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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)

9/10/05

9/21/05

9/29/05

10/20/05

Pearling with ODNO shoplight

11/15/05
Have val (various types), narrow leaf chain grass, rotilia indica, baby tears, westeria and a mistery weed (Hygrophila polysperma?) - nothing difficult.

The last two pictures is with ODNO - but under exposed it to get better color rendition. It was pretty much as bright as the metal halide.
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10/17/05
The first pic was right after I got the sun (my metal halide pendant) back up - premature bulb failure. Well I am now with a 3 month old tank that has eaten 2 hqi bulbs (second bulb failed Saturday). Last night put two shop lights over it, will take one last picture and move on to alternative lighting - goodbye mad plant growth.
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11/10/05
I do not have any more recent pics - after the sun went down. I continued to get great growth with alternative lighting (odno), but some algae is back. Have done quite a few major prunings. When I get it sculpted better will post again. Sun is back up again.
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11/15/05
Chain swords were getting out of hand, so I thinned them in hope of getting them to grow shorter rather than compeat for light. Also trimmed back the baby tears in hope to once again make it a foreground plant. Have been systematically thinning the westeria - and wow, found my amazon sword has really taken off. Tank does have a new bulb, the the color is user error with the camera - will try to replace this picture tomorrow with better color rendering.
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Discussion Starter #3
Oh, can anyone tell me what the forground plant is in the 10/20/05 picture right above the 05 is? It is the plant in front of the Amazon Sword. While I have moved it to the side, I have not pruned it yet. It is currently emergent and about 4x that size.
 

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jgc said:
Oh, can anyone tell me what the forground plant is in the 10/20/05 picture right above the 05 is? It is the plant in front of the Amazon Sword. While I have moved it to the side, I have not pruned it yet. It is currently emergent and about 4x that size.
Nice tank!!!

Where do you get your plants here in Austin? I usually go to Aquatek although I've found some hidden gyms in some of the other stores on many occasions.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Most of the plants were mostly purchased at amazonia (some were purchased, some where small peices that the sales person "accidentally" dropped into the bag).

Rest were purchased from Lucy's at Austin Aquariums (she has probably the best, and healthiest display of plants in Austin IMHO). Besides far better eye appeal, some were cheeper from her as well (at liest the Vals were, and she had the weed in the back left corner that got me out of the first Algae problem).
 

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Lovely plant growth, but it needs some kind of a hardscep in there to break it up a little... It's a little too green. Maybe some dirftwood, some rocks...
 

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jgc said:
Most of the plants were mostly purchased at amazonia (some were purchased, some where small peices that the sales person "accidentally" dropped into the bag).

Rest were purchased from Lucy's at Austin Aquariums (she has probably the best, and healthiest display of plants in Austin IMHO). Besides far better eye appeal, some were cheeper from her as well (at liest the Vals were, and she had the weed in the back left corner that got me out of the first Algae problem).
I was recently in Austin Aquariums (after not going there for almost a year) and I agree with you on the plants. They used to not have much of a plant display or selection but they've really upgraded lately. Their planted display tank is incredible.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
update 1/27/06


1/26/065
Everything growing like weeds again. I can not keep the narrow leaf chain swords short - they are on a short list to be rescaped. Meanwhile I am still fighting to make the baby tears into a foreground plant (have tried trimming every 3 weeks, but will have to accept that they will require weekly mowing).

Added my first riccia and moss last week, but still a long way from either taking off. The Amazon chain sword is on it's third runner - the second runner be coming out this week (hopefully) and will post an after pruning pic as well

I figured out how to trick my camera into reasonable color rendering (color of the tank has not changed.
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I just realized how large of hole I left in this log, so here is a bit more. At some point around 11/15/05 I went to a vertical spraybar – this caused algae. My co2 ladder and my 2213 just could not supply enough flow and co2. I hooked up my HOT to get flow – things started getting better. I took a much needed vacation from 11/22 to 12/2/05. The vacation left my tank abandoned for a few days, then in the care of family for the next week. I came back to a less than perfect tank – some algae and signs of deficiencies. Luckily, I also came back to my first of two Tank Christmas presents – A new needle valve, an eheim co2 diffuser, and test kits. Within a few days I knew my water much better than I had before. Both PO4 and NO3 were around 40ppm. CO2 was around 60-80ppm. I started down the slow road to redemption. I also modified my HOT to a vertical spray bar. Almost immediately I got champagne bubbles.

By the week before Christmas (and 4+ large water changes latter), PO4 was down to tap levels 1-2ppm. NO3 absorption sky rocked. Plant growth drastically improved. Addition additional K also cured most of the deficiencies. My second tank Christmas present came in as well – a 2217, a hydor inline heater, and a switchable power center (each outlet is switched). Shortly after these I started on my automatic water change project – still pending. Actual installation of all the Christmas presents was only finished on 1/26 – so will take pictures tonight.

Anyway, this brings me pretty much to current. Most of the old plant growth and damage has been removed, new growth looks great, but a little less red (PO4 deficiency is my guess, I am resuming minimal dosing of it on 1/26/05.)
 

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Discussion Starter #10


Just thought I would finally post pictures of my diy stand and the equipment in it.

And a quick post pruning picture.
 

