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Why We Should Not Fishless Cycle Planted Tanks.


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#1 Dave Spencer

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Posted 02 August 2009 - 09:17 PM

When I first start up a new planted tank, I have a different goal to those that start their tanks with a fishless cycle. My aim is to maximise plant growth from the word go to produce healthy, vibrant plant growth, and create an environment hostile to algae blooms.

The fishless cycle requires the addition of ammonia, which is instantly a no no for planted tanks.

Light + ammonia = algae

If you absolutely have to fishless cycle on a tank that you intend on planting, then I strongly recommend the cycling is carried out in the dark, and the plants are added once the cycle is complete. Personally, I advocate that you don’t bother going down this long path, and save yourself a lot of time and effort by starting your planted tank with the goal mentioned in the first paragraph; “healthy, vibrant plant growth” from the word go. A fishless cycle establishes a large, robust bacteria colony that is suddenly going to be in competition with plants for ammonia, and plants are very efficient at ammonia processing, and get first dibs. The bacteria that you have just spent the last six weeks developing is going to reduce in number once healthy plant growth is established, so why bother in the first place? Certainly it is because fish need to be added to a tank that can process their waste before they reach toxic levels. Well, this can be achieved in a planted tank before the bacteria colony is fully established.

The following is my own preferred method and, while many experienced planted tank people will have variations on my methods, the fundamentals remain the same.

MULM
Firstly, I take the mulm (substrate detritus) from an existing tank, and put it below the new substrate. Obviously, this wasn’t an option on my first ever tank, but it is worth using mulm if it available to you. Why?

There is a popular belief that there is a minimal amount of nitrifying bacteria in the substrate. This may be true in unplanted tanks, and I am not entirely sure, but plants and their roots are covered in nitrifying bacteria. The roots bring a lot of aeration to the substrate and help to make an environment that is beneficial to the types of nitrifying bacteria we nurture in our filters. By adding mulm we are introducing a good sized colony of nitrifying bacteria at root level and creating a healthy environment in which the roots can quickly become established.
Personally, I trim the roots back a fair bit to aid planting (Crypts are a good example), but try to promote new root growth as soon as possible.

It is also known to use carbon in the substrate to absorb any toxins present that may inhibit initial root growth and health.

CO2
I run the CO2 at elevated levels that would be lethal to any fish or shrimp, just to ensure there is no CO2 limitation anywhere in the tank that could start any localised algae blooms. This is backed up with a high flow rate of water via over filtration and/or power heads to transport all nutrients to the four corners of the tank, along with surface disturbance to help keep O2 levels up. Once any fauna is due to be added, the CO2 is throttled back and established 30ppm, but getting the CO2 levels and distribution correct from the start is essential to avoid algae issues.

ZEOLITE
I don’t think a great deal of people in the UK bother with Zeolite a great deal, but it is popular in the US and I swear by it for algae control in immature planted tanks. It will absorb the ammonia being produced and remove a possible trigger for an algae bloom. My latest tank was started without Zeolite as I didn’t have any, and I have witnessed brown diatoms for the first time since I started using Zeolite. People say brown diatoms are inevitable in a new tank, but this is not the case in my experience. Remove the ammonia, remove the diatoms.

This will instantly raise the question in many peoples mind “won’t it starve the bacteria colony?” No, not in my or anyone else’s opinion that use Zeolite, that I have read. The Zeolite provides a large surface area and a large supply of ammonia to nitrosomonas bacteria. Why wouldn’t the bacteria want to move in to this environment? Exhausted Zeolite just becomes filter media.

The other thing to add about using Zeolite I am not aware of anyone having problems with ammonia leeching back in to the water column. Certainly not from those that have used it. People remove the Zeolite, see an ammonia spike, and then blame the Zeolite for having starved their bacteria colony, making it incapable of supporting the fish load. In reality, what they have done is removed a significant percentage of their nitrifying colony when they removed the Zeolite.

DOSING AND WATER CHANGES
I dose at full levels from day one. If the aim is to promote plant growth from the outset, then why would we hold back on the dosing for any given period? Water changes are carried out daily at around 50% water volume for the first week or two to remove algae spores and inhibit unprocessed ammonia levels. This becomes a bit of a chore on larger tanks, and is probably slackened off to just once a week more rapidly than on smaller tanks. Personally, I am usually at my normal water change of 50% once a week after the first month.

