120 Gal Dutchy Freestyle - Now with 35% less water volume! - Page 51 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #751 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 02:54 AM
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Starting to think I am still putting 87 octane in the tank. Seem to be gobbling up Nitrate and Phosphate faster than expected. Will check those 2 tomorrow morning again before dosing macros - might have to splurge and go with the 93 octane for a few weeks
I test at least something in my tanks once per week.
Lately it has been NO3, and they have been holding for 1 week @ 20ppm.
Other weeks it's 2x EI all week long, go figure.
Macro dosing is way more safe than micro dosing.


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post #752 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 03:08 AM
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Would you recommend the oddysea that was posted in the last page?

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post #753 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 03:35 AM
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Question for you Chlorophile. Have you personally been able to induce good color from plants under low light by starving them?

I only ask because I have read this several times, but don't know of anyone who has actually done it. And I'm not saying it doesn't happen, I've just never seen it.

I know for me I've never seen plants get better color from starving them under either low or high light. For me, starving plants under either light just results in dead or dying plants (and algae). I get the best color out of well fed happy plants.

So I am wondering is starving plants really a technique that brings out color??

Burr I wonder what your thoughts are on this???
Personally yes, atleast Bacopa Caroliniana it gets very copper at the tips in my tank that is neglected. Far far more than the B. Colorata in my high tech tank. Honestly if I took the two stems out you'd get them backwards.
As far as the botany is concerned, there are two ways to produce red coloration.
Anthocyanin is present all the time, but when the plant can't produce chlorophyll quick enough or transfer it the anthocyanin is all that is present and you get a red coloration
Same thing happens in the fall during before the leafs absence, not so much in plants with quiescence though as they don't drop the leaf, ergo they do not stop the flow of chlorophyll until the leaf is simply dead.

I think in actively growing plants it a little different, but I've seen dennis wong talk about it plenty and demonstrate it as well.
Like we talk about traces being a limiting factor at times, or N, or P..
When nothing is limiting except light I don't think you will induce good coloration.
If somethings are limiting more than light, the plant can't cope as well and the current lighting might produce more stress response and ergo anthocyanins.
This is something unique to red plants, but its definitely something I can prove with pictures I have in my library.
I have pics of rotala rotundifolia looking better than nearly anyones I've ever seen, under a single Current Satelite + pro, during a very lean part of my early tank set up.

And I think it's a large part of why many of the original dutch guys who were running lower light to maintain lower growth rates (and therefor keeping the scape the way they intend for longer) ran very lean dosing.

as far as the gas analogy goes: a car designed to run 87 octane wont benefit from 93.. in plants though I think if you pour good gas on them but the gas pedal isn't pressed all the way you won't see any results.

It shouldn't be a confusing concept, why does higher light produce certain physiology in the first place?
It's pushing a plant to some kind of nutrient limit.
If you limit it in another way, half throttle should push it to a similar limit.
Exceptions abound of course, node length and leaf density are gonna be largely independent of things like coloration.

double edit:
Nitrogen in turfgrass produces dark green coloration..
Without it you get yellowing.
Nitrogen on trees in the fall will completely negate red coloration even on maple and red oak.
Coincidence?
Theres definitely science behind it, but I think when people say they can't reproduce it they are operating a tank with high fish load and couldn't actually provide the low N level necessary even if they tried.


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post #754 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 05:58 AM Thread Starter
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Would you recommend the oddysea that was posted in the last page?
Yeah is a pretty good light for the money. Id definitely plan on getting a red/pink type bulb to replace one of the 6500Ks with though. All 6500K light is pretty washed out

The on/off switch is on the ballast, which is about 1 foot from the plug at the end of the cord. That could be an inconvenience if you're manually turning it on and off every day.
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post #755 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 06:18 PM
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Yeah is a pretty good light for the money. Id definitely plan on getting a red/pink type bulb to replace one of the 6500Ks with though. All 6500K light is pretty washed out

The on/off switch is on the ballast, which is about 1 foot from the plug at the end of the cord. That could be an inconvenience if you're manually turning it on and off every day.
Thank you for the information! I'll give this a try to add on with my current lighting.

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post #756 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 07:13 PM
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The question was asked on BR why Rotala wallichii had better color in the 120 than in the 50. The answer is light.

And since @Greggz is over there showing out with his new fancy Seneye it seems like a good time to make a light post.


