**Journal** 55 Gallon planted community aquarium - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 12:10 AM Thread Starter
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Talking **Journal** 55 Gallon planted community aquarium

My first photo of my 55 gallon aquarium. Still waiting for my plants, but getting the tanks biological cycle going.




After a 2 week wait, I finally got the plants that I ordered. I love it so far. Photo taken with white balance off, ISO 50. The biological cycle is coming along well as I just recently had a small nitrite spike and my nitrates are building. I have 1 betta, 5 mystery snails and 2 platy's so far.


55 Gal, Fluval 305, GE 9325K CF 55x2 (7hrs/day), Coralife T5 56 watts (used in conjunction with the GE 9325's 2hrs/day.), Eco-Complete substrate, EI Dosing, Flourish Excel, 200 watt heater, Pressurized CO2 with Rhinox 2000 diffuser, Coralife Turbo Twist 3X - 9 Watt U.V. Sterilizer on 24/7.

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post #2 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 12:43 AM
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the plants will really help with the cycle. What is that grassy plant in the middle? it looks like Mondograss which isn't a real aquatic plant. If it is you might want to take it out because it will foul the water when it rots.
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post #3 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 12:51 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by flash69x View Post
the plants will really help with the cycle. What is that grassy plant in the middle? it looks like Mondograss which isn't a real aquatic plant. If it is you might want to take it out because it will foul the water when it rots.
Man I was actually going to ask someone the same thing. I'm not sure what the grassy plant is, but it's some type of aquatic grass plant that I got from Petsmart a few months ago and seems to be doing really well. Doesn't grow much, but isn't showing any signs of dying either. I'm really looking forward to the plants all growing. I'm getting CO2 system tomorrow, so that should help everything.
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post #4 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 12:59 AM
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PlantGeek.net - Ophiopogon japonica

try that. That might help you ID it. Petsmart sells that stuff, i feel for it when i first started out.
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post #5 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 12:07 PM Thread Starter
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PlantGeek.net - Ophiopogon japonica

try that. That might help you ID it. Petsmart sells that stuff, i feel for it when i first started out.
Thanks for the link. I'll have to double check with Petsmart what kind of plant it is. Sure does look a lot like that mondo grass. I'll definitely keep a close eye on it.

I'm going to let the tank sit as is for a few weeks and see how things do. I'm getting the CO2 system tonight, but I still need to get a bottle. The system is supposed to use either paintball style hookup or the regular bottle style. Guess I'll try a sporting store later.

Also due to arrive today are some GE 9325K CF lights. I'll try them out tonight and take a photo and see which one works best.

55 Gal, Fluval 305, GE 9325K CF 55x2 (7hrs/day), Coralife T5 56 watts (used in conjunction with the GE 9325's 2hrs/day.), Eco-Complete substrate, EI Dosing, Flourish Excel, 200 watt heater, Pressurized CO2 with Rhinox 2000 diffuser, Coralife Turbo Twist 3X - 9 Watt U.V. Sterilizer on 24/7.
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post #6 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 01:15 PM
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Nice looking tank. What kind of lighting/how much is on the tank?
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post #7 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 01:18 PM Thread Starter
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Nice looking tank. What kind of lighting/how much is on the tank?
I have the all-glass hood with 2 55watt PC bulbs. 2 watts per gallon, I thought about getting something more powerful like a 65 x 4, but my gosh they are expensive. I'll try this 110 watt setup and see how it does. I've seen other setups with 110watts and they look pretty good. hoping for the best.

55 Gal, Fluval 305, GE 9325K CF 55x2 (7hrs/day), Coralife T5 56 watts (used in conjunction with the GE 9325's 2hrs/day.), Eco-Complete substrate, EI Dosing, Flourish Excel, 200 watt heater, Pressurized CO2 with Rhinox 2000 diffuser, Coralife Turbo Twist 3X - 9 Watt U.V. Sterilizer on 24/7.
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post #8 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-12-2006, 11:44 PM Thread Starter
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9/12/06 Photo

Got the GE 9325k PC bulbs today and I'm really liking them. Not a huge difference over the 8000k bulbs, but it does as more contrast and makes the red betta more vibrant.

55 Gal, Fluval 305, GE 9325K CF 55x2 (7hrs/day), Coralife T5 56 watts (used in conjunction with the GE 9325's 2hrs/day.), Eco-Complete substrate, EI Dosing, Flourish Excel, 200 watt heater, Pressurized CO2 with Rhinox 2000 diffuser, Coralife Turbo Twist 3X - 9 Watt U.V. Sterilizer on 24/7.

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post #9 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-14-2006, 03:50 AM
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One thing i think might be helpful to your tank design is to avoid symmetries in the tank. For instance the wood that subdivides the tank into 3. You might consider placing them in such a way that it doesnt look to perfectly split.
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post #10 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-14-2006, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Well I just added the Red Sea C02 Pro system last night and have it running during the day only at about 1 bubble per second. What is everyone else running? Also, is there a cheap way of setting it up to work automatically. I think that turning it on and off each day will get old fast and having to readjust the bubble count too.

