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Need help with setting up a planted Aquarium (Long read).

This is a discussion on Need help with setting up a planted Aquarium (Long read). within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> not the floaters. Some plants will thrive, others will survive~...

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Need help with setting up a planted Aquarium (Long read).
Old 03-22-2013, 01:25 PM   #11
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not the floaters. Some plants will thrive, others will survive~
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Old 03-22-2013, 03:07 PM   #12
 
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your definaltey going to want the life glow since this is in the optimum range for the plants to use (kelven rating of 6.7k). and i agree with aokashi, some are going to thrive others will survive. with your lighting i would advise against any of the floaters since your light with the x2 t8 life glos is already low to medium light at best, all floaters will do is reduce your PAR which translates to how much light your plants are getting in the substrate. you said you dont want any rhyzome plants ferns and anubas, these will work great with your setup i reccomend atleast trying them to see your results. as far as your stem plants go you can try lugudia but it tends to be a higher light demand. swords should do fine in that tank for sure and then some ambulias, for the ambulia species try to get the sessiflora variety as this seems do be the easyiest of that species to grow and is amazing at algae proactiveness.

so i would try these plants:
amazon swords just the normal popular one (scientific name escapes me)
sessiflora ambulia
java fern
a few anubas
maybe look into a lugudia or two to try

all in all its pretty much trial in error with setting up a new planted tank, just be patient and presistent. the tank will tell you all you need to know by shoing you through plant issues, algae issues slow growth etc etc. then you post here and we help you figure it out =D
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Old 03-22-2013, 03:22 PM   #13
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limnophilla sessiliflora is a noxious weed which means that the only way to obtain it legally is by geting a permit to move said noxious weed. Just a heads up for you guys who own it.
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Old 03-22-2013, 03:38 PM   #14
 
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ah didnt know a permit was required for it, but i was aware of it being noxious. only reason i reccomended it since it would mroe then likely grow for anyone
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Old 03-22-2013, 04:14 PM   #15
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yep I agree too , precisely why it's a federal noxious weed :D ^_^ it often gets moved around, shipped and shared by "accident" ;)
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Old 03-23-2013, 02:33 PM   #16
 
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I have read this thread so am aware of subsequent posts, but wanted to offer a few suggestions on your initial points/questions.

Quote:
1x Hagen Life Glo T8.
1x Hagen Aqua Glo T8
1x Hagen Power Glo T8.
(I only have 2 sockets for my bulbs, so it would be a combination of 2 stated from above).
In a subsequent post you mention a 4-foot tank and the tubes are 42 inches. This would be 40w tubes according to Hagen's website. What depth and volume is this tank? This has an impact on lighting.

I have used all three tubes, and many others besides. I would certainly forget the Aqua-Glo, it is half the intensity of the Life-Glo plus it is purplish in hue. The Power-Glo is also purplish [I don't particularly like this as it distorts fish and plant colours, along with other things like the substrate] but has the intensity to work. The Life-Glo is ideal; this is frankly the best planted tank tube available. The 6700K renders fish and plant colours accurately, there is higher intensity than in most standard "daylight" tubes, and it is high in the three critical areas of red, blue and green. Two of these would be fine, subject to your answer on the tank size. But I might be able to suggest a second tube of less expense when I have the data.

Quote:
Several packets of "API Root Tabs"
Unfortunately I cant uproot my current sand substrate in order to place plant substrate down as the plant substrate would most likely make my tank cloudy and murky (Unless someone can recommend me a solid plant substrate - I heard Fluval Stratum doesnt leech, but wasnt sure how true this was), hence why I will be using Root Tabs. - I was also unsure as to how beneficial Plant substrate is in comparison to having sand + Root Tabs.
1x 500ml Easylife Profito
1x 500ml Easylife Carbon (I've heard this can melt certain types of plants however, so I'll have a think about that before I buy any).
I would not use the API substrate tabs; other members have reported various issues. I use Seachem's Flourish Tabs and after a couple years now can confirm that they are worth it with some plants such as the larger swords and tiger lotus. The smaller plants will be fine with a good liquid fertilizer. I am not personally familiar with Easy Life Pro-fito, but from what I see on their website I would say it is probably fine. My usual recommendations are either Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive Supplement or Brightwell Aquatics' FlorinMulti. But as I say, the Pro-fito looks like it should be much the same.

