29g struggle. Please look.
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:15 PM   #1
Woody0229
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29g struggle. Please look.


Hello everyone I currently have a 29g planted tank that is about six months old. Here is the info about the tank.

Lights- 4 bulb t5 corallife fixture. I currently have been only running 2 bulbs. 1 6700k and one 10000k I have one 6700k turn on and then 2 hours later the 10000k turns on and run for 4-5 hours and turn off leaving 1 6700k left to run for another hour then lights off for the night.

Co2 system- I have pressurized co2 coming from a 5 lbs tank. Diffused by an atomic diffuser off green leaf. Very good diffuser vs the cheap amazon glass ones. About 2 bubbles per second. Since my waters kh is so high (17 degrees) when I compare ph and kh to figure out my ppm of co2 the chart does not go that high but I think I'm near 30 ppm of co2.

Sub straight- I am currently using Eco complete half of which I used from my previous try at a planted tank and about 1 1/2 bags of new Eco complete. I also put flourish root tabs in about once ever couple months.

Filtration- I run a rated 50g marine land HOB. A 55g rated marine land canister. I do run a small bag of peat in the canister to try and battle ph. How often should you change peat? Also do I need to use peat granulals or can I use peat from a gardening store as long as I wash it off well? Also I have heard of some people not using filter bads in there HOB and just using the bio-wheel? Good idea bad? Also have 2 koralia power heads. One running length wise in the back and one in the front.

Plants- I don't know all scientific names but here it goes-
Dwarf sag
Blue hygro
Red ludwigia- mine does not turn red this is one of my issues.
Red tiger lotus
Staurogyne repens- this i recently got. It is sustaining but has not grown to much. Had in tank only about a week.

Fish load is pretty light. Couple Cory's a beta and couple tetras nothing crazy. I'm more about getting my plants healthy before I go nuts on fish.

Dosing regimen - I used an ei calculator and from there I have been trying to make adjustments as I see issues arise.

I use a scale and weigh out my ferts and mix them all separate into 700ml containers and dose 100 ml when I dose.

Kno3- 3x weekly mixing 7 grams in 700ml bottle
Khpo4- 3x weekly mixing 1.5 grams in 700ml bottle. Dose the same day as kno3
Chelated iron-3x weekly 4 grams in 700 ml bottle.
Planted+dsm+b- 3x weekly 8 grams in 700 ml bottle dose the same day as the iron.
On the seventh day I do a 50% water change doing a 50/50 mix of RO water to try and fight the hard water here in madison.

I also have caso4 but I do not dose this since my water is super hard.

Here are my current levels as of last night 2-9-13
Ph- 7.3 ( milwuakee ph pen)
Nitrate-10 ppm last dosed kno3 2-8-13 (API test kit)
Kh- 17 (API test kit)
Gh- 11 (API test kit)

I lost my ammonia test and my nitrite test.

When I look at my levels I feel like my gh is way to high? And nitrates seem to be good? What do you all try and keep your levels at?

So couple things I am having issues with. Looks to me and from the reading I have done I have a mg deficiency. Since I am getting holes in my leafs. Do you think I may have this because I use to much RO water and not enough tap. I think I saw I can use a type of salt to rid me of this problem? How do I go about dosing the salt?

Second issue and this is the one that drives me crazy... My plants do not change color as they grow closer to the aquarium. Only one I have seen do it is the blue hygro and it was super close to the top and turned red/purple and then algae took over so I trimmed it. My red ludwigia has never been red besides when I got it. I have done some reading on why plants turn color and came up with a lot of reasons so I don't think it's light I think I'm starving my plants and there not getting enough ferts? Maybe it's my sub straight is not rich enough in nutrients?

Third issue is just my plants have slowed down growing. And not pearling nearly as much as they used too. So I wanted to see what you guys think of the dosing and over all set up of the tank. If you have any input I would love to hear it. If you need more info I will do my best to supply it. Please excuse me for bad grammar and spelling issues.

Another thing what is the proper way to trim ludwigia. When I do it most of the time I cut and replant the stem the the rooted part that I thought would shoot side shoots just rots. Maybe it's to shaded or maybe I'm doing something wrong?

Here is the tank as of today right before I do my water change. My apologies for a terrible picture.


Last edited by Woody0229; 02-14-2013 at 10:15 PM.. Reason: Updated lighting section.
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Old 02-11-2013, 03:08 PM   #2
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Any one?
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Old 02-11-2013, 04:18 PM   #3
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Reading on am iPone

Looks like a lot of light. I have the same size Tank. Granted it is low light with one Catalina T5 HO and what I have plated grows. The crypts take me forever to grow.
I'll look at this on a bigger screen later
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:17 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquaticz View Post
Reading on am iPone

Looks like a lot of light. I have the same size Tank. Granted it is low light with one Catalina T5 HO and what I have plated grows. The crypts take me forever to grow.
I'll look at this on a bigger screen later
So I should either raise the light? Add more ferts to compensate for the amount of light? Or just go back to running two bulbs? I would like to hear what else you have to say about it. Thank you very much!
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Old 02-11-2013, 08:07 PM   #5
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You probably should ditch your HOB filter- at the very least, ditch the biowheel. It's just going to out-gas your CO2. If you need more flow in the tank than what the canister filter alone can provide (which chances are, you will, once the plants fill in) you can always add a powerhead instead.

