BW plants???

Tain't fresh, and tain't marine! Talk about brackish setups.
RTR
Mentor
Posts: 6164
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 4:39 pm
Gender: Male
Location (country): East Coast, USA

Post by RTR » Fri Oct 06, 2006 11:16 am

EI, the Estimative Index, is a planted tank operational proceedure devised and extensively tested by Tom Barr (http://www.barrreport.com/). It is currently the most widely used and accepted proceedure for operating high ligh CO2-supplemented tanks. It works very well indeed.

Puffermama wrote: "I want plants, so I've decided to do everything to try to keep them 'happy', knowing full well this will also encourage the algae." No, not quite - when the plants are well supplied with balanced nutrients and light, algae is minimized.
Where's the fish? - Neptune

User avatar
crazy loaches
Dwarf Puffer
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2006 10:25 am
Location: Gahanna, OH
Contact:

Post by crazy loaches » Fri Oct 06, 2006 1:01 pm

Since I dont have the co2 is my tank is only moderately planted, I have been dosing very similar to the EI but about 1/4 the amount. I have been dosing Excel just about dialy when I can with the rated amount + about 1/4 more.

RTR - what are your opinions on my dosing... aslo considering I just backed the lighting down to ~2wpg. I do want the tank more heavily planted but I was hoping the jungle vall will start to take of and spread and that was going to be the bulk of my plants. So far they have shed alot of yellowing grwoth and started to turn a much nicer green but havent really started to grow up much. ABout the same with all the others, look pretty good but not a lot of growth (most are slow growers anyhow though so that would be norm).
http://tristan.homelinux.net/fish/
* 150G Setting up
* 75G Freshwater Planted
* 45G Bowfront Brackish
* 40G Brackish
* 20G Plants, Guppies, Snails, low/no maintenence tank

RTR
Mentor
Posts: 6164
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 4:39 pm
Gender: Male
Location (country): East Coast, USA

Post by RTR » Fri Oct 06, 2006 5:08 pm

I do a modified EI myself. None of my tanks are high light (most are at or very close to 2WPG), nor do i inject gas CO2, but If I do not supplement I turn into algae city - how many forms of hair algae would you like? I harbor at least 4 types. It is kept under control by daily Excel and twice-weekly low level supplements of N, P, K, & Fe (the P is dosed on separate days from the others). When i am doing okay and keep up with the feeding and water changes I am fine on algae - I can find some if I look, but it is not heavy or objectionable. Earlier this year when my eyes were especially bad, I slacked off for 2-3 months on both partials and dosing - the tanks exploded with algae. The cladifora is going to take forever to clear, the others are receeding as I am doing and seeing better now. When the tanks get a bit better, I'll blackout to try to hit the cladifora harder, but the tanks need to be cleaner before I do.

So I have no issues with your practice - it sounds not that far away from the way i handle my own tanks when I am keeping them properly.
Where's the fish? - Neptune

puffermama
Figure 8 Puffer
Posts: 126
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:18 pm

Post by puffermama » Fri Oct 06, 2006 9:52 pm

Thank you RTR.

I am glad you are better and hope you continue to do well :)


PS: I had a look at what Tom Barr writes and it would seem that in his experience/experiments the key to dealing with algae is NH4. He seems to be saying the goal is to achieve the perfect balance between:
-what the tank produces as waste (NH4),
-cleaning away said waste and
-leaving no more in the tank than any plants present are able to 'digest',
-plus adding nutrients for the plants to flourish i.e. estimative dosing but importantly, never adding NH4, only NO3 which plants can use instead, if necessary.
According to him even low levels of NH4 will make algae bloom. Other factors such as lighting and other nutrient levels apparently do not have nearly as much impact on the algae whereas they can make a world of difference to the plants.

Would that be right?

User avatar
Pyratt
Dwarf Puffer
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 4:01 am
Gender: Male
Location (country): USA
Location: Madison WI

Post by Pyratt » Sun Oct 08, 2006 12:54 pm

For planted 1.005 BW tanks, is there a disadvantage to using crushed coral substrate (small gravel size) relative to normal small aquarium gravel?