PLANTING LEVELS
For the inexperienced, getting planting levels right, along with non limiting CO2 throughout the tank are really key to the early success of the tank. Insufficient plant mass and/or CO2 will limit/inhibit plant growth, and open the door to algae blooms. For the inexperienced I would recommend the advice I was first given, which was to plant 75% of the substrate with fast growing stems. This will provide a large ammonia processing factory, and algae blooms will be suppressed by a healthy mass of fast growing plants. With more experience it is possible to start a tank with a lot less plant mass, but this will also require a lot more knowledge of controlling light intensity and photoperiod duration. Lighting is a whole other subject that is covered elsewhere, as are dosing methods.

MISCELLANEOUS
Other little bits of advice that I think help to establish an immature planted tank are, don’t be afraid to introduce pest snails if you are not too bothered by their appearance. All my tanks have small snail populations that eat rotting vegetation and detritus. A boom in the number of snails is an indication of excessive fish food in the tank. The population is easily managed, simply by not overfeeding your fish. Secondly, remove any apparently poor plant growth/leaves, as they will not get better, and will only contribute to the ammonia levels.

From the above, some of you may come to the conclusion that I came too when I first started reading about EI dosing planted tanks. A newly planted, healthy tank showing positive growth signs will be processing ammonia at a rate that makes it possible to add fish long before it is possible using the fishless cycle. On my first tank I used common sense, and added fish to a 120l tank at the rate of five Cardinal tetras a week. I had no problems at all adding these supposedly sensitive fish, which were the first fish I ever bought, or added to a tank.

Personally, I really concentrate on CO2 levels from the start these days, which means I don’t add fish until a month or two in to the aquascapes life.

To anyone wanting to start a planted tank:

Why bother adding ammonia daily and running all those tests?

Why bother building up a large bacteria colony, only for it to reduce once you stop adding ammonia?

Why bother running the risk of algae?

Why bother waiting all those frustrating weeks before you get any fish?

Not having to cycle a planted tank is a huge benefit IMO, and one we should all use. Fish only people will have to carry on fishless cycling, but we don’t have to. How cool is that?

This article is subject to amendment and further advice.

Dave.

#2 keenonfish

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 12:19 AM

Some seemingly good info their thanks!
I have often contemplated the removal of filter media completely, as I am fully planted and my Ph level means the Nbacs (assuming I have got any!) are in near constant hibernation. I would still use some form of mechanical filtration. It would increase circulation but are there any disadvantages to doing this in a planted tank?

#3 Dave Spencer

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 04:04 AM

I have often contemplated the removal of filter media completely, as I am fully planted and my Ph level means the Nbacs (assuming I have got any!) are in near constant hibernation.


All my tanks have a negligible KH, high CO2 and lots of wood and start out with a pH around 6, yet there is nothing to suggest that a healthy bacteria colony hasn`t developed. Some of my tanks have been quite low in plant mass, yet the water is still fine, with no obvoius "pH crash" (does a crash mean the bacteria are no longer active?). I would suggest that your tank has a healthy colony too.

I would still use some form of mechanical filtration. It would increase circulation but are there any disadvantages to doing this in a planted tank?


I honestly wouldn`t underestimate the amount of nitrifying carried out by your filter. I use a reduced amount of media due to there being a smaller bacteria colony in planted tank filters, and to increase output of the filter, but I still ensure that there is plenty of surface area for the bacteria to occupy.

Dave.

#4 aaronnorth

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 10:04 AM

I also prune heavily to promote new growth. You can tell which plants i removed lots of leaves from daily, and the others which are less accessible and are growing much slower. This is mainly reffering to rossette plants.... it doesnt matter much with stems.
I also clean the glass and any learger leaved plants i rub my fingers over the leaves to remove biofilms.
With stems plants & bushier plants i shake of waft my fingers through to remove any detrius that collects in them.

Nice one Dave
Aaron.

#5 keenonfish

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 10:35 AM

I have often contemplated the removal of filter media completely, as I am fully planted and my Ph level means the Nbacs (assuming I have got any!) are in near constant hibernation.


All my tanks have a negligible KH, high CO2 and lots of wood and start out with a pH around 6, yet there is nothing to suggest that a healthy bacteria colony hasn`t developed. Some of my tanks have been quite low in plant mass, yet the water is still fine, with no obvoius "pH crash" (does a crash mean the bacteria are no longer active?). I would suggest that your tank has a healthy colony too.

