Why can I not get this right! Ugh - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 05:09 PM Thread Starter
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Why can I not get this right! Ugh

Okay my tank is full of algae and none of my plants grow! I have a aqueon 36 gallon bow (dimensions 30"L x 15"W x 21"H), Wavepoint t5 HO with one bulb running 39watt 6500k, 2 HOB filters, Eco complete substrate with occasional root tabs, and co2 cranked up to about 6bps. I dose 1/4 tsp KNO3 and 1/16 tsp of KH2PO4 every other day and 1/16 tsp Plantex CSM+B on alternating days. My co2 is diffused by an atonomizer located under a hydor korali circulation pump, but my drop checker barely turns green! I have had co2 for about a year and I have seen no improvement. My plants are jungle val, micro sword, amazon swords, crypts, java ferns, and a few stem plants I forget the names. I have a eheim canister filter I thought about hooking up instead of the HOB's. I thought the HOB's might be gassing off all of my CO2. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. I am on the verge of giving up on this tank.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 05:59 PM
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Have you thought of just going low tech, low lighting, low maintenance? You can't really go wrong with it. If you want to try this, I'd just give a shot to pulling CO2 and dosing Ferts.

What fauna do you have?


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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 06:05 PM Thread Starter
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I really don't want to abandon the high tech scene. Especially since I have sunk some major $$$$ into it!
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 06:43 PM
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id get some fast growing plants such as hydro to see how they do they shud grow in a muddy puddle lol

40 gallon dirt tank
5 Gallon planted bonsai dirt tank
1 Bearded Dragon ''Spyro''
Normal Leopard Gecko ''Shadow''
Super hypo tangerine baldy carrot tail leopard gecko ''Moon''
2 whites tree frogs ''Ying and Yang''
1 Royal Python ''Neptune''
1 Veiled Chameleon '' Yoshi''
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
My co2 is diffused by an atonomizer located under a hydor korali circulation pump, but my drop checker barely turns green!
If the solution in the drop checker is correct, you may have a leak somewhere after the drop checker or may need better/more diffusion. Bubble counts vary quite a bit, but 6 BPS sounds pretty good as long as the CO2 is being dissolved efficiently. The drop checker should be green to lime-green.

As others suggested, raising the light would work as well, since your plants don't really require high light.

I guess you can't really dose Excel, either, since you have vals. Excel has saved my rear a few times when algae went into overdrive.

Good luck and don't give up.

Salty


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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 07:14 PM
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How many hours are your lights running?
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 07:16 PM
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Pictures please!


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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 08:01 PM
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I really don't want to abandon the high tech scene. Especially since I have sunk some major $$$$ into it!
I can understand that. So tell me about your lighting... Is it possible you have too little light, too much co2 because of it?


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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 08:12 PM
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I can understand that. So tell me about your lighting... Is it possible you have too little light, too much co2 because of it?


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You can't have too much CO2 for the plants. You can have too much for the fish to live with, but more is always OK for the plants.

I suspect you have a fairly low concentration of CO2 in the water. If you replace the HOB filters with a good canister filter you will lose less CO2 to the air. And, if you try something like https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...10&postcount=2 as a diffuser, you will get much better efficiency in dissolving CO2 into the water.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-27-2012, 10:03 PM
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6 bps is not too much.
Bps is just a way to see and regulate flow for a system but is not an interchangeable measure between tanks. You can have 3 tanks at 6bps and they will all have different co2 concentration in the water.

Make sure that you have good flow trough the tank to distribute the co2 well and that there is no surface scum making oxygen less available for livestock therefore less tolerance for you to increase the co2.


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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-01-2012, 09:48 PM Thread Starter
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Hey guys sorry for the late reply. My lights are currently running for 8 hours. co2 comes on 30min before lights come on and off. I guess I will try the canister and see if that doesn't cut back on the surface agitation. Oh and here is an updated pic. Ugh for as much $$ that has gone into this it looks terrible!!
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-03-2012, 04:37 PM Thread Starter
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Any other thoughts?
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-03-2012, 06:41 PM
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Do you see some water movement throughout the tank? Are there any piles of debris that build up anywhere? If you don't see plants swaying or there are any piles then you might consider changing the way water moves through the tank.

What do you have for a clean up crew? I know they don't cure all ails but otos do a great job on dirty looking diatoms and snails polish off a lot of green algae before it gets a chance to be a nuisance.

How about doing some gardening? Remove dead and unsightly leaves. Take out the dirty tubing and equipment and scrub it off.

I push my CO2 as high as it needs to go as my tank is very brightly lit. My CO2 drop checkers turn a yellow color, not green if I have 4 KH water in them. Don't reduce the surface ripple, oxygen is important too.

Your swords might appreciate a root tab under them.

What is the water's GH and KH? I had some plants with stalled and stunted growth because for some reason the GH of my water isn't quite high enough. You might try dosing a little GH booster to see if that makes a difference.

Hope one of these suggestions helps. My first planted tank was completely full of vals and sword plants after a year with no fertilizer and no CO2. Every single leaf had a nice fuzzy green coating but I didn't care, the plants GREW!


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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-03-2012, 07:06 PM
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Hook your Co2 line right into your powerhead where the airline goes in. It will be sufficient. You are also dosing too many ferts for a bunch of slow growing plants. You are just growing the algae. Reduce your ferts and do a big WC. You may have to adjust your Co2 up a bit, but your photoperiod seems right for your lights. Do you have an algae clean up crew? (Ottos, shrimp, etc...) otherwise the clean up crew is you and youll have to periodically clean the glass and equipment to get a better handle on the algae.

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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 10-03-2012, 08:59 PM
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First off, don't get down on yourself. Everybody has struggled at one point or another.

I would think that you need more CO2, and I would try and stuff the tank with more faster growing plants.

I agree about trying to stick with it, not only because you've spent all the money already on the equipment, but it will feel so fulfilling when you start to see real progress. Remember that progress will take time.

Try and hammer out your CO2, and periodically scrape off algae and trim any bad leaves. Definitely take a look at some stems to balance out those slower growing plants.
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