My first try at planted

Discussion in 'Aquascaping and Member's Setups' started by CAtfishluvva, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    (Pics will follow 2nite promise)

    Tank size: 6-cm by 30 by 30.

    Filtration: 30cm by 30 by 20 sump attached to side with powerhead

    2x ugf (to be removed or disconnected soon...) driven by air pump

    Lighting: 4x energy saver bulbs, total wattage 48w (works out to 250w) on from 12pm to 8-9pm

    Substrate: Normal gravel.

    Plants: 2 Amazon Swords, 3x Eleocharis acicularis or Parvula, 1x Egeria densa (I think), Lobelia cardinalis (I think), and three others I have yet to ID...

    Fish: 4-5 Ottocinclus (one was injured and I havent seen it for two days...) some N Daffodil fry, 1x Pimelodella sp.

    Feeding: 1 cube of bloodworm per week for the Pim, he is supposed to eat the Cichlid fry.

    I don't feed the Oto's yet, they take care of the Algae and are at last winning that battle...

    Maintenance: Dayly 5litre water change with water that has been aerated overnight followed by a dosing of Bio Elite, DIY CO2 from 5l yeast reactor that gives me about 3-5bubbles per second into my special self designed and uber nifty CO2 diffuser.

    Water Params: pH 6.8, KH 3deg, GH 6deg, NO2 0, NO3 dropped from 50 to 10 since adding plants 2 weeks ago.

    Plants are growing great and all are now all pearling within 1hour of lights on. My Densa keeps bending towards the strongest source of light, he changes direction when the lights go on or of within about an hour or two. Its freaky walking by the tank and seeing him looking 90degrees in a different direction...

    Suggestions?
     
  2. Andre
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    Andre Green fingers

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    Hey Q

    I know I am a pain, but Egeria densa is actually a banned plant and declared weed in South Africa. Now you know - use it dont use it. :) Its bad stuff.

    Also, dont the tanganyikans prefer harder water with a higher pH?
     
  3. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    Yes I know the tanganyikans prefer harder water. Thats why I moved mommy to a hard setup of her own, thing is I am trying to get rid of the fry. I gave some away, and the rest are destined to become catfish fodder. They are BLERRIE hard to catch, the hardest fish to catch I ever had. Everytime I give some away I end up dismantling the whole setup, and then I STILL miss some of the buggers!

    Even the Pim has had a hard time, he only gets about one or two per night...

    As for the plant, I am not sure if it is what I think it is, I will post pics tonite and we can have clarity on it. Thanks for the info though...

    PS, even with the low pH and soft water the daffodils churned out 30 to 100 fry every three weeks untill the male had a run in with the tank lid trying to catch a water drop that formed on it. Dinged his dead, got a cyst and passed away...
     
  4. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Yup, better keep an eye on that Daffodil, he won't enjoy the CO2. Although i did have a Brichardi in my planted setup for a few months and he 'seemed' ok! But this should not be done.

    IMO there is no need to do a daily water change, this upsets the balance of the tank and also makes the fish stress out. Every time they see you they will be expecting your hands to go into the tank and as such could become quite nervous. You can quite safely do a water change once a week of 40%.

    Are you sure the Nitrates have gone down due to plant growth and not from all the water changes? Keep an eye on the Nitrates, if it goes down any further (below 10ppm) I would suggest you start dosing, or reduce your light cycle by a few hours. Egeria as Andre says is declared a pest here in SA, it grows like wildfire and will branch out readily once trimmed. Top it every now and then and replant the top, leaving the bottom where it is, new branches will sprout from the bottom in no time. Be careful to discard the clippings properly as you don't want this stuff to get into our waterways.

    I still think you have too much light, 2 bulbs over this setup should be fine.
     
  5. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    The mommy Daffodil is in a setup of her own, no CO2, only filter and some rocks...

    I will reduce the water changes and see if the NO3 picks up again...

    I have a nifty non intrusive way to change water, nothing gets into the tank unless I choose to siphon, it all gets done from the sump.
     
  6. Anonymous
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    Anonymous Guest

    Looking forward to those pics man, good luck with this setup. May you have 2 green thumbs and no green toes (or something like that).

    Referring to your first post - is the tank really 6 cm x 30 x 30? Shouldn't it read 60 x 30 x 30?
     
  7. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    Uh yeah, 60 by 30 by 30 cm, thanks dude...
     
  8. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    Okay so I decided to post both my tanks, except for the Daffodil retirement home ;)

    Here is my dedicated Catfish Setup. It is a 60cm by 30 by 30 tank with sump on the side, almost identical to the other setup except for some detailing here and there.