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I think the "mystry plant" that was in front of th amazon sword but was moved, is bacopa australis. Supposedly it is very easy and very fast growing-- if trimmed, it can form a bush like M umbrosum. BTW-- did anyone know that HC, HM, and MU are in the same family as bacopas and limnophilas?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The mistery plant is indeed fast growing - 4+ inches a week. I moved it a couple inches over to the edge of the aquarium - it was hiding too much.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well, the blog still exists so I guess I will try to update it...

The sun died again, and I got fed up with it. Built a 2x96 pc because as well as the 2xODNO worked it looked terrible. Tank survived till I took down the house (sold house, moved tank) and the tank was moved to the new house and completely replanted.

pc died, flipped back to 2xodno. The time between these cost me the majority of my plants. rebuilt the pc, it died again (not sure, but expect a ballast gave out). Back to 2xodno. rebuilt the sun. sun died, found that the icecap was toast, so replaced the ballist. Sun died again (damage to bulb from failing ballast). Back to 2x odno. Oh, kids knocked over the pc fixture, there were no survivors (fixture is no longer, reflector is still salvageable). Then got the call from my wife, tank on fire...

Algae in the spraybar cause one jet to angle up. Water level had gotten low while I was on a work trip (and nobody was topping off), and that jet went airborne into the light fixture. Water everywhere, destroyed the shop light. Not sure if it damaged the ballast. That was earlier this year. So I was sitting with 3 disabled sets of lights and no time. Left the remaining odno go 24x7, but just could not find the time to repair any of the 3 sets of lights.

Finally got back to it. Not a plant living. I now have the MH working with a new ballast, and 2 spare bulbs in the cabinet.

I have done 4-6 large water changes, and have cycled the HOT a few dozen times it seams. I have some plants in place, but they can not overcome the green water (substrate probably has a huge buffer of nutrients in it). Replacement biomass inbound.

Tons of dreams and ideas (including a 4th lighting system, I like operational redundancy on hand) - completely different direction with the aquascaping (starting propagation on that soon). The saga continues.

Oh wife is on board, so the display tank might reproduce as well (livestock incompatibilities). But that is a few months down the road and entirely dependent on how the propagation of the aquascaping goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
10/27/2012


Special thanks to OVT, who's plant package made this tank rebuild possible. Essentially all plants came from OVT's aquariums.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
:icon_cry:The sun is flickering. I really do not know how many hours a day it is on and how many it is off - I fear a lot of off, as my green water went away.

Lighting system 4 is designed, but no attempt has been made to acquire all the components not less fabricate it. After much internal wailing and grinding of teeth, I had to confess to myself there is not time to build it to save the plants. Two day shipping to the rescue. A new led fixture should arrive before the weekend.

Going from 250 watts hanging (12") above the water to 28 watts of LED 3" above. PAR over air for the light is good - but PAR in a tank filled with water is a bit different. I suspect I will be able to save most of the plants - good thing there is no lawn yet...

Hard for me to grok the change in power versus the change in light - I know there is some advantage due the way LED's emit versus bulbs - There should be no spill, no reflector loss, etc... (say 2-3x as efficient there) The current light lights half the room. Likewise the LED is designed with spectrum is targeted to chlorophyll to some degree (wag at 2x, but that is stretching it). Then there is the distance factor (ok wag another 3x)... Can LED's be that more efficient. This will be a good test at least. fwiw 28x3x2x3=504 - given those wags it might just work.

Will take pics before and after. Plus updates occasionally to bless or curse the new light.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Ray II


2x ODNO Shoplight


250watt HQI
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
One week after Ray II, very nice new growth


Dry start of moss - will see how this works

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12/2/2012
Plants still look great, growth is good. Keeping up 60% weekly water changes, but so far have not added any ferts. Water has a lot of disolved solids, so still crossing fingers that water changes alone will keep plants healthy.

The dry start tank is very hairy. There is a fungus among us. Whatever was in the yogurt has sprouted. That said, Friday was worse than Sunday - so it might already be dying out.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Long past time for an update. Lost almost everything while using the Ray II, including the Ray II, the HQI pendent and a suicidal cat. The Ray II did not have light levels I wanted, coupled with my work schedule causing negligent tank maintenance. Only things saved were my mosses in a different tank.

Struggling with my current tank. Using a nameless 120 watt, 40 led off-road light bar at the moment, but still negligent on maintenance so plants are not thriving (plus current fish (small bluegill) are eating them about as fast as they grow). Not getting the biomass necessary to successfully restart EI (I really like a ton of disposable plants to start EI). Toying with the idea of diving in headfirst, restarting CO2, adding Ferts and fresh plants, and a new sun. In theory could do them all at the same time.

The plants that are growing, are growing funny. A normally vertically growing plant is carpeting. Kind of cool, plus an indication I have lots of light on the tank bottom. Weekly water changes (averaging every other), and CO2 might be all they need. That said, miss the shimmer-always miss the shimmer.

Oh, guess I should mention that I effectively moved again (no longer commuting to day job). I have more time for tank maintence, but things like refilling the CO2 are now a 4hr drive.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Ok, dove in. Kessil 360 Tuna Sun, Jebao autodoser, and a few other changes. Day one planting. Will see if I can get this one to thrive.
 
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