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I thought I'd add a quick introduction of myself rather than just lurking.
I'm relatively new to planted freshwater aquaria, but I've had a freshwater
fish-only tank for over ten years.
Last spring, I seriously considered building a live rock reef tank but was
stunned by the costs of getting one set up. The owner of my LFS suggested I
look into planted freshwater tanks as a less expensive alternative (!) that
still offered the biodiversity that I was looking for.
So, in December I stocked a 90 gallon tank with various swords, crypto
wenditii, sagittaria, java fern, anubias, ludwigia, and vals. Fauna includes
rainbows, clown loaches, flying foxes, amano shrimps, and a lone angelfish
that's been with me for some time. The light levels are what I would
consider low to moderate for that tank; it has 240 watts of NO fluorescent
lighting, plus some ambient sunlight.
Over the last five months, it became obvious that I needed to do more for my
plants. The plant growth started off great, but slowly petered out because I
didn't keep up with the nutrients (other than root tabs and Flourish Excel).
Last week I dropped the Excel (too much $$$) and added DIY CO2, and today I
added my first dose of PMDD. I've found Chuck Gadd's website and The Krib to
be a great help in getting going on the nutrient end.
I look forward to having some good conversations about planted aquariums.