Wallichii in the 50



In the 120




About 85 PAR at the sub in the 50, from this



Bulbs front to back:
6500K
Truelumen Flora




About 120 PAR at the sub in the 120, from this




@Nlewis , 75 nostalgia!
Help me I'm new to all this. Is it the color of the bulb that makes the Wallichii so red or is it the PAR? I have a feeling you will say both but I guess what I'm getting at is lower par and more red light could that color be achieved? I was planning on doing a 60 gal cube rimless with a pendent light as i like the way the tank looks as a whole. But man your tanks are beautiful and I would love to be able to achieve that with a pendant if possible.
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post #757 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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Help me I'm new to all this. Is it the color of the bulb that makes the Wallichii so red or is it the PAR? I have a feeling you will say both but I guess what I'm getting at is lower par and more red light could that color be achieved? I was planning on doing a 60 gal cube rimless with a pendent light as i like the way the tank looks as a whole. But man your tanks are beautiful and I would love to be able to achieve that with a pendant if possible.
Thanks!

I'd say the color of the light is more important than PAR. You could blast wallichii with any amount of PAR using all 6500K and it would never look like the ones in the 120.

On the flip side, 60-70 PAR with heavy reds and blues (yes blues are important too!) and it'll have the nice color, just grow a little slower and smaller.

How it appears to our eyes is not entirely dependent on the plant either. The coloration of the lighting plays heavily on how a plant looks because the light is reflected back to us. For example I could put those stems from the 50 gal in the 120 and they would immediately have better color. To put it more accurately they would appear to have better color, which is all that really matters.

Ive never used a pendant but one complaint Ive always heard is stem plants have a bad habit of all leaning in towards the center where the highest intensity is.

Wallichii of course isnt much of a leaner but most stem plants are. It makes for a weird look

On a nature style tank it probably wouldnt matter, crypts and mosses and carpet plants dont lean. But if your planning a Dutch type layout full of colorful stems then another type of light might work better.

You may want to check out some of the 'black box' LEDs type units, SBreef is a good brand and there's a few Chinese knock offs. You can adjust the spectrum on most and from what Ive seen plants look pretty good underneath. Never used one personally though
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post #758 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 09:29 PM
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Everything runs better with premium!

Recently Ive increased macros to 10/1.5/10 NO3/P/K. This made a dramatic improvement in size and color. Then a couple weeks later started doing a 1.5x dose after water changes and two more singles during the week, then went to a double dose after the water change. Since doing the extra big doses several things are even fatter and healthier looking than ever before.
Interesting. So if you do a 2x dose, then two more 1x doses, you are dosing 40ppm NO3 a week, and 6ppm PO4. I don't remember you dosing near those levels for quite some time, if ever.

I've had very similar experience. For some time, I was dosing 1x macros right after water change, then again the next day, then two more later in the week. So 4x doses per week.

This week I did 2x macro dose after water change, and another 2x three days later. Seems like my plants like that front end loading too.

Well just goes to show with this hobby the only thing constant is change!
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post #759 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 09:48 PM Thread Starter
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Interesting. So if you do a 2x dose, then two more 1x doses, you are dosing 40ppm NO3 a week, and 6ppm PO4. I don't remember you dosing near those levels for quite some time, if ever.

I've had very similar experience. For some time, I was dosing 1x macros right after water change, then again the next day, then two more later in the week. So 4x doses per week.

This week I did 2x macro dose after water change, and another 2x three days later. Seems like my plants like that front end loading too.

Well just goes to show with this hobby the only thing constant is change!
Well its only been one 2x dose after the water change, just since we talked the other day. But things were definitely loving the 1.5x, and now 2x seems even better.


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post #760 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 10:36 PM
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Very interesting... do you happen to know your PAR in the low tech tank?
The first 2 pics are from my 20g low tech tank which is running a single Finnex Planted + light around 7 hours per day.
Pic 1 is near the substrate (little too dense to get it all the way down).


This pic is with about 1 inch of water over the sensor


And just for fun, this is the heat lamp sitting over one of the bearded dragon cages...
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post #761 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 11:50 PM
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And just for fun, this is the heat lamp sitting over one of the bearded dragon cages...
Now we are talking!
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post #762 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-16-2018, 07:51 PM
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outgrowth

If you made this a palludarium, would the plants grow up and out of the water ?
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post #763 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-19-2018, 01:00 AM Thread Starter
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Welp, the double dosing macros after water change experiment has come to a screeching halt due to a severe GDA outbreak in all 3 big tanks.