I would still use some form of mechanical filtration. It would increase circulation but are there any disadvantages to doing this in a planted tank?


I honestly wouldn`t underestimate the amount of nitrifying carried out by your filter. I use a reduced amount of media due to there being a smaller bacteria colony in planted tank filters, and to increase output of the filter, but I still ensure that there is plenty of surface area for the bacteria to occupy.

Dave.


The only thing that would worry me there is Nitrites, which the plants could not use and if you stuck fish in a completely un-cycled tank, and for some reason at any time should the plants slow down processing of ammonia (maybe unnoticed by the owner) and your filter starts to take over you could potentially end up with a dangerous nitrite spike?
Now having a very low ph and little to no filter media would almost eliminate any potential for a nitrite spike and also mean small amounts of ammonia would not be as dangerous, and would show up anyway with the snails / algae...

I am not necessarily suggesting anyone try such a thing BTW just want to cover all bases!

#6 lljdma06

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 12:13 PM

I have often contemplated the removal of filter media completely, as I am fully planted and my Ph level means the Nbacs (assuming I have got any!) are in near constant hibernation.


All my tanks have a negligible KH, high CO2 and lots of wood and start out with a pH around 6, yet there is nothing to suggest that a healthy bacteria colony hasn`t developed. Some of my tanks have been quite low in plant mass, yet the water is still fine, with no obvoius "pH crash" (does a crash mean the bacteria are no longer active?). I would suggest that your tank has a healthy colony too.

I would still use some form of mechanical filtration. It would increase circulation but are there any disadvantages to doing this in a planted tank?


I honestly wouldn`t underestimate the amount of nitrifying carried out by your filter. I use a reduced amount of media due to there being a smaller bacteria colony in planted tank filters, and to increase output of the filter, but I still ensure that there is plenty of surface area for the bacteria to occupy.

Dave.


The only thing that would worry me there is Nitrites, which the plants could not use and if you stuck fish in a completely un-cycled tank, and for some reason at any time should the plants slow down processing of ammonia (maybe unnoticed by the owner) and your filter starts to take over you could potentially end up with a dangerous nitrite spike?
Now having a very low ph and little to no filter media would almost eliminate any potential for a nitrite spike and also mean small amounts of ammonia would not be as dangerous, and would show up anyway with the snails / algae...

I am not necessarily suggesting anyone try such a thing BTW just want to cover all bases!


Why would plants not consume nitrite? It is a form of nitrogen like the other two. It would be consumed as well. Dilemma solved. Plants are pigs, they'll eat anything and are not particularly picky.

I haven't cycled a tank in years and it is a glorious thing. Great read Dave and definitely pin-worthy, but what about adding something for the poor, under-represented low-techies? Or at least qualifying that this is mostly dealing with CO2 tanks? No biggie, a trifle really. But we do not have the luxury of pumping our CO2, at least not in the same way.

You are too cautious with your fishies. :lol: I tend to add my fish much sooner. Days after setting up shop, in my experience, but again, I do not use CO2 in most of my tanks and I have a heavy initial plant mass, typical for my non-CO2, low-light setups. I'll add considerably more at a time too. While you'll do five, I'll usually do an entire school, up to 10, then do water changes for a week or two, watch, if nothing is amiss, then add the second school of whatever. It takes about 1-2 months of a tanks life for me to fully stock it according to the "standard" stocking levels. As the tank matures, I will continue to add more. By the time the tank is a year old, it is quite overstocked. My 10g, for example, has the following stocking levels.

9 Dwarf platies
22 C. habrosus
14 C. pygmaeus

My 3-year-old 20g has this

10 Harliquin rasboras
7 Rasbora pauciperforata
10 C. aeneus
1 oto

This tank can handle a lot more stock, IMO, especially if I increase the plant mass, which I plan on doing. Probably building the schools, especially the oto, and adding a second species of corydora.

This type of stocking does take some eyeballing and you must be up on your maintenance, though, and common sense is needed to get stocking levels right. Mostly consisting of researching suitable fish species for these types of setups. If you notice a trend, it is that I tend to favor small, slim-bodied fish schooling fish, and that I have species that occupy different aquaria strata. Obviously, my fish aren't suffering and my tanks aren't ridden with algae. This is conservative stocking too, I know people who add considerably more. :hey: My water is also quite hard and the pH out of the tap without de-chlorinating is 8.4. After de-chlorinating, it is down to 7.2 or 7.4. My non-injected tanks rarely get below 7ph and the kH is still quite high.

