Problems with HC already - 36g bow front continue'd
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:41 AM   #1
notsogreenthumb
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Problems with HC already - 36g bow front continue'd


This is my first "Tank Journal" and only my 3rd tank so we'll see how I do. I've been running a little planted 10g for quite some time, saw this 36g bow front on sale and decided to jump into something bigger. This is the tank when I bought it earlier this week. I was a little hesitant thinking I should have went with the 26g but glad I stuck with this.
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Last edited by notsogreenthumb; 01-23-2013 at 12:32 AM.. Reason: updating title for news
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:47 AM   #2
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So I am using flourite/flora max mixture for substrate (i know it's basically the same thing but the store didn't have 2 bags of either so i mixed). Not planning on using CO2 unless I have to at some point.

I started adding plants today, my goal is to do a carpet in the front, with some larger plants in the background and dw/rocks in the mid ground. So far I have 2 pieces of drift wood with "baby tears" on them (idk the real name), a red ludigia in the back right, and some grass which i sprinkled along the left. I am really bad with plant names, the large one in the back right i forget what it's called. Also the smaller one in the back I forget but I was told when it grows larger and matures it turns pink-ish in color.
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Old 01-19-2013, 07:46 AM   #3
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I love bow fronts, great acquisition! May I suggest a few things? I would add a black background to hide the equipment. Plus the dark background would make the plants "pop" more.

What's your lighting? The Dwarf Baby Tears (HC) wouldn't thrive without a good light source and co2 supplementation. At the very least, some Excel (liquid carbon) would be better than nothing if you can't invest in co2. But if co2 isn't out of the question, you can get a good system pieced together starting with an Aquatek regulator. Another option would be DIY CO2 if money is an issue. Although, DIY co2 is more effective in smaller tanks (<20g ).
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Old 01-19-2013, 12:20 PM   #4
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Quote:
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I love bow fronts, great acquisition! May I suggest a few things? I would add a black background to hide the equipment. Plus the dark background would make the plants "pop" more.

What's your lighting? The Dwarf Baby Tears (HC) wouldn't thrive without a good light source and co2 supplementation. At the very least, some Excel (liquid carbon) would be better than nothing if you can't invest in co2. But if co2 isn't out of the question, you can get a good system pieced together starting with an Aquatek regulator. Another option would be DIY CO2 if money is an issue. Although, DIY co2 is more effective in smaller tanks (<20g ).
Definitely will be getting a background for the tank, just have to find one that doesn't have a design, every time I look for one I can't find a plain black. I am upgrading the lighting this morning to a dual T5 fixture. As far as CO2 I am using excel for now, I have never used CO2 before and need to spend some time learning how it actually works, I know it's expensive so the idea is kind of shelved for the time being unfortunately.

The water is also really cloudy I notice, not sure what I can add to improve that.

Thanks for the comments, always open to suggestions.
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:38 PM   #5
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Took the advice and got an all black background today while I was swapping out the light fixture. Also bought some seachem Clarity, doesn't seem to have had an effect yet but it's only been about 30 minutes.

The fixture came with 2 T5 18W bulbs, one is 6,700K daylight and the other is the aqueon "colormax" which I am not sure what K rating that carries, something tells me they should both be the 6,700K daylights but I wanted to find out more before I wasted 20 dollars on a bulb I might not need. So any experience on the colormax t5?

Here is how it looks with background, also that white tube/bubble wall is temporary while I cycle, from what I know the additional o2 in the water will encourage BB growth.
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Old 01-19-2013, 05:33 PM   #6
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Yeah the background looks much better. The cloudiness is normal due to the new substrate. I'm not sure about the flourite but I've used floramax. Did you rinse the substrate and use the included biomagnet solution? Well that Seachem Clarity should help if it's a water clarifier. It will also help to do partial water changes and to add some filter floss to the filter to catch the finer particulates causing the cloudiness.

I don't know much about that fixture you purchased, so i can't comment. I just hope it's intense enough for the HC. When i think HC in a tank that your height, i think T5HO. But I'm uncertain. And if you ever want to give pressurized co2 a whirl LMK. I can help piece a decent setup for about $150-$170.
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Old 01-21-2013, 02:44 PM   #7
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I added another light fixture, aquaticlife 30'' dual T5HO. This is in addition to my Aqueon 30'' dual T5NO (2x6,700K 18W). I also put an all glass versa-top on it. I have laid the lighting fixtures directly on it and as you can see from the pictures, it is rather awkward looking, I am open to suggestions on how to address this (Maybe I don't even need both lights?).

