Subject: DIYS CO2 - yeast + sugar; Paludarium questions.
What size tank do you have? Maybe you can set up a couple of CO2 systems
& have them staggered. I run three 1 liter bottles on my 125 gal tank but
only one on my 25 gal tank & acheive good levels (haven't monitored the 25 gal
tank lately but it was at 18 ppm CO2 - it has a less vigorous tank filtration
& circulation system than the 125 gal tank).
Also, I don't just let mine bubble into the tank alone, I bubble them in to
chambers. On my 125 gal tank I have some "diffusion chambers" made by Tetra
which I bought from That Fish Place. On the 25 gal tank I just use a cut-off
soda bottle bottom which is inverted to hold the pool of CO2 & let it
diffuse into the water slowly.
My bottles produce a consistent stream of bubbles for about two weeks & then
I have to shake the bottles to get bubbles (basically to fill up my chmabers)
for a few weeks after that until it's depleted or I just get fed up & decide
to make a fresh brew. I find that fresh brews work much better than just
adding to the old one. I use about half a yeast packet & 2/3 cup sugar for
each bottle & fill to about 2 inches from the top with warm-cool water, mine
takes an hour or two to start fermenting.
Hope this info helps.
Also, RE: Aponogetons
I got my original first bulb from That Fish Place mail order along with some
other stuff. The bulb did not sprout for about a year. It may have been
because I started with hard alkaline tap water in my tanks that I slowly
diluted with distilled water because I couldn't get plants to grow well at
first (except crpyts which grew like crazy!). Myabe once I got the hardness
& pH desirable for the bulb it sprouted, but whatever the reason, it sprouted
to form a beautiful lush green plant. About the same time I noticed WalMart
selling packs of little bulbs (5 or 6) for about $1.50 & bought some. Not
all the bulbs sprouted, maybe half but they grew to beautiful plants & thats
where I buy my aponogeton bulbs now! Some have flowered & died down a little
but I have about 20 beautiful plants that have lasted well over 6 months.
I'm pretty sure mine are all aponogeton elongatus.
I think aponogeton madagascariensis are harder to grow - especially since you
need an algae free tank & mine is not quite algae free, in fact I see some
brown stuff on some of my aponogetons which I'm not sure is algae or just
signs of old leaves.
Regarding propagations, Baensh & Riehls aquarium atlas indicates that this
is difficult (from seed). To grow well they need soft, clear, moving water,
free of lime. I'd suggest just a gravel substrate with liquid fertilizers,
probably aquarium ones are best because commercial ones contain high levels
of nitrates & phosphates which would encourgae algae growth.
Regarding: Plant nutrient requirements
In "The Optimum Aquarium" by Horst & Kipper, they provide info on "Nutrient
springs at tropical brooks" (the Dupla formulations are based on conccentrations
found in nature apparently). There is a table comparison of stream water:
High water Low water Normal
NO3 mg/l 5.6 - 0.47
PO4 mg/l 0.307 0.056 0.648
K mg/l 1.62 1.35 1.65
Fe2+3 mg/l 0.162 0.29 0.12
I try to maintain my nitrates below 10 ppm (they vary between 0 & 10 which I
consider "just like nature"!). I don't worry about P & K since I think there's
probably enough of that from fish wastes & I fertilize a bit erratically, but
when I do it, I try to keep Fe between 1 & 3 ppm.
I do not consider myself an expert but I have got some really nice planted