My new Dutch, however, which will inject CO2, will implement much of what you've written, though. Great minds. :nod:

Did you see the I Puritani picture at UKAPS?

llj

#7 keenonfish

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 01:12 PM

Why would plants not consume nitrite? It is a form of nitrogen like the other two.


Ah ok, chemistry not my finest subject and I had read plants tend not to consume nitrites so obviously duff info.

#8 degsod

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 01:20 PM

I have often contemplated the removal of filter media completely, as I am fully planted and my Ph level means the Nbacs (assuming I have got any!) are in near constant hibernation.


All my tanks have a negligible KH, high CO2 and lots of wood and start out with a pH around 6, yet there is nothing to suggest that a healthy bacteria colony hasn`t developed. Some of my tanks have been quite low in plant mass, yet the water is still fine, with no obvoius "pH crash" (does a crash mean the bacteria are no longer active?). I would suggest that your tank has a healthy colony too.

I would still use some form of mechanical filtration. It would increase circulation but are there any disadvantages to doing this in a planted tank?


I honestly wouldn`t underestimate the amount of nitrifying carried out by your filter. I use a reduced amount of media due to there being a smaller bacteria colony in planted tank filters, and to increase output of the filter, but I still ensure that there is plenty of surface area for the bacteria to occupy.

Dave.


The only thing that would worry me there is Nitrites, which the plants could not use and if you stuck fish in a completely un-cycled tank, and for some reason at any time should the plants slow down processing of ammonia (maybe unnoticed by the owner) and your filter starts to take over you could potentially end up with a dangerous nitrite spike?
Now having a very low ph and little to no filter media would almost eliminate any potential for a nitrite spike and also mean small amounts of ammonia would not be as dangerous, and would show up anyway with the snails / algae...

I am not necessarily suggesting anyone try such a thing BTW just want to cover all bases!


Why would plants not consume nitrite? It is a form of nitrogen like the other two. It would be consumed as well. Dilemma solved. Plants are pigs, they'll eat anything and are not particularly picky.

I haven't cycled a tank in years and it is a glorious thing. Great read Dave and definitely pin-worthy, but what about adding something for the poor, under-represented low-techies? Or at least qualifying that this is mostly dealing with CO2 tanks? No biggie, a trifle really. But we do not have the luxury of pumping our CO2, at least not in the same way.

You are too cautious with your fishies. :lol: I tend to add my fish much sooner. Days after setting up shop, in my experience, but again, I do not use CO2 in most of my tanks and I have a heavy initial plant mass, typical for my non-CO2, low-light setups. I'll add considerably more at a time too. While you'll do five, I'll usually do an entire school, up to 10, then do water changes for a week or two, watch, if nothing is amiss, then add the second school of whatever. It takes about 1-2 months of a tanks life for me to fully stock it according to the "standard" stocking levels. As the tank matures, I will continue to add more. By the time the tank is a year old, it is quite overstocked. My 10g, for example, has the following stocking levels.

9 Dwarf platies
22 C. habrosus
14 C. pygmaeus

My 3-year-old 20g has this

10 Harliquin rasboras
7 Rasbora pauciperforata
10 C. aeneus
1 oto

This tank can handle a lot more stock, IMO, especially if I increase the plant mass, which I plan on doing. Probably building the schools, especially the oto, and adding a second species of corydora.

This type of stocking does take some eyeballing and you must be up on your maintenance, though, and common sense is needed to get stocking levels right. Mostly consisting of researching suitable fish species for these types of setups. If you notice a trend, it is that I tend to favor small, slim-bodied fish schooling fish, and that I have species that occupy different aquaria strata. Obviously, my fish aren't suffering and my tanks aren't ridden with algae. This is conservative stocking too, I know people who add considerably more. :hey: My water is also quite hard and the pH out of the tap without de-chlorinating is 8.4. After de-chlorinating, it is down to 7.2 or 7.4. My non-injected tanks rarely get below 7ph and the kH is still quite high.

