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Old 12-31-2004, 04:29 PM   #1
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Green and Brown and Cloudy 90g Planted Tank..HELP!

I have had a 90 Gallon tank for 6 months now...and my plan was always to make it a planted tank since day 1.

I now have:
1. 2-2.5 Inch Gravel Base (with Laterite 110oz mixed in lower 1/2 of Gravel per instructions on box)
2. 4 x 96 Watt Coralife FW CF Aqualight (providing 3 watts/gallon)
3. Pressurized CO2 Bringing pH from 7.8 to 7.0
4. KH = 4 (was 6 prior to CO2)
5. GH = 6
6. Amm=0, Nitrite=0, Nitrate=5-10
7. Twice a week dosing with Seachem Flourish

Given this...I should have the most beautiful planted tank. CO2 should be about 18ppm given KH and pH. Plants seem to be growing well (except I have roots growing where leaves should be...but that is another post) and I have pearling happening on the leaves.

..But alas...my tank is a mess! I have a green/brown diatomic mess! At Christmas my Grandfather said "oh, is the glass tinted green"...this was after a scraping the day before.

The water is Cloudy and somewhat Green, I have some tough green algae growing on the glass and gravel, and I have thick Brown Diatoms (I think) covering the leaves of many of the plants (yet some are unaffected) and the slate in the tank. I have 2 otos in the tank...with the fullest bellies you can have. I feed once a day...and only feed what the fish will eat in about 1 minute...and little falls to the grown (which is then taken care of by a Cory)

Tank has for plants: Rotala rotundifolia "Red", Hydrocotyle leucocephala, Anubias spec. barteri, Mayaca fluviatilis (mostly dead from cold shipping...but starting to root), Hygrophila difformis, Heteranthera zosteraefolia, Alternanthera reineckii, Vallisneria spiralis , Dwarf Sagittaria , Sagittaria subulata.

Looking for any and all suggestions? I thought I had done everything right...but something is wrong somewhere!

HELP!

WC
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90 Gallon Fresh Water Planted w/ CO2:
7 Brilliant Rasbora, 6 Harlequin Rasboras, 3 Dwarf Neon Rainbows, 1 Red Tailed Shark, 2 American Flag Fish, 4 Skunk Botia Loaches

40 Gallon Breeder Salt Water: 4 inch DSB (2/3 Agaramax & 1/3 Sea Flor), Bak Pak 2R Skimmer w/ BBX, 2 x JBJ PHs, Coralife Lunar Aqualight (2x96w), 30lb Base Rock and 40lbs of Live Rock.
Inhabitants: Purple Firefish, Pygmy Angel, Lawmower Blenny, 2 Cleaner Shrimp, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, Pistol Shrimp(HH), 1 Emerald Crabs, 3 Porcelin Crabs(HH), varying amounts and varieties of hermit and snails.

3 Gallon Eclipse:
1 Goldfish (won free at a fair...cost $50 in equipment)
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:46 PM   #2
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You probably have an excess of phosphates. This is oftencaused by overfeeding the fish and or decaying plant matter.They should be down around 0.5. You can lower them by doing repeated water changes and cutting down feeding to every other day. Add more algae eating fish, black mollies are good. Your 2 otos are over matched and they do better in larger schools. Some members cover their tanks for 3 or 4 days to eliminate light. Does this tank get sunlight? When you get the phosphates down, the plants should outcompete the algae for nutrients. Good luck.
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Old 01-02-2005, 10:12 PM   #3
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Bassnman! Thanks!! Guess what I have in my tank...LOTS of decaying plant matter!!!

I got $100 worth of plants online...my next day mail turned into 5 days in sub zero weather. Many of the plants did not make it...but I wanted to at least try to salvage the plants...so I planted them anyway. A lot of a leaves are decaying...but I have new growth happening at root level. I have not dared to prune off all the dead leaves yet..just in case the plants are getting some value from the leaves that are there.

For now I will keep things the way they are...put in the old Diatomic Filter for the blooms....and hope things get a little better. When I am sure the new plant growth looks like it can handle itself...I will do some pruning of the dead stuff!

I will also buy a phosphate kit...I will need one for my SW tank I am setting up soon anyway. Any recommended Phosphate kits out there?

I am also going to do water changes with 50:50 Tap Water:RO/DI Water...and hope that keeps things in check a little better. Well...as soon as I can set up the RO/DI system....plumbing scares me!

Thanks for the point in the right direction!

