Defchilde's 125g - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-09-2005, 03:07 AM Thread Starter
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Defchilde's 125g



This is my first (not counting the haphazard first time when I purchased my original 20g as a teenager , that was a horrible sight to behold, algae beyond belief) planted tank. This 125g (6ft) tank is being used as a room-divider in the basement.

I haven’t yet decided how to stock it, currently I am using 14 neon tetras as the first fish introduced to the tank. To speedup the cycle, I have taken the filter media out of one of my filters on my other tank (a 55g tank filled with black-skirt tetras and live-bearers, surrounded by silk plants) and am using them to push the cycle along.

The idea is to fall somewhere between the “Wilson ideal” tank and the “High light/pressurized CO2” tank.

The substrate is 3” of silica sand over Shultz soil. I used fiberglass storm-door meshing as a divider between the sand and the soil. I am hoping that during transplanting of plants, the soil will not rise to the surface with the roots. Not sure that this will work but am hoping for the best.

The other specks are 2.4wpg and ph: 7.6, have not yet tested the other stuff, as I have been busy.

I am going to do some research to figure out what plants I have.

There are more issues needing to be fixed as well as original ideas used in this tank that I would like to share.

Any comments would be appreciated…..

Last edited by Defchilde; 01-04-2006 at 02:45 AM.
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-13-2005, 05:52 PM
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Nice big tank! Hope it will fill in nicely. I would add a few more plants, fast growers like Ceradopteris and Wisteria, and possibly remove them once everything grows like crazy. Are you planning on adding CO2? That can help a lot to stabilize things in the battle between plants, us and algae


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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-13-2005, 10:21 PM
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Mesh divider between the soil and sand? Wouldn't that make an even bigger mess because the roots will be entangled in it? How will you pull the plants out without pulling the mesh along with it? :P

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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-30-2005, 02:05 AM Thread Starter
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3 week update...

Wasserpest,
I am hoping that they will fill in nicely also. And some have... and some have not (seen in photos later in message). The duck weed floating has become my bane and I intend to remove it from the tank. I hope to add more plants but just have not had time. No CO2 intended as yet, but more plants, going for the wild forest look (hopefully).

StUk_In_AfRiKa
I had not thought about that until you brought that up, and I recently tried to move some plants and had trouble. I think that the roots broke rather than pulled up the mesh. Not something that I want, I don't intend to move plants often, but if this damage continues, I will take the tank apart and restart (lets wait and see).

photos....

3 weeks after setup (some plants blooming, others still strugling)...


Close-up of left side of tank...


and, close-up of right side of tank...


also I have been having a problem with algae as described in this thread...
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...015#post179015

Thanks for your interest and help....


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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-01-2005, 03:37 AM Thread Starter
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Udate October 31, 2005

I am still having trouble with algae. I am not sure how to deal with it. I had 240w above this tank, meaning that I have 1.92 wpg. Because of this, I think that this tank will be low light, low tech. Not sure what to do? Some plants are doing great, others are simply dying.

Recently to assist with the algae problem, I decide to add Amano shrimp to the tank, about 20 or so,

over a number of weeks, but they kept disappearing.

Last night, I watched as my Black Skirt Tetras,

chased the last shrimp I could see in the tank up and over the edge.

I beleive that I have to solve the algae problem before working on the growth of plants.

I still intend to continue to work on this tank, but I must say that I am disappointed that it is so difficult. My other tank, the 55g with fake decor has not even been one tenth the dificulty that I have found with this tank.

I think I am have bitten off more than I can handle.........


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Last edited by Defchilde; 11-19-2005 at 05:05 AM.
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-01-2005, 03:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Defchilde
I still intend to continue to work on this tank, but I must say that I am disappointed that it is so difficult. My other tank, the 55g with fake decor has not even been one tenth the dificulty that I have found with this tank.

I think I am have bitten off more than I can handle.........
Degchilde,
A planted tank is like learning to ride a bike. Not the proverb about getting up after you fall, but rather everything that went into learning how to ride. You need to see it done, then you need training wheels, then you need some one to hold the bike and run along side before you learn to ride on your own.

You may have bit off a big chunk, but not one that is not manageable. I would however SLOW down and read some here. When you think your getting the grasp of things, read some more. You need to decide something up front: What kind of tank do I want, what type of plants and what type of inhabitants. As crazy as all this sounds, once you get this set out you have to jump in with both feet. It does take a ton of work at first, especially with a 125 gallon tank. Remember once you decide on those requirements, start thinking, "what I want in a year" and work toward it. You may want a highlight tank, or a low light tank. Each of these have specific equipment needs. Then you will need to research about what supplementation you will need.

Remember, in reality we don't need to keep track of the fish, plants or other inhabitants... We keep water and once you reach the point where the water is stable and healthy, the rest will fall into place.

So please don't get frustrated and hang up the towel... Just slow down and do a ton of reading, things will start to click very soon, I promise

Currently tankless for the first time in 24 years... Getting the itch again
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-17-2005, 07:32 PM Thread Starter
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Hop,
Thanks for the encouragement, sometimes just another person being empathic is all that is needed.

