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Old 01-14-2011, 11:02 PM   #1
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What do I need for keeping low-light plants?

I have mostly low light plants and some high light plants. My high light ones are barely getting buy. I just made an adjustment to my fertilizer dosing because a couple leaves were starting to yellow. I am not running T5 or dosing CO2. My lighting is 80watts running one aquaglo and one powerglo. I don't have the budget for T5 so if my high light plants don't make it, I'm perfectly fine with growing only low light plants. Right now those include two types of java ferns, anubias, and soon to be three types of mosses along with an anacharis (I think). What all do I need to do to keep these low lights healthy? I'm dosing Tetra Florapride and seachem iron
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Old 01-14-2011, 11:09 PM   #2
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to keep my anubias, java fern, and wendtii alive, i have 15w over 20g, keep the lights on 12 hours a day, and dose fluorish excel with each water change (once a week). i'm not recommending this for any tank set up, it's just what works for mine.

i would stick to what you are doing now, and maybe only run your lights for 6 hours a day at first. with 80w over 55g with no CO2, there is a chance for algae to thrive. increase the time the lights are on if you are not having issues with algae.
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Old 01-14-2011, 11:49 PM   #3
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+1 for Mommytron
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Old 01-15-2011, 12:05 AM   #4
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I run my lights for 7 1/2 hours a day. I do have an algae problem. Regular algae and fuzz algae. I just added phophate remover a couple days ago in my filter to help keep algae from growing without bothering my live plants. My low lights are doing well, but I'm mainly wondering if it's still recommended to dose CO2 or any other kind of fertilizer.
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Old 01-15-2011, 12:18 AM   #5
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CO2 may help the high light plants that are in there. if you don't really care about them, and are mainly interested in keeping low light plants, i would say with that amount of light, CO2 and fertilizers aren't necessary. i like to dose my tank with flourish excel because i like to keep the lights on for longer, so i feel like it helps to keep it balanced enough to not have algae issues.

to help take care of algae now, reduce the time your lights are on to 6 hours. see if that helps at all. i've also been recommended spot-shooting the algae with flourish excel in a dropper.
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Old 01-15-2011, 12:31 AM   #6
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+1 again.

Also, that phosphate remover is probably not going to solve any algae problems for you. Unless you have unnaturally high phosphate in your tap water (You have a well and next to a farm for instance) there is probably little or no phosphate in your water.

Algae is caused by a nutriet imbalance (light is a nutrient) and I think Mommytron is right, you have too much light and not enough other nutrients, which causes algae to grow like crazy.

Excel will probably help you a lot, though it could cause the arachnis to melt a little at first.

I also think she gave excellent advice on sticking to lowlight plants unless you are ready to set up a CO2 system and start a whole new dosing regiment.

I've had all these problems before myself, its just a matter of finding what works for you and your aquarium.

I am a HUGE advocate of lowlight tanks, espcially when first getting into the planted side of the hobby.
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Old 01-15-2011, 11:09 AM   #7
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You are dosing florapride and seachem iron. They both contain chelated iron. You shouldn't be dosing both. Excess nutrients can cause just as many problems if not more than bottoming out on a nutrient.

Phosphate remover still sounds suspect to me... I know they recommended it to you, but like someone above said, unless your water naturally contains a bunch of phosphates, you shouldn't need it. Plants need P to survive. Pulling it all out of the water could cause more problems than it solves.
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Old 01-16-2011, 12:54 AM   #8
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Phosphate is often blamed for algae problems in aquaria, but that is rarely the case. When it is, it is because there is not a balance between the amount of phosphate and other essential nutrients, not because there is too much phosphate.
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Old 01-16-2011, 01:07 AM   #9
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[QUOTE=fort384;1197051]

Quote:
Originally Posted by fort384 View Post
Phosphate remover still sounds suspect to me... I know they recommended it to you, but like someone above said, unless your water naturally contains a bunch of phosphates, you shouldn't need it. Plants need P to survive. Pulling it all out of the water could cause more problems than it solves.

The main reason I bought the phosphate remover is because I didn't have a phosphate test kit. The test kit was $14 and the phosphate remove was $10. I just figured that whether I had a problem with it or not I'd just put it in my filter. I've pretty much made the decision that I want to keep just low light plants. I'm not going to get rid of my high lights unless they just completely die out, so until then I'm going to continue doing what I've been doing. If it comes down to only low lights, should I continue to dose ferts?
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Old 01-16-2011, 02:15 AM   #10
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You need some kind of CO2. PLants feed on CO2
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