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Old 03-29-2005, 11:03 PM   #1
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New to Planted Tanks, Need Advice on unusual fish tank shape

Just want to say that I've been reading these forums for weeks now and finally decided to delve into the hobby. You've all been very helpful to others and I'm hoping you can help me too. I'll try to be as thorough as possible with my setup and maybe you can tell me what's wrong.

cylinder tank, about 50 gallons
28 inches tall, 24 inches diameter
few months old and has been totally cycled
canister type filtration
substrate is gravel on the bottom, fine sand in the middle, and smaller gravel on top mixed in with the sand.
4 Red Platys, 4 Ghost catfish, 6 neon tetras, 2 goldweather loaches
95 watt 6700K corallife light.

I recently bought two plants that I thought were beginner. I even forgot the names, but they're not doing so hot. One looks like grass blades from my yard about 5-6 inches long. They're rubber banded at the bottom to hold them together, but I think the roots are falling apart and they're seperating. The other one I can't really explain. It has small little green leaves all over it, kinda looks like glosso but not as shiny? I just installed the light the other day compared to my old 50 watt incadescent, so I'm hoping the light will help.
The grassy looking plants turned a light brown to white color and some started to "melt?" Some became stringy, so I've been cutting off the bad grass pieces. I turned off all aeration in my tank and stopped all surface agitation. I think my tank is too deep and the plants don't get enough light? I don't see any bubbles on my plants and I've tried adding iron to the tank and planting those flourite tables in the substrate by my plants. I only have test kit for Ammonium, nitrite, nitrate, and ph. The readings are:

ph:7.0
Ammonia:0
Nitrite:0
Nitrate:10

What are some things that I could do to make it a success? Should I take a picture and post it to help you get a better idea of my tank setup? Should I get C02 injection also?

thanks in advance for your help and I look forward to hearing all your good advice.

sincerely,

Dale K.
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Old 03-29-2005, 11:40 PM   #2
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I think a big part of your problem is the tanks depth. Considering most rectangular tanks tend to be around 18" you're a good 10" higher. Even with your current lighting in a regular tank you still would have only 2 wpg.
As for your one plant you need to seperate them. The only plants I can think of would be vallisneria(sp?) and sagitarria but they wouldn't be banded together.
If your plants don't perk up with the new lighting you might need to add more. Of course someone else may offer more/better advice but thought I'd put my 2 cents in.
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Old 03-30-2005, 09:57 AM   #3
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Wow, 28" depth. That IS gonna be a hassle to light effectively clear to the substrate. Metal halide might do the trick, but it's expensive, and will require the use of CO2 injection, pressurized, for sure.

You'll probably be just fine though, as long as you don't have your heart set on glosso or any really short, high light, foreground plants.
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Old 03-30-2005, 05:40 PM   #4
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think I'm going to go back and grab some java ferns from the store. Will let you know how they turn out and probably take a pic to post tonight.

Also, vacuuming a tank with sand is tough! I skim near the top, but that sand comes right up.

I'm thinking with my depth, I can put a couple inches of some good plant substrate. It will help the plants and also raise the level up higher to the light. What do you guys think? Also, what kind of substrate do you rrecommend on mine currently? I have the 3 different kinds right now about 3 inches deep.

Dale
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:22 PM   #5
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Welcome to AA!

I have just delved into the lightly planted/low maintenance planted tank. Estes Spectra came highly recommended and I now have 75 lbs of it waiting for introduction.
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