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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Quick notes for the group- these are my experiences, your results may vary.

If you want nice big plants in your tank, use CO2. Period.

If you are using an air stone in your tank because you've always used an air stone in all your aquariums- stop. Yes it really does cause the CO2 to dissipate out of the tank- trust me.

If you provide ample, ample lights and CO2 for the tank- the plants still need to eat. Use root tabs and liquid fertilizer. Use in accordance with the directions........but you may have more plants than the average fella. If you do, you may need more food for all those plants. There is alot of trial and error and you'll gain a sense for how often you should add fertilizer just by looking at the plants and looking out for algae.

It took me about two or three days to see any hint of of any possible CO2 benefit....and even then, I'm not sure.
If you have a large tank, mine is 180g, you probably ought to go big on CO2- one bubble per second was not doing it for me. Mine is much, much higher than that. And while some CO2 is likely surplus, the fish are not affected and I'd rather have surplus than deficit.

I changed the direction of a power head in the tank, which created a large current down towards the bottom of the tank. The plants like it a lot. Madagascar lace, apparently, grows in high current areas and thuse the perforated leaves. Since adjusting the power head, the Madagascar Lace, in particular, has shot up. I have several new leaves and they are near horizontal in the tank and over a foot long- in just a week.

There are all sorts of schemes and methods for trying to determine how much CO2 is in your tank, etc. And I sort of gave up and went with the advice of "just look at the fish and look at the plants". It works.

More later.
 

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Hello Wonnie,
I have a 200 gallon setup and I am still in the process of trying to get everything "right". I know what you mean by the amount of CO2 needed. My co2 comes out like a steady stream and is not even countable. I am using the one pH drop method to determine that CO2 is at 30 ppm by the time the lights turn on but I am unsure about how accurate this is.

I am dosing EI and doing 50% water changes weekly. As for the flow in a large tank, I feel that it is difficult to balance having enough flow in the tank to prevent stuff like BGA and still allow your stem plants to stay upright. At one point, I tried using just the pump from my sump to circulate the water and suffered a pretty bad BGA out break. I have recently added 3 hydor koralia 2s to add more flow and now every leaf seems to be swaying, some more than others. I may decrease the flow slowly and see what happens.
 

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I have a 20 lbs tank with regulator and solenoid. As for brand, I actually have no clue. I feel like it's just a generic, not so high quality one from big Al's. I have two co2 reactors. Co2 passes through a Rex grigg type reactor first and then into a cerges reactor. However, I still get a couple of microbubbles. I feel like it has to do with my pump.being too strong

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
EXT 5000 reactor, 20 pound CO2 container and carbon Doser regulator.

Also- after spending alot of time reading about planted tanks, I found that most everything written was based on experience with a small/ish tank.

The talk of one bubble per second is nonsense, in my experience, when working on a heavily planted large tank.

The power heads have been one of those surprises....I wouldn't have figured the plants would like it but they really do and it's evident where the stagnant parts are- that's where the plant growth is much less and dingy algae appears.

My sole surviving bamboo shrimp also loves it.
 

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125 gallon tank owner here and I just got this large tank. This is the first real effort I'm making on live plants and so far so good. I'm still using a DIY CO2 kit and putting less than 2bps but from reading what you guys are saying that is severely insufficient. I'll try to boost the rate up significantly and also try to add more bottles to increase the recharge cycle. I'm using the citric acid/baking soda method instead of yeast.
 

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125 gallon tank owner here and I just got this large tank. This is the first real effort I'm making on live plants and so far so good. I'm still using a DIY CO2 kit and putting less than 2bps but from reading what you guys are saying that is severely insufficient. I'll try to boost the rate up significantly and also try to add more bottles to increase the recharge cycle. I'm using the citric acid/baking soda method instead of yeast.
From what I've read about the DIY CO2 kits and the amount of co2 you will need for a 125 gallon, I think one fill of your citric acid/baking soda mix wont last very long. I think looking into a CO2 tank and regulator may be a good idea.
 

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That really is a nice tank. What type of filter do you use? (Sorry to hijack the thread)
Filtration is two Eheim 2217's.:wink2:

Bump:
Nice looking plants! I'm guessing the type of plants would make a difference if you are going no co2 ?

Yes. It is most often not more light that more demanding plant's are calling for, but more CO2.
Just attempting to depict that low tech NON CO2 tank's can be lush also.
Have lot's of respect for those that master the CO2 injected tank's and all of their effort's getting there.
 

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From what I've read about the DIY CO2 kits and the amount of co2 you will need for a 125 gallon, I think one fill of your citric acid/baking soda mix wont last very long. I think looking into a CO2 tank and regulator may be a good idea.
I have an extra paintball tank that I'm currently not using. It's a 20oz. Anyone know how long that would last with a 125 gallon tank. Here is a pic of my tank. Water Vertebrate Plant Pet supply Terrestrial plant
 

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Can't remember but most likely not. My water has been a bnb it cloudy lately too. Any idea what it could be ?
What are you using for filtration? I just stuck some plants in yesterday night and it became pretty cloudy. By morning it was clear and I'm using sand to as the substrate.

I am running two Fluval 306 canisters that are rated for 140 gallon max. They do a great job of keeping the tank clean.
 

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Can't remember but most likely not. My water has been a bnb it cloudy lately too. Any idea what it could be ?
Not really sure. I know mine was always cloudy after a water change, that's why I asked. What filtration are you using? If you don't capture particles with decent mechanical filtration, it could be that. But most likely, it is a bacteria bloom. Bacteria tends to cloud the water.
 
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