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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-03-2018, 11:10 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Everyone! First off, I wish I would have found this site months ago before I jumped into this. I've come across tons of material already becoming super helpful.

First things first. I have a planted 55 gal tank. (48”LX12.5”W X 19” D)(rim to rim).
I was convinced by a co worker to go with a Walstad Method and was excited after some research at the potential. Picked up some organic soil, and went with the Eco-complete Carib Sea Substrate.

We did some scaping with the material and added a piece of drift wood. It looked great right off the bat! Next, Added some plants. (S. Repins, Bacopa Monnieri, Anubias Barteri, Vallisneria Spiralis, Dwarf Hair Grass, hygrophila compacta.)

It was looking really good for about a week. Then. The Algae Bloom happened. It looks to only be brown hair algae? It totally covers any rocks or piece of wood, attaches to plants and becomes long and stringy. I try and trim off as much as possible.

It totally consumed the hair algae in about 5 days and half of the S. Repins in an extra day or so’s time. Aubias is covered in brown film algae as is the Bacopa with the hair algae. Compacta were fully engulfed and were gone in 8/10 days and were removed from the tank. The Vall is really the only un harmed plant. The S. Repins at this point seem to be melting/burning. Not sure on the terminology for this. But they are not fairing well.

I decided some Otocinclus’ would be the best next step. Store had four left so they came home with me. They’re keeping the tank walls and “Vall” super clean. Anything else (Sometimes the Anubias) won’t get touched. Fish have been in the tank for 13 days now.

This whole endeavor started may 23rd. I feel with daily cleanings by hand, and 40/60% water changes every Monday (my only day off) The process will catch up. Right?

Also, I have a sump filtration set up. Overflow goes under the 55 to a separate 10G with 5 sections 3 filter sections, a refuguim, and a return chamber. My return pump is rated at 400 GPH at max flow.

I have added no other “dosages” yet. I was recommended Flourish by Seachem but am yet to use any.

Lighting is 2 Finnex 24/7 planted plus setups. One for each half of the tank, rotated each water change and they both arent able to sit parallel to each other.

Please help with any thing you may know. I will add photos as soon as possible.









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44





One of the Oto's and some "Vall" Growth




The "Melted/Burnt' Repins...

A Local Failing Planted Tank Artist
-40G Planted Tank (Work In Progress)
*ORGANIC SOIL, ECO-COMPLETE, FLUVAL 306 CANISTER.
*8 RCS, 3 OTOCINCLUS.
*2 24" 24/7 PLANTED+
-20G Tall (NO PLANS, ADOPTED FISH)
*White Sand (Deep Bed), Local Lava Rock (Desert).
*Internal Filter (Aqueon AT30)
*1 Yellow Chichlid.

Last edited by Darkblade48; 07-04-2018 at 12:16 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-04-2018, 12:14 AM
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Have you tested your water?
Ammonia, nitrate, and phosphate???


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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-04-2018, 12:23 AM Thread Starter
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Didn't Add The Oto's till I got the Perimeters 0'd out again. Ammonia spiked fairly quickly, but after the second water change, it was back down to 0ppm. Test Kit used is the API Freshwater Master Test Kit.

last Test came with Values of: pH:6.8, Ammonia:0ppm, Nitrate: 0ppm, Nitrate:0ppm

A Local Failing Planted Tank Artist
-40G Planted Tank (Work In Progress)
*ORGANIC SOIL, ECO-COMPLETE, FLUVAL 306 CANISTER.
*8 RCS, 3 OTOCINCLUS.
*2 24" 24/7 PLANTED+
-20G Tall (NO PLANS, ADOPTED FISH)
*White Sand (Deep Bed), Local Lava Rock (Desert).
*Internal Filter (Aqueon AT30)
*1 Yellow Chichlid.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-16-2018, 03:01 AM Thread Starter
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A little up date... started doing two 8-10G changes a week, aiming right at the hair algae with a 3/4" clear tube to pick it right off the plants and Decor. cleaned Up quick. Started to notice a "Green Water". Bought a an API GH,KH, and Phosphate test kit to go along with the other basic kit I had. Phosphates went straight to 10+ppm with out even waiting the 3 minutes. Obviously a bigger issue. Will be adding a API PHO-ZORB tomorrow. The pH has also been on the slow increase since cycling. (6.6, 6.8, 7.2, 7.8, 8.2) Even with steady water changes. Still only have 3 Oto's in the whole set up.


Unfortunately, I came to find out the lighting in my room is scewing the colors of the test tubes a bit. I tested for High pH and it came up Red.. Uhhhh? So I took it out in the sun light and it turned a copper brown. (8.0-8.2). Basically considering throwing out all my recordings for the past two months as todays indoor readings were all slightly off for re-reading them outdoors.

