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Hello All,


I am a beginner at the whole planted tank hobby, but I am looking forward to making this a life long thing. I have really enjoyed learning all of the information out there. Here is my set up: I have an Eclipse 5 gal corner system with 1 betta, 6glofish, and 4 redtail rasboras. I have 4 large anubias lanceolata and 1 small fern (not sure what type). I have white sand substrate with a layer of white rock on top. I have an 11watt 50/50 coralife bulb. This set up was done without any prior knowledge of proper substrates, bioloads, or anything. I managed to get through the new tank syndrome and get my amonia under control. My ph is 7, temp 78, amonia still rises to about .25 after about a week. I do 50% water changes weekly, vacuuming and cleaning. Things have been going well, but I was wondering about the long run with my plants. Will this set up be ok for plant life? Is this substrate ok, lighting, etc. Will I need a co2 system, fert tabs, dosing, or more light? The only thing I plan on adding will be tall lowlight background plants. This is my starter tank, and I have a 40 gal bowfront that I have waiting to be planted!!! Thanks
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The rhizome plants you have are one of the easiest plants to grow. If they stop growing KNO3 will help them. Best plants to help you keep the ammonia down are hornwort and Anacharis. Hornwort grows very fast.

How about a picture!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Cool, I think I'll take a few tomorrow and post em. I have just been letting the tank do it's thing and it's doing well. I wanted to plant some java fern or something tall and full to put in an open area in the background.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah, but the plan is to transfer the rasboras into a 40 gal tank eventually. The tank has been doing pretty good despite. These fish were in two separate tanks but my other tank cracked. I upgraded my light bulb to a brighter spectrum plant florescent bulb, and began dosing my tank with ferts. I added two java fern and some moss. The tank has maintained ammonia at zero for the past week and a half. Will post pics soon. Thanks
 

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nice job hardwood, i would not change a thing on that tank set up,stocking or otherwise, if it is established, and holding, no changes are needed, you will also find the 40 will be much easier to deal with.

As to your being a newb, well that makes your setup all that more impressive.

Nicely done Sir.
 

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By thumb rule the tank is overstocked for sure although with diligence it can be maintained without any toll. But for a beginner, a strong recommendation would be to follow the rules.

Not sure what kind of sand you are using but normally sand can be inert and you will need additional fert to supplement the plants.
 

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By thumb rule the tank is overstocked. For a beginner, a strong recommendation would be to follow the rules.
Not sure what kind of sand you are using but normally sand can be inert and you will need additional fert to supplement the plants.
Researching the rule for deciding how many fish per gallon found that there is more than 1 rule and the size of fish affects the decision. Also having plants makes it possible to have more fish than the norm.

I do agree though that you will eventully need some root tabs. Check out Trallen44 tank. I believed he used root tabs initially. What ferts are you dosing with?

Nice Job!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks everyone for the feedback. I knew after reading that the sand was not the best substrate for the plants because it has no nutrients, however, I also read that dosing would give them what they need. The substrate is moonlight sand, with white gravel on top. I have been using 2.5 ml of nutrafin plant gro. Do you think this is ok, if so, how often should I dose? The tank has been doing very well, no more ammonia. The tank does have a secondary filter running, you can see it in the pic on the left. If my plants continue doing well, I hope to remove that secondary filter and just run the hood filter. Also, should I have a bubbler running in the tank at night? Thanks again!!
 

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That tank is way overstocked. No way I would consider removing the second filter.

I'm glad the ammonia is under control.

I don't have anything to say about the nutrafin plant gro, other than that is probably ok. I would guess you are putting too much into such a small tank, but I don't see how it could hurt.

That looks like a nice tank in the pic.
 

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That tank is way overstocked. No way I would consider removing the second filter.!!
I agree. But if you add a plant like Anacharis, common name Egeria densa, you would be okay with 1 filter.

Also, should I have a bubbler running in the tank at night? Thanks again!!
I don't think so for those whom do have injected Co2. The bubbles are for driving off excess Co2.

I have been using 2.5 ml of nutrafin plant gro. Do you think this is ok, if so, how often should I dose? !!
I think 2ml a week should sufice.
 

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You have twice as many fish as you should ( I am guilty of overstocking too...but not to that extent).

Really try and move some out. That said, the more hiding places the better.

As this is your first tank, it is highly impressive. Never seen such a natural looking tank as a first timer. I'm certainly going to keep an eye on this thread and see where it goes. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I knew it was overstocked as soon as I started reading up. I hope to get the 40 gal filled and cycling soon. These fish will just have to wait about a month or so until I'm ready to transfer 'em. I plan on leaving the 6 glo fish and betta in the tank. Then want to do two schools of fish in the 40 gal, prob brilliant rasbora and cardinal tetra. How many of each do you think I can do?
 

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The only worry I have is the betta being nipped to death. My Glo-Fish demolished a Betta in 1 night. I felt horrible. :icon_cry:

But seeing as they are all together as is is, and no one is killing the betta, your fine I guess. Lucky you, I think the combo of glo-fish - Betta would be an awesome combo, aside the nipping. You dont seem to have that problem.


Hope to see your 40 gal soon.

co2 is always a plus. But can certainly be avoided.
 

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Nice tank. The only real protest against the glows might come from the Betta, if he's pissed off all the time then it will only shorten his lifespan. IMO, they do better alone, the lifespan is said to be around 2yrs, especially for the cheap store bought ones, but I've seen those go 5yrs in the right conditions.

There are ways around overstocking as some have said, it really depends on how fast nitrogen builds and whether or not you can keep up with them doing water changes and growing the right plants, but I personally keep the crowding factor in mind, I don't like over crowding clashing against my plants. The one sure thing about overstocking, is if the keeper can't manage to resolve the problem (if there is one) then good old mother nature will trim the numbers as the weaker fish die off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yeah, I have really kept an eye on the tank, the rasboras are very friendly, stay in the background plants, and are rarely seen (only during feeding time.) The betta is the king of the tank, but has never flared up his gill's or shown aggression. The glo fish on the other hand, chase each other around a fair amount. Also, one of the females was full of eggs the other day, now she's not!
 

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Perhaps the glofish are to busy following each other to bother the betta. :hihi:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Just did a water change and I lost two anubius leaves with stems, they looked melted (they were grey and soggy.) Two more stems with leaves on the same rhizome look good.

I also lost one amazon sword leaf, it was yellow with one black spot (I trimmed it out.) I'm not sure if the amazon will do good in my tank, but they were -buy one get one free- at petco, so I thought i'd try some!
 

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Beautiful tank. You have a natural eye on placement. :) Even though you are a bit overstocked, if you keep up with the water changes and feed lightly, it is doable. Just keep an eye on the betta and move it if necessary.

I used to have an amazon sword in my tank. I would frequently trim leaves that were not up to par. However, you are describing sounds like a potassium deficiency. http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_plant_nutrient.htm. However, if you just bought the plant, it is possible it happened at the store. Keep an eye out for more signs.

Make sure to trim off the grey and soggy leaves. It could be adjusting to your tank still. However, I have never owned an anubias, so take this advice with a grain of salt.

By the way, welcome to the Planted Tank.
 
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