55 gal novice planted tank journal - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 01:28 AM Thread Starter
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55 gal novice planted tank journal

I'm definitely still a beginner. But I've done a lot of research. Bare with me as I journal what I learn.

55 gal
7 neon tetras
6 hatchet fish
6 false julii cories
Several Amano shrimp
4 red cherry shrimp

GH 5
KH 6
pH 8.2
Finnex 24/7 planted + on timer for 11 hours a day (24/7 setting)
Black diamond blasting media*
Flourish excel dosed daily
Flourish dosed weekly

Tank started in February

*Yes, I know black diamond sand is inert but it was cheap. And supplemented gravels like eco-complete will loose their nutrients within a year or so, so I am going to try just dosing with ferts and using root tabs...we'll see if this was a big mistake...so far it seems fine

The Ludwigia is doing awesome, so awesome I pinched it all back. It branches but only one branch. So I'm not sure if I'm accomplishing the "bushier" effect.

Pennywort grows fast but just looks ugly. Possibly melt? It was so gorgeous for a few weeks when I first got it. Wonder if it doesn't like Excel...





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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 04:06 AM Thread Starter
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-06-2017, 04:11 AM Thread Starter
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These are all from 5/13/17






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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-10-2017, 12:29 AM Thread Starter
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Added root tabs (osmocote plus) on 6/7. Hoping to see some improvement.


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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-10-2017, 12:43 AM
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Started my 55 gal at the same time as you. Consider myself a novice as well though I've had a planted 20gal for years that I never took too seriously. Your tank is looking nice! Looking forward to see it "grow".
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-10-2017, 02:39 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shamrock62081 View Post
Started my 55 gal at the same time as you. Consider myself a novice as well though I've had a planted 20gal for years that I never took too seriously. Your tank is looking nice! Looking forward to see it "grow".


Same here. I had a planted 29 gallon 10 years ago but I hadn't done nearly as much research as this time. This tank has been up and running since February, so 4-5 months.


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-10-2017, 03:30 PM
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I am also a beginner and am setting up my second planted tank.

One thing I did right was to use soil under sand and I had really good growth, until my home made lights started to fail.

If you are having poor growth, you could use shallow pots filled with soil and placed under the substrate. That way you wouldnt have to redo the whole tank.

Point of reference, in soil my amazon swords grew from about 6" to 16" in about 2.5 months. And this was with cheap DIY led light strips. Also, my ludwigia grew more densely and deeper red.

I think the limiting factor in your tank is substrate. It is much cheaper to get some soil than it is to keep investing in root tabs. Your tank is lightly planted so pots under the substrate would probably work great.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-10-2017, 10:03 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ChrisX View Post
I am also a beginner and am setting up my second planted tank.

One thing I did right was to use soil under sand and I had really good growth, until my home made lights started to fail.

If you are having poor growth, you could use shallow pots filled with soil and placed under the substrate. That way you wouldnt have to redo the whole tank.

Point of reference, in soil my amazon swords grew from about 6" to 16" in about 2.5 months. And this was with cheap DIY led light strips. Also, my ludwigia grew more densely and deeper red.

I think the limiting factor in your tank is substrate. It is much cheaper to get some soil than it is to keep investing in root tabs. Your tank is lightly planted so pots under the substrate would probably work great.


I like the idea of pots. We tried soil capped with sand and it was a disaster. The soil and sand just mixed and then the soil floated.

I'm impressed with how well they're doing since I have only been dosing with excel for a month and before that it was just fish waste. Far from ideal but we didn't want to invest in expensive substrate at first.


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