I went with the crushed coral substrate over planting substrates, because I care more about buffering the water for the sake of the fish than I care about plants... I'm considering just not lighting the tank, letting the room light it dimly.

-Pete

puffermama
Figure 8 Puffer
Posts: 126
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:18 pm

Post by puffermama » Sun Oct 08, 2006 3:08 pm

It's a good choice as far as I'm aware: coral is good at buffering BW tanks, and there have been some experiments to show that providing the plants have a plentiful supply of nutrients in the water the type of substrate is not so important.

However, plants do need light to thrive.

User avatar
Pyratt
Dwarf Puffer
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 4:01 am
Gender: Male
Location (country): USA
Location: Madison WI

Post by Pyratt » Mon Oct 09, 2006 5:02 pm

Aye, the option to use dim lighting would be if I abandoned live plants.

Hmmm. Also considering running a pair of mollies with my F8 to eat his scraps and hopefully peck at algae. (Tho from what I read, sometimes F8's are scared of mollies).

User avatar
HRPuffersnStuff
Figure 8 Puffer
Posts: 105
Joined: Mon Jun 06, 2005 1:51 pm
Location: State College, PA
Contact:

Post by HRPuffersnStuff » Tue Oct 17, 2006 10:51 pm

I wa poking around the internet, doing some more research on my scats, and I read that you should not have Java Fern in a tank with them because it is poisonous. Can anyone confirm/deny this? I bought a small piece of this plant last week and I know that my scats ate some of it... Is there any truth to this statement? I have not seen any change in their behavior, I just thought this would be good to bring to the attention of other scat owners.

puffermama
Figure 8 Puffer
Posts: 126
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:18 pm

Post by puffermama » Thu Oct 19, 2006 4:49 pm

Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I had always thought that my Puffers were eating the Java fern because they make holes in them, probably in the hope of finding a snail, but now I've realized they actually spit out the plant. Wikipedia says it tastes bitter so most fish do not eat it, which makes sense, but they do not say it is poisonous. Some other sites do though. I'm sorry I do not know about scats. Cats yes, and my cats love their greens ... but that's another story LOL!

User avatar
Boxermom
Former Staff Member
Posts: 2182
Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2006 8:34 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Post by Boxermom » Thu Oct 19, 2006 4:53 pm

puffermama wrote:Wikipedia says it tastes bitter ...
I always wonder about comments like this. Have they actually tasted it? :lol:
Tina

Puffers: Auriglobus silus x1, Tetraodon travancoricus x1, Tetraodon turgidus x1, Tetraodon miurus x1, Tetraodon nigroviridis x2, Tetraodon baileyi x2, Tetraodon lineatus x1, Tetraodon palembangensis x1

puffermama
Figure 8 Puffer
Posts: 126
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:18 pm

Post by puffermama » Thu Oct 19, 2006 5:39 pm

Erm, I don't suppose they have .. euw! lol?
I imagine there are ways of assessing relative bitterness without using tastebuds, not sure really, but chemicals or spectrometers and suchlike come to mind ...

User avatar
crazy loaches
Dwarf Puffer
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2006 10:25 am
Location: Gahanna, OH
Contact:

update

Post by crazy loaches » Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:16 pm

Just wanted to post an update, so far has been almost two months and I havent had too much of an algae problem. Been dosing excel at slightly higher than recommended doses sometimes daily sometimes every other day. Have been going a little light on the ferts though, basically 1/2 or EI dosage and only twice a week each instead of 3x each (for micros and macros). I have been running both my 65W PC bulbs. The only algae I am getting is a little green on the driftwood (not sure what kind but I actually like the look) and my white 'reef rocks' have turned a dingy brownish color along with some of the aragonite turning darker. That's a lot less algae than my fw plant tank. My java fern is doing really well also, with lots of new growth. Most of the rest of the plants are growing just fine, but not exploding with growth. I have not increased the salinity though, about .001 (waiting to get things balanced and growing good before upping the salt).
http://tristan.homelinux.net/fish/
* 150G Setting up
* 75G Freshwater Planted
* 45G Bowfront Brackish
* 40G Brackish
* 20G Plants, Guppies, Snails, low/no maintenence tank

gsolman6
Puffer Fry
Posts: 27
Joined: Sat Apr 22, 2006 12:52 am
Location: Austin, Tx

