Co2 Help! (Pro's Welcome) & Plant Diagnosis Help! (Curling) - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 12:44 AM Thread Starter
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Co2 Help! (Pro's Welcome) & Plant Diagnosis Help! (Curling)

Hey everyone!

Help me take my tank from good to great!

Here's a quick description:

125G MGOCPM & Black Diamond
x4 Finnex Planted+ 8hrs/day
x2 Koralia 850 Circulators
x2 Eheim 2217
*Pressurized co2 injected w/inline reactors at each end of this 6ft tank
*pH Controller holding between 6.4 & 6.5 24/7
*pH of Degassed tank water 7.6
*KH=4 (stable)

I was having what I suspected were co2 distribution issues. So, I install a splitter and another co2 reactor and am now injecting from both ends. Furthermore, I added a pH controller to help keep co2 stable. Still, it seem I am having problems with BBA. See the following pictures:









As you can see from the pictures, the BBA is appearing on the edges of the old growth. Any ideas on what I can do to improve this? Some plants may require more maintenance than others like AR Mini? I'm wondering what more I can do to grow the plants better and take the tank from good to great.

Last edited by tylergvolk; 07-14-2015 at 02:25 AM. Reason: Changed content
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 01:34 AM
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You have a .7 to .8 pH drop with the CO2 on, which corresponds to about 20ppm or less of CO2. That is not enough for the high light you are using. If you had only 2 of those lights, you would have around 35-40 PAR, so with 4 lights you probably have 75+ PAR. You should drop the pH controller setting by .1, then observe the tank for a day or two for problems with the fish. Then repeat this, until you see the plants doing a lot better, but no problems with the fish, and you should then have enough CO2.

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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 01:45 AM
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What is your dosing schedule? It may just be too much light/ too long a photoperiod. Maybe take a couple hours out of the middle of the day or at least reduce the number of bulbs for a couple hours.
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 01:57 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
You have a .7 to .8 pH drop with the CO2 on, which corresponds to about 20ppm or less of CO2. That is not enough for the high light you are using. If you had only 2 of those lights, you would have around 35-40 PAR, so with 4 lights you probably have 75+ PAR. You should drop the pH controller setting by .1, then observe the tank for a day or two for problems with the fish. Then repeat this, until you see the plants doing a lot better, but no problems with the fish, and you should then have enough CO2.
Thank you very much for your reply. I was afraid you would say that. So, more CO2 OK. I can do that. Thanks for the helpful instructions as well. One quick thing about the math, can you share with me your math? I know mine is probably wrong but here what I'm getting:

Co2(ppm)= equilibrium co2(ppm) X 10^ change in pH

7.6 - 6.5 = 1.1
10^1.1=12.6
12.6*3=37.8ppm

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Originally Posted by keymastr View Post
What is your dosing schedule? It may just be too much light/ too long a photoperiod. Maybe take a couple hours out of the middle of the day or at least reduce the number of bulbs for a couple hours.
My long-term goal is to actually increase the light by adding two more P+'s to this tank or 2 monster rays light enhancers. I realize its going to be a lot of light but before I go there I wanna master what I've got going on here.

So, instead of decreasing light Id prefer to increase co2 and ferts.

I'm dosing EI:

KNO3: 1 1/2 tsp
PO4: 1/2 tsp
SO4: 1/2 tsp
X3 per week

Plantex CSM+b: 1/2 tsp
13% Iron Chelate: 1/8 tsp
X3 per week

Last edited by tylergvolk; 07-09-2015 at 02:25 AM. Reason: Changed content
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 04:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keymastr View Post
What is your dosing schedule? It may just be too much light/ too long a photoperiod. Maybe take a couple hours out of the middle of the day or at least reduce the number of bulbs for a couple hours.
+1 to this. I had the same issue. I also found out I was dosing too much potassium. I would add in a break period, decrease photo period to 7 hours, and I would also get some Ottos. They love keeping broad leaf plants clean. Good luck!
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 07:21 PM
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Originally Posted by tylergvolk View Post
Thank you very much for your reply. I was afraid you would say that. So, more CO2 OK. I can do that. Thanks for the helpful instructions as well. One quick thing about the math, can you share with me your math? I know mine is probably wrong but here what I'm getting:

Co2(ppm)= equilibrium co2(ppm) X 10^ change in pH

7.6 - 6.5 = 1.1
10^1.1=12.6
12.6*3=37.8ppm
Oops! My mistake. I did a quick subtraction in my head and didn't recheck it. You do have a 1.1 change in pH, so your calculation is correct. You may still not have adequate CO2, but at least it isn't as far off as I thought.

