Need rescape inspiration for my Spec V! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-14-2018, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb Need rescape inspiration for my Spec V!

Well, it's been a journey over the past six months. My beloved Fluval Spec V, home to one betta and possibly(?) some surviving shrimplets, has become...a mess. Time to dive in. So to speak.

This is only my second tank ever, and I've been tinkering with it as I learn more and more about the hobby. Upon setup I made a few commonly-recommended mods based on Internet research and not reality. (e.g., I poked holes in the pump tube to reduce flow, which was never an issue for my betta but did drastically reduce the effectiveness of the filter! Electrical tape undid my mistake.) Plantwise, at first I did nothing but plunk in a few plants and change the water weekly. Then I learned about Excel. Then Flourish. Then root tabs. Then photo periods...then went out and bought a cheap Fluval CO2 system and nearly killed poor Peter.

The tank at its cleanest, a few months ago. Current pics below:

I had a hideous outbreak of some kind of brown dust algae, which thankfully went away and has been replaced with some kind of green hair algae. Many of my plants are looking worse for the wear and not helping with the algae issue. After hours of research, trial and error, and endless water changes, here's where I stand today:

1. Location: I've moved the tank into a room that does not get as much ambient light from the window. I think that's been contributing to the algae issue.

2. Lighting: I am looking at a cheap (NICREW maybe) LED light to replace the stock Fluval light. I am trying to adhere to a regular schedule of lights on at 8am and off six hours later, at least while I'm battling this algae outbreak.

3. Fertilization: I'll keep up with the Flourish root tabs, but have ditched Flourish in favor of EasyGreen All in One from Aquarium Co-op. Dosing once a week following water change.

4. CO2: I'm using pressurized CO2 with a bell diffuser. Not the most efficient, I know, but with the crappy system I picked up I couldn't control the gas flow at all and almost killed my betta. And since it's only a 5gal with modest ferts and lighting I *think* I can get by with a relatively low concentration. I'm also dosing Excel daily.

5. Parameters:
Ph: 7.5
Ammonia: 0
Nitrates: between 0 and 5 ppm (part of the problem?)

I'm hopeful that my current setup will be a success, but first I'd like to give the tank a good cleaning, remove as much algae as possible, remove any plants that aren't going to make it, and add some more healthy plants. I might also remove one of my large ornaments (rock & wood) to open it up a bit.


Here's what I have to work with:

Existing plants:
- Christmas moss (this is the healthiest thing in the tank but has been touched by algae)
- Amazon sword (in bad shape - will probably toss)
- Staurogyene repens (alive and algae-free but not exactly thriving)
- Anacharis (I hate this plant but keep it because it's a fast grower)
- Rotala wallichii (new addition - growing well but touched by algae)
- Anubias nanas
- Some other anubias that I think is not long for this world

New plants:
- Amazon frogbit
- Dwarf water lettuce
- Lysimachia nummularia/creeping jenny
- Echinodorus parviflorus/ rosette sword
- Lobelia Cardinalis 'Dwarf'

Plants I can swipe from other tanks:
- micranthemum monte carlo
- dwarf sag
- corkscrew vals
- random anubias

Mopani wood
Some kind of zebra rock
Random river rocks
Random ornaments

Note that I had to turn the tank around when I relocated it, so this is the "back view" from when I originally scaped it.

What would you do?

Last edited by squishface; 06-15-2018 at 02:02 AM. Reason: typo
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-16-2018, 06:40 AM
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It doesn't seem like you even need CO2 for those plants. And you're using a 6 hour light period?
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-21-2018, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ScrubbyDick View Post
It doesn't seem like you even need CO2 for those plants. And you're using a 6 hour light period?
I mean, I'm basically fumbling in the dark here with the lights/ferts/CO2 trifecta. The reduced light period began months ago when I started to get a bunch of different algae outbreaks. I thought CO2 and a new all-in-one fertilizer would help my plants rebound and outcompete algae.

But I'm TOTALLY open to schooling.

Here's where I landed after a few days of rescaping, btw:
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-24-2018, 07:08 AM
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You should try a Dutch tank. You’re on a good path but I think you should definitely upgrade your co2 you could get an aquatek brand off eBay for less than $70 and diffusers are $1 a piece I wouldnt use the diffuser you have now it takes way too much space in your already small tank. Check out my specV it’s about a couple months old
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Last edited by Agent69; 01-17-2019 at 09:04 AM.
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algae, nano, rescape, spec

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