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Mininum Photoperiod ?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by The Rockster, Aug 14, 2009.

  1. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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    Hi,
    Can common aquatic plants, (with Co2 & ferts) survive and flourish with a daily photoperiod of 8 hours?
     
  2. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Yes. Species will vary but I would say in general.......
     
  3. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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    thankxs, Gerryd

    It will save me some bulb life, Co2, electricity, fight algae, keep the peace with my g/f ($$ FP & L Bill) and if the government passes the new Energy Bill ( Was named the Cap and Trade Bill), it may help...........actually if the bill passes and electric bills increase by 3X..........its gonna be tough on this hobby!
     
  4. jazzlvr123

    jazzlvr123 Guru Class Expert

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    heck my tanks got a 4 1/2 hour photo-period and i still get 1/2" a day growth on some of my plants. shorter photo period also prevents algae growth such as GSA especially with tanks that have higher light
     
  5. Matt F.

    Matt F. Lifetime Charter Member
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    6-10 hours I have heard is optimum.
     
  6. rich815

    rich815 Guru Class Expert

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    Care to point to a credible source for that outlandish prediction?
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Your aquarium electric will now have to be run by a team of gerbils on a generator wheel.

    I think there are some really good approaches and benefits to reducing electric consumption on planted tanks, Reefs are an energy sucking joke by any comparison.

    Filters and lights are the largest consumers for planted tanks.

    They can be modified to suit.

    I'm not sure if 10 hours of low say 40 micomol vs 7 hours of higher 100micromol is better for the plants, but the energy we can calculate

    Say 1.4 w/gal vs 3 w/gal will yield the above lighting intensity.
    14 watts vs 21 watts, so you'd have to have the lights on for a mere 4 hours and 49minutes to do the same energy.

    I think you'll run into issues saving $ this way
    Better to stick with lower intensity and longer time frames.

    You might do better using say 1 W/gal for 10 hours and then 2 hours of intense 3w/gal. This yields 16w total, not bad, but you get a nice high light spike in the middle.

    So there are a few ways to do this for plants and for the reduced electric.
    T5'sseem the best way at the present to do this.

    Then you move on to filters, say a nice canister, then add supplementary flow using low pressure high flow wave powerheads which use only 8-15 watts to move thousands of gallons per hour.

    In line heaters seem pretty efficient also.

    You really do not "need" much else other than CO2 solenoid.
    Even that's debatable as far as "need" but does not cost much per month, maybe a 10 cents for US electric cost per month.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  8. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    You could read the results from the NBCC model or the CRA International model, or the CBO study. All paint a pretty bleak picture for electricity rates, loss of jobs, and loss of total net worth for Americans.

    Some areas will undoubtably will be hit harder by the increase due to the source of engergy production.

    Really this is nothing more than a short term political money grab. It will get overturned in the future as the balance of powers adjust as they always due. It will be interesting in 2010 to start following the money and see where the money goes and comes from.
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Well, hopefully some solar markets will offer better returns for the $ for electric, wind is okay, depends on where you live, sun light works pretty well if you can control the % shading, I use it outside

    But Water and Electric will certainly go up in cost, that's not changed since history started. Canada should be worried with all that close water and oil:)

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  10. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    If the goal is to reduce CO2 emissions caused by power generation, then you have to raise the cost of electricity, or people won't reduce their usage of it. And, then the electrc companies will have to raise their rates to cover their fixed costs - we have already tried this with both electricity and water, and that is what happened. So, I have no doubt at all that people will be paying more for electricity and water virtually every year in the future. That happens anyway, just due to inflation.

    I would love to see a future where all buildings were fitted with solar cell panels as roofing panels, of course with higher efficiency, lower cost solar cells than we now have. I see that as a slam dunk for the future. But, not likely in my lifetime. Also, there was a Reuters news report last week about LEDs being made as flexible sheets, virtually transparent, but able to be used for automobile tail lights, for example. So, what about high efficiency LED ceilings in all buildings? That is what makes the future so exciting - being the future.
     
  11. aquabillpers

    aquabillpers Lifetime Charter Member
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    I think that the photoperiod that is required to maintain healthy plants depends very much on the nutrients that are provided, starting with CO2.

    Diane Walstad recomends 12 to 14 hours of 2 (T12?) WPG for her low light environments.

    In my recent experience, a 15 inch deep tank with 2 WPG of T12 light for 8 hours and no CO2 injection, over a 3 month period featured a lot of brown algae and dying plants. When I increaed the photoperiod to 11 hours a day (and pruned away the mess) the algae disappeared and the plants recovered.

    Bill
     
  12. Philosophos

    Philosophos Lifetime Charter Member
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    Diana's source for that argument is someone elses self-referencing book, assuring us all that studies have been done, but not revealing the methods or specific results.

    I run a 10 hour day, 8 hours of that lit with high lighting. She figured this was some sort of unhealthy thing for plants, and yet some how many of us keep on going with similar setups. Some of the best tanks I've ever seen use 8-10 hour days.

    If you want a bit more indepth on it, I believe there's a thread on APC that she and I slightly hijacked to debate the issue, I can try to dig it up.

    -Philosophos
     
  13. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    I think you are correct, Diane Walstad said that. I like her book, I think she has many good ideas.

    Light generally drives the process!

    So yes, you can adjust the light to match the nutrients or the nutrients to match the lights. In my case, I was ‘sold’ on the idea that the more light the better. I discovered the obvious (at least obvious to me now), that the lighting needs depend on the plants, the critters, the look you want and how much work you wish to put into the maintenance. Pretty much backed off the lighting to include no lights at all. I do live in a high ambient light environment; the environment provides plenty of lighting for a number of my tanks.

    My guess is that pruning and clean up had as much effect as the lighting on controlling the algae.

    Weekly water changes, primping and preening are also magic.

    Biollante
     
  14. aquabillpers

    aquabillpers Lifetime Charter Member
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    Thanks. I am sooo tempted to cut the light back to 8 hours a day to see what might happen, but the tank is starting to look good again. I guess I am not curious enough.

    Bill
     
  15. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    If It Ain't Broke...

    If it is your primary display tank and you are happy, I would leave well enough alone.

    Happy is good!:)

    Some plants have different requirements and if you are interested in flowering or full life cycle, length of photo periods can make a real difference. The rule of thumb I have gone by has been 10-12 hours for tropical plants and 14-16 hours a day cooler climate plants.

    Biollante
     
  16. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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  17. rich815

    rich815 Guru Class Expert

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    We'll go ahead and make the stretch that it's some kind of "balanced" point of view but how does that report saying "residential electricity prices would rise between 13 and 14 percent" somehow turn into your quote of "...actually if the bill passes and electric bills increase by 3X" ?
     
  18. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Yea, depends on that "goal".
    To see and manipulate, or just to have a nice tank without issues.

    Many times I'd like to be able to leave things alone.:p

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  19. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    In most locations, the seasonal light period changes.
    So does algae dominance.

    In the studies I did in FL, with FW springs, with high CO2, the only influence on algae was light, since the water and flow, nutrients, CO2 where all stable over the entire year. Spring and Fall had good growth, summer a bit algae, winter, BGA.

    But, that was non limiting CO2....


    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  20. aquabillpers

    aquabillpers Lifetime Charter Member
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    If all variables except light were constant there, could one infer that lower light contributed to the growth of BGA?

    Bill
     
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