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Old 01-23-2015, 04:33 AM   #1
Sevamortner
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First Planted Tank - Advice


So I just finished up, the water is still cloudy and i do not like the way the left side of the tank looks. Never having done plants before I did not realize java fern was so large/wide, I also think i may have too much of it. I have all kinds of ideas as to how to fix things but i wanted some experienced advice. I am not tied to the current plants I have so I'm open to all suggestions. Oh and flame moss comes in the mail some time next week for the Bonsai.

Let me know what you think.

Thanks

Tank dimensions: Finnex 20g M tank
21" L x 10.5" W (this does not include the aio filtration area) x 16" Tall

Substrate:

Just a 1/2" layer of crushed lava rock
Aquasoil Amazonia

Equipment:

Finnex fuge ray planted + 20"

Some time next week ill be setting up diy c02 and buying liquid ferts - any advice on ferts would be great too.

Plants:

Java Fern
DHG
Anubias Nana Petite - tiny guys tied to the driftwood
Hygrophila Pinnatifida - hidden behind the java


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Old 01-23-2015, 05:50 AM   #2
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If you have not bought fertilizers I wouldn't put anything other than Seachem or Aquavitro in my tank. I would pick up Aquavitro Envy and Propel. I would also dose Seachem Excel in addition to your DIY CO2. Your hair grass would love weekly doses of trace elements or more frequent water changes.

If your light on a timer? I'd go for 11 hours a day.

Did you consider a dry start for your plants? Hair grass really grows faster that way.
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:27 AM   #3
Raymond S.
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You have about 40 PAR in there. No way I'd use more than 7 hrs of light till you get the CO2 going. Java Fern and Anubias are low light(less than 35PAR) plants and need shade if in higher light. That is a very large Java Fern. They mostly come/w 3-5" leaves but do get that big eventually.
I do not know the light requirements of the Hygrophila Pinnatifida. So best you find out what it is. Then if it is higher than the Anubias and JF you can move it.
You can place a piece of fiberglass window screen between the light and the top of the tank to shade the JF and Anubias if the Hygrophila Pinnatifida are moved if it requires more light. Or it may be to your liking to let the Hygrophila Pinnatifida replace the Java Fern. But for the JF and the Anubias something has to be found to shade them or they will get thick coats of GSA(green spot algae,the same kind seen on the glass) on the leaves and die. DHG loves CO2 BTW.
As for ferts, store bought liquids are a serious waste of money and made strictly for convenience. In the 500ml bottle($5.99-to even higher)you get one tsp of whatever nutrient it is. In dry ferts you get 1/2 to 1 LB of it for the same money or a little more depending on which kind.
You don't "have to have" but a plant only can take in so much nutrients. Using them in the water cuts what they take from the sub you have making it last longer.
But if that tank is only 20g then a 500ml bottle of Flourish Comprehensive will last you
almost a year anyway. But it is incomplete. It has no Potassium or Phosphate.
API Leaf Zone has iron plus Potassium. Tetra Pride has Potassium and iron.
http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...01&pcatid=4701
Look under additional info on that one above.
http://www.petmountain.com/product/a...leaf-zone.html
But all of these products are so diluted that most who use them suggest you use 2 x the recommended doses.
Do not confuse Sea Chem Flourish comprehensive/w Sea Chem Trace. Trace is for fish health. Look at this link to see it.
http://www.seachem.com/Products/prod...reshTrace.html
And this one to see there are others but all for fish.
http://www.seachem.com/Products/Fres...ace%20Elements
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Last edited by Raymond S.; 01-23-2015 at 08:38 AM.. Reason: Additional info.
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Old 01-23-2015, 06:42 PM   #4
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@ James -

Light is on a timer - currently set to 5h a day

The tank is in a bay window which receives light from the north(left) west and south(right) so i was starting out with less light and planned to work my way up, Of course ill likely have to adjust with the seasons.

I did not even know you could dry start! Once i take these poor fish my wife dumped in the tank as a "surprise" back to the store i might consider draining and doing that.

side note - them suckers are pretty hardy, she just dumped them in the tank straight out of the bag, no acclimation into 2 ppm ammonia soaked water! Soon as I get home (hopefully they are still alive) there going back.

@ Raymond -

I may give the java to a friend. Its much larger than i had estimated.. Looks small on youtube That said, the Hygrophila Pinnatifida from what i can find doing quick searches at work say, low to medium light with a few sources saying medium to high.. So ill assume the low end of medium light? planted off to the side in the back ill assume it will be ok. What plants would anyone recommend to take the place of the java? Ideally something that will not get so tall as to drown out the hygro P and be hardy enough to survive my learning curve?

Thanks for the info on the ferts. I was honestly leaning toward the seachem for the very reasons you stated but you have given me that little push i needed to just do it right the first time. Where is a good place to purchase dry ferts?
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:45 PM   #5
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Subscribed. I love the bonsai! Where did you get it?
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Old 01-24-2015, 03:26 PM   #6
Raymond S.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sevamortner View Post

@ Raymond -

I may give the java to a friend. Its much larger than i had estimated.. Looks small on youtube That said, the Hygrophila Pinnatifida from what i can find doing quick searches at work say, low to medium light with a few sources saying medium to high.. So ill assume the low end of medium light? planted off to the side in the back ill assume it will be ok. What plants would anyone recommend to take the place of the java? Ideally something that will not get so tall as to drown out the hygro P and be hardy enough to survive my learning curve?

Thanks for the info on the ferts. I was honestly leaning toward the seachem for the very reasons you stated but you have given me that little push i needed to just do it right the first time. Where is a good place to purchase dry ferts?
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=795498
This may overwhelm anyone. But...check the kits.
The EI or PPS Pro kits/w bottles. Everything is there you just add RO or Distilled water.

http://greenleafaquariums.com/aquarium-fertilizer.html

http://aquariumfertilizer.com/index....ditU=1&Regit=2
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Old 01-25-2015, 08:44 PM   #7
Sevamortner
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Bonsai came from bonsai driftwood

Thanks Ray, After over complicating everything i read about ferts in a few different ways, I mostly get it now.
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