I need some help with my green water - long
Planted Tank Forums
Your Tanks Image Hosting *Tank Tracker * Plant Profiles Fish Profiles Planted Tank Guide Photo Gallery Articles

Go Back   The Planted Tank Forum > General Planted Tank Forums > General Planted Tank Discussion


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-24-2004, 11:58 PM   #1
lgerold
Algae Grower
 
lgerold's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 46
Default

Hi!

I jumped into this fish hobby about a year ago after a 15 year hiatus. Of course, if you knew me, you'd know that I don't do anything part way, so our house has become quite fishy, with a tank in each kids bedroom, two tanks in our bedroom, four tanks in the living room, and 2 in my office too!

The living area tanks include 2 55 gallon planted tanks of very fancy goldfish, a 125 gallon tank of very fancy goldfish, and a 55 gallon tank of tropicals. The goldfish tanks are planted with wisteria, assorted swords, assorted anubias, and assosrted java moss. These tanks do quite well. We did just recently add compact lighting which I must say REALLY DRAMITICALLY increase the beauty of these fish, and the plants too. The plants are growing incredibly now. The 55 gallon tropical tank is stocked with assorted tetras, barbs, pearl gouramis, and angel fish. This tank is doing nicely too. These four tanks have gravel substrate, with laterite mixed in, and all have undergravel filtration along with a canister filter. All the tanks have CO2 added with DIY system.

OK - So about three months ago, I was intriqued by the ideas of Diane Walsted in her book, using soil substrate, and gravel, in a rather modestly equipped aquarium. I put together a 29 gallon tank, with 130 watts of light, soil substrate from the yard, topped with gravel, a HOB filter for water movement, heater, DIY CO2, lots of plants, and a decent load of fish. I was pleased to have the plants grow beautifully from day one, no apparent cycling occurred, and other than some MINOR cloudiness for the first few weeks, I'd say the "experiment" has been a complete success. Son Charles thinks so too.

So, I decide that I'd love a 20 gallon long in my bedroom, to watch as I attempt to drift off to sleep. What could possibly be more relaxing?

So, I beg my hubby to go dig up some of the now almost frozen tundra in our yard, and put together a very similar tank to the tank above. To my dismay, I have been plagued from the beginning with cloudy water, and this time, the water is a lovely shade of florescent green. OK, I suppose it's only florescent due to the pc lights.

Here are the specific water and tank parameters:

It's a 20 gallon long tank.
110 watts 2700K light - 13 hours daily
DIY CO2
1 1/2 inches of soil substrate - basically black dirt with small pieces of clay
1 inch small gravel
Filter is an internal filter with heater combined. No carbon.
Lots of plants - red lotus, water sprite, bacopa carolini, cabomba, pennywort, dwarf sag, corksrew sag, mayaca, and rosefolia, and some others too
Live creatures: striated loach, snails, butterfly loach, 2 dwarf gouramis, 5 black skirt tetras, 4 tetras of some kind (cant remember the name!) 1 catfish, 4 otos. Fish seem to be doing very well, though I lost three of the gouramis this week!

I have not been fertilizing. The plants are growing explosively. No trouble at all with algea ON plants. Slight buildup of algae on glass, which I can manage fine. Water is like pea soup! I've been doing water changes of 75% (I know, that's hard on the fish) Seems tolerably clear after a water change, but you can see the green return within a day.

Water does not smell.
No ammonia
No nitrites
far less than 20 ppm nitrates
PH - 7.0-7.2
KH 120 ppm
GH 150 ppm

Can anyone give me some help?

Thanks in advance!

Lucy
__________________
12 tanks
125, 20L, 2 29H, 4 10, 3 55, 1 40
All planted. 125, 40, and 2 55 very fancy goldys
55, 29, 2 10's tropicals and livebearers
2 10's guppies
20L, 29 high light, soil, DIY CO2, high planted, tropicals, Angels, loaches, gouramis, barbs etc.
lgerold is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 01-25-2004, 12:23 AM   #2
SCMurphy
PT Biologist
 
SCMurphy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Maryland USA
Posts: 3,215
Default

I really hate that book.

Drop the light from 13 hours to either 10 or 11, change the bulbs to something that has a Kelvin rating closer to 6500. Stop changing the water everyday, don't change it again until we clear the green water or two weeks which ever comes first. Increase the amount of CO2 being added to the tank, til the pH drops to 6.8. Add a fert that has some nitrate and potassium in it to get your nitrate reading to 10 ppm.

Be patient, there is something (probably phosphorus) in the soil you used that is feeding the green water. You have to balance the nutrients and that means letting the water stabilize and getting the plants you have into the equation. The Green water will persist until the excessive nutrient is used up and the plants can successfully out compete the GW.
__________________
Sean

Aquascape? I'm a crypt farmer.

It's a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore looking like an idiot.

That IS an aquascape, it's titled "The Vacant Lot".
SCMurphy is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-25-2004, 12:38 AM   #3
lgerold
Algae Grower
 
lgerold's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 46
Default

Hi!

I appreciate your advice. I see that I didn't mention how often I'm changing the water - once every week.

