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Fablau 75 gallon tank

Discussion in 'Journals' started by fablau, Jan 28, 2017.

  1. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Well, I kept procrastinating this due to lack of time, but finally I found the time to put together any needed information to start this thread dedicated to my own 75 gallon tank.


    Where to start? I setup this tank back 2008, so it has been already 9 years. The tank is one of those standard “All-Glass Aquarium” tanks pre drilled with the built-in overflow, which is very convenient on one side, but on the other side it is a little cumbersome and ugly since not only takes big part of the internal tank room, but also limit your scape possibilities a great deal (and I never liked that black plastic can on the left-back of the tank).


    In any case, I have enjoyed this tank so far, despite the many problems I have experienced. But… who has never had any problems with planted tanks, right?!


    So, let’s jump on the details… get ready…


    Filter and Overflow


    Ok, from the equipment stand point, the tank is provided of an oversized wet/dry filter (I think the filter - sump - alone is about 20gl) giving me plenty of space for filters, bio media, etc. The main pump is a Eheim Compact 3000 (900 gl/hr), and the overflow is a standard Herbie I made myself from the original Megaflow system which was terribly noisy.


    Here are some pictures of my tank and all the equipment inside the cabinet:


    Full.jpg


    FullDet.jpg


    Co2 System


    The Co2 system is driven by a Eheim Compact 2000, uses a 10gl Co2 tank with a Greenleaf regulator, solenoid and bubble counter (9 years old though, the new ones may be of better quality).


    in the overall, Co2 is delivered this way:


    1. Co2 gets injected into an Aqua Medic 1000 reactor.


    2. From the reactor, flow gets into a DIY cerges 13” by 4” from a Watts water filter:


    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000E78XH6/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1


    Please, note that the flow is connected to the cerges in the “natural” way: in to in and out to out so that water enters at the top and slowly goes down and sucked up from the center tube and then back at the top.


    1. From the Cerges the pipe is connected directly to the main pump intake inside the sump to return with the rest of the flow inside the tank.


    2. GAS BUILD UP VENT: at the top of the AM reactor, the vent is connected back to the intake of Eheim Compact 2000 so that gas built up has another chance to get chopped and dissolved.


    3. The output of the Eheim Compact 2000 is connected to a Sera Flora Active reactor which is then connected back to the Aqua Medic.


    I know, it is a little complicated, so I made a graphic to better understand it:


    Co2_system.jpg


    And here is a picture of the overall Co2 system and Apex controller:


    Co2.jpg


    Co2-Apex.jpg


    Later in the day I get 2-3 inches of build up in the Sera reactor, but I almost see now bubbles in the tank. Also, I inject about 70-80ml/minute of Co2 and my Ph drop is over 1.3 (from about 7.20 down to 5.85):


    [​IMG]


    I don’t know actually if this system is efficient or not, but the PH drop is there. Co2 starts 2 hours before photoperiod (excluding 30 minutes dawn effect) and stops 1 hour before lights turn off (before the last 30 minutes sunset effect). What I am having an hard time with (sometimes) is to keep the Co2 level stable during the photoperiod, and what I mean with “stable” I mean without keeping dropping as you can see from the pH graph above. I know that to keep it there I need to add O2, and that’s what I try doing by opening my Wet/Dry filter:


    OpenWet.jpg


    And that’s my only way to add oxygen since my tank is actually closed at the top. At the top I have glass covers and then lights laid over them.


    Light


    I light my tank with 2 cheap Aqueon T8 led fixtures that can accommodate 6 T8 tubes in total, but I use just 4 (3 in the back and 1 in the front screened by a double metal mesh). In the middle, between the two T8 fixtures, I have a Dutch BML LED light which gives me a dawn and sunset effect via Apex controller.


