This site is supported by the advertisements on it, please disable your AdBlocker so we can continue to provide you with the quality content you expect.
  1. Dismiss Notice
  2. We are after as many aquarium plant images that we can get, doing so will assist us in completing the aquarium plant database.

    https://barrreport.com/threads/aquatic-plant-images-wanted.14374/
    Dismiss Notice

Hello Everybody, I Think I've Screwed Up My Set Up.

Discussion in 'Are you new to aquatic plants? Start here' started by Sloth, Aug 12, 2019.

  1. Sloth

    Sloth New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2019
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    2:21 AM
    I'm gonna be humble here. I'm brand new to this hobby and tried to jump in with both feet and think that I wasted a good chunk of money by doing so. Allow me to explain.

    I started with a simple 10 gallon tank and some UNS controsoil (extra fine) as well as some aquarium sand (the concept was for a beachy middle ground). I added about 3 inches to the background but left it very minimal for the midground and foreground. I know now that you want at least 1-2 inches, not the minimal amount I added.

    I do not have a CO2 regulator (gonna get one in the future) but add Flourish excel to it daily, about 1ml/day as the bottle recommends. I also use UNS all in one plant food, I usually add one squirt every 3 days, also as the bottle recommends. I also have a heater set to 78F as I heard that helps the plants out, for a few days they were on 72F.

    I didn't want to purchase a $100+ light because I thought that it was unnecessary (please be easy on me for that thought process, trust me I'm starting to regret it), so I purchased an 18" MingDak LED Aquarium Hood Light that said it was full spectrum and had many reviews saying it worked for plants, so I went with it for about $40. I at first left my plants at 8 hours/day but have since cut down to 6, actually from recommendations from reading forums on this site.

    The plants I have are rotala indica, najas indica, pearlweed, dwarf hair grass, natans super red and some Christmas moss. The pearlweed introduced snails into my tank, which it seems I've more so eliminated thankfully as they seemed to have eaten holes in the rotala's (they only seem to hang out on them).

    I did not cycle my tank, I have added Dr. Tims one and only bacteria to the tank as I poured the water in, and have my filter set up with no charcoal and bio spheres to help them grow.

    Now the reason I think I've screwed this up is a combination of not cycling before introducing plants, too little substrate (even though the plants don't float and seem to finally be growing some roots), and the simple fact that leaves keep dying on my plants. All but the najas indica seem to be suffering, and it's honestly sad to watch.

    Can I trouble you to offer suggestions, I really don't want to start from scratch but if they're going to die anyways I understand. Sorry for the long post, I wanted to be thorough. Also I've done some tests and the pH stays at about 6.7, my ammonia levels are 0-.25ppm, nitrites are 2-5 ppm and nitrates are averaging 5ppm since I've started doing daily 25% water changes. If anything else is needed please ask, I'm in need of some help.

    Edited to add my tank is only about a week old, and after reading through the rules on this forum I realize these issues may have been asked in the past, I'm going to read through the past threads to try and match my issues. If this post does sound like repetitive newbie issues please delete it.
     
    #1 Sloth, Aug 12, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2019
  2. Sloth

    Sloth New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2019
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    2:21 AM
    So I decided to update, after doing the water changes daily, cutting the light to 6 hours and keeping temp steady I am finally seeing new growth on about 80 percent of my plants! Still a lot to do and learn but I just did a little happy dance haha. Still would appreciate tips but not as melodramatic as my original post described.
     
  3. CarissaT

    CarissaT New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2019
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    3
    Local Time:
    3:51 AM
    Hi glad things are getting a little better. There is usually a period of time where plants are adapting to new conditions where you will see little or no growth so that's not too surprising. Keeping the photoperiod shorter is also good for just starting off. You may want to keep an eye on your nitrates + nitrites and ensure they don't get too low. As it cycles you will see only nitrates but you want to be maintaining a minimum of about 5-10ppm all the time. If it's getting on the lower side you may need to bump up your fertilizing a bit more frequently. As far as the light goes the main concern is that it's not too bright and not too dim. Being too bright will cause algae and too dim may not grow the plants you want to be able to grow. Too bright, in my opinion, is a much bigger problem. You can watch your plant and algae growth and see how things go. Spending lots of money on a light does not necessarily equate to success!
     
    Sloth likes this.
  4. Sloth

    Sloth New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2019
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    2:21 AM
    They are getting better, thank you. I have been keeping track of my nitrite/nitrate levels and for now they are still working on going through the entire cycle. I'm hoping within a couple of weeks they will stabilize.
    Now I'm dealing with another issue, pests in my tank. At first I noticed a few snails that seemed to have hitched a ride into my tank, I didn't isolate and honestly kind of rushed the process and they decided to take up residence. Now their numbers are going down from manually removing the ones I see and I noticed 2 days ago that there is a new pest. The entire back end of my tank has little tiny white worms maybe 1-2mm long. They aren't numbered in the thousands as I see some people are dealing with but there is definitely a healthy population. Looking into it they don't seem to be harmful (if my species identification is correct they are essentially scavengers), but I went and got a vacuum cleaner for my substrate to manually remove them/any plant matter that was acting as a good food supply. Their numbers seem to be declining but they are all still hanging out right on the wall by my filter. Today when I do my water change I'm planning to clean my filter media, it recommends cleaning out all the filter balls I use to grow my bacteria though and I think that would hurt the cycling process.. seems to be no winning but I'm gonna try to address this before they take over.
     
  5. Julia Adkins

    Julia Adkins aquariumfertilizer.com
    Lifetime Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2015
    Messages:
    165
    Likes Received:
    41
    Local Time:
    7:21 AM
    I suggest a clown loach or 2 to take care of the snail problem. The loach will munch those snails right up. Besides they are fun to watch.
    The tank should be cycled long enough by now that taking all the filter balls out and sterilizing them will not be a problem as the tank surfaces are now colonized with the bacteria. Once you have cleaned them, rinsed them really well, and replaced them they should repopulate fairly quickly.
    Remember things generally go pretty slow in a fish tank. Take a deep breath, relax and enjoy seeing the life in the tank.
     
  6. Devisissy

    Devisissy New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2019
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    1
    Local Time:
    11:21 PM
    It's a ten gallon. That clown loach will outgrow that at adult size 12 inches. May I suggest a better option? A Pea Puffer. Just one. And return it to the LFS after it has eaten all your snails. Or keep it but know you will need to keep up feeding it a varied diet. The worms are self regulating with what the puffer doesn't eat (they eat those worms too) will eventually wan.
     
Loading...
Tags:

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice