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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This 10g represents my foray into the world of planted tanks. I've kept tanks before but the only plants in it were plastic. The tank has been up and running for two weeks and is still in the process of cycling via the ammonia dosing method.

Once it cycles, I want to get some CRS and Oto catfish. I also want to try breeding perhaps the dario dario or celestial pearl danio. The plants are low light plants. I bought most of the from aquariumplants.com. The Dwarf Sag had some growth that one member here described as "cheese." I trimmed most of it and now it's growing new leaves without the cheese. The Java Moss is mostly brown. Don't know if I can resuscitate it. I emailed the company a few times but they have not responded. I won't be ordering from them again. The Crypt experienced some melt but it's now growing new leaves.
Tank: AGA 10 gallon
Light: Current Satellite w/28w Coralife bulb
Filter: AquaClear 30
Heather: Visi-therm Stealth 50w
Substrate: Eco-Complete black
Flora: Rotala Rotundifolia, Anubias Minima, Crypt Spiralis, Dwarf Sag, Java Moss, and Riccia Fluitans
Hardscape: Malaysian driftwood, Yamaya stone
I can't wait 'till it finishes cycling so I can add some critters! I'm already thinking about other tanks I want to set up.

 

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That looks good so far. It will be fun to see it with fish.

Be careful that the rhizomes (the fat horizontal stem that the leaves come from) of that Anubias are not buried in the gravel. You can have the finer roots down in the gravel, but if the rhizome is buried it will rot. The best way to grow most Anubias is tied to a piece of rock or driftwood so the rhizome isn't touching the gravel or sand at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The java moss that was tied to a small piece of driftwood was turning browner (it was brown when I first got it) so I tossed it. In its place, I got some taiwan moss. This arrived in good condition from overseas. The riccia I have looks almost yellow. I hope it will thrive.

The pH of my water is around 7.4 and I'm not quite sure why. Tap water here is 7.0. I have a piece of Malaysian driftwood which I thought would lower the pH if anything. The yamaya stone is supposed to be inert.




My tank cycled in 15 days using the ammonia method. I was surprised it happened that quickly considering everything was new so.....I got three little critters today. They're oto cats.



 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The Ghost Shrimp

I just had to find out what was causing the rise in pH so I tested the slate, yamaya stone, driftwood, and Prime treated water individually. The only item that had an effect was the driftwood and that lowered the pH. The other items soaked in water had the same pH as my tap water. After doing some digging on this forum, it turns out that my Eco-complete is the culprit.

Rather than getting Crystal Red Shrimp (CRS) as I originally intended, I went with Red Cherry Shrimp (RCS) because of my pH and because I'm able to get it locally.

After drip acclimating (well, not drip but rather a squirt of the turkey baster full of water), I put the eight shrimp in. Most of them were rather pale. I hope the color comes back after they get accustomed to their new environs.



I've found a few tiny snails which I believe hitchhiked in either the riccia or taiwan moss, my shrimps' favorite stomping grounds. I prefer to keep the tank snail free so I've been taking them out.

I've been enthralled with the tiny shrimp. I was staring at one hanging out on the rotala when all of the sudden, it shot across a few inches to another rotala stem. I thought it was because it saw me and got startled but then I see a ghost shrimp on the rotala. That's funny...I don't have any ghost shrimp. Turns out the shrimp just molted and I was looking at the exoskeleton. Neat. I sucked it out with the good 'ol turkey baster.



The otos have been sucking on a piece of zucchini weighted down with a clip that comes on dress shirts. They don't seem to be making a dent in the zucchini though. I can't tell if they're actually eating any of it.



The Crypt Spiralis is growing well. There's always a new leaf sprouting up. The Anubias Minima doesn't look so hot. The edges are turning brown and melting away. The Rotala is also growing well. The top leaves close at night and opens up again when the light is on.

Full tank shot (FTS)

 

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Nice tank! You need to put the Anubias's rhiozome on top of the subtrate, or attach it to the driftwood or rocks. Great jounal so far!
Good luck,
Jake
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Nice tank! You need to put the Anubias's rhiozome on top of the subtrate, or attach it to the driftwood or rocks. Great jounal so far!
Good luck,
Jake
Thanks. I pulled the rhizome up after Hydrophyte mentioned it but the leaves are still turning brown.
 

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yeah, i would hate to have to change the hardscape, but in your case it may be necessary if you don't have any more rocks or driftwood to attach those anubias to. bottom line, i'm afraid, is that you are going to have to do one of two things to save your anubias:
1: pull the rhizomes out or the substrate
2: attach the rhizomes to rock or DW
 

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are you dosing ferts? possible nitrogen or potassium deficiency. also possible residual damage from being planted in the substrate. i would assume the browning is on old leaves? do you see any new leaves? if so, what do they look like?
 

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being that anubias are considered epiphytic plants they use their roots only to attach themselves to DW and rocks. most of their nutrient uptake is from the water column through their leaves. so to ensure proper nutrient uptake it becomes necessary to dose ferts into the water column.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
are you dosing ferts? possible nitrogen or potassium deficiency. also possible residual damage from being planted in the substrate. i would assume the browning is on old leaves? do you see any new leaves? if so, what do they look like?
I haven't dosed anything yet. I do have some Excel but have yet to use it. The browning is on old leaves. There are no new leaves. I will look into pulling it out of the substrate and attaching to driftwood.

Looks like you're a soldier?? Thank you for serving :thumbsup:.
 

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Almost 9 years with the 101st Airborne. I served 2 tours in Iraq. Thank you for your apprecitation....

I would suspect that you need to look in to getting some ferts to stop the browning of your leaves. Excel is only for carbon. Check the sticky in the ferts section of this forum. Wö£fëñxXx posted a very good chart on there, as well as some other very good dosing information. Check GLA for dry ferts. I recommend the green fertilizer package that has KNO3, KH2PO4, K2SO4 and Plantex CSM+B. Dose using the EI method as described by Wö£fëñxXx. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
New plant, new fish!

I pulled the Anubia from the substrate and tied it to a piece of driftwood. The browning of the leaves seems to have abated. In fact, I see a new leaving forming!



The crypt spiralis is also doing well. It's sending out runners (Is that what they're called?).



I got some frogbit (Thanks Nymsley!) to block some light in anticipation of my next fauna purchase. It grows very fast.



Here are the new fish I got recently. They are a pair of betta albimarginata. Here they are in a bowl as I'm acclimating them to my tank's water. They look very pale and stressed.



Here is the female hiding under an almond leaf. I got the leaves to help lower the pH and also to create a blackwater effect.



Here is the male coloring up a bit.



I've been feeding the bettas bloodworms. They seem lackadaisical when feeding. Sometimes, they will stare at a bloodworm as it freefalls, trying to decide if it wants to eat before allowing the worm to burrow into the substrate. What happens to those worms, by the way? I hope they don't start breeding underground.

Most of the time, the bettas hide behind the driftwood the anubias are anchored on. Sometimes they will hide behind the rotala on the left. They rarely venture out into open waters.

I had to get a glass lid to prevent jumpers. My RCS have gone into hiding with the addition of the bettas. I see the larger ones poking out of the driftwood on occasion. The juvenilles have been eaten.

One of my otos is sick. It's not eating and is very pale. I moved it to my quarantine tank. The other two otos are fat and healthy.

FTS

 
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