Leaves curl and lack color - Page 3 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #31 of 35 (permalink) Old 01-29-2020, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Quesenek View Post
I would definitely have it tested as red stains mean high amounts of iron/rust in the water.
You could look into something like this under sink water filter, admittedly I'm no expert on these types of things however it seems like the best solution if you don't feel like lugging the water to your living quarters.
I plan on installing something like this regardless if I had an aquarium or not. I do have a filter in my fridge for drinking as well. I need to replace the valves as they are integrated into my water lines, which are ridged and old, but my HOA makes it a pain so I just haven't gotten to it.
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-Matt

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post #32 of 35 (permalink) Old 01-30-2020, 12:38 AM
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Sorry, I completely missed this. I started this tank knowing that substrate could become an issue. In fact, I personally only recommend .5 inches of dirt due to past experiences. However, I have not had the same issues I have had with this much soil and cap I have had with other tanks. No excessive bubbling, and no spots where things simply won't grow. My carpet did die off hard but it is now coming back. All stems are having issue at the top of the tank, not the bottom, which I have had in other tanks.

I will try the spraybar. Luckily, the green pipe you see in my journal can easily be moved and it is for a spray bar connection. I will see how that changes things.

What is odd though is that this tank is improving, rather than a slow decline, followed by it just failing miserably. I am not saying that couldn't happen in the future, but I have done many dirt tanks and I start to get minor issues, then major, then it never recovers. This isn't going that same direction, but I am not saying that doesn't mean what your saying is wrong, it just hasn't been my experience in failed dirt tanks. I have experimented with dirt tanks for many years, but many years ago, and I wouldn't recommend what I did to anyone, my reason for it was as simple as when playing with my rocks, in a tank that had dirt in it for entirely different reasons (for house plants and it was empty so easy storage), I feel in love with the scape and risked it failing so I have prepared for it not working out, I am just not seeing the same signs I have seen in other tanks I have had.
You need to add a spraybar or 2nd nozzle to tank, not convert your current setup to a spraybar.

But yes, once large portions of your carpet died off those areas at front are now open to water and anaerobic activity has waned or ceased there. If carpet fills back in completely you can expect a repeat of the die off unless you fix circulation.

As far as problems only at top area now, well thatís to be expected. Thatís where itís deepest, where rocks are blocking circulation into soil and also where you compacted soil by setting heavy rocks on soil.
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post #33 of 35 (permalink) Old 01-30-2020, 05:59 AM
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If your dKH=0 out of the tap, and your dGH=0 out of the tap, then I have to assume your water supply is coming through a water softener......is that correct?
If you had a water softener your KH would be very high and your GH would ve very low or zero. Your current water parameters are consistent with rain water.You state you are a condo owner. HOA don't put in one water softener for the entire complex. It would be very expensive.


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If his location is up to date, then he lives merely 15-20 miles away from me and our water comes from the same source.

I also recently had a significant problem with twisted leaves. Kinda happened all of a sudden after a water change. My soft water loving plants were happy though.

What I found was a change in my tap water. KH is usually 3-5 and GH usually 4-5. Likely because of the usual summer drought then sudden surge of rain in winter, our water got really soft.
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Also, you may want to to test your tap to see if there are any bad actors in it such as toxic levels of heavy metals. As @Surf would recommend, this test is cheap and good enough: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
If your water is changing that much that quickly I don't know how valuable a test would-be. The levels on nutrients in the tank could change dramatically after each water change. The water can be very hard with toxic levels of some nutrient. However the next week you might have water deficient in several nutrients. And at a minimum with would take several days to get the test results. And at worst a full week to get the them .

Rapid changes in water however likely your problem. While I have been aware that water change like this can happen. I never expected it would occur as rapidly as it did according to vvDO indicated. Most advise regarding aquarium depends on your tap water being resonably stable and consistent. If it isn't it can be very had to get consistantly good plant growth. About the only way to deal with this is to measure GH and KH before each water change and then add a GH booster as necessary to maintain a stable GH. Doable but you have to test once a week or which takes time and then calculate the dose needed to get to your target GH and then mix everything and do the water change.

another option is to install RO filter and fill a bucket with a RO and then add a fixed amount of GH booster to it and then do the water change. That eliminates the extra testing. And you will nougat any seasonal changes in GH and KH.