Water Change is due tomorrow. will add the other two changes, and update later in the week. Seems to be coming along though. SMH

A Local Failing Planted Tank Artist
-40G Planted Tank (Work In Progress)
*ORGANIC SOIL, ECO-COMPLETE, FLUVAL 306 CANISTER.
*8 RCS, 3 OTOCINCLUS.
*2 24" 24/7 PLANTED+
-20G Tall (NO PLANS, ADOPTED FISH)
*White Sand (Deep Bed), Local Lava Rock (Desert).
*Internal Filter (Aqueon AT30)
*1 Yellow Chichlid.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-23-2018, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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Finished another water change this morning. Still a fair amount of Hair Algae floating around attached to Vall and Bacopa. The S. Repens seem to be turning a yellow/white color now as well. I've been using Seachem Flourish to help with the plants but do not want to use full dosages until the hair algae is under more control.

Also, the PVC piping for the over flow devolved a leak at the Union Joint. Shut it all down. The local pet shop only had a Fluval 306 Canister Filter, which happened to be in sale. It'll have to work for now. I was able to swap all the Media from the over flow sump tank to the Canister with minimal work. Hoping it is enough to save the Bio Load to not have to RE-cycle again. (SMH)

Any other recommendations to help get rid of the Algae? Oh, I was also given 12 RCS to help get rid of the issue as well. They were very active for about 72 hours, then slowly died off. I have 7 left, now about a week later. Did a slow drip acclimation for about 3 hours before adding them. They wont touch any of the waffers or blanched foods I put in. I ordered some Shrimp King Complete for them to see how that goes.

S Repens leaf coloration

Cleaned Driftwood from shrimp
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A Local Failing Planted Tank Artist
-40G Planted Tank (Work In Progress)
*ORGANIC SOIL, ECO-COMPLETE, FLUVAL 306 CANISTER.
*8 RCS, 3 OTOCINCLUS.
*2 24" 24/7 PLANTED+
-20G Tall (NO PLANS, ADOPTED FISH)
*White Sand (Deep Bed), Local Lava Rock (Desert).
*Internal Filter (Aqueon AT30)
*1 Yellow Chichlid.

Last edited by Darkblade48; 07-24-2018 at 12:49 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-23-2018, 08:18 PM
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I'm the pothos queen, did you try any pothos?

I do 50 % water changes, I don't play.

Stop dosing until things get balanced.

Too much light? Did you say lights 24/7?
Too much nutrition?
Not enough flow?
Can we see the refugium?

And don't starve your algae eaters! You're already on it!

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-23-2018, 08:46 PM
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S. repens is turning yellow due to a deficiency. If your Nitrate is still at 0 ppm, that would probably be it. Plants MUST have a source of nitrogen. Your soil will eventually provide this, I'm guessing roots aren't well enough established on those S. repens for them to pull anything from the soil though.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-23-2018, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ladykemma2 View Post
I'm the pothos queen, did you try any pothos?

I do 50 % water changes, I don't play.

Stop dosing until things get balanced.

Too much light? Did you say lights 24/7?
Too much nutrition?
Not enough flow?
Can we see the refugium?

And don't starve your algae eaters! You're already on it!

Sent from my KYOCERA-E6820 using Tapatalk
I have two stems of Pothos Hanging over the edge of my tank actually...
*Light is on the 24/7 setting for 8 hours a day now, not 10.
*There is two sources of flow. Through the Canister Filter Head, and an internal filter that moves (about) 140 GPH.
The Canister filter is supposed to Support up to a 70 Gallon tank.

The Refugium is no longer in use (though it is still running), I had a Pipe leak at the joint. Thus for the reason for an emergency Canister that Happened to go sale at the local pet shop.

I'm trying to add food for the eaters.. They just don't seem to be taking the nutrients.

Bump:
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeorges View Post
S. repens is turning yellow due to a deficiency. If your Nitrate is still at 0 ppm, that would probably be it. Plants MUST have a source of nitrogen. Your soil will eventually provide this, I'm guessing roots aren't well enough established on those S. repens for them to pull anything from the soil though.
Most of the Roots have taken. (about an inch in length) But I agree with the Nitrate levels. I know adding fish is quick fix... I just didnt want to add my planned Tetras and Cardinals till the Algae was more under control.

The lights are 5.5" off the surface of the water. I had the lights attached to to the rim of the tank for about 5 weeks, finally read that it may be too close or intense. The Supports are resting on 2X4"s that gave it another 3.5" of height.

A Local Failing Planted Tank Artist
-40G Planted Tank (Work In Progress)
*ORGANIC SOIL, ECO-COMPLETE, FLUVAL 306 CANISTER.
*8 RCS, 3 OTOCINCLUS.
*2 24" 24/7 PLANTED+
-20G Tall (NO PLANS, ADOPTED FISH)
*White Sand (Deep Bed), Local Lava Rock (Desert).
*Internal Filter (Aqueon AT30)
*1 Yellow Chichlid.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 12:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryce_Hiob View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by ladykemma2 View Post
I'm the pothos queen, did you try any pothos?