The EasyCarbo I would not use. However, I would want to know what is in it, and the website is silent on this. But the mention of algae being minimized by this stuff suggests it is likely similar to Seachem's Excel or API's CO2 Booster. These are glutaraldehyde, a toxic disinfectant that carries dangerous side effects for plants, bacteria, fish and humans. I won't go further into this here (you can ask). Carbon supplements are not necessary anyway, as mentioned below.

As for substrate, nothing is wrong with plain sand. Leave it. I have used so-called enriched substrates with no gain and at considerable expense.

Quote:
I also need to add that I really don't have the time or money to spend on the various Co2 Systems that are on the market.


Natural CO2 occurs from respiration but more from the breakdown of organics in the substrate. We aim to balance light and other nutrient supplementation with this, and it is not difficult.

One other question, what is the GH of your tap water? This is essential for the "hard" minerals that are not sufficient in standard fertilizers.

Quote:
I was mainly hoping for some good Starter 'substrate plants', and moss.
(Anything that can be buried into the substrate, so no Java Fern type plants please).
Others have made suggestions; I will just refer you to our plant profiles, second heading from the left in the blue bar at the top of the page. Several species are included.

Quote:
If anyone could give me a few tips and tricks to get me started too, that would be great, as the plants I did not have much success with previously has left me feeling rather daunted and reluctant to have another shot at, which is leaving me frustrated and rather upset as I would love to get some plants in my tank for myself and my fish.
The balance is key to success. Light and the 17 essential nutrients need to be balanced. The level of balance can vary from low to moderate to high light. You may find my series A Basic Approach to the Natural Planted Aquarium helpful; it is stickied at the head of this section of the forum. The photos of my tanks under the "Aquariums" tab below my name on the left use this basic method.

Hope this is of some hlep.

Byron.
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Old 03-23-2013, 04:14 PM   #17
 
Quote:
What depth and volume is this tank? This has an impact on lighting.
The depth of the water is about 45cm, but the tank alone stands 55cm in height.


Quote:
I have used all three tubes, and many others besides. I would certainly forget the Aqua-Glo, it is half the intensity of the Life-Glo plus it is purplish in hue. The Power-Glo is also purplish [I don't particularly like this as it distorts fish and plant colours, along with other things like the substrate] but has the intensity to work. The Life-Glo is ideal; this is frankly the best planted tank tube available. The 6700K renders fish and plant colours accurately, there is higher intensity than in most standard "daylight" tubes, and it is high in the three critical areas of red, blue and green. Two of these would be fine, subject to your answer on the tank size. But I might be able to suggest a second tube of less expense when I have the data.
Would two Life Glo’s be superior (if my Tank depth allows for it, reverting back to the original Quote) than a single Power Glo and a single Life Glo?


Quote:
I would not use the API substrate tabs; other members have reported various issues. I use Seachem's Flourish Tabs and after a couple years now can confirm that they are worth it with some plants such as the larger swords and Tiger Lotus. The smaller plants will be fine with a good liquid fertilizer. I am not personally familiar with Easy Life Pro-fito, but from what I see on their website I would say it is probably fine. My usual recommendations are either Seachem'sFlourish Comprehensive Supplement or Brightwell Aquatics' FlorinMulti. But as I say, the Pro-fito looks like it should be much the same.
It is quite difficult for me to get ahold of the Seachem Comprehensive, is there anything else you could recommend? But I can easily get ahold of the seachem Root Tabs, so I will definitely get those instead.


