A few planted cichlid tanks . - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
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A few planted cichlid tanks .

I have neglected my 150 and the Peacocks and Haps have helped the neglect really reach a new low.
At one point I had some beautiful bucephelandra, anubias, and java ferns. This is how it sits now and I'm looked for advice. I'd like it to be as lush as possible. I'm going to add some large java ferns and anubias, but maybe some spiral vals? I've been running some DIY C02 and started dosing metricide again. The Africans destroyed the buces and I'm trying to recover what I can in a smaller tank, but I won't make that mistake again


Bump: This is my 75 gallon leftover tank. I had high hopes but I don't think I had enough light and the cichlid managed to kill everything so it is barren. I'm going to dose metricide and maybe some ferts. I added a 48" LED fixture in addition to the 48" Catalina T5HO which needs new bulbs.


Bump: This little 11.4 is under the 150 for now, but it will be going into the exercise room along with a second 75 gallon once I get the new stand that will hold both. DIY C02 and metricide


Bump: I've got some things coming like Monte Carlo which I'll grow out in the 11.4 as well as some Hygro Pinnetifida and java fern. Any suggestions on plants for the cichlid tanks? At this point in even considering some wisteria. I have managed to kill bolbitus several times so I'm going to try to get that, the hygro, Monte Carlo and some other things going in this 11.4 and maybe for a bit in the second 75.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 12:43 AM
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Noticed the absence!
Looks like it's been a long bad trek! But then it's not a failure if we keep coming back, right?
For sturdy plants to go with the big rocks, I might like some of the swords. Maybe not amazon but there are some which stay a bit smaller. Or if they do too well, I just lop them down a bunch. Java fern seems to be one that they don't like much and pretty well leave alone but I have some trouble getting it to be well rooted enough to hold if they are picking at the algae on it.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
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Noticed the absence!
Looks like it's been a long bad trek! But then it's not a failure if we keep coming back, right?
For sturdy plants to go with the big rocks, I might like some of the swords. Maybe not amazon but there are some which stay a bit smaller. Or if they do too well, I just lop them down a bunch. Java fern seems to be one that they don't like much and pretty well leave alone but I have some trouble getting it to be well rooted enough to hold if they are picking at the algae on it.
Ya not alot of us cichlid guys on here. While the tanks suffered from some neglect I've been really busy and enjoying the rewards of hard work and sacrifice. Now I would like to get these cleaned up. I think a big sword would be a great start in the 75. I did some rearranging and hardscape work today on the 150 and I think I'm liking it. Going to add some java fern and maybe some hygro Pinnetifida onto the wood in the middle. I'm thinking of corkscrew vals along the left side that is currently barren. I'm trying to break up the space as I'm going to add 6 synodontis multi's in a week or so. Ive got 3 albino BN Plecos in there and I want to keep territory clashes to a minimum

It doesn't look that bad in person. Water is cloudy and I just cleaned 2 of the 3 filters. A big red sword would look pretty sweet in there though . What do you think of the rearrangement? Those big stones are really too big to move and mess with so I'm rather limited

Bump: I'm going to add as much anubias and ferns as I can afford and then see what I can get to grow inside of them... to create some depth.. There is a rhizome of anubias azfelli that is taking up half of the 11.4... it's going to go into one of the tanks I'm just not sure which . When I do add plants to the 75 I need to add alot all at once otherwise they will fixate on the new edition and trash it.. I lost some really beautiful bucephelandra to these guys
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 12:20 AM
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I might like the idea of breaking up the appearance of the big rock on the left so that it doesn't look so solid? Thinking it might look better with a line or group of something that could be glued to the side? Java fern would do to super glue on but then there are likely to be others. Got any plants in mind that need a bit brighter light that would also hang on the rock side? Getting it half way up to the light is one way to get the same result as higher lighting but much cheaper.
I know that it does work that way as I'm trying to figure a way around a problem with my red tiger lotus. The light was right when it was growing but now it is tall and the leaf that winds up under the light gets algae covered. So far my "solution" has been to cut that stem off which really doesn't help the plant much!
We read so much about what causes algae and there seems to be tons of different ideas but I'm beginning to form a different idea.
It just does whatever it feels like!!!!
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 01:27 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PlantedRich View Post
I might like the idea of breaking up the appearance of the big rock on the left so that it doesn't look so solid? Thinking it might look better with a line or group of something that could be glued to the side? Java fern would do to super glue on but then there are likely to be others. Got any plants in mind that need a bit brighter light that would also hang on the rock side? Getting it half way up to the light is one way to get the same result as higher lighting but much cheaper.
I know that it does work that way as I'm trying to figure a way around a problem with my red tiger lotus. The light was right when it was growing but now it is tall and the leaf that winds up under the light gets algae covered. So far my "solution" has been to cut that stem off which really doesn't help the plant much!
We read so much about what causes algae and there seems to be tons of different ideas but I'm beginning to form a different idea.
It just does whatever it feels like!!!!
I'm super nervous about messing with those rocks. They weight close to 80-90 lbs at least. I was thinking about gluing some anubias to the side. I've got some plants on the way and hopefully get some inspiration. I'd love to get some blyxa growing in there, but I'm not sure if they would eat it.
As far as light I've noticed that the left side doesn't get as much. I was thinking about attaching a CFL over that area and the other side to get some more light in those areas. Do you have a canopy on your tanks?
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 02:38 AM
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No doubt about the moving the rocks. What I meant was to make it look like it was less solid by adding some green somewhere half way up or something like that? Anubias or java fern don't have to be in the sub, so them come to mind first but there are likely to be others that could just be super glued to the rock and they would grow from there?

