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I'll bet if you provide some more detailed information (tank size, lighting system details, photoperiod, CO2 system, fertilization schedule, etc.), forum members will be able to help you figure out why the plants aren't pearling and whether that's a concern.

What plants do you have? What kind of growth are you seeing? And are you having any algae problems?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Tank size- 10 gallon
Lighting- AH supply 36 watt bright kit
Photo period- 9 hours
CO2- Red sea reactor 500 (I am getting a diffuser by wednesday to see if tat works)
Ferts- (Seachem products) excel, potassium, nitrogen, iron.

I have hygro, anachis, glosso, baby tears, crypts, and pearl weed.
 

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That sounds like enough light -- I wonder how much CO2 is making it into the water? (The reactor ought to help.)

How much of the ferts are you adding and how often?

I am sure that someone with more experience than I have will be able to chime in with some good advice, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am using the recommended amount on the bottles. everyone always says "dont overdose" , but i dont do exact measurements. Hopefully someone can help...
 

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Are your plants growing? From what I understand, pearling is what happens when the water RIGHT NEXT TO the leaf surface becomes supersaturated with O2, so you start to see the O2 bubbles (which can no longer dissolve into the H2o) rising to the surface. No pearling does NOT necessarily mean bad or no growth. I'm not familiar with Seachem liquid ferts, as I dose dry, but they should work. There may be a limiting factor in your plant growth, but I'll wait for someone else to chime in on that. How often do you do water changes?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I do water changed 2x per week 50%. Do you think i should only do 50% 1x per week instead. I do have plant growth. My hygro grows like a weed. But i dont even like that stuff. My glosso isnt growing very fast...Is it like HC where it takes a little bit and then grows like crazy? Hopefully this diffuser will make a big difference...
 

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What kind of filtration are you using? What I have found is that it's difficult to detect pearling if the tank has a lot of current in the water.
 

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I am not sure that the recommended doses on the Seachem ferts are anywhere near say an EI regime. From Seachem on the Nitrogen dosing for example:

"DIRECTIONS: BEGINNER: Use 2.5 mL (half a cap) for each 160 L (40 gallons*) twice a week or as needed in response to signs of nitrogen deficiency (e.g. stunted growth, chlorosis). For smaller doses, please note that each cap thread is approximately 1 mL. EXPERT: The beginner dose raises nitrogen by the same degree that 1 mg/L nitrate would. This dose is sufficient to provide approximately 4 g of growth (dry) or about 20 g (hydrated) over a 1 month period (assuming all other necessary nutrients are provided). For increased growth use proportionately more. To target a specific nitrogen increase, dose according to the following formula: 0.25vn=m, where v= volume of tank in gallons*, n=desired nitrogen increase (if using a “nitrate equivalent” value for “n” then use a factor of 0.05 instead of 0.25 in the formula) and m=volume of product to use in mL. For example to raise 20 gallons* by 0.20 mg/L nitrogen you would use: 0.25*20*0.20=1 mL."

Are you dosing the "beginner" levels?
 

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If you do 50% wc 2x a week, that's fine. I do about 2-3 wc's a week of about the same amount. Has your tank been set up a long time, plants growing, etc? I wonder if your Co2 isn't as high as you think it is. Do you have a drop checker? Don't trust your test kits, if you're going by ph and kh levels.
 

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I think the dosing instructions from Seachem are for low-tech setups. If my quick math is right, an EI strategy would call for ~10ml of their nitrogen liquid 3x a week, for example, instead of the .625ml 2x per week they are suggesting for a 10-gallon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
First of all 2wheelx2 i am using a penguin 150 (for a 30 gallon) and a whisper 5-15. That could be my problem. What should i use instead if that is the problem?

Second dapellegrini could you send me a site that has dosing for expert and beginner??? How did you do that math? How do you use the EI strategy???

Third Ringram i have the red sea drop checker http://www.arcatapet.com/fullsize/9991.jpg
I dont understand how this thing works anyways (it says "real time indication")

Fourth TropicalFish i will try bumping up the flourish a little bit to see if that works...
 

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Seachem has all of the dosing information on their site:

http://www.seachem.com/products/product_pages/FlourishNitrogen.html

http://www.seachem.com/products/product_pages/FlourishPotassium.html

http://www.seachem.com/products/product_pages/FlourishPhosphorus.html

http://www.seachem.com/products/product_pages/FlourishIron.html

http://www.seachem.com/products/product_pages/Flourish.html

EI (Estimative Index) dosing is probably one of the most popular dosing models around right now. With your frequent water changes, high light and CO2 I am surprised you are not familiar. Here is a good beginner link:

http://www.barrreport.com/estimative-index/2819-ei-light-those-less-techy-folks.html

Most people dose dry ferts because it is WAY less expen$ive than dosing Seachem products at the quantities that you will need. 1/8 tsp of KNO3 (nitrate) is the equivalent of about 11ppm of nitrate. This is recommended 3x a week for example, though you may want to start with 5-10ppm 3x a week and see how it goes.

I used Chuck's calculator, and highly recommend it:

http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_plant_aquacalc.htm

The drop checker recommend is also a very good one!

Good luck
 

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Do you have a lot of surface turbulance? Just be sure that CO2 is not escaping. I don't have pearling ALL the time, but about 3 hours after I add my fertilizer (yamato green) I get it. I'm wondering if you're dosing the nutrients at the correct levels. I'd try the dry ferts, or get some Yamato green since you can get everything in one (and not worry about adding 2, 3, or 4 different things)
 

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The idea of a drop checker is quite simple and powerful. Test your tank pH with your favorite test kit then instead of throwing that test water away (yes the blue or green stuff) put it in the drop checker... Then put the drop checker in your tank. Over about 1-2 hours the CO2 in your tank water will crossover the air gap into your drop checker and equalize with the test water so that the CO2 content in both your sample water and your aquarium will be the same.

As you know, adding CO2 brings your pH down. If you know the kH of the water in your drop checker and can read the pH from the drop checker's color, then you can calculate the CO2 level (there are many kH/pH charts out there to help you do this).

Now, take it one step further and buy a reference solution to substitute in place of the tank water in your pH test water in the drop checker. The reference solution has a calibrated kH of 4. This means it will go perfectly green at 6.6 pH which will indicate 30ppm of CO2. If it is blueish your CO2 is too low, yellowish and your CO2 is too high. Pretty simple.

I haven't been on this board long enough, but there must be some good threads on this you can find for more detail.
 

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If you are using a Penguin 150, you are losing a lot of your CO2. My plants never pearled when I was using a 100 on my 20 gallon. When I switched to a canister (Fluval 204), I was keeping a lot more CO2 in the water. The biowheel is the culprit.
 

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If you are using a Penguin 150, you are losing a lot of your CO2. My plants never pearled when I was using a 100 on my 20 gallon. When I switched to a canister (Fluval 204), I was keeping a lot more CO2 in the water. The biowheel is the culprit.
I just talked to him. He actually has the Red Sea drop checker and it registers green all the time he says. So that blows my and your idea out the window.
 
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