    Hood.jpg


    The Photoperiod is defined as follows:


    1. Dawn starts at 12:30 pm via BML Led


    2. Back lights (3 x T8 40w each) start at 1 pm


    3. BML Led stops at 25% at 1pm and remains there until 4pm


    4. Front light (1 x T8 40w) starts at 1:30 pm


    5. BML Led stars ramping down at 4pm until 8:30 pm when all lights are off


    6. Front light stops at 7 pm


    7. Back lights stop at 8 pm


    To make it simple: I have a 7 hours photoperiod with a 50-60 PAR at the substrate.
     
  2. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Substrate


    Well, substrate is a little messy. When I setup the tank, I used Eco Complete at the bottom with a top layer of gravel (I used to like gravel, go figure!) which made all planting extremely difficult (ouch!)… so, over time, I began adding more Eco at the top to help with planting. I also added some ActivFlora substrate in some areas. Both Eco and ActivFlora are inert substrates with a decent CEC capacity, even though I think ADA has much more CEC capacity than Eco, and I’ll tell you why I think so… keep reading…


    Fact is, nowadays my substrate depth is ridiculously high, probably around 8-9 inches (!!) because of adding new substrate, layer after layer, in 9 years of playing around… I don’t know if that may cause issues after 9 years, but that’s the situation of my substrate now.


    Water


    I have always used tap water until 2 months ago when I started trying to mix tap and RO. Tap gives me a KH of 7 and a GH of 15 (LA water folks!), and now that I mix with RO I get a KH of 3 and a GH of 7.


    Critters


    - Amano Shrimp


    - Red Cherry Shrimp (breed all the time)


    - Rummy Nose Tetra


    - Tetra Neon


    - Ruby Platies (breed all the time)


    - Albino Bushy Nose Plecos (breed all the time)


    I had a lot of fish until 2 weeks ago, then I bought some sick neons that spread some sort of disease and had a terrifying mass-death that seems to have finally stopped. Second time in 9 years. That sucks but may happen.


    Plants


    Currently I have the following plants:


    - Anubias


    - Rotala Rotundifolia


    - Java Moss


    - Micro Sword


    - Ambulia


    - Swords (I must find the will to remove them)


    - Alternanthera Reineckii


    - Alternanthera Variegated (thank you Vin!)


    - Hygrophila Sunset


    - Hygrophila Polysperma


    - Vallisneria Americana


    - Stargrass


    - Red Pantanal


    - Micranthemum Monte Carlo


    - Myriophyllum


    - Ludwigia Peruensis


    - Mayaca Fluviatilis


    - Staurogyne Repens


    - Limnophila Aromatica


    - Cabomba Furcata


    And other few plants I can’t recall their name… still learning on that.


    Interestingly, as I said above, I setup this tank 9 years ago, before moving into EI I could successfully grow amazing Rotala Nanjenshan and Alternanthera Reineckii (AR) as you can see from the pics below taken from two different tank's versions of a few years ago (before EI fertilization):


    IMG_5413.jpg


    Nanjenshan.jpg


    IMG_5415.jpg


    AR-Nenjanshan.jpg


    Anubias and other easy-to-grow plants like Ambulia (Limnophila indica) have always been among my favorite. Here is a full pic of the tank back in 2013 before EI:


    FullTankBeforeEI.jpg


    So… you’d probably ask: Why in the heck did you change fertilization style if it worked well??!! Good question… I screwed up man. I began playing with more light because I wanted to grow Glosso as carpeting plant, and at that time I thought and read that I needed more light… so I added 2-3 tubes more of what I had, and then I started having algae issues (GDA mostly), and then I moved into EI to cope with that… and here I am after 4 years. I know now a lot more than before, and I know that I have to fertilize, but maybe I need to find the right balance to have those plants back… read below for more details…


    Fertilization


    I began this tank by dosing just Flourish Comprehensive once a week. With the fact at that time I had lower light (just 3 x 40w T8) and lower Co2, that was enough for me to grow easy plants without any issues… no algae and they grew great for a while (Valisnerias, Amazon Swords, Microwords, Anubias, Ambulia and other easy plants). Here is a picture of my tank back in 2009:


    LowFertilization.jpg


    Funny thing is that at that time, I used to have a much less efficient Co2 system, much less Co2 and much more O2 because of the fact I used the old Megaflow overflow which added a lot of O2 by itself, but I used to be able to grow plants like Rotala Nanjenshan and Alternanthera Reineckii that today I am completely unable to grow (see below). Also the main pump was a small Eheim 1000, so in the tank there was much less flow and distribution (isn’t this interesting?).


