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Thread: Back to the hobby after 3.5 years but with a different mindset (some questions)

  1. 30 Gal medium tech (update)

    Hi everyone just joined after reading a ton of information that is available here and getting everything ready to start putting together my first planted tank in 3 years on Friday. As a background info when I first go into aquariums years ago I of course fell under the curse of no patience newbie and never had a successful tank. Like most newcomers I had absolutely no patience and needless to say things never worked out. Now I think I am ready to get back into the hobby but this time with tons of patience.

    This is a list of what my tank will consist of:

    Equipment:
    30 gal 36x12x16 tank with open top
    2x 36" Coralife Aqualight T5 with 2x 21-watt 6700k bulbs
    2x Hagen AC70 hob filters filled with 1000g of Fluval Biomax biorings each
    Jager 75w heater
    Aquatek CO2 regulator w/ 20oz paintball 5bps 10 hours a day

    Substrate:
    Miracle Gro Organic Potting mix for the bottom (1 1/2in)
    CaribSea Tahitian Moon black sand lightly covering the dirt (1in)

    Hardscape:
    Cholla driftwood
    Colorado river rock

    Plants:
    Glossostigma - covering the majority of the tank (3 pots)
    Dwarf Hairgrass - covering the back of the tank behind the rock mountains (2 pots)
    Cryptocoryne parva - around one mountain (1 pot)
    Pigmy chain sword - around other mountain (1 pot)

    Fish:
    No plans for fish yet as I want to wait a couple months for tank to be settled before I start adding anything

    For the plant setup I am going to be using the dry start method for all of them. Since I have read that Glosso in particular propagates faster when not bunched up I am going to take apart the pots and plant each individual stem an inch or so apart using tweezers deep into the soil so only the top is above the substrate. I have read that by doing this the plant will propagate faster and have a much stronger root network. Will be doing almost the same with the dwarf hairgrass for the back. Since I want the crypto and pigmy around the rocks I will not be doing that to that extent with those.

    I know that having puddles when soaking the substrate is bad with the dry start method so I was planning on laying down the soil, using a watering can to get it soaked, and then laying down the sand but I am not sure if that would be a good way to go about it. Then of course cover the tank with plastic and do 8 hour light period, spraying the plants with water every couple of days for the next 4-6 weeks.

    Please bare with me for this pretty long post but I want to make sure I am not planning anything wrong come Friday which is the day I am setting up the tank. Planting the Glosso stem by stem is going to take a long time but I think it will be worth it and I think it will be pretty fun.
    Last edited by gus6464; 01-17-2012 at 08:44 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Burlington, NC
    Posts
    2,510
    I started my new 40 breeder with emersed grown glosso and dwarf hairgrass. I didn't have any trouble with the transition. Both plants grew very well. I thought about using the dry start method, but I went this way because I already had some driftwood with moss growing on it that needed to be submerged.

    I got these emersed grown plants from AquariumPlants.com. Both were grown on some type of fabric mat. I just pulled off the fabric and planted them. No problem. I'm using Amazonia for my substrate.

    glosso mat: http://www.aquariumplants.com/Glosso...n_p/new150.htm
    dwarf hairgrass mat: http://www.aquariumplants.com/Dwarf_...ris_p/dhm1.htm

    Good luck with your new tank! Do you think that you will use pressurized CO2?

  3. Quote Originally Posted by Left C View Post
    I started my new 40 breeder with emersed grown glosso and dwarf hairgrass. I didn't have any trouble with the transition. Both plants grew very well. I thought about using the dry start method, but I went this way because I already had some driftwood with moss growing on it that needed to be submerged.

    I got these emersed grown plants from AquariumPlants.com. Both were grown on some type of fabric mat. I just pulled off the fabric and planted them. No problem. I'm using Amazonia for my substrate.

    glosso mat: http://www.aquariumplants.com/Glosso...n_p/new150.htm
    dwarf hairgrass mat: http://www.aquariumplants.com/Dwarf_...ris_p/dhm1.htm

    Good luck with your new tank! Do you think that you will use pressurized CO2?
    Thanks! Here is the tank after 1 week.

    IMG_0258.jpg
    IMG_0259.jpg
    IMG_0260.jpg

    The Glosso is already sending little tiny runners. The crypto and pygmy chain sword got really yellow 3 days after I planted and I thought I was going to lose them but all of a sudden they came back to life. I have another 42w coralife fixture on the way which should put me right at the limit before requiring CO2. My plan is to not use CO2 at all with this tank.

