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Stretch 72 Peninsula Tank, v2.0

Discussion in 'Journals' started by Christophe, Apr 27, 2017.

  1. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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    Without the arch being the way it is now, it wouldn't be the same, idk if I can stop you, but don't cut em! I would say it has more of a Dutch approach rather than a nature... The way I see it is, on the right side of your tank, its Way more Dutch, Left side is more of a simplistic nature type. Definitely I think your getting what you want when you say nature & dutch.
    may I ask what camera you use? I have a Canon SX530 and I don't really know how to get a GOOD high quality image of my tank with it, without editing.
     
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  2. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    I was running like 90 ppm SO4 most of the time in the 75, probably close to the same in the 120, a little less because I dont use as much K2SO4.

    A couple of times when Ive tried omitting the K and lowering the MGSO4, things went south pretty quick. None of the typical K or Mg looking symptoms either.

    So Ive always felt like SO4 is a good thing. Its basically a secondary macro nutrient like Ca and Mg.

    http://www.pthorticulture.com/en/training-center/role-of-sulfur-in-plant-culture/

    But Im also the one over here with chronic and extreme sensitivity to micros. So in a planted aquarium, it may not be such a good thing after all.

    The reason I asked since you're doing RO and reconstituting everything, I wondered if you might be rolling with none at all.
     
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  3. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    I'm using a Canon 7D, most of my tank pics are with a 17-40 F4 lens. I try to prevent problematic reflections in the glass (mostly minimized by shooting when it's dark), and eliminate distracting background objects as much as I can. I've not really developed specific technique for aquarium shots, there's probably some flash tricks involved for award-winning contest-style shots.

    I really started developing technique by doing underwater photography.
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/27722578@N08/albums/72157623015707293
     
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  4. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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  5. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    In reconstituting, I really tried to reduce just sodium and chloride, and keep all the other things as they were. I think it's probably important to keep *some* of just about everything to some degree.

    For the rest of this month, I'm backing off excessive nutrients. The measurable macros have been riding consistently high, and maybe the micros are accumulating a bit also. Next month I'll give a trial of reducing GH some and cutting sulfate to 25ppm or so.

    Every time I think "Aha! Too much sodium!" or "Too much sulfate!", I ask around and see who else has lots of it. So far, I always find some counterexample of somebody loaded down with tons of whatever I'm concerned about at the moment, and they're growing excellent plants in it.
     
  6. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    Here we are after a pretty good trim and a 56% water change. Diandra biomass is trimmed to about a quarter of what it was before, and Ludwigia red is cut in half. Don’t worry, they’ll both be back in about two weeks. Also trimmed and swapped placement of the Bacopa and Acmella, as @Pikez suggested.




    The new residents, a dozen Corydoras Julii


    ...and their handiwork


    I’m in the process of leaning things out for the next few months. The tank went all week without any added micros, no macros added during the week either. From here forward for the next month, I’ll be dosing about a quarter of the micros I was. Macros will come with the water changes, and from fish poop. At the rate my tank consumes nutrients, I doubt anything will bottom out. At least, it looks like it won’t so far.

    In September I’ll look into reducing GH to 3, and cutting back significantly on SO4 to see if there’s an effect.

    Water change composition, 33% of system volume
    Ca 23.0 ppm
    Mg 7.7 ppm
    SO4 59.9 ppm
    Na 2.7 ppm
    Cl 7.1 ppm
    GH 5.0
    KH 2.5
    NO3 25.1 ppm
    PO4 4.2 ppm
    K 35.2 ppm

    Micro dosing, amounts per week
    Fe 60 ppb
    Mn 28 ppb
    B 3.9 ppb
    Zn 3.0 ppb
    Cu 0.7 ppb
    Mo 0.4 ppb
     
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  7. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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    Tank looks great Christophe, corys are the best sand cleaners, they turn the algae over when they are scavenging for food. What I think is DHG, in the tank, is looking really good! if you can keep it going and meet halfway in the middle, with another carpeting plant, it would look really neat.

    In simpler words; have DHG on one side of the tank, then some other carpeting plant on the opposite side.
     
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  8. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    Gradually working in that direction.

    I've not really pursued carpeting plants with this scape, the idea was to keep things to about an area I can cover with one hand with any one species in this tank. I'm starting to think about spreading some carpeting species a little further. I still want open sand in a number of places. That said, I'm working to expanding a couple of these species.

    Eleocharis parvula is going quite well from a single Petsmart gel-pack. I'm working on wrapping it around...