    But then plant mass increased, and I began seeing some GSA around and other minor algae, then I began using the macros offered by Sachem besides just the Comprehensive mix, but that wasn’t enough to keep up with algae. Then I messed up things increasing light trying to grow plants like Glosso, and I screw up too much… then I decided to switch to EI, and I must say, things haven’t worked well ever since neither. I mean… some plants got much better, algae almost disappeared, but other plants got worse and I haven’t been able to have them back ever since. The plants that got worse are AR, Rotala Nanjenshan (it dies after a couple of weeks in my tank with EI fertilization) and Java Moss. Yes! I am unable to grow Java Moss well and I used to do with almost no fertilizers as you can see from the pics above.


    So, with the fact I have experimented a lot in the last 5-6 years, and even since I switched to EI 3 years ago, I won’t list all the experiments I have tried, but I’ll tell you what’s my current fertilization regime:


    Macros (alternating days, 3x a week):


    KNO3: 5.62 ppm per dose


    K: 2.53 ppm per dose


    PO4: 0.86 ppm per dose


    Mg: 1.77 ppm after WC


    Micros (alternating days, 3x a week):


    Here’s tricky. I have been dosing 0.2 ppm Fe from CSM per dose since I switched to EI and until a couple of months ago (with the exception of when I tried the “detox” experiment mentioned above), then I decided to lower the dose to see if too high micros were the cause of my stunted AR and Java Moss. I started lowering them step-by-step, from 0.2 ppm to 0.15 ppm, then 0.12 ppm, etc… changing the dosing every week… (Burr knows about all this)… well, very interestingling, when I reached the dose of 0.055 ppm of Fe from CSM, my Java Moss started growing again!! After 3 years of complete inactivity! And AR started putting out some new roots and some new leaves as well (!!) So… I am now in the process to try lowering micros even more, so my current micros dosing for the next couple of weeks is going to be the following:


    0.036 ppm Fe from CSM + 0.02 ppm Fe from DTPA + 0.01 Fe from Glutamate


    It looks like my tank could be pretty similar to Burr’s. Maybe the substrate doesn’t have enough CEC capacity anymore? Or never had? And this would be an interesting discussion since I always thought Eco Complete was a pretty high CEC substrate… but maybe it is not compared to ADA AQ or others… I’ll definitively know that as soon as I’ll be able to grow AR again with such low traces.


    Water Change: 50-60% once a week.


    Current Challenges


    So… after so many years, are are my current challenges:


    - I am able to grow well pretty much all plants in my tank with the exception of AR and some Rotalas like Nanjenshan that I used to grow perfectly with almost no dosing (you may know why — Pikez’s Kill Tank tells :) )


    - I have BBA issues all the time and it looks like I am unable to defeat that damn thing (keep reading…)


    BBA


    BBA started about 2 years ago to appear in my tank, I never had it before. It began appearing on some Anubias leaves, and then it spread over some wood. Nothing really bad, because I keep it in check, but it never went away ever since. Then back in November 2015, I tried the famous “micro detox” cure which actually made BBA disappear for about 20 days (!!) as I have given evidence of it on several threads on this forums and others. But eventually BBA came back (no idea why) and then I was able to make it disappear again by increasing micros back again, and BBA stayed away for a couple of months that way… but then it came back again, and I haven’t been able to get rid of it ever since. I tried again detox cures and then re-increase micros, but no avail. It looks like my first events of BBA disappearing because of different micro dosing was either a fortunate coincidence or something else at the same time played a role together with the different micro dosing.


