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Old 08-25-2011, 02:49 PM   #11 
Oldfishlady
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Join Date: Mar 2010
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What kind of lights are you using...age of bulb, kelvin, watts, photoperiod...although nutrients are important..... without proper lights in the correct color spectrum/wave length, penetration etc.....photosynthesis is limited and you will see poor growth, melt, leggy plants etc......also, too much turbulence can drive CO2 out...aquaclear filter are great filter but with plants I found that the overflow needs to be under water some to limit turbulence.......

Most planted tank failures are related to wrong lights than the lack of nutrients IME-a lot of the ferts/neutrients are supplied by-the fish, decomp of plant material, fish food and water changes......
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:03 PM   #12 
Sakura8
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I think it's the standard 15w fluorescent bulb that came with the hood. (Aqueon Deluxe Hood) Should I get a different light? I don't mind doing so, I'd like the plants to make it. If so, which kind? There are so many bulbs out there, I'm not sure which I should use. I had some floating Water Fern as well but I have since removed those as they were multiplying quite fast and blocking the light. They're now spread throughout other tanks that don't have any other plants growing underneath.

I don't have the outflow under water right now, close but not quite. I can raise the water level so it is. I'd love to be able to use CO2 but I have nowhere to put the additional equipment right now.

One question: I had 3 otos in there for a short time but I noticed they pooped A LOT. I ultimately returned them to the pet store but now I'm curious: would the plants have absorbed all that extra poop as fertilizer?

Also, how close should I place the stems of each plant and is it okay to alternate them? I currently have it set up so that there is a stem of wisteria, then a stem of moneywort alternating about an inch or so apart.

Thank you OFL for your help. :)
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Old 08-25-2011, 04:00 PM   #13 
Oldfishlady
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Unless you want harder type plants....you really don't need CO2......you do have CO2 in the tank from the fish, plants and in the water itself...limited.....but it is usually enough for the easy plants we use......

Lights-I use/buy the GE brand "daylight" 6500k bulbs in the lighting dept at WalMart, home depot, Lowes......pretty cheap too....I think under $6 for the regular 2 pin fluorescent that your hood uses.....6500k is the color most like the sun.....
Be sure the divider between the bulb and the water is really clean or remove it all together for best light penetration to the plants....

They need to be changed out every 6mo-1yr...even though they still shine and you can see the light...the plants can't use the light for energy and photosynthesis......start on a 10h/day photoperiod and if you start to see more than normal algae...increase to 12h/day....with planted tanks its a balance.....the plants have to be able to out compete algae for nutrients and light......it normal to have some algae and it is a sign of a healthy system and can help make the aquarium look more natural by softening edges and a place that microorganism will colonize and fed that in turn the fish will graze on......
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Old 08-25-2011, 04:03 PM   #14 
Sakura8
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Thank you so much, OFL, I'll see if I can grab some of those bulbs tonight. And thank you for the reminder about the divider, I don't think I've cleaned it since I got the hood. Thanks again. And my plants thank you too.
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