Good Lord have mercy....I'm exhausted.
I've been fighting with a disgusting black/dark green algae in both my 3 gallon and 5.5 gallon. They are (well, were...) two completely different tanks on different sides of the room. One was all live plants with sand (5.5 gal), the other gravel and fake plants (3 gal). Even after twice weekly cleanings with algae control it just blooms like crazy.
At first I was just going to strip the 3 gal and wipe everything down and make it a bare bottom tank. It doesn't look...terrible....Okay, it's probably the most unattractive tank I've ever seen. It looks so bare. It has fake plants and places for Frederick to hide but it's so terrible
Then I turn around and see my wonderful 5.5 gal that I worked so hard on, put hours of time into, covered in this algae. I pitched everything. Sand, plants, wiped down the hard decor, removed all algae. So, now I have 2 terrible bare bottom tanks. Will it make cleaning easier? Sure. Do the fish care? Doubtful. Is it attractive? Heck no.
Sigh. I'm going to cry over my lost planted tank. Night night, all.