Critique my 2.5 G plans - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2004, 01:51 AM Thread Starter
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I've got an AGA 2.5 that I'm setting up to bring to work.
I've replaced the incandescent bulb with a 19W CF spiral bulb 6700K (HD Ghetto special). I've got a HOB whisper filter for water flow (so I can run a filter if I need to) the substrate is probably going to be kitty litter/gravel over a peat moss base.

I'm planning to have
some Glossostigma for the front with Wisteria and Hygrophila in the back.

I'd like to get either a few white clouds or harlequin rasbora or two.
What could I get for algae? maybe a ghost shrimp or a cory or a SAE?
but would that be too much?
Oh an a few MTS to keep things churned up.

I've been keeping a 6g nano reef for the last few years and the moment I found this place I know I was going to setting up a plant tank.

Thanks guys for furthering my addiction!
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2004, 02:09 AM
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Hey, welcome!

I began my 20L nano-reef a couple of months ago - it's good to see that the pull is bidirectional. :-)

Anyway, with that much light, your maintenance requirements will be pretty heavy. Wisteria and Hygro may get a little big, and will grow like weeds under that lighting... You might reconsider those for the longterm, but they are definitely good choices for initial algae control. Just keep some scissors handy.

Otherwise, sounds cool!

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2004, 02:12 AM
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Oh yeah, you will need CO2. What type of Whisper do you have? I'm asking because I use the internal Whisper Micro as a diffuser, so that's an option...
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2004, 03:27 AM
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I would suggest against an SAE. I have one that is 5 inches long. That is too big for this tank. I also think they are social and would prefer a school, but that is by observation, not technical knowledge. I think some Amano shrimp would work. There are many other types of shrimp that you may like more. Someone around here just posted an excellent like to a site that sells many different types of freshwater shrimp.

Like others have said, it seems like you have a lot of light. You'll want to have CO2, but be careful. My experience shows that you'll want to attempt to make changes to your CO2 levels slowly and that is much hard in such a small tank.

Have some fun and don't be affaid to play around.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2004, 03:34 AM Thread Starter
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Well I was hoping to be able to get away with not using CO2.
I'm nervous about exploding yeast bottles while I'm not there.

Would you suggest that I tone down the lighting?
Maybe put a 9W CF bulb in there?

Or is possible to increase the fish load (slowly) to produce more CO2?
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2004, 03:40 AM
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Lots O' Shrimps: http://www.azgardens.com

Just re-reading the initial post. As for fish, I'd say a school of 4-5 Ember Tetras or Endler's Livebearers would do fine in a tank this size. White Clouds would be ok, too. Raspboras, though, might be a little large, because they appreciate groups of 4 or more. I could be wrong about that, but it's my general rule for schooling fish... ...applies to Cories, too.

Ian
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2004, 03:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by singulari
Well I was hoping to be able to get away with not using CO2.
I'm nervous about exploding yeast bottles while I'm not there.

Would you suggest that I tone down the lighting?
Maybe put a 9W CF bulb in there?

Or is possible to increase the fish load (slowly) to produce more CO2?
The exploding yeast bottle thing is a pretty lame reason for not being able to grow Glosso, don't you think?

That's pretty much the score, though. If there's not enough light to require CO2, then there's not enough to grow Glosso.

Plus, I think the danger of a CO2 explosion is pretty minimal... Read this article: http://www.qsl.net/w2wdx/aquaria/diyco2.html He even has a solution to your concern, specifically:



Also, if you're considering all your lighting options, the ahsupply.com 13w "Brite Kit" is excellent.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-06-2004, 04:22 PM
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I have a planted 2½ gallon tank, http://www.freewebs.com/uglygenius/twogallon.htm.

Plant-wise, I have been keeping it simple: Glosso, Dwarf Hairgrass, Java Moss, Dwarf Anubias Nana, and Pearlgrass.

I fertilize it with Flourish, and for CO2, I use Flourish Excel. It's been working out fine for me. You might want to consider Flourish Excel for that tank.

Until day 50 in the tank's life, it was filterless. After adding the filter (i.e. flow) plant growth exploded.

I have three White Clouds in there now and they seem happy enough. A few people on this board recommended a Sparkling Gourami for my tank, and I think that is a great idea. One you too might want to consider. (I have been unable to find a Sparkling Gourami at any of my LFSes, however. I eventually want to remove the three White Clouds have one Sparkling Gourami and three Red Cherry Shirmp.)

Water quality-wise, the tank stays pretty stable with weekly ¾ of a gallon water changes, but space-wise, I think I could only add one more White Cloud before it got too crowded for them. Four is about as many fish as a 2½ gallon (planted) tank can comfortably hold, IMO.