Also I gathered a few rocks from a nearby creek (boiled them first) and created a little cliff effect on the left side of the tank. It didn't turn out as dramatic as I would like, perhaps I need bigger rocks or more substrate or both. Any suggestions for the left side of the tank? My goal is to have two "peaks" on the left and ride side of the tank with a grass carpet valley type of thing in the middle. Would also like to hide filter drop, maybe a nice piece of DW would help. In any case I am enjoying the way this is progressing.
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:39 AM   #8
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I am already having trouble with the HC. I have been dosing with flourish excel daily (~1 cap full, and have done 2 doses of flourish comp). I know initially the light fixture was probably too low for them but I fixed that during the first 48 hours and it seems as though during the 48 hours after upgrade the HC is turning light yellow and even brown in some spots. I know CO2 injection is recommended but I didn't think it was an absolute must. Can't think of anything else to do at this point any input is appreciated...thanks.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:29 AM   #9
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How was the HC purchased? Emersed or Submersed? It could be going through an acclimation period if purchased emersed.

Have you tested for nitrates? It could be a nitrogen deficiency. In one of my newly cycled tanks, I had almost no stocking in that tank.. therefore, my nitrates were 5ppm. I was also growing the HC with Flourish Comp and I was advised to use a better and more comprehensive dosing regiment. So I started using the GLA Dry Ferts Pack and I starting mixing the ferts myself using the PPS-Pro dosing method. This mix has Potassium Nitrate (KNO3). I'm not quite sure if that was the culprit from getting my yellowing HC to a nice green again, but after I started PPS-Pro it really started to take off.

And lastly... yes, it could very well be CO2! HC loves intense lighting and co2. I'm just not sure if Excel can be a true substitute on that one.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:38 AM   #10
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Oh and is that an anubias plant in the substrate on the far left? If so, did you bury it in the substrate or is it tied to something like a rock?
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Old 01-23-2013, 02:03 AM   #11
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Quote:
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Oh and is that an anubias plant in the substrate on the far left? If so, did you bury it in the substrate or is it tied to something like a rock?
Thanks for your continued input Brian, I plan on taking you up on your budget CO2 setup at some point but it's just not feasible right now.

Yes thats an anubias, a nana i think, and it's tied to a piece of wood now (although I took it straight out of my 10g where I have been growing it with its roots burried, rhizome exposed for almost 2 years now, maybe that's why it's still so small)

I bought the DW with HC already attached and they were already completely underwater in a tank at the store when I picked them up.

My current parameters are 0.25 ammonia, almost 5ppm Nitrites and ~15ppm Nitrates. I am in the midst of a cycle hence the really high nitrites. Also I am keeping the tank very warm (~84 degrees) to encourage BB growth. Not sure if this stuff has something to do with the leaves loosing color.
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Old 01-23-2013, 02:26 AM   #12
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No prob... sorry I couldn't help further. I hope that you solve your HC problem! Maybe you can at least implement a DIY co2 system. They're pretty cheap to make and maintain but at least you can get 'something' out of it. Usually they're best for tanks 20 gallon and under, but if you use DIY co2 with Excel together, that might be the extra boost your HC needs in its requirements.
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Old 01-23-2013, 02:41 AM   #13
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No prob... sorry I couldn't help further. I hope that you solve your HC problem! Maybe you can at least implement a DIY co2 system. They're pretty cheap to make and maintain but at least you can get 'something' out of it. Usually they're best for tanks 20 gallon and under, but if you use DIY co2 with Excel together, that might be the extra boost your HC needs in its requirements.
Do you know of any links for a really basic explanation to how a CO2 system works? I don't even understand the terminology and before I start thinking about DIY I should at least understand the basics lol
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Old 01-23-2013, 02:50 AM   #14
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^ Problems with HC Cuba? Look at this!

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Old 01-23-2013, 02:56 AM   #15
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No prob...

Here's a beginner's guide:
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/beginn...-planted-tank/

The recipe I use for my DIY co2 system (FYI: I have 2 tanks on pressurized co2 and 1 on DIY):
http://www.aquatic-eden.com/2006/09/...intensity.html
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