I have had a 20-gallon high tank setup for a little over 6 years.
Fugeray planted +
eco complete substrate
Aqueon quietflow 10
Livestock (as of now):
2x Lemon Tetra
Last year I revamped it and added some stronger lights hoping for some growth. This led to a massive algae problem that I made a post about back in October or so. Long story short, I never stopped battling that algae problem and it made me extremely distraught every time I looked at it. I also had a pretty big fish die off recently with only 2 lemon tetras surviving. Today, I decided I had had enough so I ripped every plant out of the tank threw them away and I now am staring at a completely blank tank save for a couple pieces of driftwood.
I would like to make this tank work again, and so far I think I'm going to black the tank out for the foreseeable future to kill all the remaining algae particles (right thing to do?). One of the problems I think my tank had was the high lighting and lack of a fast-growing plants. My tank was essentially a slow-growing anubias jungle. I hadn't planted any faster-growing plants because I had felt I couldn't fit them in with my many anubias plants, but now I think I should plant some. Need suggestions for some high-light plants that don't require co2, although if co2 would help I might look into it.
Here are some pics from today before and after my cleaning (sorry for the wonky order):
Basically, I need to know what I was doing wrong and how I can fix these issues this time. I have a couple of things I think I was doing wrong.
1. Too high light with not enough fast-growing plants
2. Lack of co2 to combat algae
3. Stagnant flow (might need a powerhead)
4. Alkaline, Hard water (8.0 pH out of the tap)
5. Inconsistent/poorly optimized dosing schedule
If anyone can give me some advice on how I should go about redoing this tank such as equipment suggestions, plant suggestions, or dosing schedules please let me know.
Finally, I want to get some advice on an attractive stocking that makes use of the existing lemon tetras.
Thanks for listening to my rambling--I know this probably should have been multiple posts but I just sat down and wrote it.