    Here is what I have tried to defeat that damn BBA:


    1. Different level of Co2, reaching crazy levels of Co2 by pumping over 140ml/minute of Co2 giving me pH drops of over 1.6 (!!). Wet/dry helps with that. But nothing, BBA was always there.


    2. Keeping Co2 stable as much as I could (see Co2 curve above, is that enough stable???!!)


    3. Cleaned the tank like my grandma used doing with her kitchen, keeping filters super-clean, doing regular maintenance daily and weekly, the same way Pikez is doing (my gosh Vin, how in the heck you don’t get BBA!!!) and siphoning substrate weekly before water change. But no, no avail either!!!


    4. Lowering light: nothing.


    5. Shortening photoperiod: nothing.


    6. Increasing Water Changes to 2-3 a week for 2 weeks in a row: nothing (should I try doing it more?)


    So… what in the heck do I need to do to stop this BBA? You tell me. I have tried everything. I suspect something related to plant growth is causing it, hence the fact I could make it disappear twice by tinkering with micros. Also, as I said above, I am unable to grow some plants which suggests me something is not completely right in what I am doing. Or maybe my tank is too old? Substrate too old? Go figure…


    Here are some pics showing my current BBA situation:


    BBA1.jpg


    BBA3.jpg


    BBA2.jpg


    Well, I wrote everything I could write about my current and past tank situation. Now, I am eager to know your thoughts about it, and if you have any thoughts about how to tackle BBA more of what I have already tried, let me know!


    I’ll post my current tank’s pictures in the next post.


    Thank you all guys.
     
  3. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Here are some pictures of my current tank status:


    Full Tank:


    FullTank.jpg


    From the left angle:


    Angle.jpg


    From the right corner:


    Corner.jpg


    Right-front view. The nice AR is from Vin (Pikez). Those few stems of Red Pantanal is what is survived from the nice batch I got from Tom (sorry Tom, I did what I could!). For Pantanal, 50% RO seemed to help, but it looks like low traces also helped...


    RightFront.jpg


    Left side:


    LeftSide.jpg


    Right side:


    RightSide.jpg


    AR Variegated from Vin (Pikez) Thanks! I love this plant!:


    Variegated.jpg


    My resurrected Moss since I am dosing low traces (finally after 3 years I see it back!!):


    Moss.jpg

    Save

     
    #3 fablau, Jan 28, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2017
    Sky King, rzn7z7, Nikolyator and 2 others like this.
  4. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    GREAT write up man. Glad to finally see all the details and close ups. Tank looks very nice. I like the way the moss logs(?) sorta wind towards the back. Good depth effect. Some of those earlier renditions were stunning as well.


    About the bba, something occurs to me since you've tried just about everything. (obviously could be a result of a few perpetually unhappy plants, but lets put that aside for a minute)


    With substrate that deep and that old, I wonder if you have a lot of organic waste in the system. Have you ever used Purigen? I have a 20 long about 3 years old, about 50 par and co2. Initially was set up with a mix of gravel and sand. The plants stay algae free as long as they're happy, but there used to always be tufts of bba growing on the gravel and various other places.


    About a year ago I started using Purigen in all my tanks. The 20 has two Aquaclear20 HOB filters, and I put a 100ml bag in each one (1 bag is supposed to treat 100 gal) After just one week both bags were doo-doo brown. The same color it took my 75 four or five months to turn. Yes, in one week!.


    This told me there was a lot of built up organics somewhere. Since I keep the filters really clean and do good pruning and water changes, the substrate was the only thing left.


    So I did a few deep vacuums over the course of a month or two, doing part of the tank at a time, and it got a little better, but not much. Finally I wound up replacing it with all new sand and no gravel. Now the Purigen lasts 4-5 weeks before needing a recharge. That's still not great, I believe the tank is underfiltered actually, but it's a lot better than it was.


    I said all that to suggest dropping some Purigen in the system and see how long it lasts. It can be a pretty good test to see how much organic waste there is.