Most under sink RO systems don't take up that much space and they can produce about 25 gallons a day. Most don't have a storage tank for that much water but if you have enough space you can get a pressurize tank separately. Or you could put enough in a bucket after a day or two for the next water change. This is what I do for my small tank.

There are also Larger RO units like RO buddy which can produce 50 to 100 gallons of water a day. And you don't have to install it under the sink. Although I don't have this system I have read that it can be quickly connected to and outdoor faucet or a sink and then another line in the sink for the brine disposal and one line to your storage container or tank. In few hours you would have enough for a water change.
https://www.liveaquaria.com/product/...BoCSYEQAvD_BwE
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post #34 of 35 (permalink) Old 01-30-2020, 07:15 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Surf View Post
If you had a water softener your KH would be very high and your GH would ve very low or zero. Your current water parameters are consistent with rain water.You state you are a condo owner. HOA don't put in one water softener for the entire complex. It would be very expensive.


Rapid changes in water however likely your problem. While I have been aware that water change like this can happen. I never expected it would occur as rapidly as it did according to vvDO indicated. Most advise regarding aquarium depends on your tap water being resonably stable and consistent. If it isn't it can be very had to get consistantly good plant growth. About the only way to deal with this is to measure GH and KH before each water change and then add a GH booster as necessary to maintain a stable GH. Doable but you have to test once a week or which takes time and then calculate the dose needed to get to your target GH and then mix everything and do the water change.


Most under sink RO systems don't take up that much space and they can produce about 25 gallons a day. Most don't have a storage tank for that much water but if you have enough space you can get a pressurize tank separately. Or you could put enough in a bucket after a day or two for the next water change. This is what I do for my small tank.
My location is accurate so my water is likely the same as the previous poster as we don't have a lot of water district in my area. In a state where we have massive drought, then massive rain, I don't really know how that changes things, especially since unlike a smaller city, we have many water reservoirs and I don't know how it all works. Just going online real quick, we have many in the area, but also have some 90 miles away in the mountains. That's why I haven't relied heavily on test kits as I have never felt like my water is consistent as the early books I read, or what I now read online. I know that in the past, I have had changes in my parameters from the same water source, when I tracked things more concisely, but rarely did that help me make better decisions. That said, did my water change? Well, I did one test wrong, but others right and they changed, and in the same time period, I just don't know how rapidly. I do know I had some really vibrant reds only 2 months ago and now they are far from that color.

I know nothing about water softeners but my first guess is, my HOA wouldn't add them, and if they existed previously, I would imagine they would take them out, our HOA got higher than we wanted so any unnecessary cost and maintenance, we would cut out. I can still ask, but it's hard to get that info easily.


As for an RO unit here, its a little tough. I have about 650 ft, not including a long hall way, in a one bedroom, with no outdoor plumbing and its not really an option to me, unless I want to fight my HOA, and pay companies I don't trust, who do what seems to be work that requires constant repairs, at a higher cost than other plumbers (I inquired for much more minor plumbing work and it was stupid expensive).

If I do RO, it will be from my LFS. Even a 5 gallon container is hard, my closet shelves are too short and up higher (which is a concern in CA with Earthquakes) and I don't want them out in the open. If it is a must, I would do it.

At the end of the day, its not that my plants are not growing or my tank is really suffering, not at all. My coloration is just not what I want. I trim 1/2 of a gallon pitcher regularly.

-Matt

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post #35 of 35 (permalink) Old 01-30-2020, 01:51 PM
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If you had a water softener your KH would be very high and your GH would ve very low or zero.
This isn't necessarily correct. My softener removes all Mg and Ca, leaving GH at zero. It also lowers KH by about 50% from a pre-softenened level of 2.6 dKH.
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