My new Dutch, however, which will inject CO2, will implement much of what you've written, though. Great minds. :nod:

Did you see the I Puritani picture at UKAPS?

llj



When you have a heavily planted tank do you still vac the gravel? I have one tank which I have a lot of plants in and it is a complete b****** to vac. The tank is 2'x1'6"x1' and I have about 40 bunches of plants with approx 5 plants per bunch. Would you say this is heavy, medium or light planting?

tia

#9 SuperColey1

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 06:48 PM

I go even further than the 2 above and start mine up as I mean to go on. Heavily planted, CO2 at 30ish ppm full ferts, full lights, once a week water change. And as soon as the water is up to temp (within a few hours) the fish, shrimp and snails go straight in. Not a problem. This is with no fast growing stems, just rosettes, rhizomes etc.

As per above the plants will consume any form of Nitrogen whether is be Ammonia, Nitrite or Nitrate. They may have a preferential order that they will use it in but the bacteria colony will grow large enough to make the difference pretty quickly.

I have seen multiple posts where people are waiting for their planted tank to cycle and immediately I don't bother reading anymore. Far too many old practices creeping back in that just make me want to 'flame'. lol.

Good that Dave has written it up because if I try to write these things they turn into rants about the 'state of the world' and the 'recession'.

As for adding how to do Non Co2 tanks? With a non Co2 tank you aren't (or at least shouldn't need to be) adding the additional ferts so therefore all the nutrients are coming from the fish/food waste and you can do exactly the same (assuming you are heavily planted.)

When you have a heavily planted tank do you still vac the gravel? I have one tank which I have a lot of plants in and it is a complete b****** to vac. The tank is 2'x1'6"x1' and I have about 40 bunches of plants with approx 5 plants per bunch. Would you say this is heavy, medium or light planting?


Most aquascapers do vac the gravel/sand. Inexperienced planters/scapers should to take away one of the algae risk variables. I don't I just leave it in there but then I benefit from experience ;).

Within reason heavily planted means if you look from above how much of the substrate is visible. If it is 25% or less then it is considered heacily planted. Of course this doesn't mean 1 Nymphea where the pads cover 75% of the water surface. However although this wouldn't be considered Heavily Planted it wouldn't suffer too many problems as the pads would reduce the light substantially. lol. Another of those things that come with experience.

I would say that approx 25% of my actual substrate is planted, however I have huge amounts of rhizome plants attached to wood/rock. Looking from above you can probably see about 10% of the substrate. It is very heavily planted (Jungle)

p.s. The 'quotes' above are all a little bit OTT. It is possible to just 'quote' some sections or even reply without quoteing ;) Keeps the thread tidier and easier to read :)

AC

Edited by SuperColey1, 03 August 2009 - 07:11 PM.


#10 lljdma06

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 07:03 PM

I go even further than the 2 above and start mine up as I mean to go on. Heavily planted, CO2 at 30ish ppm full ferts, full lights, once a week water change.


Well, you can only pay for so much post at a time. :lol: Otherwise, my shipping would cost an aweful lot!

llj

#11 aaronnorth

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 10:42 AM

Why would plants not consume nitrite? It is a form of nitrogen like the other two.


Ah ok, chemistry not my finest subject and I had read plants tend not to consume nitrites so obviously duff info.


you are partially correct keenonfish. It depends on the plants, as NO2- uptake requires specific enzymes to utilise NO2-, wheras there is no need to do that with NH4+, because it is a cation and diffuses across the cell easily, i cant quite remeber how it goes. The same goes for NO3-, but it is still simpler for plants to convert this to NH4+ by combining it with Hydrogen atoms & water.
That is why you hear more about NH4 & NO3.

#12 Dave Spencer

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 02:36 PM

I go even further than the 2 above and start mine up as I mean to go on. Heavily planted, CO2 at 30ish ppm full ferts, full lights, once a week water change. And as soon as the water is up to temp (within a few hours) the fish, shrimp and snails go straight in. Not a problem. This is with no fast growing stems, just rosettes, rhizomes etc.


And I thought I was daring. :lol: From now on, I`m adding the fish before the water. :P

Dave.

#13 RadaR

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 03:37 PM

Thanks for writing this, Dave. Nice to have something that people can easily be referred to.

#14 DBridges

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 04:37 PM

Thanks for writing this, Dave. Nice to have something that people can easily be referred to.

Definitely a great post, and one worth pinning I think.

#15 OneOnion

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 01:27 AM

I don't get it. So can I just add fish to a heavy planted tank without cycling it? :blink: I don't have any CO2 or mulm would it still work?

Edited by OneOnion, 05 August 2009 - 01:29 AM.