    Even with vacuuming, I bet there's a ton built up in that sub. Might have something to do with it.


    Keep the updates coming! :)
     
    #4 burr740, Jan 29, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2017
  5. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Thank you Burr, I appreciate your kind words!


    Well, good question about Purigen.... I tried that, yes, but actually not for long, a few months ago. Maybe for 2-3 weeks only?


    But as today, I completely forgot to mention that in the last 2 weeks I have put a big bag (500ml bag) of it together with regular carbon inside the media section of the sump exactly for trying to reduce organics even further. And after 2 weeks it is actually still pretty white, sort of "beige" color", so I don't see that much organic matter trapped in there... but of course, the old substrate is the first thing I have thought being the cause several months ago and that's why I vacuum every week, before water change, and pretty deeply also (I go down between 1-2 inches into the substrate).


    But this time I'll try to keep Purigen and carbon for longer and see if it makes any difference. I never kept it there for long because before I thought it could absorb dosed traces, but reading around, it looks like that's not the case, right?


    Also, I forgot to mention above, that since I have decreased micros dosing, all plants got better with the exception of Cabomba Furcata that slowed down growth... but maybe it is just temporary to adjust to the new conditions? What do you think? Have you ever noticed slowing down growth in any plants with such slow trace dosing?


    I'll definitively keep updating the thread, finally I have a place where to post my own questions and issues ;)

    Save





    Thank you!
     
  6. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Oh, I forgot this question for your Burr: Have you ever noticed any possible correlation between trace dosing and BBA as I did? Just curious... thanks!
     
  7. Nuno M.

    Nuno M. Member

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    Hey man really nice and peaceful tank you got there !!!


    It really blows my mind the way that you guys trouble so much for CO2 diffusion !!! I really don't understand why so much trouble, and all the equipment you got there just for this !!! Cleaning all the equipment you got there must be a headache :eek:


    Any one of the reactors you got there would do the job just fine, I think you guys over complicate it !!! Don't get me wrong but for me easing the maintenance routine is one of my main objectives, so I can focus on the plants, layout and enjoying my tanks ...


    I also think a good ceramic diffuser beats down any kind of reactor, I've used some in the past, but since I'm using a pollen glass any related CO2 problems I got in the past whore overcame, sure with them there's no 100% dissolution, some will be wasted, does this really matters ?? Last time I filled my 10KG CO2 bottle was on 02/27/2015, almost 2 years now and still going strong !!!


    Don't focus so much in fertilization or co2, the main goal is maintenance and keeping a good routine, the simpler the better to have time to enjoy it ;)


    Sorry for being a little harsh, you really have a beautiful layout there, and at first glance it seams really healthy so keep it on fablau :D


    Keep those updates coming, I will for sure follow this journal !!!
     
    #7 Nuno M., Jan 29, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2017
  8. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Thanks Nuno, I agree with you 100%. Too complicated. And if you consider my plants used to grow better with less of anything, that tells you all.


    As for ceramic diffusers, you are the only person I ever heard saying that are giving you better results than reactors. That's great to know, and makes me think why... your thoughts on that?


    I think I began becoming paranoid as soon as I switched over EI, and not seeing the "perfect" results I expected, I began tinkering with things... and, most of all, when BBA appeared, I definitively became paranoid on Co2, hence complicating things!


    So... whatever I can simplify, the better. That's my goal as well.


    As I wrote above, I am now in the process of testing low traces to see if at least I can have my AR back, and if I can also find a way to get rid of BBA, I will be finally done with "experimenting" and I will be finally able to move on with "simplification" of the whole process.


    oh! One thing I forgot mentioning, when I had great plants years ago (see pics above), with almost no ferts, almost no circulation, low Co2, I also used to change water just twice a month and clean the pre-filter just once a month! Such a easier life... and I used to get better results.


    so... that's my master plan. And of course, if I won't be able to get rid of BBA in any other way, my next step will be to tear down the whole tank and start over.
     