Quote:
The EasyCarbo I would not use. However, I would want to know what is in it, and the website is silent on this. But the mention of algae being minimized by this stuff suggests it is likely similar to Seachem's Excel or API's CO2 Booster. These are glutaraldehyde, a toxic disinfectant that carries dangerous side effects for plants, bacteria, fish and humans. I won't go further into this here (you can ask). Carbon supplements are not necessary anyway, as mentioned below.
Ok, I won’t bother using Liquid Carbon either.
Will there be a considerable difference by not having Co2? I’d prefer to get the best out of my plants without having to spend too much time or money on Co2 Systems (If you could recommend anything that would be appreciated).

Quote:
As for substrate, nothing is wrong with plain sand. Leave it. I have used so-called enriched substrates with no gain and at considerable expense.
That has put my mind at great ease, thanks.
I thought enriched substrates made a huge difference is all. But if it doesn’t, then that’s good news for me.

Quote:
Natural CO2 occurs from respiration but more from the breakdown of organics in the substrate. We aim to balance light and other nutrient supplementation with this, and it is not difficult.
One other question, what is the GH of your tap water? This is essential for the "hard" minerals that are not sufficient in standard fertilizers.
Would you recommend turning/removing my aeration pumps and the likes off once I have an abundance of plants in my aquarium? Or will it harm the fish if there is not enough Gaseous exchange? (I have a wavemaker too, as my filter doesn’t do a too great a job of pushing the water around)


Hardness Level: Moderately Soft


Hardness Clark: 6.00



One more question.
I have some 3d Resin rocks in my aquarium, I was hoping to attach Weeping Moss too them, would you know by any chance know if they would latch onto such man-made material? And if not, is there anything I could do to make it latch onto them?

These are them
3D ROCKS BOUNDLE ORNAMENTDECORATION For Aquarium Discus 4 items | eBay
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Old 03-23-2013, 05:56 PM   #18
 
Quote:
Quote:
I would not use the API substrate tabs; other members have reported various issues. I use Seachem's Flourish Tabs and after a couple years now can confirm that they are worth it with some plants such as the larger swords and Tiger Lotus. The smaller plants will be fine with a good liquid fertilizer. I am not personally familiar with Easy Life Pro-fito, but from what I see on their website I would say it is probably fine. My usual recommendations are either Seachem'sFlourish Comprehensive Supplement or Brightwell Aquatics' FlorinMulti. But as I say, the Pro-fito looks like it should be much the same.
It is quite difficult for me to get ahold of the Seachem Comprehensive, is there anything else you could recommend? But I can easily get ahold of the seachem Root Tabs, so I will definitely get those instead.
- I can however get ahold of Seachem Flourish.
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Old 03-23-2013, 07:12 PM   #19
 
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take out any aeration stones that you currently have in there since they will gass off the co2 in the tank which plants need. stick with the lif glos, its simple as that they are best for the plants. there is a diffrence in using co2 and not using co2, the plants grow alot faster im sure injection users will agree here. as in instead of plants growing inches in a day it takes weeks but they still grow. jsut not as much, not to mention you dont have the light output for co2 to even be worth it.
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:30 PM   #20
 
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Quote:
The depth of the water is about 45cm, but the tank alone stands 55cm in height.
OK, so this is what we call a standard 55g. The two 42-inch tubes will be sufficient for low and moderate light plants, which covers most of what's generally available. This designation is included in the plant profiles to help you.

Quote:
Would two Life Glo’s be superior (if my Tank depth allows for it, reverting back to the original Quote) than a single Power Glo and a single Life Glo?
In my opinion, yes. But remember that I mentioned earlier about the purplish hue of PG and I do not like that. While I have used all these tubes, I have not had PG and LG together over the same tank, so I can't say how much of an effect the PG might have. I would stay with two LG.

However, now that I know the tank specs, you could have a look in hardware-type stores for "daylight" tubes made by GE, Phillips or Sylvania. All three make some sort of "daylight" tube having a Kelvin of 6500K. I have used all three, and presently have GE and Phillips combined with LG on my three dual-tube tanks. The LG is more intense light, so you are getting that benefit; but otherwise they are near-identical. To save some money, one LG and one GE is an option. I do not think the difference would be significant for the "natural" method plants. I don't know if the GE, etc are available in 42-inch, perhaps not; so then I would say two LG.