#16 theshadowinc

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 04:10 AM

I go even further than the 2 above and start mine up as I mean to go on. Heavily planted, CO2 at 30ish ppm full ferts, full lights, once a week water change. And as soon as the water is up to temp (within a few hours) the fish, shrimp and snails go straight in. Not a problem. This is with no fast growing stems, just rosettes, rhizomes etc.


I can vouch that this method works, although I had to do research cause I didn't believe it, when I did the research on a cycle of a plant and combining it with Amo, Nitrite and Nitrate I finally understood how it all folded together, my planted tank I took my discuss and through them in right away, although they had to go in quartine for the night cause my filter system crashed ~ thinking because it was setup at night, next day discus went in and no problems since, cept for the discus eating my tetris for a late night snack!

I have seen multiple posts where people are waiting for their planted tank to cycle and immediately I don't bother reading anymore. Far too many old practices creeping back in that just make me want to 'flame'. lol.

LoL! Its cause all the people who say you need to do a fishless cycle havn't learned first hand that you don't need to with a planted take they just assume a fishless cycle is needed cause you are adding fish! Just like when someone makes a Planed tank and doesn't bother to use CO2 and just wants to fert so only feeding the plants half of what they need!, or they Feed it CO2 and not use the right dosage needed for the plants food!(Fertz)

As for adding how to do Non Co2 tanks? With a non Co2 tank you aren't (or at least shouldn't need to be) adding the additional ferts so therefore all the nutrients are coming from the fish/food waste and you can do exactly the same (assuming you are heavily planted.)

My belief system now is, no Co2 well you don't have a true planted tank and reason I said that is many people who have co2 in there tanks see a world of difference when dosage is right! Thicker Stalks and stems and makes them grow like weeds!

When you have a heavily planted tank do you still vac the gravel? I have one tank which I have a lot of plants in and it is a complete b****** to vac. The tank is 2'x1'6"x1' and I have about 40 bunches of plants with approx 5 plants per bunch. Would you say this is heavy, medium or light planting?

Most aquascapers do vac the gravel/sand. Inexperienced planters/scapers should to take away one of the algae risk variables. I don't I just leave it in there but then I benefit from experience ;) .

Well I never vac mine stick a hose in and drain the water out once a week! Only cause before i did and sand is a pain to vac! I remember the talk I had when I asked you about it and you told me you never vac so i decided all the other information you gave me was definitly worth my while to save me time and money etc , I decided to use your method and man makes it easy drain right into the sink and fill it up with cold water! And dose right after!!

Within reason heavily planted means if you look from above how much of the substrate is visible. If it is 25% or less then it is considered heacily planted. Of course this doesn't mean 1 Nymphea where the pads cover 75% of the water surface. However although this wouldn't be considered Heavily Planted it wouldn't suffer too many problems as the pads would reduce the light substantially. lol. Another of those things that come with experience.

Heavily to me is where you look and the substrate you might be able to see maybe 10% of it and the entire top part is all most 100%, usually mean i need to do a trim >< LoL

I would say that approx 25% of my actual substrate is planted, however I have huge amounts of rhizome plants attached to wood/rock. Looking from above you can probably see about 10% of the substrate. It is very heavily planted (Jungle)

about 50% coverd in my tank after a trimming to 75% coverage when all out in bloom, usually taking up the entire surface and growing out after about 4 weeks... again means i need to trim lol, find its the fast steam plants that causes that issues!

Sorry been away on personal family issues and personal issues had to deal with the past few months, I will try to be back a little bit more might want to pick at your brain in wispers lol.
ttyl
~theshadowinc~

#17 SuperColey1

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 10:19 AM

My belief system now is, no Co2 well you don't have a true planted tank and reason I said that is many people who have co2 in there tanks see a world of difference when dosage is right! Thicker Stalks and stems and makes them grow like weeds!


Thats an opinion as bad as Walstad's 'Aquascapes are landscape paintings in museums'.

I have both a non CO2 setup and a heavily injected pressurised setup. They are both planted tanks!!! IMO ;)

AC

#18 aaronnorth

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 11:14 AM

I don't get it. So can I just add fish to a heavy planted tank without cycling it? :blink: I don't have any CO2 or mulm would it still work?


yes :)

the CO2 makes plants grow faster, mulm just gives the substrate a boost for bacteria population. Neither is needed, just helps thats all

My belief system now is, no Co2 well you don't have a true planted tank and reason I said that is many people who have co2 in there tanks see a world of difference when dosage is right! Thicker Stalks and stems and makes them grow like weeds!