Tank Update:
Over the last two weeks, I have decided to go low-tech, I reduced the light from 240w to 160w over a 12 hour period. No water changes over the last two weeks. Over that time period I have not removed any more hair algae. What algae is there is being eaten by the three remaining amano shrimps and otos.

The algae on the rocks I have decided to live with, they are not increasing, and seems to have stabilized. The sand substrate has a green sheen to it, so it’s not as aesthetically appealing as I would like, but it’s also something that I can live with.

As for the plants, I am starting to see improvements in their appearance, and as soon as I figure out the names to each, I intend to provide progress details.

The one plant, Vallisneria Americana var. "Rubra", that I was really worried about has shown new growth. I guess that it took some time (more than I expected) to establish roots. I did have, and still do, a lot of runners when initially planted, but there was no grow to the grass leaves, they all remained under 2”-3” tall. Now, some sections have grown to about 7”, so I am pleased.

I do have a problem with surface scum/slick on the tank. It’s much thicker than I expected, based on what I had read on the web. I have seen two trains of thought concerning this, a skimmer or black mollies. I have to put some thought to this.

I am going to try to get some update photos posted soon.

Thanks.


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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-19-2005, 04:48 AM Thread Starter
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Photo update - Nov. 18, 2005

A photo from today....



Today, the scum on the surface of the tank got the better of me, and based on the statements of many other users of this site, I went to my LFS and purchased 4 black mollies. I must say that within an hour of placing the mollies in the tank, NO MORE SCUM!!! I was amazed and overjoyed.

A close-up of the left side of the tank...



A close-up of the right side of the tank....



The Limnophila Sessiliflora is growing like gang-busters, I am trimming and replanting on a weekly basis.



Cryptocoryne Lutea is doing extremely well...



And I want to show one of my White Skirt Tetras, they do not usually stay still for a portrait, but this one did, so I wanted to share...



And since the algae has subsided in the tank , I must say that I am no longer wanting to throw this tank out the door...


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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-19-2005, 04:56 AM Thread Starter
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Help with Nymphoides aquatica

As you can see in the full tank photo, I have one Nymphoides aquatica (banana plant) that is doing well (sitting behind so MTS)...



However, I do have another, on the other side of the tank, but it seems to be dormant...



I have kept it in the tank, hoping that it would start growing. Every couple of days, I check to see if the nugget is still firm or if it is showing signs of ANYTHING. Nothing so far!!!

Any suggestions on how to revive this plant would really help....


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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-19-2005, 05:03 AM Thread Starter
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Identifying some plants

Like I said, I went to the LFS today to pick up some Black Mollies to help me with my scum problem. While there, I can't help myself, I have to buy plants as well.

Along with Java Fern, I did pick up these two unknown plants...

Unknown #1



and Unknown #2



Any ideas as to what they are would be nice, and I hope that they will do well in a low-light, low-tech tank....

TIA...


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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-19-2005, 02:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Defchilde
Hop,
Thanks for the encouragement, sometimes just another person being empathic is all that is needed.
No problem. I think that you are getting some growth in there! Things should start balancing out as time goes on and your level on knowledge increases. It's a great hobby and it relaxing darnit

Currently tankless for the first time in 24 years... Getting the itch again
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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 01-04-2006, 02:44 AM Thread Starter
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I think that I should update my journal.


This is a picture of the tank as of tonight. I am not sure what I think of it. The growth has been resoundingly good. I can see a difference between when I originally started and now.

A 45degree pic...


As a nod to the requesting of my wife, I added 5 Barbus denisonii (red-line barbs) blury photo, and I am regretting it. I had planted a field of Echinodorus tenellus. The barbs have pulled this up. Each night (most times) I replant, and when lights come back on the E. tenellus is floating at the top of the tank. They also seem to have a thing for Cryptocoryne Lutea as well.


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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 01-04-2006, 02:53 AM Thread Starter
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small rant....

Small rant....

I have Cyanobacteria in my tank, and I happen to live in the ONE jurisdiction in North America where you can not buy Erythromycin or Maracyn at the LFS.

I need a prescription from a Medical practitioner to get it (or I cross the border into Ontario or New York to get it, bummer....


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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 01-04-2006, 04:37 PM
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Hey things are looking better in there! Keep it up!

Currently tankless for the first time in 24 years... Getting the itch again
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 02:44 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hop
Hey things are looking better in there! Keep it up!
Hop, thanks for your encouragement.

Now for an update.....
My tank as looked in August of 2005, when I first took the planted plunge..

On March 3rd,2006, just before I did a major trim...

And right after...


I must say that I am ecstatic with the growth of the plants. However, if anyone asks me about the use of silica sand, I will advise against it, suggesting that they opt for one of the name-brand products. I have been unable to win the battle with the algae on the sand. No matter what I do, it remains.

Most of the plants have been growing extremely well, my Nymphoides aquatica has been putting out leaves and showing amazing color. Limnophila Aquatica has taken over the center of the tank, looks like a jungle in there. The Cryptocorynes Lutea have taken over much of the tank, and what beautiful leaves, I think that I am in love.

Other than spot algae on the rocks and glass, not forgetting the silica issue, I have not seen any of the hair and thread algae that plagued me at start up.

i am loving this planted tank.


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