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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Lowdown: 10 Gallon tank, 10 days old, already cycled aqua clear 30 filter, play sand substrate, anubias, anacharis, val, sword, water wisteria, 26 watt cfl light customized over tank.....2.6 wpg, and dose flourish once a week.

Questions

1. Brown algae has started....expected it, but also green spotted type algae on glass....never had this before, should I be worried? What to do? Is it going to cause my plants to suffer and not grow? I just keep scrubbing it off

2. Do I need CO2 with this setup i described? I was hoping to have a low maintenance setup going and didn't want to have to use a CO2 diffuser.... if I do need one, could I lower my wattage and not need one?

3. Plants are green with a hint of brown....maybe its the brown algae? Maybe they take a few days to green up? Should I be worried? Be patient? What to do?

4. People say use flourish excel.....i heard it will melt my vals and anacharis.....too many conflicts... help?

5. Since my tank is new should I be dosing flourish fertz more than once a week? Seems like algae appeared the day after I first dosed my tank?


Sorry for so many questions, but I am a poor college student but dreamed of doing a planted tank....I just don't want to fail, or have to spend money I don't have to buy more plants...thanks!
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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Algae outbreaks are the norm with new tank setups, but yes, you're going to need a supplemental carbon source with that level of lighting. Either DIY CO2 or Excel would probably work. I've heard that Vals can sometimes be acclimated to Excel, though I've never heard that about Anacharis so that may be a reason to go with CO2 instead.

You're also going to need to dose more than just Flourish (I'm guessing Comprehensive?) since that is mostly trace; you need to supply Macro nutrients as well to keep the plants from becoming deficient (check out some of the stickies at the top of the Water Parameter forum for advice on fertilizer regimes).

If you DON'T want to go with CO2 and fert dosing, my suggestion would be to go back to a single 15/18 watt flourescent strip (which is what I run over my own 10gal and I love it).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I could easily get a 15 watt 18 inch light strip for my 10 gallon.....so you are saying with that amount of light and the plants I have, nothing would be required in order to maintain healthy plant life? (ferts, C02)
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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Yup, as long as you've got a decent bioload in the tank, the waste and respiration from the fish are sufficient to support the plants in a low-light tank.

That's exactly how my own 10gal is set up and the crypts, sunset hygro, and mosses are doing great (Microsword not so much, but that was an experiment anyways. I suspect hairgrass would fare just the same as microsword has in my tank- linger but never really fill in and over time slowly fade out.).
 

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My 10 is run the same way--only the stock 20 watts or so--and my Rotala rotundifolia, swords, and Java moss are doing great. On occasion, I will put just a couple of drops of an iron based fertilizer, but that is all. No Excel, no CO2.
 
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