    ...to where the HC is more or less failing to take hold. Not sure what's going on here, but after 15 or so weeks, things should be going better.


    I don't do glutaraldehyde. It's just a biocide, it might take down the BBA, but also damage the plants I want to keep, turning them into more BBA food. Kinda pointless.

    Meanwhile, glossostigma is doing well after I initially butchered it. Started out in early May with a nice-ish pot of it in a corner. It grew up gangly rather quickly. Being accustomed to stauro, which I can cut to the ground with impunity and it will come back, I did that to the glosso in the first week of June. By 4th of July weekend, I had three little pairs of leaves. Three. I grew those up and cut & replanted, lather rinse repeat. Here's what I have now. Looks like it will do pretty well here. I'll try and wrap that around opposite the hairgrass.


    Stauro is good for me also. Just a little taller than what I'd characterize as ground cover. Think I'll keep it a little more limited for now.

     
  9. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    So I've been thinking about @Pikez findings regarding root vs water column feeding. Thinking about moving micros to primarily substrate-based. Easy. Jab a root tab here and there every couple of months. But, what happens when I disturb the substrate, move or trim plants, replant? I kinda lose control of what's in the water column. Plus, root tabs is just more stuff to buy. I already own all this stuff.

    What if there were a way to use my regular DIY ferts as substrate fertilizer? Use a week's worth of micros, placed into the roots of each stand of plants, right after water change. Same amount I was going to just throw into the water column, but put directly into the roots. Next week when I uproot stuff, there's nothing more in the water than would have been there anyway.

    But HOW? You may find yourself asking...

    Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you today:
    The Micro-Fertilator!

     
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  10. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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    Now this, is going to be kick ass.
    So are you going to inject your micros into the substrate? with that extra tube attached to your (cant think of the word...) thingy?
    Well either way I want to see the results because this is something I can actually do to.

    Following.
     
  11. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    The Fertilator!! Haha

    What to stop the liquid from seeping right up into the water column? Seems like that'd be a problem
     
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  12. Dale Hazey

    Dale Hazey Junior Poster

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    I was gonna ask the same thing, blasting sand has no CEC. I thought pikez was putting a lot of his root tabs in cups. I asked him about it leaching into the water column and he said there wasn't much water movement down there to make a huge difference.
     
  13. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    Not sure how much circulation gets through fairly fine sand, I'd expect that would take some time. Probably worth some thought. But then, at least it's the same amount that I was putting directly into the column before. The big hope is that the plants get exposure at the root level and take most of what they need before it leaches out to the column.

    I'm currently doing a blend that gets slightly more than half its iron from DPTA, the other portion is gluconate.
     
    #73 Christophe, Aug 26, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2017
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  14. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    That makes sense. It'd still be more available at the roots for X amount of time, then just go into the water column.

    Interested to see if you notice any difference
     
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  15. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Why not just use ADA AS and then it's a non issue?
     
  16. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    I want to have corydoras -- Back when I had AquaSoil, I tried adding a few. They kept the tank a perpetual mudhole for three weeks, until I removed them.

    I thought about capping it with sand, but then after a few months of pull/trim/replant, what does that look like?

    I'm probably destined to just not have great examples of certain plants, but trying to get there with the environment I want is kinda interesting!
     
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  17. Pikez

    Pikez Rotala Killer!
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    Adding the same amount of weekly traces to the substrate instead of the water seems safe. But there may be one issue: if there is little or no circulation, how are the roots to get to them? Unless you're shooting directly under the plant...

    Either way, I'm curious how this turns out.
     
  18. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    That's the intention, inject the micros at the roots in a couple of places per stand of plants. I've improved the application by fitting the little tube that comes with WD-40 to the syringe, so there's not a big substrate disturbance, and I can get up to 3" deep into it.

    Being done weekly, it will likely be a slightly different place each week, so even if there's little substrate circulation, different areas under one plant type get exposure. I'm diluting down my solution so that a 100ppb iron dose is 50ml. This makes it easier to distribute more evenly while dosing. Injecting 2ml in a couple of places in each plant type won't take more than a few minutes once a week. I can't think of much reason not to try this -- Could I burn plant roots with my solution? Inadvertently stab a fish with a little plastic straw?
     
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  19. Dale Hazey

    Dale Hazey Junior Poster

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    What about the moss growing so beautifully on the wood? What if the new micro fertilator works so well the moss doesn't get any...
     
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  20. Dale Hazey

    Dale Hazey Junior Poster

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    I wonder, the first time you try this, perhaps you will see the red orange color rise up from the sand?
     
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