11-10-2006, 09:48 PM
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Originally Posted by bettababy
I am curious about the green water during "gravel washing"? Can you please explain about how you are washing the gravel and how often?As for depth of the substrate being too shallow to hold plants, then I would have to suggest making it a bit deeper. The gravel bed is important for keeping the tank stable because its a huge contribution for surface area for bacteria growth. If I read the post correctly, it sounds as if the gravel is being removed for washing? If this is the case, then please, stop. Washing the gravel outside of the tank, especially if using tap water to do it, is one of the most dangerous things to do in any aquarium.
Okay, okay, let me clear things up. This particular tank has probably the clearest water of all my tanks. It is the only one where I do not keep live plants, as the dark algae has killed them in the past. I have maybe an inch of gravel at most. I lost some gravel when I re-set up the tank about 3+ years ago (after moving). It is also more pebble sized -- maybe 1 cm diameter. I did have plants grow sucessfully long ago (before the move).
About the green water -- I do not wash the gravel outside the tank. I meant, when I vacuum the gravel, the water coming up appears light green in color, sometimes very green. But not much debris at all (compared to my other tanks).
I checked my light timer -- it was set to 14 hours! I use this timer for 2 other, planted tanks. I reduced the time to 12 hours (when the question came up). So that is probably part of the problem.
I got a phosphate kit and I compared my tap water, to a planted tank, to this tank and the results were: 0.25, about 1.0, and between 1.0 and 2.5 respectively. So there are definately some phosphates.