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Fablau 75 gallon tank

Discussion in 'Aquarium & Aquascaping Journals' started by fablau, Mar 25, 2017.

  1. Jason King

    Jason King Founder
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    This plant always stands out to me whenever I see it Fab, I must get some one day.

    And yes it's looking very healthy :)
     
  2. Keith

    Keith Administrator
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    Jason

    That sounds like a massive job but it will certainly be very helpful.

    Keith :cathug::cathug:
     
  3. fablau

    fablau Member
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    Yes Keith, indeed. That's why it is taking a lot of time for Jason and Jr...
     
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  4. fablau

    fablau Member
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    UPDATE


    Here I am with an update about my tank. Well well... situation has improved a little bit for the Limno. Whitening has almost gone completely thanks to the increased Fe. I have been dosing extra 0.06 ppm Fe from Glut (thanks Burr on the barrrpoert.com for the tip to use Glut instead than DTPA!) for the past week, dosing every other day for a total of 0.12 ppm Fe. I'll keep this extra Fe for the next week and I might increase it even further since I plan reducing micros even more. Yes, AR hasn't improved enough so as Java Moss, pretty much like the week before. Not perfect yet. The only stem I had of AR variegated is gone (melted), so I still think traces may be too high for my tank. It seems absurd if you look what I have been dosing fro the past 2 weeks:


    Fe - .025 ppm

    Mn - .01 ppm

    B - .0043 ppm

    Zn - .002 ppm

    Mo - .0002 ppm

    Cu - .000265 ppm


    But I feel something is still bothering those few struggling plants... more thoughts and facts about traces are coming at the end of this post (read on...)


    Root tabs also have begun giving some good results. Stauro is improved a lot, Ludwigia Red also has a very nice stem. Ambulia is still recovering, but much better than 2 weeks ago. Vallisneria is crazy booming and today I removed something like 15 stems of it around the tank. I could find it everywhere!


    Some pictures showing what's good and what's bad:



    Improved Limno tips (less white, greener now):


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]




    Hygros are growing like mad:


    [​IMG]



    Valisnerias are everywhere, look at this stem in the middle-front of the tank. Also, notice the improved Ludwigia Red on the right tanks to, I guess, either root tabs or reduced traces in the water column, or both:


    [​IMG]



    Cabomba is doing great (DutchMuch, in a couple of weeks I'll have some nice stems for you):


    [​IMG]



    Ambulia is doing much better, 3 stems have fully recovered and the others are slowly getting better. Consider I have also added root tabs to this group, but I think they have also benefited by the reduced traces in water column:


    [​IMG]



    Anubias are just perfect and flowering all the time:


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    Lobelia is still strong and doing well (trimmed a little):


    [​IMG]



    Some more pics of the tops of Ludwigia Red doing pretty well:


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    Some stems of Rotala Rotundifolia are doing just great, for those stems also I think added root tabs and reduced traces in the water column helped a great deal:


    [​IMG]



    Star Grass doing still great:


    [​IMG]



    Stauro getting better thanks to root tabs and reduced traces in water column:


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    A single stem of this plant I can't recall the name has improved a lot. Same issue, root tabs and reduced traces in water column (do you know its name?):


    [​IMG]



    Moss instead, is growing but too slow... I guess there are still some accumulated traces in the water column:


    [​IMG]




    Ok, now the bad part... get ready....


    Struggling AR from different angles, even though I can see some little improvements in new growth:


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    Now, an interesting issue... one lower stem of the Limno Aromatica Mini began showing some "translucent" leaves a few days ago and its top just melted away... any ideas? Here it is a picture of it:


    [​IMG]



    So... for the next couple of weeks I plant to slash down traces even further, half dose, like this:


