Approaching my 3,000th post - So what have I learned? - The Planted Tank Forum
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 04:15 AM Thread Starter
Planted Tank Guru
 
scolley's Avatar
 
PTrader: (11/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: connecticut
Posts: 3,279
Approaching my 3,000th post - So what have I learned?

Wow! Just about 4 years ago my son got a 2.5 gallon tank. He immediately overloaded it with fish. I said "I bet if you put live plants in there, those fish would live longer, and your water would look better." A few Internet searches, and a couple of green water blooms later, I found myself a member of Plantedtank.net.

Now after a reasonably active 4 year membership, I feel compelled to ask, "What have I learned?"

Answer: A lot. Some from my own trial and error. But most of that was enabled by the things I've learned on this forum. I'd love to distill what I've learned into a few pithy paragraphs. But the reality is, the things I've learned from this site, and the experiences people on this site have lead me to, could fill a book or two. So rather than even attempt to distill all the things I think I've learned here, I'd prefer to pass along what I believe to be the core nuggets I've picked up.

And even these tid-bits will be, I'm sure, wide open for dispute...
  1. A little algae is natural. A lot of algae means something is wrong.
  2. EI can work, and does. But it is best applied to a fully established tank. Starting a tank on lean on ferts and aggressive algae removal is the safest route for new tanks.
  3. Light, depending on conditions in your tank, is either your best friend or worst enemy. Tom Barr says that "it is your throttle", and he is right.
  4. Nothing reduces the work of having a planted tank like having a reliable auto water change system.
  5. Too many Fish (relative to plant mass) = ammonia, and Ammonia = algae. You do the math...
  6. If Rex Grigg says it, it may be crusty or abrasive, but it is almost certainly true. NB - this only applies to matters of planted tank husbandry. Outside of that subject, please use your own discretion. :-)
  7. The search function here is your best friend. Use it. People in this community WANT to help you. But asking questions that could have been answered by a good search is bad form in the least... selfish and lazy at the worst.
  8. Good aquascaping is a difficult art form. And art does not come naturally to most people.
  9. If your tank is full of healthy, low algae plants, you should be VERY PROUD. It ain't easy. Most people can't do what you have done. Take pride in that and enjoy the fruits of your labors. For if you can't enjoy it, then you are - without a doubt - missing the point.
  10. Just as healthy GROWTH is the key to our tanks, so is it to our community. If you have received, please give back - in as much as you are able.

OK, so that's my 2 cents. But what lessons have YOU leaned? Please do tell...

Steve - 33g reef and a 180g planted in need of a re-scape.
scolley is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 04:19 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (266/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 9,417
...it's an expensive hobby. Very expensive.


Oh, and an early congratulations on 3,000.
epicfish is offline  
post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 04:50 AM
 
PTrader: (25/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 114
OK - used the search function first - no answer -

Warning - Stupid question to follow.

2. EI can work

OK...What is EI?

Tim
pranks is offline  
 
post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 05:06 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Madfish's Avatar
 
PTrader: (11/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: WA
Posts: 789
Send a message via MSN to Madfish Send a message via Yahoo to Madfish
Read before you ask!!! I know Im guilty of not doing that a couple of times.

Jeff

Whats this green fuzzy stuff thats growing in my tank.
Madfish is offline  
post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 05:07 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Madfish's Avatar
 
PTrader: (11/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: WA
Posts: 789
Send a message via MSN to Madfish Send a message via Yahoo to Madfish
BTW congrats on getting to the big 3,000 one day I will be as cool as you.

Whats this green fuzzy stuff thats growing in my tank.
Madfish is offline  
post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 05:51 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
tundragirl's Avatar
 
PTrader: (95/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: wisconsin
Posts: 670
Do things right the 1st time around- no cutting corners by going cheap.
It Always ends up costing you more in the long run when you have to buy the more expensive item anyway
cindy

Cynthia
tundragirl is offline  
post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 06:21 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
ringram's Avatar
 
PTrader: (67/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: West Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,602
Send a message via AIM to ringram
A lighter fish load is better than a heavier fish load.
Overfiltration is better than underfiltration. You can always throttle down the flow rate.
Don't add too many fish at one time. I think that pretty much goes without saying.
Another thing that I've learned from extensive reading, experience and listening to Tom Barr is that plants can and WILL get nutrients any way they can. It's pretty much a myth that swords and crypts are "heavy root feeders" and prefer to obtain nutrients in that form. If the substrate is lacking in nutrients, they'll go to the water column to satisfy those needs.
As Scolley mentioned, "a little algae is normal" --- I used to fight algae 'till I was blue in the face, even if it was just a tiny bit. You'll never completely get rid of it, alas keeping it under control is our main goal.

...just wanted to add a few things.

90g journal:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

---------------------------------------------------
SFBAAPS member -
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


SAPS member -
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
ringram is offline  
post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 06:40 AM
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
Tdon1md's Avatar
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Salisbury, MD
Posts: 430
I've learned lots as I started here with notta so no where to go but up. Most that I've learned has already been stated here but here are the highlights:

1) Spend the money the first time. It costs 3x as much to cheap it out and then re-do
2) My tank will never look as good to me as the "dream tanks" I see pictured here so enjoy what I have cuz it's the best I can do!
3) Always keep an open mind!
4) Controlling BBA in 20G+ with yeast is a myth, like a dog chasing his tail
5) Pearling is awesome but "judging plant health by amount of pearling is like judging marriage health by number of orgasims"............. thanks Rex..
6) There's always gonna be something I "need" for my tank. Spend your money wisely cuz you'll need lots of it with a planted tank.
7) Algae happens.
8) Tom Barr is the BOMB!!!!!!!!
9) Membership in an aquatic plant organization is well worth the dues for the wealth of knowledge that is available.
10) Algae happens................ lol.


Great thread Scolley and congrats on the big 3000!
________
The Legend Condos Cosy Beach

Last edited by Tdon1md; 08-22-2011 at 01:22 PM.
Tdon1md is offline  
post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 06:42 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
fishscale's Avatar
 
PTrader: (12/100%)
Join Date: May 2007
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 3,895
Quote:
Originally Posted by pranks View Post
OK - used the search function first - no answer -

Warning - Stupid question to follow.

2. EI can work

OK...What is EI?

Tim
For once, the search function won't work very well to find this answer. The search function won't accept the search term EI. So, here is how you can search on this forum in a better way:

In google:
[searchterm]" site:"[website]

So, for example, if you wanted to look up EI on this site, you would type (the whole thing):

EI site:www.plantedtank.net

into google.

Eheim Pimp #254, Eheim Wolverine #1


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Work in progress
10 Gallon Shrimp Tank
10 Gallon Planted QT
20 Gallon Shrimp Tank (Work in progress)


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fishscale is offline  
post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 06:50 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
fishscale's Avatar
 
PTrader: (12/100%)
Join Date: May 2007
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 3,895
Things I learned:

1. Fish add up, and they cost more than you think
2. Same goes for plants (as I look at my paypal statement and shake my head)
3. Craigslist is your friend.
4. Unless the tank leaks. Check it before you buy it, even if the seller tells you he tested it.
5. If there is something you want, but you think it's too expensive, wait a while and get some more money. Going the cheap route never works, because even if it works, you start having bigger aspirations, and then you will just end up getting the more expensive item anyway.
6. As peaceful as the tank looks after you are done, it is the most murder inducing activity to plant the tank sometimes (especially tall ones)
7. Get that piece of equipment you didn't need until 10 minutes ago, when you really needed it.

Eheim Pimp #254, Eheim Wolverine #1


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Work in progress
10 Gallon Shrimp Tank
10 Gallon Planted QT
20 Gallon Shrimp Tank (Work in progress)


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fishscale is offline  
post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 09:49 AM
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
Tdon1md's Avatar
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Salisbury, MD
Posts: 430
Quote:
Originally Posted by fishscale View Post
6. As peaceful as the tank looks after you are done, it is the most murder inducing activity to plant the tank sometimes (especially tall ones)
Didn't quote get that but it sounded profound. Could you elaborate?

Sorry for the hijack Scolley.
________
Live Sex Webshows

Last edited by Tdon1md; 08-22-2011 at 01:23 PM.
Tdon1md is offline  
post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 01:43 PM
Banned
 
spypet's Avatar
 
PTrader: (56/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Forest Hills, NY
Posts: 3,297
scolley, thanks for sharing those insights.
may I be half as wise, when I hit the big,
three oh oh oh.

I especially appreciated #: 1, 3, 7, 8, 9.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
spypet is offline  
post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 01:55 PM
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
PTrader: (5/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Michigan
Posts: 448
Send a message via AIM to Riley Send a message via Yahoo to Riley
Be patient! Very cool post Scolley, this should be a sticky.

--------------

Riley
Riley is offline  
post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 02:15 PM
Children Boogie
 
mistergreen's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,743
you left out mentioning the low-tech approach can work too.
And the hobby can be much cheaper.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
mistergreen is offline  
post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-04-2007, 02:54 PM Thread Starter
Planted Tank Guru
 
scolley's Avatar
 
PTrader: (11/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: connecticut
Posts: 3,279
Quote:
Originally Posted by mistergreen View Post
you left out mentioning the low-tech approach can work too.
And the hobby can be much cheaper.
Good point! But that was no omission. I have not learned that. I don't dispute it, that's just one part of the hobby that I don't know anything about. My experiences have been only high tech, and "extreme" high tech.

Maybe low tech tanks is something I can learn about on the way to my 6,000th post! Good thing we have a forum on it here that can teach me.

Steve - 33g reef and a 180g planted in need of a re-scape.
scolley is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome