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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Ok... I've started a new thread for this tank since I finally picked a clever name and I just found out I cannot delete old threads. So... here it is! I was told in the other thread that it is too early to inject CO2. I have dwarf hairgrass and HC growing in there now... I was under the impression these plants needed CO2 rich environments to even get started growing. If it is too early for CO2, at what point should I start injecting? Thanks all.
 

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I would have started with CO2 from the get go. Can't wait for the update, looks like it would grow in nice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Update: January 9, 2015

So here's the tank two months later with a few trimmings behind us and a couple of plant changes. I started with cabomba in the middle, but the dark green color of the cabomba I got just made the tank look... well.. it made it look like a swamp, and I like the lime green look of the surrounding plants better. Not only did the color bother me, but the growth rate of the plant was also a hassle. It grew much quicker than any other plant in the tank, so there were a few times I had to get in there and do a trimming session just for the cabomba. So I bought a sword and plopped it in the middle. We'll see how that works out.

Had some hiccups last month when I first tried to introduce fish to the tank. But now the fish seem to be doing great, haven't had any losses at all for the last month. I might need to get one of those signs "Days without incident" and hang it to the side of the tank.

Hmmm, what else? The HC I've been trying to grow is not really doing well at all. It's not dying, but it's just not propagating any. I'm thinking this is due to the fact that there hasn't been a time where it either wasn't covered with algae, or that the tank had zero nitrates in it. Either way, not optimal growing conditions for the HC. The dwarf hairgrass is growing in. Slowly, but surely.

The entire month of December 2014, the tank had a very bad algae problem. Hair algae, to be exact. Weekly water changes, and patience and it seems to have all cleared up. I bought a phosphate test from the LFS, and nitrates and phosphates are both at 0 ppm. This has also made life on the snails a bit tough, and currently, the tank is experience a snail famine... poor guys... but they were getting a bit out of control, so I can't say I'm too upset for them.

That's about all I can think to post... I'll try to be better about updating. This is actually turning into a very fun hobby. I'll try to take some better pictures next time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Update: April 10, 2015

Ok. Here we are almost four months later. I'm not as pleased with the growth in the tank as I would like to be, but as you can see below, the dwarf hairgrass is beginning to grow in very nicely. The HC has shown some growth, but I'm starting to think the lights are not strong enough for proper HC growth. Oh well though, I'll keep trying.

I've recently started to dose ferts, and I have to be honest, I'm still pretty clueless about what I'm doing exactly. Have I put in too much? Too little?
Still trying to work out the kinks. I've been reading the dosing schedules and such, but it's still a bit unnerving.

And this month of April, I've run into a bloom of some kind. Not too sure if it's bacterial or algae, but when I went on vacation a couple of weeks back, I had a power outage and my tank light (which is programmable) defaults to off after a power outage, so, needless to say the tank went without light for 2-3 days. When I got back, many of the plants were beginning to drop leaves, and the rotala was nothing but stems. So there was a huge spike in nitrates, of course. Which is what I'm thinking led to the recent algae bloom. Also, the sword that I planted in January took a big hit from the power outage and has yet to fully recover. I'm thinking about pulling it, because it is nothing but holes now.

I purchased a UV sterilizer, which you can see in the panoramic shot at the bottom. I will probably just keep this in there temporarily until it clears up the algae bloom. I would like to get back to the kind of water quality I had in the first photo of the new tank. Crystal clear would be nice, so, we'll see what happens and I'll keep you all updated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Update: May 20, 2015

I've changed some things around in the tank and added some new HC. I've gotten rid of the Eheim 2211 filter (never should have gotten it in the first place, very low GPH, rookie mistake on my part) and got a Hydor Pro 150 and have stocked one of the trays with Seachems Matrix. I've also added a Hydor ETH 200 inline heater and an inline CO2 diffuser. I couldn't be happier with both of the purchases (unless of course they start to leak). The ETH heater works like a charm, keeps the tank within half of a degree from the setting. I've read horror stories about them leaking after awhile, so we'll wait and see.

And the inline CO2 diffuser is great. No more annoying noise from the glass diffuser. One less thing...

I also bought an aPUMP silent pump that hangs on the back glass which I run after the lights go off. I don't think it's enough to properly aerate the tank by itself, but it is extremely quiet. You can actually hear the air stone more than you can hear that pump. So if anyone is looking for some light aeration you should give the aPUMP a go. I probably should have gotten the next level up, so if your tank is above 30 gallons, I'd recommend the pump with two outlets.

The dwarf hairgrass continues to grow very nicely into a carpet and some of the original HC has finally taken off although it's not spreading out much. The sword that I had reported as near death last post has also grown back and looks to be in good health again.

I'm still trying to get on a good fert schedule. Dosing and testing, dosing and testing.

I've also added a photo of the setup under the tank. I've finally gotten it organized to my liking.

That's all I have now. Just started a 3 gallon breeder that will be a carpet of HC. If anyone's interested it's in my signature.
 

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Looks great weazel, when the reat of the foreground fills in it will be stunning! thanks for the update :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yeah tank looks good :) I've noticed a 38 gallon tank is a pretty uncommon size that most people don't usually go for. But I like the dimensions of them.

You should update more than once a month! just a suggestion... :p
Thanks, my friend. Ya... I would prefer more depth to the tank, as it's only 12 inches. Makes it a bit crammed for lighting and planting. It's still a nice size tank though, not too small, not too big. I'm learning more how to work with the dimensions as time goes by. I'll get something like yours when I'm done with this one, for sure.

You're right. I probably should do some more frequent updates with some close up shots of different parts of the tank and the fish. Thanks for the suggestion.
 

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I'd say personally IMO that 12 or 13 inches is plenty. But to each their own! Used to have a 75 that was really nice, but just not enough room where we live. 55 doesn't stick out so much.

Will be looking forward to whatever you do! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Update: August 18, 2015

Not too much to report. It's been pretty quiet in the tank for the last three months. All livestock seems healthy, no algae problems, no leaks from any of the new gear... things are looking good.

The HC is growing in great.. but I'm curious if it's actually HC. What makes me skeptical is that in my 3 gallon tank I keep on my desk, I have the same HC, and it grows with no CO2. So maybe I got ripped off, maybe not. Still looks nice though. It will turn into a great carpet either way. I've removed the glass cover I had on it (which has caused noticeable evaporation), but it has definitely helped the growth oh the DHG and the HC.

I probably should have scooted the light back before I took photos... I think that much light on the foreground really drowned out the color in the photo. Oh well... next time I'll get better photos.

Here's the latest. Thanks all.
 

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Is that Glosso on the right, that sure looks nice. I hoping my ET takes off and looks like that some day. The tank looks great, I really like it.

I cant believe peoples Hydor inline heaters work right. I bought one from the LFS and it wouldn't turn on until I turned the dial to 85, and it would only heat the tank to 75. I took it back and the same thing with the new one. I didn't want to bother going back so I just live with it...

Looking forward to more pics
 
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