Post by gsolman6 » Wed Dec 27, 2006 10:54 pm

http://www.wetwebmedia.com/BrackishSubW ... plants.htm

which quotes:
"Best/hardiest brackish water plant species I have used: Microsorium pteropus, Hygrophila polysperma, Sagittaria spp., Vallisneria spp., Echinodorus tenellus, Ceratopteris spp.,"

gsolman6
Puffer Fry
Posts: 27
Joined: Sat Apr 22, 2006 12:52 am
Location: Austin, Tx

Re: update

Post by gsolman6 » Wed Jan 17, 2007 1:26 am

crazy loaches wrote:Just wanted to post an update, so far has been almost two months and I havent had too much of an algae problem. Been dosing excel at slightly higher than recommended doses sometimes daily sometimes every other day. Have been going a little light on the ferts though, basically 1/2 or EI dosage and only twice a week each instead of 3x each (for micros and macros). I have been running both my 65W PC bulbs. The only algae I am getting is a little green on the driftwood (not sure what kind but I actually like the look) and my white 'reef rocks' have turned a dingy brownish color along with some of the aragonite turning darker. That's a lot less algae than my fw plant tank. My java fern is doing really well also, with lots of new growth. Most of the rest of the plants are growing just fine, but not exploding with growth. I have not increased the salinity though, about .001 (waiting to get things balanced and growing good before upping the salt).
Crazy: How is this planted brackish coming along? Current SG/conditions?

User avatar
crazy loaches
Dwarf Puffer
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2006 10:25 am
Location: Gahanna, OH
Contact:

Re: update

Post by crazy loaches » Thu Jan 18, 2007 3:18 pm

gsolman6 wrote: Crazy: How is this planted brackish coming along? Current SG/conditions?
Well... so so. The first thing after my last post was that the Jungle Vall started dieing. They are pretty much all gone, so I am really thinking about trying pressurized co2 since I really want the val. I am still nervous about what may happen with the aragonite and co2, that is if it will start to dissolve and cause my TDS and GH to be sky high (then again puffers I guess don't mind somewhat high GH). I am debating on setting up centralized co2 in my house since I'll be running 3-4 tanks with it and could save some money on tanks, regulators, etc. I used to install cable and phone so its easy for me to fish down some co2 lines in the walls from the attic. Back to the plants... so the jungle vall died off. Then I was out of town for 8 days over the holidays. I setup a couple containers so my friend could come over a few times and dose ferts and feed the fish. I was already combining my daily doses into 3 day doses so he wouldn't have to come over as much. But he still ended up only coming over once. When I got back algae was going nuts. I also missed a couple weekly water changes. The algae seemed to cover a few plants in particular and these plants either died or look really bad. Since then has been disaster control and its not looking to bad, still have some algae to clean off, but as a result of the last month or so of neglect, the total plant mass has somewhat diminished instead of gained. One more month and I think it will be up and hoppin' again.

My salinity started at FW to acclimate the plants, and I went up very slowly, to maybe .002 in two months. I wanted the plants to fill in and be growing well before I went over .002 since I went through a bad spell I cut it back to .001 approx, and I'll probably let it set here for another month in hopes that the plants start growing well again, then start heading up to .005 over a couple months or so.

Sorry i don't have better news. :cry: But at least things are starting to look better this past week :)
http://tristan.homelinux.net/fish/
* 150G Setting up
* 75G Freshwater Planted
* 45G Bowfront Brackish
* 40G Brackish
* 20G Plants, Guppies, Snails, low/no maintenence tank

Post Reply