Old Newbie's NPT Journal - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-08-2012, 08:05 PM Thread Starter
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Old Newbie's NPT Journal

Well, I thought it's about time I start a journal as my experience with NPTs is getting under way. As I read a few of the journals I began to feel very, very old! I bet I have OldFishLady beat by a mile... but she's an expert and I know nothing... but what the heck. I can be the grandmother of the group and you're only as young as you feel, right? :)

Last night I was very discouraged... for one think I over did it as usual and bit off more than I can chew! Instead of doing 1 tank I'm doing at least 3 and have ordered wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyy too many plants. I guess I didn't understand how they came and have enough to plant Sea Land! Anyway I started with a 10 gal. last night... was having a hard time... ripped out the plants threw them in a bucket and had decided to cut my loses and take everything back!!! Grrrrr! I was in a foul mood! Had a good night sleep, felt better, and watched some vids on YouTube and reread OFL's sticky. I have so many healthy, beautiful plants so I've decided to try a few of the smaller tanks. Was again a bit discouraged this evening when I realized I had wayyyyyyyyyy too much sand cap, but I regrouped and fixed the situation... I think! Tonight the tanks are filled with water and are pretty clear. Will drain and refill tomorrow and then plant. Must remember to set the heaters and filters first though.

Until then... :)
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 11:55 AM
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Once you get one going and plants thriving-you will find your way and tweak them as you go. I have found with my soil based tanks-that each one can be different-Even with identical setups side-by-side-sometimes one species of plants just won't do well-but another will. I have used all kinds of different soils and caps of different types of sands, gravel and at different levels and have started them differently all together and haven't been able to tell that much difference regarding plant growth per se.

The more you setup and gain experience you will find that these systems are not all that difficult. Its not really an exact science in some regards...

One thing you will find....once you get one going, you will want or need to setup more tanks due to the massive plant growth or at least that is what happened to me...lol.....

Look forward to seeing pics and hearing more about your soil based tanks....Don't get discouraged.....
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 07:03 PM Thread Starter
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I'm trying very hard not to get discouraged... another stumbling block today. Was already to go with my 2.5 tanks. Heaters fine, but with the substrate the filter doesn't fit. I bought the TOM Mini Elite and it's too long! Wondering if I need a filter for the 2.5? Anyway tomorrow I will concentrate on the 5.5 and perhaps take the 2 - 2.5 tanks back to Petco. Hope the shrimp and plants hang on...
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 08:09 PM
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You will get the hang of it! Just take a deep breath, walk away for a bit, and come back to it later.
I wanted to try an NPT too, (and ordered wayyyyyyyy too many plants like you did too!) decided I'd do my 26 first and then decided I'd try the 10, but things have gotten pretty hectic for me the past couple of weeks so it's on hold till after christmas. For now all the plants I can fit are planted into gravel and the rest are floating in an unused tank.
Goodluck!!

10 HM, 3 HMPK, 5 HMPK fry
8 German Blue Ram, 5 Green Dragon BNP, 4 Albino BNP, 4 Calico BNP, 6 Red BNP, 5 Kuhli Loaches, 2 ADF, 7 Peppered Cories, & 6 Tiger Endlers + Fry
12 full time tanks, 4 NPT, 6 QT/Breeders
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 08:31 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks aemaki09! Makes me feel so much better to know I'm not alone! Many of the plants are floating in a 5.5g and the others floating in asst' buckets all over the place! lol! Do you add any ferts to them? I keep rotating my lights so they get at least a little added light. Thanks again... I needed the encouragement! Good luck to you too!
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 08:47 PM
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Yeah so far I've been using seachem flourish once a week.
I've got some bad algea problems right now though so I've got to either cut that or the light.

I would love for you to keep this thread updated as your tank comes a long! I think it'd be really helpful to see what you as a beginner go through so that I know what to expect/avoid when I do mine after christmas. Seems like just about everyone else on here that has any type of NPT thread seems to be pretty experienced with them.

10 HM, 3 HMPK, 5 HMPK fry
8 German Blue Ram, 5 Green Dragon BNP, 4 Albino BNP, 4 Calico BNP, 6 Red BNP, 5 Kuhli Loaches, 2 ADF, 7 Peppered Cories, & 6 Tiger Endlers + Fry
12 full time tanks, 4 NPT, 6 QT/Breeders
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 09:28 PM Thread Starter
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I'll be happy to unless I totally give up... I'm not a quitter though, so I plan on hangin' in there. Tonight I bought a water test kit at Petco... decided I'd try it out on one of my Betta temp tanks. Broke a test tube trying to get the top off and cut my finger! Sheeesh! I have zero aquarium experience and am a bit OCD. I know if anyone were to ask me right now for any tips I would suggest ONE 5.5 gallon (at least a filter will fit!), 1" - 1.25" dirt, 3/4" cap. 1 bunch of Cabomba, 1 bunch Ludwigia Repens, 1 bunch Hygrophila deformis, 1 bronze cryptocoryne, 3 sags OR 3 chain sword, 1 Dwarf Red Lily, some duckweed, some frogbit, 10 red cherry shrimp, and try to get some MTS from your LFS (mine sells a dozen for a $1.) Not the 3 bunches of this, 3 bunches of that, etc., etc., etc! LOL I have some beautiful asst' red Amazon swords... they're gorgeous, but they are huge... I had no idea!!!

Well, anyway I hope to get the 5.5 planted tomorrow. If I'm successful I may even post some pics!
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 09:41 PM
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Goodluck
Looking forward to pictures!

10 HM, 3 HMPK, 5 HMPK fry
8 German Blue Ram, 5 Green Dragon BNP, 4 Albino BNP, 4 Calico BNP, 6 Red BNP, 5 Kuhli Loaches, 2 ADF, 7 Peppered Cories, & 6 Tiger Endlers + Fry
12 full time tanks, 4 NPT, 6 QT/Breeders
Member IBC
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2012, 02:01 PM
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I don't use filters in my soil based tanks 10gal and under-sometime I will add a filter for a few weeks to a month when I first start them up.

I just setup a 10gal 2-3 weeks ago without a filter and so far it is fine. The young Bettas I put in it grew so fast I removed them and replaced them with some 3 week old Betta fry and they are doing just fine too. The RCS and young BN pleco are also fine and the plants thriving....No filter used....

I think the 2.5gal will be fine without a filter.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2012, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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That is great news! Happy to hear that.
Thanks Again!
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