55 Gal, Fluval 305, GE 9325K CF 55x2 (7hrs/day), Coralife T5 56 watts (used in conjunction with the GE 9325's 2hrs/day.), Eco-Complete substrate, EI Dosing, Flourish Excel, 200 watt heater, Pressurized CO2 with Rhinox 2000 diffuser, Coralife Turbo Twist 3X - 9 Watt U.V. Sterilizer on 24/7.
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post #11 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-14-2006, 04:44 PM
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2-4 bps is what I normally run. depends on your GH KH etc...
a little over 70quid you can get a pH controller to automate it.
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post #12 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-20-2006, 07:21 PM Thread Starter
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Well I've got the C02 running on auto now with a switch and I seem to have about 17ppm at the moment. I'm trying to get about 20 so I'll up the bpm slightly and see what happens.

So now that I have C02 running, decent lighting 2.2 watts per gallon I'm curious to see if I need to start fertilizing? I came across this method called an EI dosing schedule that lists several different things to be added each week along with doing a 50% water change. Is this necessary? Will I get an algae bloom if I don't do this?

55 Gal, Fluval 305, GE 9325K CF 55x2 (7hrs/day), Coralife T5 56 watts (used in conjunction with the GE 9325's 2hrs/day.), Eco-Complete substrate, EI Dosing, Flourish Excel, 200 watt heater, Pressurized CO2 with Rhinox 2000 diffuser, Coralife Turbo Twist 3X - 9 Watt U.V. Sterilizer on 24/7.
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post #13 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-21-2006, 03:50 PM
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my CO2 is diffused via a little powerhead, and i have that on a timer that runs in conjunction with my lights. it's nice. when the powerhead isn't on, it doesn't get diffused and the bubble just rises to the top and out into my living room. i guess it's not the most CO2 efficient way. maybe you could mcguyver something up.


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post #14 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-21-2006, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by caymandiver75 View Post
Well I've got the C02 running on auto now with a switch and I seem to have about 17ppm at the moment. I'm trying to get about 20 so I'll up the bpm slightly and see what happens.

So now that I have C02 running, decent lighting 2.2 watts per gallon I'm curious to see if I need to start fertilizing? I came across this method called an EI dosing schedule that lists several different things to be added each week along with doing a 50% water change. Is this necessary? Will I get an algae bloom if I don't do this?
I would up the CO2 to about 25-28%, then yes you need to dose macros and micros. EI is a good method if you don't like to test, but if you want to fine tune it, you can modify your dosing and do less water changes like 30% weekly or 60% every two weeks, depending on your concentrations. You do need to test though to get to that happy medium. I see you have some swords, so I suggest some flourish root tabs under those, or some ADA Iron bottom. Just make sure they are buried straight down in your substrate as to not get it in your water column. Don't wait to see IF you need to fertilize, because you will get one hell of an algae bloom. You will inevitably need to get to it, so start out on the right foot!
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post #15 of 70 (permalink) Old 09-21-2006, 07:40 PM Thread Starter
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I would up the CO2 to about 25-28%, then yes you need to dose macros and micros. EI is a good method if you don't like to test, but if you want to fine tune it, you can modify your dosing and do less water changes like 30% weekly or 60% every two weeks, depending on your concentrations. You do need to test though to get to that happy medium. I see you have some swords, so I suggest some flourish root tabs under those, or some ADA Iron bottom. Just make sure they are buried straight down in your substrate as to not get it in your water column. Don't wait to see IF you need to fertilize, because you will get one hell of an algae bloom. You will inevitably need to get to it, so start out on the right foot!
Where can I get the recommened doses of macros and micros? Also, the substate is ECO-Complete do I still need to get some flourish root tabs for the swords? Also, what's the deal with the roots not being allowed in the water column? I'm a newbie!


**EDIT**
Just placed an order from gregwatson.com for the following and will be doing a weekly water change of 50%.

Product ID: Nitrate
Product Name: Potassium Nitrate 1 lb.
--------------------------
Product ID: PotassiumPhosphate
Product Name: Mono Potassium Phosphate 1 lb.
--------------------------
Product ID: CSMPlantex1
Product Name: CSM+B Plantex 1 lb

55 Gal, Fluval 305, GE 9325K CF 55x2 (7hrs/day), Coralife T5 56 watts (used in conjunction with the GE 9325's 2hrs/day.), Eco-Complete substrate, EI Dosing, Flourish Excel, 200 watt heater, Pressurized CO2 with Rhinox 2000 diffuser, Coralife Turbo Twist 3X - 9 Watt U.V. Sterilizer on 24/7.
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