    #8 fablau, Jan 29, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2017
  9. Nuno M.

    Nuno M. Member

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    I really don't have a strict answer to you fablau, I've discarded my reactor long ago and the main reason was maintenance, I hate when things get over complicated, since then I notice my pH drop is faster and plants response was better, maybe it's because of the misting in water column can't say for sure !!!


    Overall having fittings twists and turns on my plumbing is something I avoid at all costs, even more because I use lily pipes that require cleaning more frequently, and having things on the hoses hanging it's a PITA !!! With fast coupling taps, I do that in a breeze, same thing with the ceramic diffuser, I grab a bucket, make a bleach/water solution drop them in there for like 10 min, and they are ready to go !!!


    I's easy to maintain this kind of equipment, and is aesthetically very appealing, so that's my main reasons for using them ;)
     
  10. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    Only as it relates to plants being happy or unhappy. In my humble experience most algae is directly related to unhappy plants. Im talking about algae on the plants themselves.
     
  11. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Ok, I see your point. Maybe you could have tinkered with your reactor to make it better than the diffuser, but why if you are happy with the diffuser, right? May I ask you what's your pH drop in your tank. Maybe you have written that on your own journal... sorry!
     
  12. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Sure thing Burr, I also have always correlate algae with plants problems. I mean, those few times where ALL plants were perfect in my tank, no algae were around, not a speck.


    Strange enough, BBA disappeared when I stopped micros dosing for 10 days. It disappeared in just 3 days. Then it came back, after 10 days. And after 2 months, I got back to my previous micros dosage, and BBA disappeared again. And then it came back again after another couple of weeks. I am confident that the change made some plants doing better and BBA was defeated in some way, but when BBA disappeared the second time I still was dosing a lot of traces (0.3 ppm Fe from CSM per dose??!), so I still had problems with AR and Java Moss, so... hard to understand what plants got better when I tried that, I couldn't see any difference in plant growth but BBA disappearing. Sort of a mystery to me, still nowadays...
     
  13. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    Indeed that is strange.


    Maybe in both cases adjusting micros caused a brief surge of plant growth and health.


    The detox helped because previous levels were too high, but then it soon became not enough. The increase helped because there were deficiencies, but soon became too much again.


    Perhaps you just havent found the "sweet spot" yet. If I recall you and Pikez didnt really explore much middle ground at the time.


    idk, just an idea
     
    #13 burr740, Jan 30, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2017
  14. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Yes, that's exactly what I thought, but still some plants never recover despite BBA disappeared (AR, Java Moss for example). And then how to explain the numerous times I have tried that again without success? Lowering and increasing micros, catching that damn "sweet spot"? Truth is: I have never lowered micros that much, with the only exception of the 10 days "detox"....This time I have really lowered micros a great deal, and very slowly, in order to give time to plants to adjust and give me some feedback, and it looks working! At least I can now see my Java Moss getting back well. My goal now is to have AR back as well. I will keep lowering micros until that, and then we'll see if BBA will stop.


    I will keep you posted!
     
  15. rajkm

    rajkm Article Editor
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    I can tell you that BBA is not co-related to micro. I dose quite a bit of micro but never had BBA. I just recently had BBA when tinkering with my new reactor which meant my CO2 levels were off. Now since I fixed that, no new BBA growth. Old one I zap with H2O2 and that's done.


    i also have eco complete and I think it's CEC is overrated. Your 9" substrate can cause problems because eco complete has some fine granules which settle down over time and can cause anaerobic pockets.
     
  16. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    3:35 AM
    Good to know that Rajkm. I am testing with very low micros right now, we'll see if that'll help with some stuck plants, and then with BBA as a consequence. I am pretty sure there isn't a direct correlation, but for sure I could cause something in my tank, with different micro dosing, which made BBA disappear.


    As for the deep substrate, I see what you mean. I am just wondering what negative effect such anaerobic pockets can have... ideas?
     
