New member, new nano (Aqueon Evolve 2) - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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New member, new nano (Aqueon Evolve 2)

Hello all!

I have been out of the hobby for awhile, but got bit by the bug again recently. When I started browsing around here I was amazed at all the cool setups people post and decided I wanted a planted tank of my own. This is my first time with a planted tank, and also with a tank this small.

The setup is a stock Evolve 2, with the addition of a 25w heater (it can get pretty cold (60F) in my apt. in the winter so I wanted to make sure the heater was big enough). I also added a small pouch of BioMax to the filter chamber. Currently using the stock LED light, but have ordered a 9W 6500k LED light because the plants seem to be stretching/reaching a bit.

The substrate is CaribSea Super Naturals, and I have added a root fertilizer tablet (split into quarters). To be honest, I don't even remember the names of the plants besides the Wisteria, maybe you guys can help!? And I'm really not sure if I made the best choices of plants for a small tank, so changes may come depending on how they do. I would like to add some moss to the driftwood, and maybe some fine, short grass in the foreground.

I am not sure if I will be adding any fauna. I travel a lot for work, often only get home on weekends, and feeding might be an issue . I would like to have some type of fish or shrimp eventually, but only if I can provide the conditions and care they need.

Thanks for looking, and I welcome any tips and advice.


Last edited by simplechamp; 07-22-2012 at 11:09 PM. Reason: Added to post
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 12:35 AM
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You could probably have a few shrimp if you provided them with some moss or something similar for them to pick at while you are gone.

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 12:41 AM
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pretty! it looks like you have some java fern and anubias (or is it crypt. wendtii "green" i can't even tell geeez) (back left and right, front center) planted into the substrate, their rhizomes will rot if you keep them that way... you should either attach them to driftwood or rocks or let them sit on top of the substrate. if the crypt/anubias is actually a crypt (hopefully someone will say) then leave it as is c:

also the stem-ish plants with the little round leaves all over them look like bacopa caroliniana .
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 12:43 AM
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That's a really nice tank, seamless looking. What is the filtration like on it?
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 01:10 AM
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Looks great! Like radioman said, if you end up stocking it with fauna, inverts might be a good option. Shrimp can sustain themselves on algae/microfauna and don't necessarily need to be fed every day - shouldn't make all those trips too much of a problem.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 04:31 AM Thread Starter
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their rhizomes will rot if you keep them that way... you should either attach them to driftwood or rocks or let them sit on top of the substrate. if the crypt/anubias is actually a crypt (hopefully someone will say) then leave it as is c:
Well, the bad news is the rhizomes on the two larger plants (java fern) are looking rotted (see pic). The root growth looks healthy, all that growth has happened over about 7 days. I attached them to a driftwood and I guess time will tell if they make it. What would you guys think? Did we catch it early enough so they have a chance?

The good news is the smaller front one is definitely a much different plant, no big rhizome and no rot, very healthy white roots with lots of fresh growth. So I'm guessing it is a crypt? The roots look like stalks with a little white ball on the end, maybe that helps identify it?

Bad news part 2: When I was moving the plants around I hit a chunk of root tab. Maybe I didn't have them deep enough. I tried to re-bury it and it just mushed apart and COMPLETELY clouded the water. Since the tank is only a week old and has no fauna I decided to do a nearly complete water change (75% change, then 75% change again). This might have been the wrong choice, but when the tank clouded I kind of panicked, and there was some frustration that didn't help either. I was worried that the instant release of a whole chunk of root tab would cause the fertilization levels to spike way too high and cause problems. Anyway, the tank is back to about 80-90% clarity now (just guessing compared to before this all happened). Going to test the water in the AM.

Definitely like the idea of shrimp. I'll have plenty of time to do some research on them while the tank stabilizes. Also need to find some moss to add in. I would like something with a really fine texture.

This is definitely a learning experience, just have to look at each mistake as a new piece of knowledge gained. Thanks for the help everyone.

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 04:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simplechamp View Post
Well, the bad news is the rhizomes on the two larger plants (java fern) are looking rotted (see pic). The root growth looks healthy, all that growth has happened over about 7 days. I attached them to a driftwood and I guess time will tell if they make it. What would you guys think? Did we catch it early enough so they have a chance?

The good news is the smaller front one is definitely a much different plant, no big rhizome and no rot, very healthy white roots with lots of fresh growth. So I'm guessing it is a crypt? The roots look like stalks with a little white ball on the end, maybe that helps identify it?

Bad news part 2: When I was moving the plants around I hit a chunk of root tab. Maybe I didn't have them deep enough. I tried to re-bury it and it just mushed apart and COMPLETELY clouded the water. Since the tank is only a week old and has no fauna I decided to do a nearly complete water change (75% change, then 75% change again). This might have been the wrong choice, but when the tank clouded I kind of panicked, and there was some frustration that didn't help either. I was worried that the instant release of a whole chunk of root tab would cause the fertilization levels to spike way too high and cause problems. Anyway, the tank is back to about 80-90% clarity now (just guessing compared to before this all happened). Going to test the water in the AM.

