DLP's 29g low-tech journal. Plants dying, algae thriving. Need HELP!!! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-10-2009, 09:07 AM Thread Starter
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DLP's 29g low-tech journal. Plants dying, algae thriving. Need HELP!!!

Hello all,

Just recently set up this tank. It's a 29-gallon with an Eclipse 3 hood light and filtration system. It's got two 18-watt 24-inch bulbs.



The hardscape: Manzanita branches in a pile of slate and lava rock on the left and a few nice pieces of petrified wood on the other side. Substrate is a black moon sand.

The flora: Java moss tied to the manzanita with thread and some anubias nana and java fern around the base. Chain swords, C. wendtii and C. walkeri. Marsilea minuta in the foreground.

The fauna: 5 rummynose tetra, 8 pristella tetra, 4 otocinclus, 5 corydoras paleatus, 5 German blue rams*, one bushynose pleco and some MTS (they come with the anubias).

*Newely added.

Currently no dosing with anything, but will probably start soon with API Leaf Zone (0-0-3).

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Any suggestions would be great. Specifically looking for feedback on the following:

- This is my first time using the moss on the manzanita. When and how should I start to trim it?

- Any changes to the hardscape? Any additions?

- What other fish should I add?

Thanks and aloha,
James.

Last edited by DataLifePlus; 04-22-2009 at 05:05 AM.
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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-10-2009, 09:15 AM
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Oto cats are cool fish, you might add a few. Maby add a Java fern on the rocks, to the left.

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29 gal journal

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55 gal low tech

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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-10-2009, 12:12 PM
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Tank is looking good sor far, and I think it has potential...

The only thing I would add is some type of foreground plant, and possibly something taller behind the rocks.

DHG would be a cool plant to cover the foreground, and maybe blyxa or something behind that.

65 gallon low tech planted
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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-11-2009, 04:23 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the comments and suggestions so far.

I'm definitely looking to get some oto's, but having some trouble tracking some down at the moment. Was also thinking about some small corys. Maybe pandas?

I like the DHG idea, but how do you thin k it would work with the current setup? I want to keep this tank as low-tech as possible... low light, no CO2, sand substrate, and light on the fertz. I know that really narrows down my options, but what do you think would work in this environment?
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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-11-2009, 04:37 AM
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I'm not sure how the dhg will fare--might do ok towards the front of the tank where the light's at, but not in the rear. You could try a moss carpet in the foreground as most traditional foreground plants will need more light + CO2, but I think you'll have trouble growing anything taller in the back. What does grow will droop fwd towards the light and drive you crazy anyway. I'd stick w/ the slow growers you've got, add more of them to the other side of the tank, and generally keep things close to the substrate. Great start so far.
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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-29-2009, 06:38 AM Thread Starter
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Small update.... added a few fish. 5 otocinclus, 5 corydoras paleatus, and a bushynose pleco. All the fish are doing great. I think I have a good mix, everyone is getting along and the tank is very active.

Also added three small plantlets of java fern tied to a rock and placed around behind the anubias.

And the obligatory tank shot, taken today:



The moss seems to be doing okay. It seems to be getting fuller, but I'm not sure how much it's spreading. Haven't done any trimming yet. Should I?
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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-29-2009, 11:13 AM
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Looking really nice. I like the black moon sand a lot! Where did you get it from? I wouldn't start trimming just yet. As the moss thickens, it'll begin to attach itself to the wood. Too much tampering early on with prevent that from taking place.
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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-29-2009, 07:01 PM Thread Starter
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Looking really nice. I like the black moon sand a lot! Where did you get it from? I wouldn't start trimming just yet. As the moss thickens, it'll begin to attach itself to the wood. Too much tampering early on with prevent that from taking place.
Thanks for the compliments and advice.

I got the black sand from Aquascapes in Aiea. It's a bit pricey, but looks nice.
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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-29-2009, 07:20 PM
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I see a lot of potential with your tank DLP. Get a few nice stem plants to go behind your rocks and it'll look great.

The only suggestion I have is about the ferts. API's leaf zone contains only Potassium and Iron. Since you have lower light, fertilization won't be too critical, but I'd try Seachem's Flourish line. They work well for lightly planted tanks, but they are kind of $$$. Using root tabs would also be a good option.

If you want an easy low light foreground plant, you could try Marsilea quadrifolia.

Got Plants?-6 CO2 + 12 H2O → C6H12O6 + 6 O2 + 6 H2O

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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-29-2009, 07:23 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by legomaniac89 View Post
I see a lot of potential with your tank DLP. Get a few nice stem plants to go behind your rocks and it'll look great.

The only suggestion I have is about the ferts. API's leaf zone contains only Potassium and Iron. Since you have lower light, fertilization won't be too critical, but I'd try Seachem's Flourish line. They work well for lightly planted tanks, but they are kind of $$$. Using root tabs would also be a good option.

If you want an easy low light foreground plant, you could try Marsilea quadrifolia.
Thanks for the response. How deep would I need the substrate to be in the back for the stem plants? Right now it's pretty shallow, mainly due to the cost of the sand. But I do have a few more bags I could use. Any suggestions for stems that would do well in this low-tech setup?
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post #11 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-29-2009, 07:32 PM
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1.5" would be more than plenty for most plants.

As for good stem plants: most Hygrophila sp., Rotala rotundifolia, R. indica, Ludwigia repens, L. repens x arcuata. There a good plant database here on TPT that you can surf through, and other good one on APC (Aquatic Plant Central) for some ideas.

Some good sized Crypts might look nice behind the rocks too

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post #12 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-29-2009, 08:25 PM
 
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what type of driftwood?
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post #13 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-30-2009, 02:17 AM Thread Starter
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1.5" would be more than plenty for most plants.

As for good stem plants: most Hygrophila sp., Rotala rotundifolia, R. indica, Ludwigia repens, L. repens x arcuata. There a good plant database here on TPT that you can surf through, and other good one on APC (Aquatic Plant Central) for some ideas.

Some good sized Crypts might look nice behind the rocks too
Sounds good. How do you think most of those would do with the lower amount of light (just over 1 wpg)?
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post #14 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-30-2009, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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what type of driftwood?
On the left are two manzanita branches and the right side is all petrified wood.
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post #15 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-30-2009, 02:23 AM
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Sounds good. How do you think most of those would do with the lower amount of light (just over 1 wpg)?
The rotalas should do fine, but the nodes between leaves will be fairly large, and they may not have much pink color, but I've found that they'll grow in most anything. The ludwigias may not fare quite as well, but, experiment...that's the best part of keeping aquariums.

And most any cryptocoryne will grow under that light. I have to say I am somewhat biased towards them, I am hopelessly addicted to crypts lol.

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