    The hardscape is kinda bugging me because I don't really like that rock but I don't know if rescaping and replanting is going to mess with the glosso that's spreading. I also want to add some Marsilea Quadrifolia into the mix.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Burlington, NC
    Posts
    2,510
    The plants are looking nice. Some people plant them in smaller clumps, but whatever works for you is fine.

    I have crypt parva and M.m. in mine too. These are slow growers as you know My glosso grows maybe 100 times faster. LOL!

    May I mention that your decorations are too symmetrical in their positioning? Do you remember reading about the "Golden Rule" or "Golden Ratio" at some time? This "Golden Rule" dates all the way back to the Greeks. It seems the they came up with a theory that the ratio 1:1.618 was the most pleasing to the human eye. Many people assume that plopping the focal point in the middle is most pleasing, however, this will again keep your eyes wandering left and right. By placing it slightly off center, you are effectively gently guiding the viewer's eyes. You'll see this Golden Rule used in all forms of art, from paintings to architecture. Here is a blog about it: http://www.aquatic-eden.com/2006/11/...uascaping.html

  5. Quote Originally Posted by Left C View Post
    The plants are looking nice. Some people plant them in smaller clumps, but whatever works for you is fine.

    I have crypt parva and M.m. in mine too. These are slow growers as you know My glosso grows maybe 100 times faster. LOL!

    May I mention that your decorations are too symmetrical in their positioning? Do you remember reading about the "Golden Rule" or "Golden Ratio" at some time? This "Golden Rule" dates all the way back to the Greeks. It seems the they came up with a theory that the ratio 1:1.618 was the most pleasing to the human eye. Many people assume that plopping the focal point in the middle is most pleasing, however, this will again keep your eyes wandering left and right. By placing it slightly off center, you are effectively gently guiding the viewer's eyes. You'll see this Golden Rule used in all forms of art, from paintings to architecture. Here is a blog about it: http://www.aquatic-eden.com/2006/11/...uascaping.html
    Yeah the hardscape is really bugging me. I got some more rock from the rock yard but I'm afraid to pull out the glosso now that it's starting to take off. I want to do a little mountain cluster setup but I am just afraid of the glosso. Do you think the plants will be fine if I rescape the entire tank?

  6. Took your advice Left C and rescaped following golden rule measurements and it looks so much better. Once I fill in the tank I want to put something in between the rock formation but I have no clue what yet. Here are pics of the new scape.

    IMG_0261.jpg
    IMG_0262.jpg

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Burlington, NC
    Posts
    2,510
    Do you like that better? I do. It looks nice!

  8. Quote Originally Posted by Left C View Post
    Do you like that better? I do. It looks nice!
    Yeah it flows so much better now. Thanks a lot for the help on the scaping. Freshwater is so much trickier to scape than saltwater tanks.

    Hopefully I should get the second coralife fixture I ordered by Tuesday so the light distribution will be a lot better front to back.

    Also I spray mist once a day and I was wondering if I should add some liquid fertz to the mist mix? Would it help with the yellowing parva?
    Last edited by gus6464; 01-01-2012 at 02:48 AM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Burlington, NC
    Posts
    2,510
    Some people dose macros and micros when they dry start. How much and when, I have no idea. It is mentioned in some of the threads and possibly the sticky about it. You are using a rich soil to start with, but how to dose for it in dry start is unknown to me.

    I can't remember if it is in this one: http://www.barrreport.com/showthread...l-with-non-CO2

    Tom has a solution version of EI or it's PMDD + PO4. Customizing this a bit may help you to make spray solutions for your macro and micro dosing: http://www.barrreport.com/showthread...tyle-EI-dosing

    I'm just tossing these links out as possible helpful info for you. In actuality, I don't know if these are the best ways for you to try.

  10. Filled up the tank this weekend and set up CO2. I went from wanting low-tech to a medium-tech. When I filled the tank the MGOCPM was leeching tannins like crazy but I did 2 big water changes for 2 days straight and it looks like it might be under control now. I added 2 ikea led lights for night-time and the tank looks like a full moon is hitting it. Going to see if leaving these 2 lights on all the time will give me algae issues. I really dislike how the reverse venturi powerhead sticks out like a sore thumb so I am going canister with diy co2 reactor and taking out one AC70.

    Here is a shot of the moon lights.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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