    Fe - .0125 ppm

    Mn - .005 ppm

    B - .00215 ppm

    Zn - .001 ppm

    Mo - .0001 ppm

    Cu - .0001325 ppm


    I could easily reach the point of possible deficiency for some of the above elements. Possible B and Cu. But... here is an interesting point. I was reading Sleipfinger's journal on the barrreport.com yesterday:


    https://barrreport.com/threads/75g-dutch-weed-farm.14313/



    And interestingly, he tried for a while not to dose any traces (with the exception of Mn) because his water report showed enough traces in his tap water supply. Eventually some deficiency signs appeared (possibly a lack of B...)... but fact is, if you have enough traces in the tap, you could get away with dosing some traces... or, even worse... some traces could more easily "accumulate", right? I don't know why, but I never thought about such a stupid thing. I have never thought "What the heck, I could have some single traces toxicities because my tap water supply has plenty of them!"... and I might be right!

    I don't use tap taken directly from my water company, I filter it with a whole-house system which uses high-capacity activated carbon:

    https://www.lifesourcewater.com/

    It should just remove Chlorine and other stuff that activated carbon typically removes... but it should leave all the "good stuff", and so minerals as well...


    Yesterday I could find a 2-years-old water report I made right from my tap, filtered thought that house-filter. I paid over $150 for this report made by the National Testing Laboratoires Ltd. It is a complete report for drinking water, but not for our aquarium use. But it is interesting that from that report, it looks like I may have enough Zn and Cu in my tap water to be careful about those two elements. Have a look at the scanned image below:


    [​IMG]



    Unfortunately that report doesn't give me the values of Mo and B. Mn seems to be zero though. I'd need a more complete report... of course, all those Zn and Cu could NOT be available to plants, but... that could also mean that I could have some serious trouble if I keep dosing extra Zn and Cu, right?


    So, I am looking around for a service which could provide me of a more complete report. I am also considering a kit like this, but I am not sure how much accurate it could be:


    https://www.karlabs.com/watertestkit/kit90.htm


    Your suggestions are very welcome on that.


    So... a new, uncharted field of discoveries it is opening before me. All this could potentially explain why I am struggling with traces so much!


    Awaiting for your thoughts and comment... thanks for following!
     
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  5. Keith

    Keith Administrator
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    Fablau

    Your posts deserves a Like +++

    That would be one of the longest also very detailed and interesting posts I have seen and read for a very long time. I am very sorry I cannot help you BUT I am sure either Tim or Jason can assist you or direct you to some one who can.

    Keith:cathug::cathug:
     
  6. fablau

    fablau Member
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    Thank you Keith, appreciated!

    It is an hard path, but I am getting closer... my goal is to be able to grow Alternanthera again, as I used to. I used to grow it perfectly with very little water column fertilization, that's why I am aiming toward that. Eventually I'll reach the point where I'll try the same exactly fertilization regime which was just 5ml of Flourish Comprehensive a week. That's it!

    I'll keep everyone posted here ;)

    Thank you again for the like and the kind words!
     
  7. Keith

    Keith Administrator
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    fablau

    I am a true be leaver of the quality Seachem products they might cost more but its the old saying "You get what you pay for"

    Keith:cathug::cathug:
     
  8. fablau

    fablau Member
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    Yes, I have been using their products for years with success. Just trying to "emulate" them and finding the perfect custom solution... maybe I'll never be able to do it, but that's also a part of the hobby that I like to have fun with: play with ferts like a mad scientist!
     
  9. Keith

    Keith Administrator
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  10. fablau

    fablau Member
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    UPDATE

    Interesting things happened in the past week... several positive changes. Could the simple dose of Prime after water change have contributed to these changes? I am 99% sure the answer is YES. That's the only change I have done in the past week, and, unless my previously done dosing changes are now showing their effects, I think Prime had a clear positive impact on my plants growth.

    Let's let the pics show you the evidence!

    Look at these Rotala Rotundifolia stems: you can see clearly they got some growth at the bottom (4-5 weeks ago), then stunted (2- weeks ago) and then growth again (last week):

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    AR also is showing some positive signs (it is still alive then!!)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    This plant has shown particular improvement (can't recall its name, can you help?)