I do use canopies on most of the tanks and part of the reason is that I do need to hide some of the variety of lights I use. I can never figure ahead far enough to know what spots will need more or less so I do like small lights like bulb holders. Especially with LED bulbs and CFL, I can usually figure some level of some light as long as I can make the change for just the price of a light bulb and screw it in.
This is a link to the auction that should bring up my new favorite bulbs.
[Ebay Link Removed] G24 3528 5050 SMD LED Spot Corn Light downlight Bulb Lamp Warm Day White | eBay[/url]
They come in all kinds of sizes and length so that I can pick lots of different sizes for pretty cheap. That's cheap as compared to buying new fixtures, huh?
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 10:29 PM Thread Starter
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I'm going to send you a PM to get that link. I packed what was left of my java ferns to include windolev and needle leaf onto the driftwood. I'm going to start saving my pennies for a CO2 system. I think getting some good plant mass will help the sub dominant guys get away. There is always at least one peacock hiding in the crypts at the bottom. I got some bolbitus, java fern, crypt balansae, crypt beckettii, a variation of anubias nana, hygro pinnetifida.... a few things on the way... I'm not going to try the buces in here again until I can put them in some sort of plant mass... I'm going to affix the anubias like you mentioned along the large rock to create some separation. I'm thinking the beckettii will go in the front left corner and the balansae on the other end of the big rock in the middle of the tank to help create some depth. I think some of it will arrive tomorrow... I also upped the dose of metricide to 25ml today. I'm going to keep it there and run the 2 bottles of DIY C02 for now.
I'm also planning a new tank... I think I can fit a 40 breeder under the 75 in the stand... but it might force me to put the 2217 someplace else... Id really like to get some matching iron style stands... any suggestions maybe on building something that would house 2 tanks? I am also figuring out lighting for the new tank.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-10-2017, 01:55 AM Thread Starter
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This is a few of the previous iterations
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-10-2017, 02:43 AM
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I really like your hardscaping in all your tanks. Bold, big pieces, but they work well.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-11-2017, 12:19 AM Thread Starter
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Plants from Buce Plant arrived yesterday and plants from huhu89151734 and if you have the opportunity to deal with either I highly recommend both. The portions from Buce Plant were extremely healthy and eat pot of crypts probably had 10 plantlets... The buces were HUGE... and they were like $5!! I'm very happy... now huhu literally sent me enough plants to completely fill up an empty 75 gallon tank... in fact I finished planting my 150, 11.4, and 75 with them!! I'm really hoping I am able to provide adequate parameters to so that everything can thrive. I'm going to set up another 75 on a shelf system with this 75. Obviously things need to fill in, but I'm happy


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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-11-2017, 12:34 AM Thread Starter
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I'm going to move this on onto a rack and get another 75 going under it. I'm thinking I could T a 20lb C02 setup to both tanks perhaps
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-11-2017, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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There is a place literally 5 minutes from me that supplies C02 and C02 tanks... I'm going to save up for a nice regulator and maybe 2... I can have one for the 150 in the entry and a second in the exercise room to run on both 75's! I'm going to beat the odds and have one of the nicest heavily planted African cichlid tanks.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 04:44 PM Thread Starter
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Plecos did a number on both of the tanks overnight. In the 150 they uprooted some crypts... in the 75 somehow a nearly 4" BN Plecos swam into a very large dual circulation pump... this thing moves some serious water... woke up to sand and plants blown all over. When he got into it he managed to knock it loses to it fell and pointed toward the substrate... and he was dead inside... wouldn't believe it if I didn't see it. I may wait a couple weeks on the synodontis to let some plants get better root development. I was thinking 6 for the 150... but now I'd like to have something in the 75 as well. I'm going to look around for a deal on heavy duty shelves this week and get things set up in that room with the second tank. The syno's are only 1" - 1.5" not sure if they'll be ok with my larger Africans in the 150.
Still investigating the regulator thing. I see post after post about people more than pleased with their $100 regulators. I'm not sure I can stomach $300+...
Going to call the gas supply place today and figure out the cost of a 20lb tank filled. Just spent $1500 on carbon fiber package for my Z06 so hobby money is pretty well spent
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-13-2017, 03:56 AM
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Didn't know cichlids got that crazy with plants I hope my blue steel apistos don't trip out like that.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-13-2017, 12:17 PM
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What are your water parameters? PH, alk, gh, etc. I have a 75 gallon hap/peacock which I keep in line with Malawi parameters. I've had planted tanks before, co2, high light, etc, and would consider putting some low tech plants in my current 75 if I could find any that would survive the hard water.

My 75 gallon 'journal':

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Last edited by 20 20; 06-13-2017 at 12:17 PM. Reason: typo
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