I am sorry that is a truly ridiculous statement, My bet is quite a few tanks you have looked at dont use CO2, you just cant tell unless they tell you in the specs... Or that you cant tell the difference ;)
All CO2 does is speed up plant growth.

Take a look at some of llj's tanks, one of her most recent tank is already begginning to look great :D

#19 baron von bubba

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 12:13 PM

My belief system now is, no Co2 well you don't have a true planted tank and reason I said that is many people who have co2 in there tanks see a world of difference when dosage is right! Thicker Stalks and stems and makes them grow like weeds!


hmmm, i agree with the other guys!
that is a bit of a sweeping statement. its different strokes for different folks...................
if you want a high maintenance tank that NEEDS constant monitoring, trimming/replanting and a large ammount of cash chucked at it then fair enough.
i have one and 5+ inches of growth a week is hard to keep in check sometimes, going on holiday is a nightmare, being hung over on water change day........... its a commitment a lot of ppl wouldnt want or in some cases couldnt have!

i'm currently thinking doing a low tech or NPT because i want to learn the other side of it, different knowledge, techniques , i'm sure i will ultimately will get the same sense of satisfaction when its all "running" correctly.

you wouldnt compare a marathon runner against a 100m sprinter and say only one of them is a true athlete would you??

Edited by baron von bubba, 05 August 2009 - 12:19 PM.


#20 SuperColey1

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 02:30 PM

you wouldnt compare a marathon runner against a 100m sprinter and say only one of them is a true athlete would you??


Staying on the theme of athletes I would've said that it is much more satisfying to win without the use performance enhancers ;)

AC

#21 lljdma06

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 03:34 PM

you wouldnt compare a marathon runner against a 100m sprinter and say only one of them is a true athlete would you??


Staying on the theme of athletes I would've said that it is much more satisfying to win without the use performance enhancers ;)

AC


I agree. See below, no performance enhancing drugs were used in the running of this race. :P

Posted Image

QUOTE (theshadowinc @ Aug 5 2009, 05:07 AM)
My belief system now is, no Co2 well you don't have a true planted tank and reason I said that is many people who have co2 in there tanks see a world of difference when dosage is right! Thicker Stalks and stems and makes them grow like weeds!


Oh, you did not just say that here! :hyper: Again, see above. So that is not a planted tank then, eh?

llj

#22 OneOnion

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 03:47 PM

I don't get it. So can I just add fish to a heavy planted tank without cycling it? :blink: I don't have any CO2 or mulm would it still work?


yes :)

the CO2 makes plants grow faster, mulm just gives the substrate a boost for bacteria population. Neither is needed, just helps thats all


Woohooo!!! :hyper: That's awesome! Where can I get CO2?

#23 aaronnorth

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 04:42 PM

So that is not a planted tank then, eh?


one of the best examples to give :hyper:

Where can I get CO2?


You can use a pressurized system, fermentation system, or liquid carbon. Check out these for more info:

http://www.fishforum...howtopic=296418

http://www.fishforum...howtopic=298133

#24 theshadowinc

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 06:10 PM

Thats an opinion as bad as Walstad's 'Aquascapes are landscape paintings in museums'.

I have both a non CO2 setup and a heavily injected pressurised setup. They are both planted tanks!!! IMO ;)


Now Now! LoL
Carbon dioxide is used by plants during photosynthesis to make sugars, which may either be consumed in respiration or used as the raw material to produce other organic compounds needed for plant growth and development. It is produced during respiration by plants, and by all animals, fungi and Mircroorganisms that depend either directly or indirectly on plants for food. It is thus a major component of the Carbon Cycle.(Also a product known as liquid Co2 many use called florish) I am sure I don't need to remind you of this lmao you taught me this....
So... with this being said I guess co2 isn't an enhancer :)
(Although for some reason Co2 and Java Moss tend not to agree for me!)

hmmm, i agree with the other guys!
that is a bit of a sweeping statement. its different strokes for different folks...................
if you want a high maintenance tank that NEEDS constant monitoring, trimming/replanting and a large ammount of cash chucked at it then fair enough.