Of all my tanks, the 2½ gallon gives me the most satisfaction. Not that in that it is pretty, but rather due to the fact that the plants have all done exactly what I wanted them to do. "Glosso, you carpet. Pearlgrass, bush up! Hairgrass, spread. Java Moss, grow, but not too fast. And, you, Anubias, look pretty." For me, thus is rare. In my other tanks, the plants seem to have a mind of their own. And the most headstrong "plant" seems to be the algae.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2004, 01:47 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Ugly, you answers the question I was about to ask.
I was wondering if anyone used Flourish Excel instead of a co2 tank.
Because I was considering the Hagen HOB CO2 kit w/ the bubble ladder.

Here's what I decided on
some Dwarf Hairgrass in the back right corner, Java Moss on a long rock in the front right, some glosso along the front and left side, Dwarf Anubias on the driftwood piece. Some Hygrophila for Initial algae control. I was looking for something with some color for accent. Any recomendations for a small non green plant in this tank?

As for fish I prefer a school of smaller fish instead of one fish.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2004, 03:58 AM
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I am using Excel on my 2x96W 90g. I go through a 500ml bottle per month.
Eusteralis stellata is growing w/o loosing lower leaves, am having issues with Alternanthera reineckii, but it is currently somewhat shaded.

I have only seen post water change "pearling", and IMO, while Excell is a good substitute, but does not compare with DIY or pressurized CO2 setups.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2004, 05:34 AM
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I am not sure on this, but the results with Excel and Glosso are iffy - it may not use carbon efficiently in that form. Glosso seems to be more dependent on CO2 than most plants.

It's worth a try, though, because it sounds like it's working for Ugly. Definitely share your experience if you go that route.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2004, 04:42 PM
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I forgot to mention that for a time I used the 19W CF spiral bulb (the one that singulari aptly termed the "HD Ghetto special") but found that the spread and intensity were not enough to keep the Glosso carpeted. I think if I had to use a CF spiral bulb, I would use the 27W 6,700k bulb that HD sells instead of the 19W bulb. Luckily, I had a fixture that accepted a regular 13W CF and that seems to work the best for this tank.

As for a small non-green plant, I have a Sunset Hygro growing behind my Java Moss—it is still too small to see in any of the pictures—and it looks as if its red color will contrast nicely with the green of the other plants. I was also considering some Rotala Indica but I thought it might grow too fast for a 2½ gallon tank.

One odd thing about this tank is it's built-in and rather unorthodox—yet still effective—algae defense. Whenever algae starts to take hold, all I have to do to fight it is remove the HOB filter for one day. After one day the algae disappears. I suppose it has much to do with nutrients not flowing throughout the tank, but whatever the reason, it works and is very easy. (Of course, it stunts plant growth but stunted plant growth in an itsy-bity 2½ gallon tank is not always a bad thing.)
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2004, 06:41 PM Thread Starter
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So you are saying that a 13W PC buld would be better than the 19W spiral bulb?

I have a 3 13W ballasts and sockets that are left over after a light upgrade on my 6G reef.

I was trying to keep as much self contained as possible, Using the spiral instead of having to place the ballast somewhere on my desk.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2004, 08:18 PM
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When I was using the 19W spriral bulb, I was using a desklamp with less than optimal reflectors. If your ADA tank's light fixture has decent reflectors, chances are your results will be much better than mine.

My main gripe with the spiral bulb was not so much the spiral (and consequent loss of intensity) as the length of the bulb itself. Plenty of light would hit the four inches directly beneath it, but the far sides of the tank were in relative darkness.

The 13W bulb, 5½" long, gives a pretty decent light spread across the 12" long tank. (Although I wish the bulb were 7"; that would be perfect, IMO.)

I say that since you have the 19W, give it a try and see how it works out for you. Hopefully, your results'll be better than mine.

I agree with your idea to keep your setup as simple as possible. (Especially if you're going to be bringing it to work.) My 2½ gallon tank is the easiest I have in that the only things I do are water changes and plant & fish feeding. (And when I feed the plants, I pretty much just guess. Very unscientific, but it seems to be working. Knock on driftwood.)
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-10-2004, 04:50 PM Thread Starter
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Looking at the hood the socket it is actually a dual socket bulb.
Meaning I could move the socket to the center of the hood and fit two bulbs covering the entire tank.
But would that be two much light? Yes I know that I'd have to DIY CO2 with that much light.

Now that I'm thinking about it. I'll probably replace the socket with a spare 13w 65K socket and bulb I have.

Also is the little hagan co2 kit worth the money?

And is the light frequency shift in PC bulbs a problem for freash water plants? I know for coral you need to change the bulbs every 9-10 months to keep the light frequencies where they need to be. Or else Algea takes over.
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