Something in my tank is 'off'. Can you help? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2010, 09:01 PM Thread Starter
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Something in my tank is 'off'. Can you help?

I have a 47 gallon tank that has been doing very well for the most part. It's a 'collectoritis' tank, and it's an attempt at keeping a dutch style tank. Anywho. There are just a few things that are a bit off, and I was hoping someone could help me.

First, here are some general details:
Tank is 48x12.5x18.5
Lighting: 2 x 54 watts T5HO
CO2: yes, with hagen mini elite as a diffuser
substrate: sand only
fertilization: EI and root tabs about 5 months ago (time to add new ones?)
algae: I can finally say no!

Things that are going well:
most of my plants; at least 20 different species--common and uncommon

Things that are not going well:
Rotala 'mini butterfly': was doing well for awhile, but then the leaves one day decided to start growing green, very small, and twisted
Rotala araguaia: same thing, but still has some pink color
Staurogyne 'porto velho': same exact symptoms

I know CO2 is the most important thing to get right, and here's where I need help! Last few details--very important:
CO2 turns on at 1:00
Lights on at 1:30
drop checker slowly goes from blue to green throughout the day. blue at 1:00, turquoise at 4:00, green at 5:00, and very light green at 7:00. Why is this happening?
Plants pearl starting around 3:30pm
CO2 off at 7:30
Lights off at 8:00

I've given a lot of details, but that's because I think it's all relevant and related. It strikes me as really strange that the drop checker takes so long to turn green. Can you help me figure out what's not right?

Thanks so much,

Lara


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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2010, 09:18 PM
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For what its worth I havent been able to grow those sp without a nutrient rich substrate. I had them in a tank with flourite black sand and they diddnt do much I swapped the substrate out to aquasoil That helped. Ive found the stargoune grows better under lower light and the Rotala sp Araguaia like very bright light I have never tried rotala butterfly. Lots of co2 mist
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2010, 09:22 PM
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kinda makes sense about the gravel not having enough "food" in it... hit up over_stocked about his gravel ferts
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2010, 09:25 PM
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A dropchecker can be a little slow to respond with a 1-2 hour lag time some people have concluded. Do you have good circulation in the tank? Not a whirlpool of course but do you notice the mist being carried to all parts of the tank? Another thing you might want to try is starting the CO2 earlier. I'm using a DIY reactor and I've found it good in my situation to have the CO2 cranking two hours before the lights come on. Twisted leaves are usually a case of insufficient CO2 for me and I think that's your problem also.

As long as you're following EI dosing and not missing a lot of days I see no need to change over to a different substrate or use root tabs. If however you miss dosing the column a lot then a different substrate would be probably be a benefit. I have HC, Staurogyne porto velho, Staurogyne 049 and Blyxa all growing well with regular aquarium gravel.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2010, 09:54 PM Thread Starter
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chuukus: Hmm. I hadn't even thought of that.

Jeff 5614: Thanks for the help. The answer is ALWAYS CO2! It seems that I've learned this many times over. I will try your idea of turning the CO2 on sooner (before the lights go on). Maybe that will make a difference. Wanna sell me some Staurogyne 049 so I can experiment?

I also used to have the diffuser on the far right side of the tank, but I've just moved it to the back/center. This should help to give a more even distribution. I'm good with dosing, so that shouldn't be an issue. I'm glad it can be done with an inert substrate :-)

Comments still welcome!!


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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2010, 10:02 PM
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It sounds to me you need to bump up co2 a bit and ferts alot. With an inert substrate I would go very high on EI dosing and you need to be religious about it compared to a tank with a rich substrate.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2010, 10:47 PM
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"Jeff 5614:Wanna sell me some Staurogyne 049 so I can experiment? :icon_mrg"

lol, as soon as I have enough to sell you'll be the first to know .
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-11-2010, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
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Excellent


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