Are there certain plants that will gobble up the phosphorus better than others? The plants are really growing furiously so it can't take too long to use up the excess nutrient :-)

Thanks!

Lucy
__________________
12 tanks
125, 20L, 2 29H, 4 10, 3 55, 1 40
All planted. 125, 40, and 2 55 very fancy goldys
55, 29, 2 10's tropicals and livebearers
2 10's guppies
20L, 29 high light, soil, DIY CO2, high planted, tropicals, Angels, loaches, gouramis, barbs etc.
lgerold is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-25-2004, 12:41 AM   #4
SCMurphy
PT Biologist
 
SCMurphy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Maryland USA
Posts: 3,215
Default

The plants you have should do the trick. I had read your post as changing 75% of the water daily for some reason. Anyhow, skip this week.
__________________
Sean

Aquascape? I'm a crypt farmer.

It's a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore looking like an idiot.

That IS an aquascape, it's titled "The Vacant Lot".
SCMurphy is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-25-2004, 04:09 PM   #5
Rex Grigg
Planted Tank Guru
 
Rex Grigg's Avatar
 
PTrader: (65/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Portland Orygun
Posts: 9,600
Send a message via ICQ to Rex Grigg Send a message via AIM to Rex Grigg
Default

SCMurphy,

I guess you and I are members of the same club in regards to "that" book. I might note that the Walstead method doesn't use high amounts of light and 110 watts of light over a 20 long is much more light than many people would attempt.
Rex Grigg is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-25-2004, 07:13 PM   #6
lgerold
Algae Grower
 
lgerold's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 46
Default

Hi!

You certainly are right about that. I figured I'd need to fertilize some and do water changes, with the addition of the better light.

I do wonder about Sean's comment about cutting the lighting time down. Wouldn't it make more sense to keep the light the same so that the algea would use up the extra nutrient more quickly?

Just wondering...

Lucy
__________________
12 tanks
125, 20L, 2 29H, 4 10, 3 55, 1 40
All planted. 125, 40, and 2 55 very fancy goldys
55, 29, 2 10's tropicals and livebearers
2 10's guppies
20L, 29 high light, soil, DIY CO2, high planted, tropicals, Angels, loaches, gouramis, barbs etc.
lgerold is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-25-2004, 08:01 PM   #7
SCMurphy
PT Biologist
 
SCMurphy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Maryland USA
Posts: 3,215
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rex Grigg
SCMurphy,

I guess you and I are members of the same club in regards to "that" book. I might note that the Walstead method doesn't use high amounts of light and 110 watts of light over a 20 long is much more light than many people would attempt.
I promise not to let it go to my head that we agreed on something, Rex. 8)


Quote:
Originally Posted by lgerold
Hi!

You certainly are right about that. I figured I'd need to fertilize some and do water changes, with the addition of the better light.

I do wonder about Sean's comment about cutting the lighting time down. Wouldn't it make more sense to keep the light the same so that the algea would use up the extra nutrient more quickly?

Just wondering...

Lucy
You can try what I suggested or not, I only offered a little help. But, if you do as I suggest you have to do all of it or it won't help. I'm good at making one of my tanks turn green, then getting it to clear. It's a little hobby of mine.
__________________
Sean

Aquascape? I'm a crypt farmer.

It's a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore looking like an idiot.

That IS an aquascape, it's titled "The Vacant Lot".
SCMurphy is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-25-2004, 08:23 PM   #8
lgerold
Algae Grower
 
lgerold's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 46
Default

Hi!

I'm already on your advice, Sean. I hope you didn't think I was being critical, just trying to understand the science behind this problem.

Last night, I added some Kent Freshwater Pro-Plant, which has Nitrogen. I don't have a fertilizer with Potassium too. .... Yet.

I had already done the 75% water change before I wrote the letter, so we're only a day into it.

I'll be adding a 2nd CO2 bottle later today.

I do really appreciate your help. This tank is so pretty when you can see the plants and the fish. :shock:

I'll add a picture soon, hopefully before and after the green strikes...

Lucy
__________________
12 tanks
125, 20L, 2 29H, 4 10, 3 55, 1 40
All planted. 125, 40, and 2 55 very fancy goldys
55, 29, 2 10's tropicals and livebearers
2 10's guppies
20L, 29 high light, soil, DIY CO2, high planted, tropicals, Angels, loaches, gouramis, barbs etc.
lgerold is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-26-2004, 02:51 AM   #9
Rex Grigg
Planted Tank Guru
 
Rex Grigg's Avatar
 
PTrader: (65/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Portland Orygun
Posts: 9,600
Send a message via ICQ to Rex Grigg Send a message via AIM to Rex Grigg
Default

Igerold,

You are really mixing techniques here. Soil substrates, high light, water column fertilization, and CO2.

The whole idea behind the Walstad idea is no water column ferts, no CO2, lower lighting.
Rex Grigg is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-26-2004, 03:22 AM   #10
SCMurphy
PT Biologist
 
SCMurphy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Maryland USA
Posts: 3,215
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rex Grigg
Igerold,

You are really mixing techniques here. Soil substrates, high light, water column fertilization, and CO2.
I make this work just fine, call it a wetlands approach.
__________________
Sean

Aquascape? I'm a crypt farmer.

