My first journal-20g planted - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 07:40 PM Thread Starter
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My first journal-20g planted

I've been trawling around this site for ages looking at other peoples setup's, mostly boring my wife to bit's every 5 minutes, saying "wow look at this one" alot! Thought it was about time i put my second tank on here for advice/ criticism etc...

I'm using DIY Co2, dosing with Seachem trace once a week, only got a poor 15w overhead light at the moment, but i have ordered a new 3x 24w T5, which should arrive this week. At the moment it's filtered by an Interpet PF3 internal filter, but i will also be buying an external filter very soon.

Tank is 60cmx29cmx29cm

Plants are Crypt wendtii, Bacopa, Rotala indica, Anubias barteri, Hygrophilla polysperma, Crypt becketii, and I'm not sure what the tall ones at the back are, but i bought them to provide instant height at the back to disguise the equipment.

Please give feedback, good or bad.

It's been setup for about 2 weeks now, and I've just added a pair of Kribs, as i want it to be Dwarf Cichlids only.

The Ph is 7.5, and the Nitrates are 0, water temp about 28 Celsius.
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 07:59 PM
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Looks like a good start. It's good that you're getting more light, but I would be careful just how much of that light you're gonna use. With all of them on at once you'll be well over 3WPG, which means your CO2 and ferts will have to be properly balanced otherwise you'll most likely have algae issues. Pressurized CO2 may be the way to go to ensure consistent CO2 levels and dry ferts will be a good investment as they last a long time and are much cheaper than the liquid form.

As far as plants, looks good. I would moving things around a bit to have less of a central focus on the big mound of rocks. Not sure what you're going for, but the big mound of river rocks doesn't do it for me. Looks like you just dumped them in there and let them lay where they lay. Looks like you have a nice piece of driftwood back there, but it's hidden by the rocks. I'd bring that to the front/middle or maybe offset to the side a bit and attach some type of plant or moss to it. It will make a much better center piece than the mound of river rocks you have now. Well on your way though.
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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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Yes i did consider pressurized Co2, i have it in my 40g setup, but to be honest i wanted to try my hand at the DIY route. I have bought a diffuser which will attach to the filter to get a better mix of water and Co2, so that should help. With regards to the dry ferts, i would like to try that, but I'm not sure where to get that sort of thing in England, certainly none of the local shops stock it. A bit of research on the net is called for.

And i can see what you are saying about the rocks and the bogwood, but you know what it's like, trying out different layout's, so who knows, i may change it then again i may not.
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 08:52 PM
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I like the way your tank looks. Just a quick thought. You have a bunch of rocks, which I like. With a variety of rocks like that did you test to make sure that they were safe for your tank?

They all look somewhat rounded, meaning they have probably been in water for a long time, but better test if you haven't just to be safe.
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 09:20 PM Thread Starter
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Test in what way?
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 09:41 PM
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Test them with a strong acid to see if they're going to dissolve minerals into your tank water and increase the hardness and pH.
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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 10:44 PM
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There is a specific chemical that you can pickup at a pool supply store, I forget the name of it. You should be able to find it by searching the forums very easily.

However if your in a pinch I've heard you can use distilled white vinegar. Just place a drop on the rock, if it at all bubbles it's not safe. No bubbles = safe

Rocks can leach very harmful things into your tank, its best to take them out and test them immediately.



Hope all goes well.
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-28-2008, 10:47 PM
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O yea.. you have a butch of non aquatic plants.
Mondo grass. Your whole back is full of them, other then that your tank looks perfect.

One month in.
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2008, 07:21 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks frozenbarb, a friend of mine also told me that, and i wondered how long it would be before someone would pick up on it. I will replace them very soon. All the other plants doing very well, and i took delivery today of my lovely new overtank luminaire. Not sure yet what to replace the Mondo grass with, i don't really want any Vallis in this tank, might go for more Hygrophylla or maybe some other fast growing stem plants, any suggestions?
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-31-2008, 05:23 PM Thread Starter
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Any suggestions about those plants to replace the Mondo grass?
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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-31-2008, 09:07 PM
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Nice tank T, I would replace the MG with Vallisneria americana, vallisneria Biwaensis, Eleocharis Vivipara.

Good luck !

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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-31-2008, 09:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tourney View Post
Yes i did consider pressurized Co2, i have it in my 40g setup, but to be honest i wanted to try my hand at the DIY route. I have bought a diffuser which will attach to the filter to get a better mix of water and Co2, so that should help. With regards to the dry ferts, i would like to try that, but I'm not sure where to get that sort of thing in England, certainly none of the local shops stock it. A bit of research on the net is called for.

And i can see what you are saying about the rocks and the bogwood, but you know what it's like, trying out different layout's, so who knows, i may change it then again i may not.
www.aquaessentials.co.uk thats the ONLY place in the uk you will find something that WILL work.

Unfortunately our market is flooded with outmoded information and products, aqua essentials and one or 2 others, green machine for example, are starting to supply us with genuine products that work and are actually meant for planted tanks not an old product with dubious origin rebottled (king british).

I find the best thing to do in the uk is unless they are a specialist plant stockist ignore what they say and as other hobbyists on forums like this, ukaps.org (join it, we're the only uk planted tank society) and fishforums.net.
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post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-31-2008, 09:54 PM Thread Starter
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Actually i've e-mailed Rex Grigg for some prices from the USA, and it would work out a hell of a lot cheaper to buy the dry ferts from him and get them shipped over, rather than buy them in the UK. It works out at about 1/3 of the price including shipping, for alot more of the products.

And yes i have registered on the UKAPS website.
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post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-31-2008, 10:09 PM
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good man, and that is interesting!
post up a thread on ukaps a bulk order my be in order!
I like the set up by the way, almost bought one myself.
I wouldn't worry too much about the rocks they appear to be pretty much crystalline and therefore insoluble.
well at least that's my outlook on it, don't quote me though I'm no geologist.
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post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old 02-01-2008, 03:31 PM Thread Starter
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Wow look at the pearling on my plants, since i installed the new lighting!!
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