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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-09-2019, 09:22 PM Thread Starter
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not enough plants?

I'm wondering if my problem is not having enough plants and the reason why i grow some algae in my 5gallong tank. Low tech, 6 hours photo period 2 hours of which is max and the remainder 4 hours are ramp up/down.



after 4 days past my previous water change the green/brown algae was starting to show up on my rock and substrate where the light shines most. I started to reintroduce .5ml Excel and .25ml Thrive.

weeks ago I bleach dipped my rock and plants to remove hair algae and brown algae on plant leaves. I stopped Thrive and a couple of new smaller leaves were light green and the reason why I started to reintroduce thrive and Excel.


here's my water parameters today prior to a water change:
pH 7.4
kH 4
gH 5
Phosphate .25ppm
Nitrate 5ppm
tds 176ppm (out of tap is 153ppm)


Am I low on nutrients for plant growth? but having little plants the algae will grow no matter the low nutrient level? Is my thinking, right?

Started out, thinking it's a 5gal. tank chore for my grandkid want, now, it's turned into a expensive hobby that I've got only myself to blame fer.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-09-2019, 11:50 PM
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What do you mean by green algae? Blue green algae or? If you are stating you have BGA and brown algae then I see that happen in lower light, no co2 environments the most.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-10-2019, 12:15 AM
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What light and what is intensity of 2hr midday cycle? This is a long shallow 5gal tank?

What plants ? and pic of how dense planting is would help.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-10-2019, 03:33 AM Thread Starter
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my Fluval Nano has the whites @ 10%, red @ 4% and blue @ 1%. 2 hours max. the remaining 4 hours are ramp up/down.


I didn't take very good pics as I forget to take off the lid, I can take more if needed. The bacopa was propagated a week ago as I cut a couple and replanted. The windelov I've had for over a year and this is the biggest they've gotten, the one on the rock has some black mass of roots, it was the mother plant as the smaller ones broke off and I had put weights on them. The nana petite I've had for a year as well, it's a pretty tough plant(knocking on wood) as it been bleach dipped 3 times over a year.





adding Thrive has accelerated the algae growth on rock and bacopa. I'm thinking I may do another bleach dip to clean up the algae on plants and stop dosing Thrive although the plants will suffer yet again. "sigh"

Started out, thinking it's a 5gal. tank chore for my grandkid want, now, it's turned into a expensive hobby that I've got only myself to blame fer.

Last edited by Pocho; 07-10-2019 at 03:36 AM. Reason: added
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-10-2019, 01:46 PM
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Just a hunch from my personal experience: some plants just don't do well under direct light, they do much better in partial shade. In my book, all of your plants fall into that category. I belive that if you add some floaters or plants that grow tall and drape over part of the surface then you will get better results with your existing plants.

If you are in continental US and want some plants for the cost of shipping (~$8), then send me a PM.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-10-2019, 08:35 PM Thread Starter
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I'd gladly buy plants from you if I were on the Continent and would let you choose the right plants for my near future low tech 13 gallon upgrade. Tank: 8" depth, 16" high, 24" long

Started out, thinking it's a 5gal. tank chore for my grandkid want, now, it's turned into a expensive hobby that I've got only myself to blame fer.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-10-2019, 09:08 PM
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Also pink gravel is forbidden.

But seriously, epoxy coated gravel has zero CEC potential so basically worthless to rooted plants. A 40lb bag of safeTsorb is only $7US or less.

But yea, way under planted and a few red root floaters would help a lot.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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DaveKS thanks for the reply. I gather being so under planted and introducing Ferts no matter how little the amount will cause my algae problems. This reintroducing of Thrive accelerated the growth of algae in days


I wonder if it's possible just to have "one" plant and a small one at that and keep it happy with no algae problems?

Started out, thinking it's a 5gal. tank chore for my grandkid want, now, it's turned into a expensive hobby that I've got only myself to blame fer.
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