picked up some excel for my low tech tank. I am spot dosing any signs of staghorn on the older leaves this tank. The leaves that are hard to remove with scissors. I've increased the co2 as well. my only inhabitants are snails so I'm not concerned too much about gassing my fauna as I was before. But with the 18w light, the less co2 and nutrient demand. I imagine that the changes in staghorn growth will be more noticeable after two weeks. Once things start to settle in with the lower light intensity.

I've been manually removing any powersand that I had mixed up with the top substrate when rescaping the tank. I noticed what looks to be fertilizer balls mixed in with the powersand. not quite sure what they are. When I apply moderate pressure to them they burst. Any thoughts on what they are. I can only imagine they are part of the powersand. I hope. And not something to be worried about that has been growing in my tank.

Little bit of gda appearing. I had this algae before. Hopefully when the system balances out I will see a change in growth. I've been dosing richer than usual and run my photoperiod for 7 hours. Plants pearl within the first hour. They pearl much more quickly on Macro days and not as rapidly on micro days.

thinking about adding some dhg behind the rock. any thoughts?

best

walter







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Old 12-11-2012, 03:49 PM   #184
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Default dhg

picked up some dhg from Pacific Aquarium on Delancey. $5. They are no doubt my favorite lfs in nyc. Planted some behind the rock. Hopefully this will enhance the perspective of the tank. Looking forward to taking another shot at this plant. The first time I used it I did so exclusively. And man did it take off. But I had planted it in individual clumps throughout the entire aquarium. This time I planted in bunches and only in a limited section behind the rock. I thnk with more strategic trimming I can keep it away from the front of the tank. We shall see.

I also changed up the solution in my drop checker. (I haven't done that in months, so I don't think the reading I was getting was accurate). Still spot treating with excel. Haven't seen any new signs of staghorn. I'd like to say that it is nonexistent, but I'm not going to jump to any conclusions yet. I know the battle is a process and does not happen overnight. We shall see with the DHG. The first time I really noticed staghorn was a long time ago on a strand of DHG. The cause was no doubt my own. But now I feel like I have a better grasp on this little ecosystem. But I don't want to jinx myself.

It's silly, but I'm also including a picture of my DIY razor scraper. It's my alternative to the ADA one (which is way too much to pay for such a simple tool). So I just used a pair of hemostats and a razor blade. To be honest, the best glass cleaning tools have been a generic toothbrush, a paper towel and a razor blade. Never been happy with any of the algae scrapers out there. I also may venture off this week to a restaurant supply store to get a pair of 10" forceps for tank maintenance. Or go online and get some better quality planting tweezers. I'd like to keep the cost low though. But, now that everything is planted, this may be a poorly timed puchase.

All in all, the glosso seems to be growing well. The glosso that's newly planted grows tall at first. Then once it starts to root, I clip the top chute and discard it. By the next day it starts to shoot out a runner. It's getting there... Keeping the fingers crossed for the DHG. The next upgrade may be a new timer to have the CO2 turn on 1 hour before lights up. Any thoughts?

walter


DHG and Glosso from above shot

parting shot

Last edited by Fat Guy; 12-11-2012 at 05:34 PM.. Reason: more photos
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Old 12-15-2012, 05:28 PM   #185
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The new bulb seems to be having a positive effect on the system. I've upped my co2 this week and spot treated some staghorn zones with excel as well as removed any leaf with any sign of it. Haven't seen any sign of this algae now in two days. I've been very meticulous trying to tackle this issue. I think I've finally made some serious ground. The DHG and glosso are growing nicely. The glosso is growing much slower now with the new bulb which is great! The leaves are a little smaller and it is sending out more runners. The plants pearl after about three to four hours into the photo period. Definitely not pearling like before with the 27wt light, but they look much much healthier all around. I think they have started to adjust to the reduced light intensity and are growing at a more manageable rate. The only other algae issue now is GDA. I'm going to get at it by shutting off the inlfow when wiping/scraping away, followed by a 30% maybe 50% water change after cleaning every three days. Gonna start from there and see what happens.

best, walter

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Old 12-15-2012, 07:28 PM   #186
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I like it! Great job
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Old 12-15-2012, 07:47 PM   #187
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Just use the edge of an old credit card to scrape algae. I'm using an old Dave & Buster's card I got one time. You'll cover more area with an old card than the razor
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Old 12-16-2012, 05:26 AM   #188
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I like it! Great job
Thanks!! it's a continuous work in progress.