I do 50 % water changes, I don't play.

Stop dosing until things get balanced.

Too much light? Did you say lights 24/7?
Too much nutrition?
Not enough flow?
Can we see the refugium?

And don't starve your algae eaters! You're already on it!

Sent from my KYOCERA-E6820 using Tapatalk
I have two stems of Pothos Hanging over the edge of my tank actually...
*Light is on the 24/7 setting for 8 hours a day now, not 10.
*There is two sources of flow. Through the Canister Filter Head, and an internal filter that moves (about) 140 GPH.
The Canister filter is supposed to Support up to a 70 Gallon tank.

The Refugium is no longer in use (though it is still running), I had a Pipe leak at the joint. Thus for the reason for an emergency Canister that Happened to go sale at the local pet shop.

I'm trying to add food for the eaters.. They just don't seem to be taking the nutrients.

Bump:
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeorges View Post
S. repens is turning yellow due to a deficiency. If your Nitrate is still at 0 ppm, that would probably be it. Plants MUST have a source of nitrogen. Your soil will eventually provide this, I'm guessing roots aren't well enough established on those S. repens for them to pull anything from the soil though.
Most of the Roots have taken. (about an inch in length) But I agree with the Nitrate levels. I know adding fish is quick fix... I just didnt want to add my planned Tetras and Cardinals till the Algae was more under control.

The lights are 5.5" off the surface of the water. I had the lights attached to to the rim of the tank for about 5 weeks, finally read that it may be too close or intense. The Supports are resting on 2X4"s that gave it another 3.5" of height.
I would try dropping your photoperiod down to 6 hours at most until the tank settles, or decrease power by 25%. Having zero's from your ammonia, nitrates and nitrites makes me think you're still uncycled. There should be some nitrates present.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 12:31 AM
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FWIW I would never starve my plants when algae gets a bit out of hand.
Algae can thrive on a lot less nutrients than plants can.


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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 01:41 AM
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FWIW I would never starve my plants when algae gets a bit out of hand.
Algae can thrive on a lot less nutrients than plants can.
100% agree. Can't give you a like on mobile... ridiculous. I have no idea how dosing in a Walstad tank works, but when you stop dosing altogether, your plants suffer while algae is still just fine. I learned this lesson early on the hard way in a high tech tank. Things quickly went from bad to worse.
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 01:54 AM Thread Starter
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I’ll have to go back and check, but it was roughly 5 weeks into the tank that both ammonia and Nitrates were pressent. That was when I added the Oto’s. I know it has cycled at least once because I got a cloudyness shortly later....

A Local Failing Planted Tank Artist
-40G Planted Tank (Work In Progress)
*ORGANIC SOIL, ECO-COMPLETE, FLUVAL 306 CANISTER.
*8 RCS, 3 OTOCINCLUS.
*2 24" 24/7 PLANTED+
-20G Tall (NO PLANS, ADOPTED FISH)
*White Sand (Deep Bed), Local Lava Rock (Desert).
*Internal Filter (Aqueon AT30)
*1 Yellow Chichlid.
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 02:08 AM
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Hi Bryce,

I do a dirted low tech tank (no injected CO2) and one thing I haven't seen you mention is do you add any type of carbon for your plants? If not you may want to consider some type of glutaraldehyde (Seachem Excel, NilocG Aquatics, etc) plus it does have some algaecide properties so that may also help. You also might consider getting some fast growing stems to help compete with the algae. But you need to get your nitrate up and your phosphate down if your test results are true. Also, test your water you use for your water changes - it may be a source of your phosphates.

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 02:25 AM
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Hi Bryce,

I do a dirted low tech tank (no injected CO2) and one thing I haven't seen you mention is do you add any type of carbon for your plants? If not you may want to consider some type of glutaraldehyde (Seachem Excel, NilocG Aquatics, etc) plus it does have some algaecide properties so that may also help. You also might consider getting some fast growing stems to help compete with the algae. But you need to get your nitrate up and your phosphate down if your test results are true. Also, test your water you use for your water changes - it may be a source of your phosphates.
Glut will melt his vals.
You would have to go through a slow acclimation process with glut, and you still may have some melt.
Isn't the soil supposed to provide the carbon via anaerobic activity?
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 02:49 AM
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Sorry, missed that part. Yeah, Vals can have issues with Glut.

I don't know if the soil would provide enough carbon source, I've always had to supplement with glut. But each tank is unique and I believe some are more in balance then others. I am still striving to reach that balance...lol.

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