WC

P.S. I have also read that I should not fertilize until 2-3 months after I planted the plants..water should have enough trace elements without addition for a few months...when plant root system improve and the plant are starting to grow well and use more nutrients...that is when you should start to fertilize...so I will stop that practice for now too.
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90 Gallon Fresh Water Planted w/ CO2:
7 Brilliant Rasbora, 6 Harlequin Rasboras, 3 Dwarf Neon Rainbows, 1 Red Tailed Shark, 2 American Flag Fish, 4 Skunk Botia Loaches

40 Gallon Breeder Salt Water: 4 inch DSB (2/3 Agaramax & 1/3 Sea Flor), Bak Pak 2R Skimmer w/ BBX, 2 x JBJ PHs, Coralife Lunar Aqualight (2x96w), 30lb Base Rock and 40lbs of Live Rock.
Inhabitants: Purple Firefish, Pygmy Angel, Lawmower Blenny, 2 Cleaner Shrimp, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, Pistol Shrimp(HH), 1 Emerald Crabs, 3 Porcelin Crabs(HH), varying amounts and varieties of hermit and snails.

3 Gallon Eclipse:
1 Goldfish (won free at a fair...cost $50 in equipment)
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Old 01-03-2005, 03:00 AM   #4
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I was having the same problem as of last week. I couldn't even see the back of my tank it was so cloudy

I noticed that I had a Magnum 350 in the garage- I don't know how much they cost... maybe you could find one cheap on ebay or something... but its easy to hook up and my tank is crystal clear and it only took maybe 48 hours for hardly doing anything! There is a sticky about using the magnum in the DIY area

good luck!
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Old 01-03-2005, 10:36 AM   #5
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Your math is wrong. 2x96watts over a 90gallon tank is a smidge over 2wpg, not 3wpg.

I think that's still sufficient for all your selected plants though.
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Old 01-03-2005, 11:47 PM   #6
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Go ahead and trim off the dying stuff. Its not worth messing up your whole tank. Dying leaves are not doing the plant any good any way.
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Old 01-04-2005, 01:34 AM   #7
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Oops....Malkore...

My math wasn't bad...but my typing was....

I acutally have 4 x 65watts = 2.9 watts/gallon

...I will trim off the dying leaves...I have looked at every LFS in the area for nice pair of aquarium pruning cutters....I am going to order some from Big Als this week (need to wait until wednesday for double VIP point don't ya know).

I actually had purchased a System 1 Diatomic Filter a few months ago...so I am going to use that weekly until this is under control. Was hoping when I got the CO2 system I would never need it again...boy was I wrong.

I am also going to add a bit more CO2 and bring the pH down to 6.8. Hopefully the plants will benefit...and complete better with the algae.

Thanks

WC
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90 Gallon Fresh Water Planted w/ CO2:
7 Brilliant Rasbora, 6 Harlequin Rasboras, 3 Dwarf Neon Rainbows, 1 Red Tailed Shark, 2 American Flag Fish, 4 Skunk Botia Loaches

40 Gallon Breeder Salt Water: 4 inch DSB (2/3 Agaramax & 1/3 Sea Flor), Bak Pak 2R Skimmer w/ BBX, 2 x JBJ PHs, Coralife Lunar Aqualight (2x96w), 30lb Base Rock and 40lbs of Live Rock.
Inhabitants: Purple Firefish, Pygmy Angel, Lawmower Blenny, 2 Cleaner Shrimp, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, Pistol Shrimp(HH), 1 Emerald Crabs, 3 Porcelin Crabs(HH), varying amounts and varieties of hermit and snails.

3 Gallon Eclipse:
1 Goldfish (won free at a fair...cost $50 in equipment)
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Old 01-04-2005, 09:36 AM   #8
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As long as your CO2 is in the 18-25ppm range, the plants have enough.

When was the last time you did a big water change? I'm talking 50% or more...up to 75%.
I've gotten into the habit of doing larger water changes, to 'reset' my tanks, and then I dose with fresh ferts to bring myself to desired levels.

How long ago did you recieve those plants? A lot of suppliers grow plants under 'special conditions'...sometimes that means emersed growth. These can take a month to convert to submerged growth...so they'll lose leaves and look bad. Only time and patience will solve this.
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Old 01-04-2005, 02:52 PM   #9
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Worry to Hi-jack.
I just order some plants from Aquariumplants.com
Anyone have any experience with them? Just wondering if they sell emersed growth. As i understand emersed growth grows better than submersed, so i see why some do it this way.($$$)
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Old 01-04-2005, 03:05 PM   #10
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I'll let you hijack this once...but next time I'm kicking you to your own thread

Judging from the plants I've received from them, I think quite a few of theirs are grown emersed...the ones that can grow emersed at least. I typically see a lot of leaf shedding for a couple weeks, then the plants kinda sit...then they start going nuts after maybe a month from original planting, which is in line with the timespan it might tank for them to switch growth patterns.

If you compare their prices, you'll find several plants are quite a bit cheaper than other online vendors.
Still, I've had good luck with most of their plants, and the plant bulbs they sell at Petco's (and on their site). Biggest advantage is that they're only about 2.5 hours away from me, so I can order USPS Priority mail for only $6-8 and still get healthy plants. Other places I have to go next day fedex or the plants wilt.
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