    [​IMG]


    Cabomba Furcata has never been better:

    [​IMG]


    Stauro is doing much better, even though I think root tabs helped a big deal. Look at the following pics from the top which clearly shows which stems got the tabs and which not (I guess that's it!)

    [​IMG]


    The rest of the plants are showing phenomenal growth, and I won't go in detail. In other words, the only plants still giving me hassle is AR.

    Here is a full shot of the tank, just to give you an idea:

    [​IMG]



    So... what are my plans now? Well, here is my plan: I got two test kits:

    [​IMG]


    I want to test both the water as it gets out from my tap (the same exact faucet I use to fill the tank), and the same exact water treated with Prime to see what exactly I am giving my plants with and without Prime. I think will be interesting to find out what Prime does with metals and possibly other stuff. The above water test kits will give me 101 tests, including 72 heavy metals as listed below:

    Aluminum down to 50 parts per billion*
    Antimony down to 5 parts per billion*
    Arsenic down to 2 parts per billion*
    Barium down to 100 parts per billion*
    Beryllium down to 2 parts per billion*
    Bismuth down to 0.1 parts per million*
    Boron down to 50 parts per billion*
    Cadmium down to 1 part per billion*
    Calcium down to 0.1 parts per million*
    Cerium down to 5 parts per billion*
    Cesium down to 20 parts per billion*
    Chromium, total down to 10 parts per billion*
    Chromium, hexavalent down to 10 parts per billion*
    Cobalt down to 20 parts per billion*
    Copper down to 20 parts per billion*
    Dysprosium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Erbium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Europium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Gadolinium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Gallium down to 20 parts per billion*
    Germanium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Gold down to 20 parts per billion*
    Hafnium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Holmium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Indium down to 20 parts per billion*
    Iridium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Iron down to 0.01 parts per million*
    Lanthanum down to 10 parts per billion*
    Lead down to 1 part per billion*
    Lithium down to 50 parts per billion*
    Lutetium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Magnesium down to 0.1 parts per million*
    Manganese down to 5 parts per billion*
    Mercury down to 25 parts per trillion*
    Molybdenum down to 20 parts per billion*
    Nickel down to 20 parts per billion*
    Neodymium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Niobium down to 50 parts per billion*
    Osmium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Palladium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Phosphorus down to 0.5 parts per million*
    Platinum down to 10 parts per billion*
    Potassium down to 0.1 parts per million*
    Praseodymium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Rhodium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Rubidium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Ruthenium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Samarium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Scandium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Selenium down to 5 parts per billion*
    Silicon down to 100 parts per billion*
    Silver down to 5 parts per billion*
    Sodium down to 1 part per million*
    Strontium down to 0.1 parts per million*
    Sulfur down to 500 parts per billion*
    Tantalum down to 50 parts per billion*
    Tellurium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Terbium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Thallium down to 2 parts per billion*
    Thorium down to 20 parts per billion*
    Thulium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Tin down to 0.1 parts per million*
    Titanium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Tungsten down to 50 parts per billion*
    Uranium down to 5 parts per billion* - Parent element and indicator of Radon and Radium
    Vanadium down to 20 parts per billion*
    Ytterbium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Yttrium down to 10 parts per billion*
    Zinc down to 0.02 parts per million*
    Zirconium down to 50 parts per billion*


    I'll send out the test tomorrow morning. Hopefully I'll have the results in 1-2 weeks. I can't wait to see what's going on with my tap! Once I have that information, I'll be able to understand what I need and don't need to dose to my plants. I think it'll be interesting...

    Looking forward, I might want to try to reduce water changes to possibly reduce the presence of "bad stuff" in my tap water as we have been discussing on Pikez's Rotala Kill Tank's thread:

    https://barrreport.com/threads/rotala-kill-tank.13975/page-36

    Before moving into EI, I used to change water just twice a month, used to dose much, much less... and the harvest used to be phenomenal, mostly with plants I am now struggling with. So... another experiment for the upcoming months!

