So, I’m trying to figure out my tank with the new plants.
I have not been able to make the PAR meter work for me, so I’m guessing. Here is what I know. The tank is 26” tall, and the lights are about 4 inches off the surface.
I am running a hybrid: 2 T5 HOs fixtures cover the front and back, EACH with 2 90 watt, 60” T5 HOs, so 4 T5’s. Then, and then in the center of the tank (front to back) on the right and left, I have 2 AI 16 Freshwater spotlights (they have quite a bit of coverage, according to PAR readings that were taken in a video I watched online). Below is a picture with just them on to give you an idea.
I have total control over these lights from my iPhone. So, I can dim them, make them very bright, and set a custom light pattern at any point i the day.
This is an example of the current settings, for instance:
Currently, I use them on very low i the mornings (as with @Greggz
viewing lights), and then they get more and more intense as the day goes on. Evenings, they look like the picture for an hour or more before the tank goes totally dark.
By midday, my tank is really very bright, at least to my eyes (but I don’t know PAR).
Obviously, in the dead center of the tank, there is less light. This is intentional because I do love anubias nana and buce on my driftwood there eventually, so I’m wanting a “lower light district.” The high light plants that I’ve bought are planted where they’ll get the most of the light I have.
SO: my question is this. I have been dosing about half of what is called for with EI, and I have been doing water tests to assure myself that parameters are okay: ammonia is zero and NO3 is between 10 and 20. Temp is 77*, and pH swings between 6.8 during CO2 and 7.8 offgassed in the AM. The fish seem happy, but the plants are not thriving. I would say that, if anything, they are losing ground.
What would “typical” (I know every tank is different) photoperiods be for these higher light plants... how many hours under what kind of wattage. Greggz might be closest to what I’ve got... I’m not sure. If you all could just tell me how long you have whatever light arrays you use on in a given day, I’d sure appreciate it.