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[APD] RE: Gloss at lower light:how

>Tom, I know you are a guru here on apd, so i'm not even going to question
what you said about glosso.  Instead, I would like to know what >factors i
should look at in order to grow glosso successfully at, say, 2 WPG, because
I have grown it successfully in high lighting situations 
>(4wpg)  and have had it completely stop growing  in lower light  with no
other factors changed except light...
>Any advice is much appreciated.

A few things help.
Good reflector, most folks do that, it's a good investment, saves electric
by getting all you can out of the light.
Good spread, not just a tiny strip of light on the back wall etc, a wide
reflector helps spread out the light more.
A&H PC reflectors are great, but can be two narrow, for say a 55 gal with
2x55w, while a coralife adjustable will cover it just right.
But if you want more light on the bottom the PC's are great.
But I've not found any need for that.  

I use 2-3 bulbs of NO's typically with electronic ballast, the T5's and the
T8's are super. 
Say a 40L or a 55gal with 80 w or a 125gal with 260w, we will use those for
the example.
The CO2 is still 20-30~35ppm. Fish load relatively decent, alage eaters
etc. Sand 2-3mm /laterite was used in all cases, gloss grew better in the
Flourite and I've only grown Gloss/hargrass in a non CO2 tank with
Flourite, not the soil sand based tanks. 
Water changes are 50-70% weekly, dosed afterwards once for the 55 gal, 2x a
week or so for the 125/40L. No dosing for non CO2, just regular fish
1/2 teaspoon of KNO3 per dose,some KH2PO4, traces 10-15mls for the 40/55,
30mls for the 125, 1/8 teaspoon of KH2PO4, 1 teaspoon of KNO3.
Keep the over story and back ground stem plants from over shadowing the
This is easier to prune and maintain since there is less light.

It's pretty much the same routine, the dosing frequency is less(1-2x a week
vs 2-3x a week or daily etc), fish loads supply more % of the nutrients,
growth is less, so is algae though.

Mature tanks should be able to handle that. This tanks had wet/drys and /or
cansiter filters, relatively high current, good CO2, nutrients, moderate
light.Heck look at George Booth's tanks. He seems to darn well with less
light. Most would agree.

Also, Claus/Tropica and I both mentioned this independent of eachother,
plants have a better time dealing with low light at high CO2 levels.
So crank the CO2 in those low light tanks and see.

Temp will also play a role. Gloss likes slightly cooler water as do many
plants, 72F seems like a good temp for most plants, cooler water holds more
gas, CO2/O2 etc and slows growth down also.

Many people with low light think, "well since I have low light, I don't
need CO2". But they assume because they do not NEED it, that adding it on a
low light tanks will not help or improve the tank much, well this is not
It certainly will help, the results are slower, but MANY folks have
suggested a slower growing tank method or type of method and this is a real
good one.

Low light(1.5-2.5w), high CO2, semi rich substrate, large weekly water
changes, one dosing after the water change(maybe a little later in the
week, but okay if you forget), cooler temps, more algae eaters etc.

George mentioned this not too long ago, perhaops not the high CO2/ and the
same routine, but along those lines, you can get away with more with less

Many dfolks that buy canned CO2 assume that they need high light also to
fully reap the benefits of the CO2, well, yes and no. 
Less work and easier to do with less light, but you can get max/faster
growth rates with higher light.
Some folks want to try both methods in different tanks.
But it's worth the effort to try these other methods. 
They work well and might be what many are lookign for that are not as
interested in pruning a lot, seems to have trouble with algae, certain
plants etc.

Knowing what you know with the high light tanks now, you can go back and
try some of these things with less light and you will be surprised I think. 

Tom Barr

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