    Thoughts and ideas are always welcome. Thanks for following :)
     
  11. Keith

    Keith Administrator
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    You would not want to live in my area (A holiday resort) as it can vary seasonal and even over the day. When the area was being developed it was discussing what was coming through the water. I have a very fine filter for my washing machine I have even had pieces of copper a relation even had oil and it cost the water company a lot of money as all the lines had to be cleaned and all her washing had to be either replaced or professionally cleaned.

    Keith:cathug::cathug:
     
  12. fablau

    fablau Member
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    Wow Keith, that's awful. How do you deal with your tank(s)?
     
  13. Keith

    Keith Administrator
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    I don't now I only have Terrascapes I stopped for health reasons only getting too much for my very close to 80 years young.

    Yes it was a bit of a concern but you learn what to look for plus a good LFS was a help if a concern was in the area as they were on the same pipeline as I was.

    Even today I only drink boiled water and the same for our three cats.

    Keith:cathug::cathug:

    Keith
     
  14. TimHarrison

    TimHarrison Super Moderator
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    Looking good fablau, some very healthy growth :)
     
  15. fablau

    fablau Member
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    Wow, that's a lot of extra work... have you considered to use a whole-house filter system?
     
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  16. fablau

    fablau Member
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    Thank you Tim, appreciated! Update coming super-soon...
     
  17. fablau

    fablau Member
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    UPDATE

    While I am still waiting for the water test results to get back to me, in the past week I have tried to reduce my traces dosing even more... instead of dosing my custom Burr mix, 1/3 dose, I have dosed Flourish Comprehensive instead, 3x a week at the Seachem's recommended dosage.

    Just to give you a comparison, here is the custom traces dose I have been giving for the past 4-5 weeks (per dose):

    Fe - .025 ppm
    Mn - .01 ppm
    B - .0043 ppm
    Zn - .002 ppm
    Mo - .0002 ppm
    Cu - .000265 ppm

    Plus additional 0.08 ppm Fe from Glut and about 0.02 ppm Fe from DTPA, for a total of 0.125 ppm Fe.

    And here is what Comprehesive gave me instead me instead (per dose)... I'll leave out all the extra elements included in this mix:

    Fe - .07 ppm
    Mn - .0026 ppm
    B - .002 ppm
    Zn - .00015 ppm
    Mo - .0002 ppm
    Cu - .00002 ppm

    Plus additional 0.06 ppm Fe from Glut and about 0.02 ppm Fe from DTPA, for a total of 0.15 ppm Fe.

    So... as you notice, Fe increased but some traces were reduced a great deal, mostly Zn, Cu and Mn.

    The results? Some plants began stunting and I got some little BBA back on my Anubias!! Wow! I thought to have finally won the battle against BBA since I re-scaped my tank back in April, but here I am, again, seeing a strict correlation between BBA and traces!

    Have a look at the following pics:

    Stunting tip (forgot the name of this damn plant!)
    [​IMG]


    BBA is appearing a little on some Anubia leaves (after over 6 months without it!)
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    On the other side, Java Moss improved (it was the only plant I could see improving, all the others have pretty much still the same kind of growth):
    [​IMG]

    AR also kept sprouting, even though leaves are still tiny:
    [​IMG]


    So... what are your thoughts? Too low traces? Too high Fe? I just read on Burr's thread that he experienced similar signs (stunting) by just increasing total Fe from 0.12 to 0.15 (look how close our dosing is!):

    https://barrreport.com/threads/120-gal-dutchy-freestyle-now-with-50-more-dutch.14072/page-25#post-146646


    Eager to know what you think guys about all this...

    Thanks for following.
     
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  18. Keith

    Keith Administrator
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    I used to have a good filter system but the cost of continually changing the filter it was far easier to just boil all the drinking water.

    With your tank all I can suggest when you decide to do a change do it slowly and give it time to work.

