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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So i got my co2 hooked up and have been dosing with liquid fertilizers as they are instructed. i am redoing my tank so i only have wisteria and ludwigia repens in there at the moment. the co2 is coming out of a diffuser and into the intake of a canister filter. now here are the problems...

1. i have algae on the tank glass on every side as shown in the picture.

2. the leaves of the ludwigia are no longer pearling even though a good amount of co2 is going into the tank.

3. i dont have a bubble counter but i did the ph/kh and got about 16 ppm.

4. the leaves dont seems to be growing and seem to have a nutrient deficiency.

please help!!! lights are on for 10 hours a day. here are the pictures.









 

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We need information about your lighting and your exact dosing regime. What type of ferts and how much and how often.

You also should looking into getting a bubble counter or at least a drop checker. The ph/kh charts are often inaccurate.
 

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Crank up your CO2.

Since you got 16 ppm using the chart, that really means that you have very little CO2. The chart skews to the high side because of other buffers, etc in the water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
We need information about your lighting and your exact dosing regime. What type of ferts and how much and how often.
2.5 watts/gallon from a 78W Nova Extreme light with 2 T5HO bulbs. I am using liquid ferts and following the instructions on the bottles. i am dosing twice a week (which is also recommended on the bottle)

You also should looking into getting a bubble counter or at least a drop checker. The ph/kh charts are often inaccurate.
i read that the drop checkers on ebay are not good. is this true? should i spend the 30 dollars for one on GLA?

Since you got 16 ppm using the chart, that really means that you have very little CO2. The chart skews to the high side because of other buffers, etc in the water.
i am really pumping the co2 in there. its going into a diffuser than my canister filter, is there a possibility that its no making it back into the tank? is there a better way to diffuse the co2?

also, can anyone id if that is a nutrient defiency with the wisteria. there are see through spots and its not bright green like the new growth is. am i underdosing with something?

please continue to help me if possible! i need some help!

would adding more plants help? or otos to clean up the algae?
 

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Yes adding more plants will help. There's too much empty space in there so the algae doesn't have much competition for the nutrients.

You NEED a drop checker. It shouldn't be thought of as optional, unless you maybe have a CO2 controller. I don't necessarily think you need a bubble counter, but the drop checker takes all the guesswork out of things. I agree with Left C, that you probably aren't injecting enough CO2. 2.5 wpg of T5HO light is on the high-light side of things, so CO2 should be plentiful.

Your wisteria doesn't look that bad. It might be indicative of a nutrient deficiency, or it might just be that it is adjusting to your tank's parameters. I don't know much about liquid ferts, or which ones you are using, but make sure they contain the whole array of macros and micros. Yellowing usually means nitrates are low. Adding a school of pooping fish might help out as well.

Get a drop checker so you can know for sure that your CO2 levels are good, THEN work on adjusting the ferts as necessary. Both of those plants don't require much fertilizing anyway.

Get yourself some otos and amano shrimp, also. They help to keep things clean.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
about the drop checker, i was asking if its okay to buy the 8 dollar ones of ebay or if they are cheap and useless.

should i switch to the dry fert package from GLA?

i leave for italy in a week.. should i wait to add plants? or would they be okay if my roommate just added the fertilizers i ask him to? i'm thinking it may be better to just wait. and get some fish beforehand? thoughts..?
 

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about the drop checker, i was asking if its okay to buy the 8 dollar ones of ebay or if they are cheap and useless.
You need the pH indicator solution plus the 4 dKH solution to make them work properly.

The ebay drop checker don't come with the 4dKH solution. They work OK when you use both solutions.

SuMo has the solutions. Get the 30 ppm solution. This is the 4 dKH solution: http://www.sumoregulator.com/DropCheckerSolutions.html

GLA has the 4 dKH solution too. It is at the bottom of the page: http://www.greenleafaquariums.com/co2-drop-checkers.html

Also, I understand that GLA's drop checkers come with both solutions that are either separate or mixed together: http://www.greenleafaquariums.com/co2-drop-checkers.html

Cal Aqua Oracle drop checker is nice: http://www.greenleafaquariums.com/co2-drop-checkers/oracle-drop-checker.html

Red Sea has a cheaper drop checker, but it works well. You still need the 4 dKH solution for it. It comes with the indicator solution: http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsCA/ctl3684/cp18478/si1380875/cl0/redseaco2indicator
 

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how often does the solution need to be changed?
I change it when the colour starts to fade, or whenever I take the drop checker out for cleaning. Some people like to change it once a week, or every other week, etc. You may want to maintain a regular changing interval (say every other week) to ensure that your CO2 levels are optimal.

As dumb as this sounds, why do you need anything other than what comes with this drop checker?

EDIT: Never mind, didn't realize the solution redsea includes isn't pre-mixed.
Some drop checkers (the eBay ones are notorious for this) suggest that you mix their indicator with tank water (and not 4 dkH water). This is incorrect, however, and a 4 dkH solution should be used.
 

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T5HO lights are not your ordinary fluorescent lights. They come with great reflectors that double the amount of light you get from the bulbs, which are already much brighter than T8/T12 fluorescent tubes. You have far too much light for that size tank. If you can hang the fixture above the tank, and raise it about a foot above the tank, you might get the light intensity down low enough to make things a lot easier for you. Right now the very intense light is driving the plants to grow much faster than you have nutrients available for them to do so. And, you need a lot more CO2 dissolved in the water too. You can raise the bubble rate a little at a time, waiting an hour or more between adjustments, while carefully watching the fish for problems. If there is a problem, most fish will run to the water surface and look like they are gasping air from above the water. That means you have too high a bubble rate. Reduce it slightly if you see that. A drop checker will make that process a lot easier by letting you increase the bubble rate until the drop checker turns green, then start the gradual increases to get still higher.

Just using less light is easier, and makes everything happen slower so you have time to react before the whole tank is an algae mess.
 
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