It's mostly on the glass. The 120 has it the worst, not surprising because it has the most light, the 75 is next and the 50 is a mere nuisance level. When everything is right there's none at all. Sometimes I'll go 2-3 weeks without even touching the front glass.

It started showing up on the front glass of the 120 about halfway through the first week. No big deal, just wiped it off at water change and turned the UVs on.

But the second week it got worse, much worse in the 120. By day 3 it was seriously blocking the view.

So day 5 I did an 80% WC on all three tanks. Dosed back the single amount of 10/1.5/10 and thats where Im staying for a while, 3x per week.

If you recall I'd dosed 1.5x after water changes for I think 3 weeks prior. Plants seemed to like it. Then I went to 2x. Plants seemed to like that too for the most part.

It has to be the culprit behind this GDA because its the only thing thats changed in recent weeks. I think after 2-3 weeks it finally built up to peak levels, which is too much

The only plant affected is the Lagenandra in the 120. Probably wind up just cutting these two older leaves off but Im gonna wait a few days and see if it clears up by itself. This plant is amazingly efficient at ridding itself of algae once the cause is dealt with.




Wallichii in the 120 aint worried about much of anything, already at the surface again.



Here's the pic from 9 days ago. That's why its best to start the tops out very short when you replant. If you start them out tall close to the sweet spot you'll be doing it every week



Another interesting development is Hygrophila siamesis 53B in the 50 fattened up a lot over the past few weeks. Im thinking due to the higher macros, we'll see if the trend continues. Hard to tell from the pic but that one top is nearly 6" wide. Thats pretty big for the species, at least for me so far.

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post #764 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-19-2018, 01:13 AM
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FWIW I have spoken of 2x EI macros in the past.
I am guilty of water testing once per week, that's what led to the 2x EI macros.
This is also not consistent from week to week, trimming etc.. changes things a lot.
e.g. this week during trimming no macros at all, PO4 has been over 2 and holding it's own.
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post #765 of 1818 (permalink) Old 02-19-2018, 01:13 AM Thread Starter
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Posted this in the micro thread but Im adding it here too, pretty good stuff

One of the new 20 gal is producing some of the biggest and best looking Ludwigia sp reds Ive ever grown or seen.

The two or three biggest ones are damn near 3" wide






The question was then asked what might be the difference between these new tanks and the others, why it's growing so big here

Same tap water, same type of lights, roughly the same PH drop from co2, same substrate,

Dosing has been slightly less. The 20s arent getting the double macro dose after water changes (the other tanks arent going to be either going forward but that's another story)

Flow is probably a little stronger, I switched from the powerhead sponges going through Ista reactors to Aquaclear 70 HOBs mounted on the ends. There are baffles on the outflow to cut down velocity, but there's no doubt more water volume is passing over these plants than in the other tanks

PAR is about 75 at the sub against the back wall, in the center its about 90. The 50 gal is in the 85-90 range. So not a whole lot of difference there. (For those who read the initial PAR readings in the 20s, it jumped up probably 10-15 points a few days later after the new bulbs "burned in"

There's a fresh batch of Osmocote+ in the substrate. I dont think this is much of a factor because the tops have been replanted twice. There hasnt been much tiime to make roots. These were started from small cut tops just a few inches tall. They've hit the surface twice already. (first week was a little rough) I replanted them for the second time last week and they didnt miss a beat. So if the O+ is having an effect on these particular plants, it's from whatever is leeching into the wc.

Personally I have no idea what the difference maker is. More flow and probably a higher concentration of everything in a small volume of water would be my guess.

But sometimes things just click fro no apparent reason. Surface film disappears, the water becomes crystal clear and the plant are all singing halleluja.

For the first couple of weeks there was a wicked diatom bloom, some GDA, and some sort of dark spot algae took over the older leaves of several plants. Everything was brand new starting out, new sand, filter sponges, everything. So there was zero bio-filter for a while.

I added 3 otos to each one and threw in a few guppy and platy fry. Did 2x weekly water changes for the first 3 weeks. All that algae started going away in week 2. Its been one of the easiest start ups ever really
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Last edited by burr740; 02-21-2018 at 06:06 AM. Reason: .
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