    One plant I could grow and that was Anubia once it slowed down I could start to see the Algae starting. The cheapest method I found was 2 X 35% water changes twice a week and plenty of water movement the best one on a vertical piece of DW had a small airstone under the plant. I only every used Seachem Liquid Ferts as recommended.
    All low tech tanks.

    Keith:cathug::cathug:
     
  19. fablau

    fablau Member
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    I see Keith... I think my problem now is that I started using Seachem Prime a couple of weeks ago, and the games have changed. Now all possible traces coming from the tap are neutralized by Prime, hence the need to dose more of them manually. Does this make sense?
     
  20. fablau

    fablau Member
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    UPDATE

    Well... I got my water test results back. And I must say, I am quite disappointed. Yes, disappointed because for some reason I thought to have more precise results, at least for the elements I was interested in. And it's completely my fault, I am sorry guys, but I thought to have results down to the 1 ppb precision for metals such as Zn, Cu, Mn, and Mo, instead they were at the 20 ppb. Anything below that resulted "undetected." Too bad...

    Yes, totally my fault. I read through their sample, and I saw their stated "20 ppb" detection threshold, but yet, I have overlooked that or confused that for some reason (am I aging too fast??). So... unfortunately I didn't have the results I was hoping for, which means most of the elements are not show since they were under the detection level of 20 ppb.

    So, if you wanna have a look at the two reports, here are the links, no secrets on that:

    Results from my tap water (named "Faucet 1"):
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/69484kujine3h11/Faucet_1.pdf?dl=1

    Results fro my tap water, treated with regular dose of Prime (named "Faucet 2"):
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/3vjp3ief532bdu7/Faucet_2.pdf?dl=1

    In any case, despite Cu, Zn and Mn were "undetected" in both reports, there are some interesting points that I have learned from this test:

    1. Boron is extremely high in my tap: 0.11 ppm. I guess I could NOT dose Boron at all seen the level I get straight from my tap. Also, clearly Prime doesn't affect Boron. If you look at its value, it is the same on both reports.

    2. Cu, Zn, Mn and Mo are for sure less than 0.02 ppm. I wanted badly to see the difference with the Prime sample though.

    3. No enough Iron in my tap, not at least more than 0.01 ppm.

    4. Good content of K: 3.5 ppm for free ;) but no N nor P. Good to know.

    5. High levels of the possible "bad" stuff such as Sulfur (72.8 ppm), Chloride (85.5 ppm), and Sulfate (193 ppm). I knew that already though...

    6. Interesting level of Silicon (3.3 ppm), no idea if that's a bad thing.

    7. The use of Prime adds a conspicuous amount of Orthophosphate (2.1 ppm), which is probably part of the solution to bind heavy metals. That shouldn't be a problem from what I have read about that element.

    8. Prime didn't affect at all any other element that was detected in the tap only report. What I mean is that Ca, Mg, Sulfur, Chloride and Sulfate were not affected by Prime. That's something I wanted to find out anyway.

    So... that's all I got from this test. Quite disappointing, I know, and I apologize for my oversight on the rough detection levels of this test for the metals we all care about.

    Extra DIY info: Since I have a Hanna checker for Cu which gives me a reading down to 1 ppb, I made a test myself. Without prime, I get something like 10 ppb from my tap. If I add Prime at its regular dosing, the level drops down to 0. So... it really looks like Prime is lowering down metals a great deal... I guess something similar happens to Zn and Mn.

    So... I think that by using Prime, you can just reset metals to pretty much zero. That'll allow to dose myself Cu, Zn, Mn and Mo as needed. But I am pretty sure I don't need extra Boron. Actually, I am not sure that a level of 0.11 ppm of Boron coming from tap every water change could be safe for plants. What are your thoughts on that?

    Looking forward for your thoughts, and please, if you know of any other water analysis service that could provide more precise results (at least 10 times more precise, down to 1 ppb), let me know! I'll be glad to perform the same test again. I looked on the web for hours, but I couldn't find anything better from the one I used here.
     

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