I agree you've got a ton of light, probably a lot more than you need. Personally, I'd run just 2 banks of bulbs most of the time and then you might run the 2nd bank for a short "burst" if you want to see quicker plant growth.
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Old 02-12-2013, 03:44 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lauraleellbp View Post
You probably should ditch your HOB filter- at the very least, ditch the biowheel. It's just going to out-gas your CO2. If you need more flow in the tank than what the canister filter alone can provide (which chances are, you will, once the plants fill in) you can always add a powerhead instead.

I agree you've got a ton of light, probably a lot more than you need. Personally, I'd run just 2 banks of bulbs most of the time and then you might run the 2nd bank for a short "burst" if you want to see quicker plant growth.
Thank you for your reply! The reason I keep the hob on the tank is so I don't get a white film on the top. My power heads are too weak to break enough surface tension for the whole tank. Why do you say take the bio wheel of? Thought it was good for extra bacteria? If I wanted to run a burst lighting how long would you let that run for 2 hours?
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:38 PM   #7
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Does any one have ideas on why my plants do not change color as drastically as they should. i was thinking of resting the tank and doing a dirt tank. But i much rather tackle my issues head on instead of avoiding them. i do think my substrate is under fertilized. how many tabs do you guys throw in your tank? Please mention substrate you use and tank size!
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:58 PM   #8
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Instead of using tap water to reconstitute the RO water look into getting a gH booster or something of the sort. I use the GLA gH booster. The reason for this is because the booster has many micro nutrients in it including the ones you may be lacking.
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:05 PM   #9
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It's hard to see what is going on in your tank because the picture is so small. First off, unless you are hanging your lights, you probably have way too much light right now. If I had to make a guess with the info provided, you most likely have a co2 problem.

Get rid of the HoB because it is negating your pressurized co2 at the moment. If you have surface film without the HoB, you will need to get a surface skimmer and/or add more circulation. I like 'Ista' brand surface skimmers the most out of all the ones I've tried (tom's/fluval). Be very careful with co2 after removing the HoB. If your surface film is really bad, you can gas your fish if you don't readjust co2 accordingly. However, I doubt you're adding enough right now....2bps sounds really low.

When I've kept red ludwigia in the past, it usually turns green when its not happy. After transplanting/shipping, all the new growth will be green for a week or so until it settles in. Once it is happy, the new growth will turn red and stay red as long as its happy.
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:21 PM   #10
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I run a great growing tank and this is just my opinion.... For colouring I look to iron, for magnesium I use epsom salt. To split the plant try to look for root runners pinch off just below and plant. I use hob filters on my tanks and I agree it does cause more gas use in theory but my plants grow great. I only get pearling when I do water changes
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Old 02-14-2013, 05:12 AM   #11
Woody0229
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bababooey View Post
It's hard to see what is going on in your tank because the picture is so small. First off, unless you are hanging your lights, you probably have way too much light right now. If I had to make a guess with the info provided, you most likely have a co2 problem.

Get rid of the HoB because it is negating your pressurized co2 at the moment. If you have surface film without the HoB, you will need to get a surface skimmer and/or add more circulation. I like 'Ista' brand surface skimmers the most out of all the ones I've tried (tom's/fluval). Be very careful with co2 after removing the HoB. If your surface film is really bad, you can gas your fish if you don't readjust co2 accordingly. However, I doubt you're adding enough right now....2bps sounds really low.

When I've kept red ludwigia in the past, it usually turns green when its not happy. After transplanting/shipping, all the new growth will be green for a week or so until it settles in. Once it is happy, the new growth will turn red and stay red as long as its happy.

Took your advice bought one. I did get a Tom one though they were only 11 bucks and had decent reviews. Can't wait to get the hob off. Super cool thank you for the suggestion. My atomic diffuser is throwing tons of tiny bubbles at 2 bubbles a second. But I will mess with it when I get the skimmer.

What do you guys think of my dosing? To lean? Not enough? It is pretty dence with plants there is no hard scape.

Does any one have suggestions on a phosphate test? Heard the API ones are okay? I bought a seachem phosphate test kit. Any one use this and trust it?
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Old 02-14-2013, 11:21 PM   #12
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Turns out I am dumb. All along I have been running 2 bulbs. Not three. So does this rule out to much light?

So what your saying is just use all RO water and a gh booster to put the good stuff back in the water?

Test results from today
Ph-7.6
Nitrates-35-40 hard to tell color. Seems really high. Maybe it's because I have not been shaking the bottles every time I test? I did do a side by side test and the non shaken one said 5-10 ppm and the shaken one tested 35-40? Dose less?
Gh-14
Kh-17
Dosed micros today.

Thanks
Tim
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