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[APD] Bad air and light?
I've been lurking for about four months reading the archives and have been
fascinated by all the information on lighting, CO2 and fertilization. I've been
in the hobby for twenty-five years and have learned more lurking around here
than I ever thought I knew before. I used to go for all the technology and
chemicals I could afford (e.g. canister filters, pH buffers and ion exchange
resins.) If only I knew then what I am learning here.
I have a two gallon tank filled with reconstituted RO water to about 100 mg/l
CaCO3 + MgSO4. 25% of the water gets changed every three days. The lighting
is a 25 watt Verilux incandescent bulb eleven hours a day in a piano lamp ten
inches over the substrate. The surface area of the tank is 72 square inches.
A fan keeps things cool. The KH is kept around 5 dH with input of Potassium
Bicarbonate. CO2 is injected making the pH go down from 7.6 to 7.0. The air
flow on the sponge filter is adjusted to offset CO2 injection and keep the
CO2 at about 15 mg/l. The java fern, bolbitus h. and anubias nana are
fertilized with two drops of Tropica Master Grow at water changes. Nitrate and
phosphate are tested and kept low to abate algal growth.
The java fern and anubias did well at first but now new growth on the java
fern is smaller and much of the anubia's rhizome has disintegrated with no new
growth. The Bolbitus has never done well but has some new growth. There is no
abnormal discoloration of foliage evident on the anubias or java fern. The
tips of the old growth on the bolbitus have disintegrated but the leaves have
not died. I was raided by algae for the first time in five months three weeks
ago after trying to see how much PO4 I could get away with adding to the tank.
I thought the PO4 might help the plants but the algae became too much of a
problem. Also, algae encroaches when iron gets up over 0.05 mg/l and or when
nitrate gets above 5 mg/l.
My questions are:
1. Does the chelated iron in plant fertilizers break down and rust faster
when the water is aerated and should more be added to compensate for a loss of
2. Do I have to use flourescent lighting and stop aerating the water?
3. Can a tank that doesn't have enough plants be sustained by minimizing
The way things are going, I'm going to end up just growing java fern soon.
The incandescent light was working a couple of months ago. I realize it may
have to go. Thank you for reading all of this. I'll be lurking in the
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