Another good tube is the ZooMed series, and their UltraSun 6500K is almost identical to LG. In North America these are a tad less expensive, if that is a concern. Just make sure you get T8. The newer T5 tubes will not work in T8 fixtures [this applies to all tubes mentioned].

Quote:
It is quite difficult for me to get ahold of the Seachem Comprehensive, is there anything else you could recommend? But I can easily get ahold of the seachem Root Tabs, so I will definitely get those instead.
- I can however get ahold of Seachem Flourish.
Sorry, I previously intended to say Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive Supplement.

I think the Pro-fito may be fine, though. The ingredients cover most of the nutrients, except for the hard minerals which I will come to later.

You might want to compare prices there, and amount dosed. Flourish requires 1 teaspoon (5 ml) per 60g once (or twice, depending upon results) a week. And I would do 1 tsp per dose in your 55g.

Quote:
Will there be a considerable difference by not having Co2? I’d prefer to get the best out of my plants without having to spend too much time or money on Co2 Systems (If you could recommend anything that would be appreciated).
Mitch has answered this, and I agree. As my 4-part series explains, it is all about balance. But the balance can be at any one of several levels. Without adding CO2 by diffusion, you are at lower levels, so we keep the light less and do less fertilizing of the other nutrients. It may take some experimenting to find the balance. For instance, with your light, I would start with once a week dose of Flourish Comp [and the day following the water change], and lights on for 8 hours daily. Monitor the plants' response for 3-5 weeks, and watch out for algae. If the plants seem to be doing well, you might want to increase the light duration if you would prefer more viewing time. But this might cause algae issues, or it might go beyond the nutrient balance.

If you had a look at the photos of my tanks, I do not use CO2, never have and probably never will. I know there are a few plants I can't grow--fine, I don;t try. I stay with what thrives in the light I am prepared to give them, and the nutrient balance. These tanks work with 8 hours of light; any more and algae increases.

Quote:
Would you recommend turning/removing my aeration pumps and the likes off once I have an abundance of plants in my aquarium? Or will it harm the fish if there is not enough Gaseous exchange? (I have a wavemaker too, as my filter doesn’t do a too great a job of pushing the water around)
I agree with Mitch here too, though I am not certain as to what you might be referring too. You want the filter, but nothing beyond this in the area of water disturbance. My series goes into this, have a read of that please.

Quote:
Hardness Level: Moderately Soft
Hardness Clark: 6.00
One clarke degree I believe is 14.254 ppm, so 6 clarke degrees would be 85 ppm, which is 4.7 (call it 5) dGH. This is soft water, so that tallies. This is absolutely ideal for plants, and soft water fish. You are very lucky.

Earlier in this post I mentioned the hard minerals being left out of the fertilizer. The hard minerals (calcium, magnesium, potassium) in Flourish is minimal in proportion to the other nutrients because most people have water that is moderately hard or harder. Those like me with very soft water (less than 1 dGH out of the tap) have to add these to get the GH up to 4 to 6 dGH. But you have that, so you should be fine. But if your calculation shows that Flourish might be no more expensive, or less expensive, than the Pro-fito, depending how much of the latter you need to use compared to the 1 teaspoon of Flourish. And as Flourish does have some hard minerals, this would probably be a bit better, hard to say.

Quote:
I have some 3d Resin rocks in my aquarium, I was hoping to attach Weeping Moss too them, would you know by any chance know if they would latch onto such man-made material? And if not, is there anything I could do to make it latch onto them?

These are them
3D ROCKS BOUNDLE ORNAMENTDECORATION For Aquarium Discus 4 items | eBay
I don't know these; some use black cotton thread or fishing line to attach plants to rock and wood, and the plant eventually takes root itself. I don't know if moss would on resin or not.
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