It's a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore looking like an idiot.

That IS an aquascape, it's titled "The Vacant Lot".
SCMurphy is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-26-2004, 04:24 AM   #11
lgerold
Algae Grower
 
lgerold's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 46
Default

Quote:
Igerold,

You are really mixing techniques here. Soil substrates, high light, water column fertilization, and CO2.


Well, while I liked the idea of low maintenance with the Walsted technique, lower light, etc. , I do like the looks of some of the plants with higher light needs. I can't see why a combined approach wouldn't work just fine. The fish are so much prettier too, under more light.

I sure see better growth and healthier leaves and stalks on these two tanks with the soil substrate. The plants in the tanks with the gravel/laterite base have more fragile leaves and stalks (at least on the faster growing species.) I'm now just beginning to toy with dry ferts, so hopefully, we'll begin to see stronger plants in these tanks. In the past, I have been using liquid fertilizers, which have been quite expensive for the large number of tanks.

I do wonder though, what minerals etc would be found in soil, that won't be replenished with the dry fert dosings. As an analogy, we humans take vitamin and mineral supplements, but we know that getting these nutrients from real foods is much healthier, because all the nutrients in these real foods have not yet been discovered.

I've just received my order of dry ferts from PlantGeek.net Including K2SO4, (Hey, I do have Potassium!) KH2PO4, KNO3, and the trace minerals. I sat down this afternoon with Chuck's Fertilizer Calculator, and I think (MAYBE) that I have an understanding of what I'll need to do for each tank.

Could some of you folks recommend some good testing products? I have been using Jungle Labs, 5 in 1 Test Strips, to test for Nitrate, Nitrite, GH, KH, and PH. I see now that I'll need some testing products for Phospates and Potassium too. I have to wonder about the accuracy of the product too, but my basic reason for using the 5 in 1 product is that it gives such a quick result on the nitrate test. With goldfish tanks, nitrates build up to a pretty high level quite quickly.

Along that line of thought, it's not uncommon for the goldfish tanks to be running Nitrate levels from 40 to 80+ ppm (before a water change.) What kind of effects will that have on the needs of Potassium and Phosphorus? How do I attempt to get a "balance" with such a high Nitrate level? Remember that these Goldfish tanks are NOT the tanks with the green water. Water is crystal clear, fish happy and active, plants growing well, but not as sturdy as they could be (yes, added CO2).

Hmm! More questions than I originally had! :?

Lucy
__________________
12 tanks
125, 20L, 2 29H, 4 10, 3 55, 1 40
All planted. 125, 40, and 2 55 very fancy goldys
55, 29, 2 10's tropicals and livebearers
2 10's guppies
20L, 29 high light, soil, DIY CO2, high planted, tropicals, Angels, loaches, gouramis, barbs etc.
lgerold is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-26-2004, 12:40 PM   #12
Rex Grigg
Planted Tank Guru
 
Rex Grigg's Avatar
 
PTrader: (65/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Portland Orygun
Posts: 9,600
Send a message via ICQ to Rex Grigg Send a message via AIM to Rex Grigg
Default

Red Sea for nitrates and phosphates. Aquarium Pharmaceuticals for gH and kH and Wardley's for pH.
Rex Grigg is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-26-2004, 10:17 PM   #13
lgerold
Algae Grower
 
lgerold's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 46
Default

Quote:
Along that line of thought, it's not uncommon for the goldfish tanks to be running Nitrate levels from 40 to 80+ ppm (before a water change.) What kind of effects will that have on the needs of Potassium and Phosphorus? How do I attempt to get a "balance" with such a high Nitrate level? Remember that these Goldfish tanks are NOT the tanks with the green water. Water is crystal clear, fish happy and active, plants growing well, but not as sturdy as they could be (yes, added CO2).
Quickie Question - I do have a product called Poly Filter, by Poly-Bio-Marine Inc. The filter is supposed to remove harmful organics, toxic ammonia, heavy metals, and ALL FORMS OF PHOSPHATES, as well as medications after treatment.

Would this be a good idea to insert into my filter?
__________________
12 tanks
125, 20L, 2 29H, 4 10, 3 55, 1 40
All planted. 125, 40, and 2 55 very fancy goldys
55, 29, 2 10's tropicals and livebearers
2 10's guppies
20L, 29 high light, soil, DIY CO2, high planted, tropicals, Angels, loaches, gouramis, barbs etc.
lgerold is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Green Water frogfone Algae 6 07-11-2004 10:28 PM
kno3,phosphate and green water dogg76 Fertilizers and Water Parameters 9 07-04-2004 08:13 PM
ultrasonic foggers? Anonymous Riparium/Terrarium/Vivarium 44 06-08-2004 08:20 AM
Need some advice Zaphod_Beeblebrox General Planted Tank Discussion 8 11-05-2003 07:11 PM
starting r/o and green water disimm General Planted Tank Discussion 2 06-09-2003 07:19 AM


All times are GMT. The time now is 10:16 PM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright Planted Tank LLC 2012