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Help with lighting

755 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  BellyFlop
I'm new and this is my first posting.

So here is the problem. I have had a 55 gallon planted tank for about 3 months now with very little growth and a few plants just not making it at all. For lighting I have an aqueon LED 48" with two colormax strips at 7W (equivalent to 75W each) and one blue max strip. It runs for 12 hours on a timer. I have the CO2 tank on the same timer using ceramic disk under a powerhead. I have a bubbler that runs at night. My drop checkers are nice and green with 4 dkh solution so I know I'm in the zone for good CO2 levels. I check it with ph level and kH level and it's usually at 20 to 25 ppm. I do regular water changes (20%) and use excel flourish and trace every few days (not on same day). I put some tablets in substrate month ago. Substrate is 60 pounds of Eco-Complete and have 2" to 4" (it varies). Filtration is the canister - Fluval 306. The ph is 7.2, 0.0 ammonia, 0.0 nitrites and 40ppm of nitrates. Phosphate was high - like 5.0-10.0 ppm.

Slight green spotting on acrylic tank (hard to remove without scratching) that has been present for several months and hasn't gotten worse. Plants are basic pet store stuff: Amazon sword, anubias nano, wendii, some grassy stuff and a few others that I can't remember or spell (clearly). The only plant that is thriving is the anubias nano attached to driftwood and a rock. I get a new leaf per week. None of the other plants gave done much but just stay alive.

Please help. Do I need an additional light source like a T5 or something?
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Decision made

I ordered a ray2 48" to replace my cheaper Aqueon LED. Be here Wednesday. I hope this is the solution. Any other suggestions?
You already did what I may have suggested on the lights but you don't have complete
ferts. Any missing fert causes plants to not be able to grow. But the Anubias growing
indicates it's more the light than anything else. This might help.
The Aqueon light is very low level in a tank that tall.But once the plants do start to grow because of better light, then you will have that not enough ferts issue.
Flourish is only Micros. Excel is extra if you have injected CO2. Not needed but still
an option as it helps keep out algae. 99% of "tabs" either have none or too little of
the Macros. They are good for a suppliment to like the sword plant but only for "in
addition to" not as the only fert because of what they lack and plants like the Anubias
can't take advantage of them.
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So the new Ray2 by Finnex is amazing. Insane how bright it is, puts the aqueon to shame. Within 5 hours of turning it on, my crypt wendii was pearling. It hasn't done that before. The rest of the plants still haven't greatly improved but they are no longer degrading in quality. I recommend the Finnex Ray2
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