Definitely like the idea of shrimp. I'll have plenty of time to do some research on them while the tank stabilizes. Also need to find some moss to add in. I would like something with a really fine texture.

This is definitely a learning experience, just have to look at each mistake as a new piece of knowledge gained. Thanks for the help everyone.

oh whoa, that's not java fern xD
it looks like roots for a sword or something, i'm just nuts today
replant that in the substrate! D: it's fine, probably just getting used to your parameters. yeah that sounds like crypt roots, keep it planted haha
whooooooops...
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 05:49 AM Thread Starter
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Amazon Sword sounds familiar, I want to say that's what they are, wish I would have kept the containers/labels. I replanted them in the substrate. Hope this is the last time I'll be moving them for awhile! I actually rearranged everything a bit and like this setup better now, so it wasn't all for nothing. Can't wait for everything to start filling in. It's fun to come home after a week on the road and see the new growth.

Went ahead and did a water test. General hardness 60ppm, carbonate hardness 100ppm, pH 7.2, nitrates and nitrites 0ppm. Might try to reduce the hardness a bit with some distilled water when I do a 25% change next week.


Last edited by simplechamp; 07-23-2012 at 05:52 AM. Reason: Added pic
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 12:14 PM
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Those 2 plants in back are definitely small Amazon Swords and will outgrow that tank in no time. I would recommend switching them out for some Java Fern as they won't outgrow the tank. If you want to see how big an Amazon Sword gets, check out my 60G journal, you can't miss it in there.


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Who would have thought that plants like dirt?!
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 03:19 PM
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wow... that substrate look ssuper clean... like a dozen bags of sugar


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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-24-2012, 02:03 PM
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agreed on the amazon sword, mine in my 55gal has leaves that reach the top at 20 inches. Shiny, its awesome to see how that sword grew.. nice tank. Champ, I do like the sand contrast, very nice so far, I like the small tank!


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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-24-2012, 08:18 PM
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How is the flow in your tank without the spout on the outflow? Does it slow it down a bit because it is not directed?


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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-24-2012, 10:36 PM Thread Starter
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How is the flow in your tank without the spout on the outflow? Does it slow it down a bit because it is not directed?
Yep, that's exactly why I removed it. With the nozzle on I was getting bowled out areas in the sand from the current no matter which way I angled it. Now the sand stays put and the flow seems much gentler, while still providing the same GPM (maybe even a little more since there is now less restriction on the pump outlet)

Guess I will have to swap out the swords for something else. Maybe I will see if anyone wants to trade in the FS/FT section.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-28-2012, 02:39 AM Thread Starter
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Got my new light today. The brand is "BeamsWork" and I found it on that popular online auction website. Quality seems decent, but not spectacular, definitely made by an overseas OEM and branded by the seller here in the US. The housing is made of aluminum to help dissipate heat, and the flexible arm is sturdy, time will tell if it begins to sag or weaken. It has 9x1W 6500k LEDs.

The light runs with either 3 LEDS illuminated or all 9. The 3 LED mode is about equal to the stock Aqueon Evolve 2 light (which makes sense since the Aqueon is ~3W). The 9 LED mode is definitely a big improvement, much brighter. The wider spread of the LEDs covers the tank better and more evenly.

For downsides compared to the stock Evolve 2 light I would say the lack of blue moonlight LEDs, and the inability to easily swivel off to the side (you can bend it up then down again, but not as convenient as swiveling, and as mentioned before I'm a little bit suspect of the flex arm). I will probably modify the lamp and add some blue moonlight LEDs myself.

Overall, seems like a good light for the Evolve 2, have to wait and see how it holds up over time. I tried to get some comparison pics between the 2 lights, but the auto white-balance on my camera made it difficult. The difference in color temp is easier to see, however if you look at the wall behind the tank you can see quite a big difference in brightness.

Stock Evolve 2 light



BeamsWork 9x1W light

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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-28-2012, 04:49 PM Thread Starter
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I have been considering getting a betta for my nano. As mentioned before, I am on the road a lot for work and have concerns about feeding. This would be the feeding schedule on the weeks I am traveling:

1) Feed early Mon morning before I leave
2) No food Tue, Wed, and Thurs
3) Feed Fri evening when I get home
4) Normal feeding Sat and Sun

Do you guys think this would be reasonable and humane? I know bettas can go longer than 3 days without food, but I need to know that it will be happy and healthy, not just surviving. I do not want to use those vacation feeding blocks. Most reviews seem negative saying they pollute the water, probably harder on the fish than going 3 days without food.

Thanks for any advice!
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