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Advice for Converting Established Tank to Planted

This is a discussion on Advice for Converting Established Tank to Planted within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> Very nice! I did not have good luck with the Seaview material for mounting my background. Over a few months, it "wept" down the ...

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Advice for Converting Established Tank to Planted
Old 11-22-2011, 10:07 AM   #21
 
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Very nice! I did not have good luck with the Seaview material for mounting my background. Over a few months, it "wept" down the stand and caused a wrinkle in the background. I did really like the way the background looked using seaview, perhaps I used too much? Now I have a plain black background (piece of black fabric) and I will have to admit the plants stand out better with a plain dark background - but I still miss the other background that was similar to yours!

I really like your mixed substrate.

Regarding the zoomed bulbs.. The Ultrasun produces twice the level of photosynthetically active radition as the "plant" bulb, based on some PAR measurments I took on mine recently. I do like using both the daylight and plant bulbs, I like the color balance it gives.

Last edited by DKRST; 11-22-2011 at 10:14 AM..
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:19 AM   #22
 
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Thanks for the compliments on the substrate. I'm still getting used to it. Last year I was sooo excited to go to sand, now the smooth look is gone, I'm not 100% digging the redish tone yet. The bag said original but I think I got the volcano red (or it's just my lighting) My wife loves it though, she was pissed when I went with sand haha.But I think once I get it heavily planted and some ground cover the substrate will help emphasize the plants.

Regarding the light, that's another reason I'm in a rush to get more plants, don't want to have more light than they need, right now I cut it down to 8 hours. I am hooked though haha.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:30 AM   #23
 
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Oh yea, you don't want more than 7-8 hours and watch the light levels! It can take up to a month, but then algae will show up with a vengence if the light's too intense.
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Old 11-23-2011, 12:29 AM   #24
 
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Finished the tank tonight, took a long lunch break at work and got my drift wood and more plants. I pulled anything fake out of the tank, added the drift wood, planted, and sat back with a jack and coke watching my fishies check out their new aquascape. I am very happy with it.

The driftwood wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Rinsed it in as hot a water as my hands could stand, scrubbed it with a clean potato brush then let it soak for 30 minutes, rinsed and threw it in a large stock pot (only 2/3 would submerge at any time), boiled for 15 minutes then flipped it to get the other side. Then I pulled it out, let it soak in treated water for 30 minutes, gave another good scrub and 20 minutes boiling on both sides, after the final boil another 30 minute soak in treated cool water (Total: boiled for 70 minutes and soaked for 90 minutes)

After I got the driftwood set where I wanted I started planting the plants. Please feel free to critique or provide feedback if anything should be moved or planted differently. At the LFS (different than my normal place, was a HUGE aquarium specialty store) they had rows of nothing but plants. I was like a kid in a candy store and just started pointing without having any sort of plan. Spent the rest of the afternoon at work laying it all out on paper

Here is a link to the pictures. I put them in the Freshwater Fish Pictures and Videos section:
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...35/#post900568
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Old 11-23-2011, 12:57 AM   #25
 
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Here is a progression photo I put together.

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Old 11-23-2011, 08:07 AM   #26
 
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Looks nice maybe switch out the background for a plain black one, and a few more tall plants along the back of the tank to hide the filter intake and the heater?
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:17 PM   #27
 
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I'm planning on doing the black background, gonna take a few days break from modifcations though to let the fishies (and wife) have a break haha. I have three more baby sword plants behind the driftwood. Hoping they grow in to fill up some of the back. Also the one on the far right should get pretty tall right?

I really sped through the purchase at the LFS and my memory is horrible. If there is any chance you could help ID the plants that would be greatly appreciated so I can put it in my profile (and brain housing group)

I'm letting the plants and tank settle in. So far there has been zero discoloration from the driftwood, I think I boiled it enough lol. All the fish are doing great so far, they all seem more active. The clowns and Gourami used to just hide in the fake mountain. I selected that driftwood since it is an L shape (the right side curves back a little bit creating a hiding spot but they seem content hanging out by the back left plant swimming around it.

One other (hopefully quick) question I have, the large sword has one pretty brown leaf, should I cut it or see how it recovers. From what I read I should expect some of the original leaves to brown and die out, but all the plants (less the fern) came from a submerged aquarium. I'm going to pickup some ferts on Friday (have to get a new dog bed from Petsmart anyways). The carbon is removed from the filter but I'm hoping to get a sponge filter soon. Any recommendations for my 29g? The Biowheel 330 doesn't create as much agitation at the surface but I'm worried about the high GPH sucking up the CO2.
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:26 PM   #28
 
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Can you get a picture of each plant that way I we could see them better it would make it easier to id them for you that way. ; )
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:54 PM   #29
 
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No problem, I'll try to post them tonight (heading out right now with the wife) or tomorrow morning after feeding time. Thanks a million you and Byron have been amazing! What kind of ferts do you recommend, bear in mind my light is an 8,000k running right now 9 hours a day. That reminds me I have another question about ambient light that I will probably create a new thread on tonight. Summarily, the aquarium is positioned in a high traffic area (primary living room) therefore there are usually lights on in the surrounding area that gently alluminate the tank, the guide says 10 hours of total darkness but my tank actually only gets 5-6 hours of "total darkness" due to the ambient lighting. Anyways, I'm in trouble, wife is heading to the car. I'll be back on later lol I'm an plant addict now. Thanks again!
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Old 11-23-2011, 09:34 PM   #30
 
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LOL you are a smart man if you do what it take to keep the wife happy. ; ) I use Flourish Complete one a week and the flourish root tabs every 1-2 months depending on how my swords are doing. My tanks are on timers and the lights are on 8 hours a day but they do get more indirect light do to room lights and sunlight and I have not noticed any advert reaction because of it. I would have to cover all my tanks to have complete darkness for the time that is recommended.
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