  17. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Ok, here is an update on my tank's situation: today I had weekly WC, not trimming. I tried what Tom and Pikez suggested doing during WC, using air pumps and H2O2:


    http://www.barrreport.com/forum/barr...276#post244276


    I wanna try that for a while and see if makes any difference with BBA...


    Also, after one week of a 500ml bag of Purigen in the filter, it became pretty brown, showing pretty high organics I guess (I have no comparison though)... I'll regenerate it in the next 24 hours and put it back, and I'll see if it'll be still the same in 1 week or so. The next time I'll take a picture of it so you can tell me if it is too dark or not that much...


    Anyhow, here is the current situation, in detail...


    The Good


    In the overall, the low micros regime seems to work well for plants. Moss got much better and it is actually growing (!!), and AR seems growing. AR Variegated seems growing as well (so far so good Vin!). I am currently dosing 0.037 ppm Fe from CSM, 0.01 Fe from DTPA and 0.01 Fe from Glutamate every other day... well, 10 times less of what I used doing a few months ago!


    Here are some pictures of the "good" of my tank, right now:


    Moss thriving:


    moss.jpg


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Pantanal got much better than before (it is actually growing, it was stuck!)


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Rotala is sprouting very well:


    rotala.jpg


    AR is growing (slowly, but I see new leaves coming up!)


    [​IMG]


    AR Variegated is growing (slowly, but so far so good!)


    [​IMG]


    The Bad


    BBA doesn't go away, it is persistent. I can find it mostly on Anubias (classic!) and Repens:


    9BBA.jpg


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    I have noticed that since I have increased circulation in my tank a few weeks ago (through the use of the Eheim 3000 instead of the Eheim 2000 in primis, but I also added a very small Hydor circulation pump - the 180 gl/hr one, you can see it in the overall tank picture below, right in the center-back of the tank), I see more debris floating around, and I am wondering if that's a good or a bad thing. Could that contribute to BBA in some way?


    The Weird


    Well, despite all plants are growing pretty well, Cabomba Furcata got stuck a little bit. It is growing, but very, very slow.. can that be due to low traces? Ambulia (Limnophila) grows like crazy, so I am puzzled about the status of the Cabomba:


    cabomba.jpg


    We'll see in the coming week. I'll keep this low-traces regime for one more week, and then I'll have my next WC and trimming, and I'll decide what to do. I can either continue with this regime (if I see enough growth in AR), or I can try to lower the dosage even further, getting close to what Burr is dosing for his tank (0.01 Fe from CSM). I'd like to see what's gonna happen with such low dosage. My goal is to have ALL plants thriving. I got my moss back (finally!), and so I hope all other plants will get better and bac to normal as well after years of struggle.


    About the persistent BBA, I still have the following to try:


    1. I could try to reduce circulation and see if that makes any difference (maybe, less stirred organics could help?)


    2. I could try to increase aeration during night through the use of an air stone... I tried that already in the past, and didn't help with BBA, but I could try again. Your thoughts on that?


    3. If nothing of the above works and ALL plants thrive, I'll reach the conclusion that my tank's substrate is too old and it is probably releasing too much organics all the time, and I'll have to either siphon very deeply the substrate, step-by-step, or tear down the whole tank and start over with clean substrate. Feedback on that is very welcome!


    In any case, I am pretty satisfied with the low-traces dosing results so far, and I'll keep you posted!


    Here is a full-tank shot, taken right now:


    [​IMG]

    Save




    Save

     
    #17 fablau, Feb 4, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2017
  18. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    Looking good! Those AR varig. leaves are flatter than mine.
     
  19. fablau

    fablau rotalabutterfly.com
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    Yeah, I am surprised.... And I am dosing more traces than you! Go figure... I will keep testing. Thanks Burr!
     
  20. rajkm

    rajkm Article Editor
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    The Pantanal leafs curving downwards is a sure sign of CO2 issues and Macros. I would concentrate on that first.
     
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