Very Hard Water & The Use Of C02 - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-15-2006, 11:19 AM Thread Starter
 
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Very Hard Water & The Use Of C02

Hi all,

I am new to planted aquariums so please go easy on me as I am more used to reef aquariums!

My first question is that I have read a lot of people saying that you should not mess around with your tap water too much to try to get hardness and pH down and I wanted to know your views on this. I live in a very hardwater area and am concerned that my success setting up a planted aquarium will be somewhat limited. Here are my water parameters from a sample of tap water which was left standing for just over12 hours -

pH = 8
Nitrate = 3 mg/L
GH = 240 mg/L
KH = 180 mg/L

My next question is the use of C02. I am setting up a 24gal Nano and only want to plant the tank (about 1 third of the tank) with some easy to care for plants (low lighting plants) and wanted to know if the C02 is really necessary? The lighting will come from a 24watt power compact (hence I know I cannot have many light loving plants) but I wondered C02 is really necessary for such a small tank?

For additional information, I will be using Eco Complete substrate and will be performing a 35% water change each week using Prime water conditioner.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-17-2006, 11:03 PM
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Howdy Blue Ram,

Your water is not all that hard and many plants will grow fine in it.

The main factor in determining whether you need CO2 is the strength of your lighting. You will have 1 WPG (watt per gallon) which is considered very low light. At that light level CO2 is not required, however even at low light, CO2 is beneficial on any size tank.

If you use low light plants as you have suggested, then you should be fine. Stick to mosses and anubias. You may have luck with various Java fern species or Bolbitus, but that is not guaranteed. If you could bump your lighting to 40-48 watts, you would have more options for plants.

Eco-Complete is a good substrate choice.

Regards,
Robert

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-18-2006, 12:01 AM
 
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my tap is at 500-661ppm GH and 200-300ppm KH

My fish and plants do just fine in this.

no need to dose Ca or Mg !

-jd
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-18-2006, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
 
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That is good news about hard water, many thanks. As for the C02, I will see how it goes. As this is a nano, if I do need C02, I will opt for a Hagen Nutrafin C02 unit to start with.

Many thanks for everyones help.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-18-2006, 08:22 PM
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No problem. Good luck!

Regards,
Robert

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-18-2006, 09:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueRamPlanted View Post
I am new to planted aquariums so please go easy on me as I am more used to reef aquariums!

My first question is that I have read a lot of people saying that you should not mess around with your tap water too much to try to get hardness and pH down and I wanted to know your views on this. I live in a very hardwater area and am concerned that my success setting up a planted aquarium will be somewhat limited.
If you are attempting to breed Blue Rams, it is my experience that soft water is more important that low pH for fertilization to occur. Therefore set up a small (10-20gal) breeder with partial RO or DI for a pair. And be sure to have small live food on hand. This is what has stopped me in the past.

Moved to Tucson.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-19-2006, 03:32 AM
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I second everything Blue Ram has said. I have been trying with apistos and having the same problems.
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