Inject CO2 to jumpstart a Walstad aquarium? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-19-2011, 04:16 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
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Inject CO2 to jumpstart a Walstad aquarium?

Just set up my 2nd tank, a standard 55gal tank. I decided to try a Walstad style aquarium due to the low maintenance aspect.

Unfortunately the only plants I have are very small and don't add much biomass to get the tank running. It's probably about 1 handful of biomass, some of it already melting due to leaving it in a dark bucket over the weekend due to a wedding.

Should I attempt to temporarily inject CO2 in order to perk up the plants and speed growth? From what I read, the success of a Walstad ultimately hinges on a healthy flora biomass, but they grow 5-10x slower than high-tech tanks.

I don't really want to have to wait 6 months for a well-grown, but I don't want algae after I pull the CO2 either. I have all the equipment on hand and could easily run one with an Eheim 1250 water pump, which would also boost flow.

Substrate:
Miracle Gro Organic Choice Potting Soil
Organic top soil
Capped with aquariumplants.com aquasoil 1"

Lights:
Hagen Glo 2x54w

Filtration:
Eheim 2236
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-19-2011, 04:38 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
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By far the best idea would be getting more plants. Try the SnS forum, looking for "starter packages". Those are almost always good for lower light tanks, and are largely stem plants. I think most people just want to see those plants put to good use instead of just tossing them, so they aren't usually very expensive.

I think the only downside to adding some CO2 is that when you stop doing so the plants may decide to stop growing. They need to become acclimated to non-CO2 conditions in order to keep growing steadily, but slowly. If you do decide to try it, I suggest a pretty low bubble rate.

Hoppy
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