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Just use the edge of an old credit card to scrape algae. I'm using an old Dave & Buster's card I got one time. You'll cover more area with an old card than the razor
thanks for the suggestion. I've used the ol' credit card before. It works pretty well.
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Old 12-18-2012, 01:25 AM   #189
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looks great as always! what are those little white thingies at the front of the substrate?
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Old 12-18-2012, 06:42 AM   #190
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looks great as always! what are those little white thingies at the front of the substrate?
thanks!! those little white things are small pieces of powersand that I mixed up when rescaping. it's quite the task trying to pick them all up.
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Old 12-21-2012, 07:47 PM   #191
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Default staghorn update

The staghorn is completely gone. The best method for me was spot treating it with excel. Actually, the smartest thing I've done to treat it was to first remove the tank of its occupants. Tinkering with c02 and excel can be tough on the fauna...(and flora). I treated the tank for about a week. Half an hour before lights up I closed the valve for my filter so there was no current and treated the glosso with a dosing syringe of excel. After about 20-30 minutes, I reopened the filter valve and brought the current back in. I overdosed excel for three days then did a major water change and repeated for the first week. stahorn eventually turned grey then virtually transparent. I dosed more than the recommended amount which I know can be issue. There are zero inhabitants in the tank except for pond snails. My pond snail population did diminish significantly after dosing. I dosed between 5-10ml. after a week I did a 75% water change and resumed daily maintenance without excel. I have to say that excel did the trick, however I noticed a difference in the growth of my glosso after the first couple of days. The plants were not pearling and to me the new growth seemed thin. After the last major water change and ferts plants have bounced back. I read that there is a risk of damaging your plants by overdosing excel. I felt like I was walking a very fine line. Finally, though, the staghorn is gone. I've tried very hard to be patient. With such a small tank there is ver little room for error.

Got some 12" tweezers today from Southern Oak aquatics. $20 and free shipping. They work very well. If I were to purchase such a product again, I would go with 10" ones. These are great, just take some getting used to.

Redid my 4dkh recipe for my drop checker. After 4 hours the drop checker is green. Big thanks to the barrreport.com and its members for the recipe:

I used Billionzz recipe found here: http://www.barrreport.com/showthread...7-Dkh-4-Recipe

and followed it to the T.

I weighed every element instead of measuring on my graduated cylinder. The graduated cylinder I have is inaccurate.

Have to say, this recipe make me feel much more confident in getting a general estimate of co2.

All plants are pearling. Again. glad I switched to the 18w bulb. Hairgrass is shooting out multiple runners too. Going to do a tank trim tomorrow. some glosso is still growing high while others are growing horizontally.

All the best,

Walter





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Old 12-22-2012, 04:45 PM   #192
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did a large trim of the glosso today. just mowed it down instead of clipping at individual leaflets. I was inspired by this method: http://www.youtube.com/adgvibe#p/a/u/1/nbZqDPmuWFA the hairgrass is really starting to perk up. cleaned the filter and added some new floss. a lot of snails living in the filter now that I removed the metal shrimp guard. trying to narrow in on 30ppm co2 (using the drop checker method)...rather...shooting for green. this morning the drop checker was yellow. too much co2. not a real concern for me right now because there isn't anything in the tank. that reading was with roughly 2bps. I'm hoping that going back to 1bps will get me within a more manageable range. also hoping for better results now that the staghorn is gone and my scape methods are leaning towards being more patient. keeping my fingers crossed for the glosso to bounce back after such a heavy buzz cut. I think that may encourage more shoots to grow horizontal. best, walter

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Old 12-24-2012, 04:42 PM   #193
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messing around with a new container for my 4dkh solution. just an old contact solution container. this one works well and is a lot easier to add to my drop checkers because of the dropper. I broke out the old diy drop checker I made a while back and felt like putting it in the tank in the back right corner. top drop checker is a good solid green after changing the co2 to about 1 bubble every 1.5 seconds. the back drop checker is blue in the picture because...well...I just put it in a couple minutes ago. as for the glosso, new little leaflets are sprouting after the trim (two days ago). noticed a little bit more green algae on the rock after the trim. I imagine the major trim had something to do with its appearance. it's a mild algae outbreak after the trim. but nothing on the plants. best, walter





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Old 12-28-2012, 05:06 PM   #194
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having a lot less algae issues. the gda has seemed to have significantly reduced. staghorn is still gone. I had some green algae on the rock 4 days ago. when I changed the water in the tank I exposed the section of the rock and spot treated it with prime and let the rock sit exposed in the air for about ten minutes before filling the tank up. four days later that algae has vanished. I attribute it's appearance to the major trim I did. I've reduced my dosing to the recommended EI levels. I was dosing richer initially and I think that attributed to some gda algae issues as well. I was dosing too much for the plant mass in the tank. Once everything fills in more, I may dose richer, but depending on what I see from the plants (or algae). 30-40% water changes every 3 to 4 days. co2 now runs an hour before lights up and shuts off an hour before lights off at roughly 1-1.2 bps. The glosso is now sprouting tiny leaflets where trimmed. I think there are some sections of it that were shocked by the glutaraldehyde in the excel treatment, but they are bouncing back. The dhg is really thriving. it's sending out multiple runners and filling in the gaps between the rocks very nicely. My goal is to contain it to the back section of the tank. I will remove any runners that make their way past the rock arrangement. So far so good. hoping for the glosso to stay low now that I've trimmed it like a hedge and pushed it deeper in the substrate. we shall see. best, walter

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Old 12-28-2012, 05:09 PM   #195
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Looking great. Take some closer pics though. I would love to see the texture of the rock more.
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