I use to pay 60 for the florish not including the plant food, not including Trace etc...., use to last me 6months 2nd biggest one my closest pet shop has in stock all the time.... sometimes had to special order it,
Co2 Canister 45 bucks filled first time, then the regulator is the expensive part no lie on that one, 150bucks i got one for, last 6 months and costs 15 to refill. so over the course of 2-3 years it pays for itself in the long run now depends where you are are located cause more expensive or even cheaper depending where you are.
2 Bottles a year at 120 x 3 years = 360
Reg 150, Tank 45 and filled, 15 per refill at 3 = 3 years x 30 2 refills a year = 90 + 150 + 45 = 285, now as the years go by the savings add up. So not really an expensive setup.

#25 theshadowinc

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 06:15 PM

I agree. See below, no performance enhancing drugs were used in the running of this race. :P

Posted Image
QUOTE (theshadowinc @ Aug 5 2009, 05:07 AM)
My belief system now is, no Co2 well you don't have a true planted tank and reason I said that is many people who have co2 in there tanks see a world of difference when dosage is right! Thicker Stalks and stems and makes them grow like weeds!
Oh, you did not just say that here! :hyper: Again, see above. So that is not a planted tank then, eh?
llj

Why wouldn't it be I see a diffuser of some sort looks like you are running Co2, on the right hand side a bubble counter maybe??

#26 aaronnorth

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 06:21 PM

Why wouldn't it be I see a diffuser of some sort looks like you are running Co2, on the right hand side a bubble counter maybe??


if it was that obvious i doubt llj would lie ;) It is just the curved glass causing the distortion

#27 Geoff1991

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 06:26 PM

I agree. See below, no performance enhancing drugs were used in the running of this race. :P

Posted Image
QUOTE (theshadowinc @ Aug 5 2009, 05:07 AM)
My belief system now is, no Co2 well you don't have a true planted tank and reason I said that is many people who have co2 in there tanks see a world of difference when dosage is right! Thicker Stalks and stems and makes them grow like weeds!
Oh, you did not just say that here! :hyper: Again, see above. So that is not a planted tank then, eh?
llj

Why wouldn't it be I see a diffuser of some sort looks like you are running Co2, on the right hand side a bubble counter maybe??


Where are you looking? -_-

#28 aaronnorth

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 06:35 PM

Where are you looking?


my guess is the distortion, looks a bit like a spiral.

#29 lljdma06

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 06:44 PM

Why wouldn't it be I see a diffuser of some sort looks like you are running Co2, on the right hand side a bubble counter maybe??


if it was that obvious i doubt llj would lie ;) It is just the curved glass causing the distortion


You are probably spying the two HOB filters. No, this tank did not use CO2 at the time the photo was taken. It set it up in mid-October of 2006. I won't lie, it did run with DIY CO2 for about 2 weeks or so, until late October, then I stopped it. It's membership profile was put up in May of 2007 and it is in the link below.

8g tank specs

So at that time and for most of the life of that scape, no CO2, no ferts. Just platy poop and 2 HOB filters. I'm not kidding. The tank was taken down in December of 2008, so for over 2 years, no CO2, no ferts. The actual tank is being redone as we speak in True Dutch style. It has a complicated story, I apologize.

llj

#30 SuperColey1

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 07:39 PM

Now Now! LoL
Carbon dioxide is used by plants during photosynthesis to make sugars, which may either be consumed in respiration or used as the raw material to produce other organic compounds needed for plant growth and development. It is produced during respiration by plants, and by all animals, fungi and Mircroorganisms that depend either directly or indirectly on plants for food. It is thus a major component of the Carbon Cycle.(Also a product known as liquid Co2 many use called florish) I am sure I don't need to remind you of this lmao you taught me this....
So... with this being said I guess co2 isn't an enhancer :)


If you add something that wouldn't naturally be there (namely very high CO2 when it would naturally be pretty low) then you have enhanced it. I do both. lol. I was just commenting on the statement that if you don't inject CO2 it isn't a planted tank. lol.

There was an argument a while back that you had to have a certain amount of plants/percentage of substrate covered to be a planted tank to which I replied if there is only one real plant in the tank then it is planted. CO2/Ferts etc are nothing to do with it. lol. Its like saying unless you use composts and fertilisers your 'outside area with plants in it' is not a garden which of course is just silly :)

I use nothing in my garden and it is a garden. I use CO2 and ferts in one tank and neither in the other tank and they are both planted tanks :)

AC




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