    Filtration: Sump on the side, powerhead. Thats it, I have a lot of surface agitation due to my inlet being above water level. I like it that way, this is not intended to be a planted setup anyhows. No CO2 although I do add nutrients. Also no algae problems...

    Here is the tank:

    [​IMG]

    Here are the three plants, I know two of them are anubias, but I am unsure as to which types and the third is some kind of grassy thingie.

    Plant 1:

    [​IMG]

    Plant 2:

    [​IMG]

    Plant 3 (grass):

    [​IMG]

    Whaddya fink?
     
  9. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    Here is the second setup, and I am not going to go through the whole thing again, details for this baby is in the OP.

    Here is the tank:

    [​IMG]

    And here are individual shots of the plants: (Helping with ID'ing these guys will help a lot!)

    1:

    [​IMG]

    2:

    [​IMG]

    3:

    [​IMG]

    4:

    [​IMG]

    5:

    [​IMG]
    (Here you can see one of the Daffodil babies I am trying to get rid off...)

    6:

    [​IMG]

    7:

    [​IMG]

    8:

    [​IMG]

    9:

    [​IMG]

    Notice the pearling. This goes on all day, every day on every plant except the grassy stuff from 1hr after lights on untill I switch them off, is this a good thing?

    Any comments are welcome, I am not terribly concerned with aquascaping now, I just want the plants to grow, and then I will move on to the looks.
     
  10. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    Here is my diffuser:

    [​IMG]

    Basically the line coming from the 5litre yeast reactor goes into the Valpre bottle via the thin airline you can see at top left.

    The thicker pipe on left bottom is the inlet from the power head, and the one on the top right is the outlet from the valpre bottle to the tank.

    The bubbles rise from the airhose into the bottle from behing the water inlet to be whacked a little by the current (I was hoping for more action from the current) to the top of the water bottle where a nice bubble forms.

    This bubble then gets absorbed into the water that flows out the outlet.

    I used a similar idea to a simple protein skimmer to get this idea...
     
  11. banjo
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    banjo Algae harvester

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    Great Pics! And great setups!

    I think plant 6 is either Ambulia or cobomba ... they are very similiar. I bought some ambulia on the weekend. nice plant.

    how about some pics showing the inhabitants of ur tanks?
     
  12. City bowl
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    City bowl Noob

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    My guess would be:

    1 Gymnocoronis spilanthoides -Spadeleaf
    2 Alternanthera reineckii
    3 Hygrophilia polysperma
    4 Eleocharis acicularis -Hairgrass
    5 Bacopa monnieri -Water Hyssop
    6 Limnophilia sessiliflora -Ambulia
    7 Ceratopteris -proberly thalictroides -Watersprite
    8 Houttunyia cordata -a non aquatic spieces
    9 Echinodorus bleheri -the common Amazon sword

    The bigger Anubias is barteri and the smaller nana
     
  13. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Nice pics, your plants look healthy. Thanks for posting the nice pictures. Did you get the hairgrass from Animal Kingdom, it's a handsome looking bugger, I like.

    Nice ID job from City Bowl !
     
  14. Anonymous
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    Anonymous Guest

    Looks great CFL, looks very good for a first try!

    Looking forward to those pics of the fishies in the tanks ;)
     
  15. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    I thought number 8 and Number 1 were not true aquatic plants... No 1 (Spadeleaf) has lost almost all its underwater leaves, but the Houttunyia is actually doing okay...
     
  16. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    Thanks for all the help guys...

    Cam nope I got the grass from Pet City in Zambezi road, actually all the plants except the Anubias come from there. The Anubias I got from Pet a Pond.

    Pet City has great prices on their plants, R9.90 each, or R39.90 for five. So I paid about R100.00 for all my plants except my Anubuas, which cost R15.00 for the Nana and R25.00 for the Barteri...
     
  17. City bowl
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    City bowl Noob

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    the spadeleaf should recover give it some time, it's not that easy but it's not difficult.
    Your tank still looks very new, the plants will all undergo changes for submerged life. :)
     
  18. CAtfishluvva
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    CAtfishluvva Algae harvester

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    Is the pearling okay? Also, my stem plants are making white root systems that grow out from the roots, at the "knuckles" where the leaves are growing from.

    Is this indicative of someting, or normal?
     
  19. Andre
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    Andre Green fingers

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    Yep, it means they are growing :)
     
  20. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    The 'knuckles' are better known as 'nodes'. It is quite normal for stem plants to put out roots from the nodes. H. polysperma does this quite alot, my guess is that it 'might' be from high levels of Phosphate in the water column. It can get quite messy, you can trim them off or cut at the node and replant.

    The pearling is indicative of good plant growth. This is good. In systems with good CO2 levels the pearling is seen as strings of bubbles escaping the plant, like champaign.
     

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