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Melting Ozelot sword?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by Crazymidwesterner, Feb 11, 2007.

  1. Crazymidwesterner

    Crazymidwesterner Guru Class Expert

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    My ozelot swords appear to be melting.

    I am trying a 75 gallon lowtech planted aquarium. I just recieved my plants yesterday and planted them. I used seachem prime to treat the tap water. I dosed KNO3 and KH2PO4 and seachem equlibrium per the article on non co2 methods. I also dosed a bit of excel just for the heck of it. I have 160 watts of NO t12's and the light is poorly reflected. No fish so far. I use cheapo test kits which is why I chose the EI method of dosing but here are the parameters that I'm getting

    NO3 about 20ish PPM
    NO2 0
    GH 280 PPM
    KH 220 PPM
    PH 8 or so

    My PH and hardness seem pretty high is it something I should worry about?

    It's only been a day so I am not terribly concerned as it may just be shock of the new tank but if you can point out any glaring issues I would appreciate it.

    Also in my tank are various crypts, dwarf saggitaria, pennywort, java fern, java moss, corkscrew vals, anubias nana, and a bunch of stem plants. The crypts are melting too but I read that is fairly normal when moved. The dwarf saggitaria seem like they already have grown some, and anubias nana looks very healthy as well. The smaller vals look great but the bigger vals have browning tops.

    There seems to be hair algae already growing on the tips of my vals, on my java fern, and ozelot sword. The lights have only been on a total of maybe a total of 6 hours so far so I found that a bit odd. I figured withour reflectors about 2 watts per gallon would be good but maybe I should lower that.

    Should I wait it out for a few weeks and see what happens or change something?
     
  2. Frolicsome_Flora

    Frolicsome_Flora Guru Class Expert

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    Im a bit confused when you say your doing a low tech tank, but your dosing EI and have high light etc. (2w/g is still highish light)

    Im not sure about the melting plants, but the algae probs are more than likely due to the unstable conditions and high light compared to zero CO2. 2 w/g with no CO2 is quite alot in my eyes.

    If your doing EI, does this mean your doing water changes as well?

    If you are, then this isnt going to help you either, as all youll be doing, is replacing the Co2 deficient water, with CO2 enriched water, this is going to give you a huge seesaw effect in your CO2 levels, something which your plants are going to find horribly hard to cope with, and the algae very easy. For plants to get used to low CO2, its far better not to do water changes very frequently, some people dont do them at all in fact.

    Remember, light drives Co2 takeup, Co2 takeup drives nutrient takeup. What your doing is limiting your tank via Co2, you have the light, the nutrients, but no way for them to take it up. Algae needs far far less Co2 to grow. Also, algae will target slow growing, stunted plants.. you hardly ever see algae growing on a healthy plant.

    I would try to decide whether you want to do a techy tank, or a non techy tank, and then stick to one or the other.. at the moment, your trying to do something in the middle, which aint gunna work.

    Instablity is one of the worst causes of algae problems, as happens alot with DIY Co2, I spent a good 10 months banging my head against a wall with DIY Co2, before I found this place and people told me what was going wrong. Instability.

    Im not experienced in low tech tanks, but Im sure someone can suggest a schedule for you to follow that will get you back on track. But its going to be based around minimal ferts, minimal light, minimal water changes. Good luck with it :)
     
  3. Crazymidwesterner

    Crazymidwesterner Guru Class Expert

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    I am dosing EI per the non co2 article so should be right on track with the ferts.

    Yes it appears to be 2 watts per gallon but they are shop light with a cheap white reflector so I imagine my actual wattage per gallon is much lower. You may be right though. I'll wait a bit to change it though and give the plants a chance to acclimate

    I will not be doing water changes but maybe once a month and they will be small. I plan on backing off of ferts to let uptake catch up if I get too much. I beleive this is what Tom's post suggests. CO2 will be stable because of minimal water changes, ferts will be stable as I will follow the same routine unless I OD and the lights will be stable 10 hours a day (The wattage may be lowered if need be or as suggested)

    I plan on stability but the tank is only is its second day of operation so there really has been no chance for stabilty yet.

    I just did some research and it turns our my algae is fuzz algae not hair algae. I'm new bare with me;-) Still makes me think I may have too much light.

    Any other suggestions?
     
  4. Mooner

    Mooner Lifetime Charter Member
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    Either use Excel (per bottle) or don't. A NON CO2 tank is just that, no C. Excel is a sourse of carbon. Depending on what you choose, Carbon or not, this will determine how much NPK you use. A NON CO2 tank only gets about 10:1/7:1 ratio of a CO2 tank. An Excel tank ratio is near 3:1 ratio.



    2 watts per gal is not bad for NON CO2 tank using NO T12's, They should have a reflector though. Excel lighting could be in the T8 to T5 range. New plants can shock and loose their leaves. Watch for new growth. Unless you calibrate your test kits it is hard to rely on them.:(



    Get your photo period up around 10 Hrs per day. You need to stabilize your fertz and lighting. Then start working that algae. Start looking at the LFS for Ottos and SAE's they will help with algae. Also KEEP reading in this forum. Alot of info to be had.:D
     
  5. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator Social Group Admin

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    You can use Zeolite, activated carbon in the start and that can help.
    What type of substrate?

    pH should be high during the day.
    Adding mulm from the start?
    Good condition plants also helps to start.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  6. Crazymidwesterner

    Crazymidwesterner Guru Class Expert

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    I used soilmaster select. I bought it before I did a lot of reading on your forum. The plants were in poor health when I got them. Its been very cold here in the midwest and I had them shipped. The shipper did the best job he could with insulation and heatpacks but I don't think some of the plants appreciated it. I know my pond lily didn't

    I plan on not using excel at all in the future. I can't really explain what drove me to add it to begin with;-) it will not be used from here on out though.

    I had zero access to any mulm so there isn't any. I don't trust any from our local LFS or the one person I know who has a tank. I do have some peat moss under the substrate though.

    The good news is things already seem to be turning around. The roots seem to be taking and there does seem to be some new growth starting. My stem plants have already shot out roots (I learned this while cutting off dead leaves on a nearby crypt and I uprooted it ;-O) Hopefully it was simply the poor condition of the plants and the plants acclimating to my tank.

    My LFS has some ottos coming for me and I plan on buying some Amano shrimp from him also so hopefully that should clear up my minor algae.
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Well, sounds like you just need to keep things as clean as you can and wait.
    You might add some cheapo plants till these grow in better.

    Regards
    Tom Barr
     
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