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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-10-2015, 01:48 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
Oops! My mistake. I did a quick subtraction in my head and didn't recheck it. You do have a 1.1 change in pH, so your calculation is correct. You may still not have adequate CO2, but at least it isn't as far off as I thought.
Phew, okay. Still gunna follow your instruction and review...

Anyone else have any thoughts?

Another issue I'm having is very old growth that is starved of light tends to lose all of its leaves and starts to look "linky" after awhile. Is there anything more I can do besides trim the tops of new growth and replace the old stems?

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+1 to this. I had the same issue. I also found out I was dosing too much potassium. I would add in a break period, decrease photo period to 7 hours, and I would also get some Ottos. They love keeping broad leaf plants clean. Good luck!
Too much potassium? This is the first time I've heard of that. I've read tons of threads saying you can't really over dose posatssium unless you drop the whole container in the tank...

I've used siesta periods in older lower light tanks before to give co2 time to ramp back up. Worked well. It's not as common for higher tech to siesta, or is it?!?
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-11-2015, 02:35 PM Thread Starter
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-11-2015, 11:03 PM
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Originally Posted by tylergvolk View Post
It's not as common for higher tech to siesta, or is it?!?
You can maintain consistently high CO2 levels in a tank; the siesta really isn't necessary other than to extend the viewing period. The build up of CO2 during mid day siesta is more useful for low tech approaches. Tom barr did cover this experimentally in one of his barr reports.

The Alternanthera reineckii looks very severe... I suspect it's more than just a CO2 issue.

Did you change anything else in a major way before this ? Did you make changes that affect plants growth rates ?

I definitely don't think you have too much light/too long hours - which will usually result in more green algae forms appearing. If anything the AR seems to be lacking good lighting. BBA can grow in low light tanks as well and so isn't particularly triggered by high light. Do you know your substrate PAR ?

Regards, Dennis
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 04:04 AM
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Just would like to point out this is a STUNNING tank, ^ as these gurus said I don't know if it's your distribution as much as it your levels
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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 04:57 AM Thread Starter
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You can maintain consistently high CO2 levels in a tank; the siesta really isn't necessary other than to extend the viewing period. The build up of CO2 during mid day siesta is more useful for low tech approaches. Tom barr did cover this experimentally in one of his barr reports.

The Alternanthera reineckii looks very severe... I suspect it's more than just a CO2 issue.

Did you change anything else in a major way before this ? Did you make changes that affect plants growth rates ?

I definitely don't think you have too much light/too long hours - which will usually result in more green algae forms appearing. If anything the AR seems to be lacking good lighting. BBA can grow in low light tanks as well and so isn't particularly triggered by high light. Do you know your substrate PAR ?

I've been tinkering with ferts and co2 the last few months trying to solve these issues but I don't think I've cranked up co2 enough yet. I'm really gunna turn up co2 and assess.

Here is the deal tho...

I agree that the condition of the A.R mini is severe. I also agree it lacks light. However when I turn up the photo period from 7 hours to 9 hours by 1/2hour increments daily, I get GDA on the glass so I ramp it back. Therefore, I figure I need more co2. So, I increased co2 with my ph controller and things improve immediately.

Next, I have two more 36" P+ lights ready to go on this tank. I want to get more light on this if possibly. Currently, x4 P+ on this 125g delivered ~75+par.
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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:16 AM
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IMHO I don't think it lacks light. Could be lack/excess of micro nutrients.

I know you are doing EI but have you ever checked you macro nutrients too? Nitrates, Phosphates, GH and KH?


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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:43 AM
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I would just crank the co2 until the fish show signs of distress, then back it down a little until they are comfortable again. Obviously do the increase slowly over a few days or so.

Imo that's about the only way to know for sure you're getting adequate CO2 in a tank that size. Calculating levels is at best a tricky business.


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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:51 AM Thread Starter
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IMHO I don't think it lacks light. Could be lack/excess of micro nutrients.

I know you are doing EI but have you ever checked you macro nutrients too? Nitrates, Phosphates, GH and KH?
This was one of the very first things I tested several months ago and realized my macro were Way high and dialed those back. My levels are all in range now. Tested with calibrated kits.

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I would just crank the co2 until the fish show signs of distress, then back it down a little until they are comfortable again. Obviously do the increase slowly over a few days or so.

Imo that's about the only way to know for sure you're getting adequate CO2 in a tank that size. Calculating levels is at best a tricky business.
Good advice. I'm in the process now. Thanks.
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by burr740 View Post
I would just crank the co2 until the fish show signs of distress, then back it down a little until they are comfortable again. Obviously do the increase slowly over a few days or so.

Imo that's about the only way to know for sure you're getting adequate CO2 in a tank that size. Calculating levels is at best a tricky business.
This is a very good suggestion.

Regards, Dennis
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