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GreggZ Planted Rainbow Tank!

plantnoobdude

Member
Joined
17 Mar 2021
Messages
956
Location
uk
If my journal at TPT was still up I'd just point you to the page where I went over it. I make up a 1000ml solution and dose 20 ml per day so lasts about 50 days. I make the solution with RO water and add 10 ml of distilled white vinegar and 0.4 gm potassium sorbate. The gram scale is a typical jewelers model that goes to 0.01 gram. Shake it like heck every so often for a few days and keep it stored in a dark place. Mine is in a closet and I have never had any issue with mold or anything like that.

For the items that are very small amounts I create a separate 1,000 ml container (Nickel Sulfate Hexahydrate, , Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate, Sodium Molybdate) and add that to the micro 1,000 ml solution. It's a bit more math but not that bad.

The ferrous gluconate is dry.

Once you do it once you will see how easy it is.

Let me know if you have any other questions.
Is there a reason you use unchelated? the reason I ask is because most of my Micros are chelated, but I haven't tried other sources. have you done so and have you found any difference?
 

GreggZ

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Thread starter
Joined
4 Mar 2022
Messages
279
Location
Novi, MI 48374
Is there a reason you use unchelated? the reason I ask is because most of my Micros are chelated, but I haven't tried other sources. have you done so and have you found any difference?
Hey Plantnoobdude I hope you don't get in trouble with the other guys for stopping in here!😄😄

I've been using the same or similar mix for about 5 years now. And I know dozens of others rolling their own with the same ingredients. I haven't found a need to try anything different as things have been going pretty well for a long time now.

As to micros in my opinion most tanks can get by well on a pretty wide range of dosing. I've been as high as 0.60 with Fe as proxy and as low as 0.20 weekly. No big changes other than interesting reactions from a very select group of plants. For most stem heavy tanks like mine I have found about 0.40 to be a sweet spot. Enough but not too much is a good general rule. Not an exact science and there are far more important things to worry about.

The bigger issue is to have good stable relative values and nothing in excess or completely lacking. That is the issue with some popular mixes being sold. As I am sure you know CSM+B is meant to be mixed in large vats with 100's or 1,000's of gallons of water to dose crops. The odds of getting a stable mix in your 1/8 tsp is very unlikely. That was likely an issue with many of the micro tox complaints. Just a single large overdose of B can wreak havoc on a tank. By rolling your own you can create a much more stable mix.
 

JacksonL

Member
Joined
27 May 2015
Messages
123
If my journal at TPT was still up I'd just point you to the page where I went over it. I make up a 1000ml solution and dose 20 ml per day so lasts about 50 days. I make the solution with RO water and add 10 ml of distilled white vinegar and 0.4 gm potassium sorbate. The gram scale is a typical jewelers model that goes to 0.01 gram. Shake it like heck every so often for a few days and keep it stored in a dark place. Mine is in a closet and I have never had any issue with mold or anything like that.

For the items that are very small amounts I create a separate 1,000 ml container (Nickel Sulfate Hexahydrate, , Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate, Sodium Molybdate) and add that to the micro 1,000 ml solution. It's a bit more math but not that bad.

The ferrous gluconate is dry.

Once you do it once you will see how easy it is.

Let me know if you have any other questions.
Thanks yet again for your help!
All my ingredients have been ordered so I will be giving it a shot once they arrive.
 

GreggZ

Member
Thread starter
Joined
4 Mar 2022
Messages
279
Location
Novi, MI 48374
I posted this picture earlier in another thread. A rare treat to have someone you know in the hobby get a chance to see your tank. Gives a perspective of the size of the 120G
20210130_151530.jpg
 

GreggZ

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Joined
4 Mar 2022
Messages
279
Location
Novi, MI 48374
So….do you take that whole lid off for maintenance or do you have deceptively long arms! 😂
LOL good question. The small doors on the canopy work well for daily tasks like feeding. The canopy has a piano hinge and flips wide open for maintenance.

It's a DIY build made of solid oak using a Kreg's pocket jig and face frame construction. No plywood. No 2 x 4's. All 1x4, 1x6,1x10's. I built it so that the tank sits higher than most stands as I feel it has a better presence in the room. I need to use a step stool to do maintenance.
P1100120 (Large).JPG
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Stand plans jpeg.jpg
 

KirstyF

Member
Joined
25 Jul 2021
Messages
525
Location
Kidderminster
I use a step stool for my beastie too, though at 4’ 11” tall, I’d be using a step stool for most any tank tbf. 😂

That piano hinge design is pretty nifty and I guess the extra height on top makes access a bit easier. My cabinet top is fairly shallow so whilst it has liftable lids, access towards the back of the tank is still a bit awkward. Wasn’t brave enough to even think about DIY’ing something that size.

Your cabinet is beautifully built, I must say (very tidy joints 👍) I’m planning on building some DIY oak planked cabinets on softwood frames this summer (not aquarium related) If I can get my finish anywhere near that I’d be chuffed.
 

GreggZ

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Thread starter
Joined
4 Mar 2022
Messages
279
Location
Novi, MI 48374
@GreggZ what polyurethane brand did you use?
Varathane Ultimate. And lots of it. Holding up very well years later.

That piano hinge design is pretty nifty and I guess the extra height on top makes access a bit easier.
Yes the piano hinge works very well. I need open access to do what I have to on a weekly basis.

The canopy needed to be extra high as the T5HO's are mounted inside.

20210122_161120.jpg
 

GreggZ

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Thread starter
Joined
4 Mar 2022
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279
Location
Novi, MI 48374
Sometimes life just gets super busy and the tank gets neglected a bit. That's the way it has been for me for a month or so.

Here's the mess it was this morning about 8:00am.

20220514_081455.jpg



And here it is after about two hours of trimming. Once in a while I just need to whack the heck out of it, and today was that day.

20220514_144408.jpg


It's been about 6 weeks running at what for me is very low PAR (71). All in all things have gone pretty well. But a few plants like (Pantanal, Bacopa Colorata, L. Cuba) are not showing great color.

So going to slowly start it back up in small increments and short bursts of high light to see where it goes and will update as things progress.
 

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Yugang

Member
Joined
13 Mar 2021
Messages
459
Location
Hong Kong
Sometimes life just gets super busy and the tank gets neglected a bit. That's the way it has been for me for a month or so.

Here's the mess it was this morning about 8:00am.

View attachment 188574


And here it is after about two hours of trimming. Once in a while I just need to whack the heck out of it, and today was that day.

View attachment 188575

It's been about 6 weeks running at what for me is very low PAR (71). All in all things have gone pretty well. But a few plants like (Pantanal, Bacopa Colorata, L. Cuba) are not showing great color.

So going to slowly start it back up in small increments and short bursts of high light to see where it goes and will update as things progress.
I really love these before and after FTS @GreggZ , trying to learn from your trimming skills. Hope you can post like this more often :)

Am I right that virtually all your plants this time were uprooted and replanted? Sometimes I read opinions that you can trim back a stem plant 6-7 times, after which it is time to uproot?
 

Qwedfg

New Member
Joined
21 Feb 2022
Messages
21
Location
Rhode Island
I love this tank and I’ve been following your journal since the last website. Was one of the big inspirations to get back into planted tanks although at a much smaller scale.
 

GreggZ

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Joined
4 Mar 2022
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279
Location
Novi, MI 48374
I really love these before and after FTS @GreggZ , trying to learn from your trimming skills. Hope you can post like this more often :)

Am I right that virtually all your plants this time were uprooted and replanted? Sometimes I read opinions that you can trim back a stem plant 6-7 times, after which it is time to uproot?
Much depends on the plant. There are some you can uproot and beat down every time and they don't miss a bit. Others require more finesse. It takes trial and error to determine which ones like what.

Take a plant like Pantanal or Cabomba Furcata. You can beat the heck out of them and they don't care. They grow so fast that they never really get any large root systems. But then take plants like Eriocaulon's or Samolus Parviflorus. They don't take uprooting as well and take longer to recover. Both are better left undisturbed as long as you can. And something like Barclaya Longifolia you never want to uproot. I had to when I deep cleaned my gravel and it's just now starting to bounce back from a complete melt.

But in general my tank gets a LOT of uprooting. With some stems as things get shaded and crowded the older growth will begin to decay. Usually best just to trim it off and keep the tops. Better to have the energy spent on new growth than trying to repair old growth. With most stems roots grow quick.

And keep in mind when you just trim back plants go through a period of not looking their best. I don't have much patience for that and like to keep the tank looking as good as I can. So for most of the faster stem type plants they might get uprooted every couple of weeks, and some like Myriophyllum Roraima it's every week or even more. It grows so fast I just pull out the entire bunch, rip off about 8", then plunge the entire bunch back in at once. Takes a few seconds and it could care less and just grows and grows.

I love this tank and I’ve been following your journal since the last website. Was one of the big inspirations to get back into planted tanks although at a much smaller scale.
I can't tell you how glad I am to hear that. You know I wrote hundreds of pages of drivel and other than the regulars you never really know who is following. I will say when I started hanging out on some FB groups I was shocked at how many people knew my tank when I posted it. The sense of community and the many people who are willing to help and inspire others is one of the things that makes the hobby great.
 

Hanuman

Member
Joined
4 Jan 2019
Messages
1,556
Location
Thailand
Take a plant like Pantanal or Cabomba Furcata. You can beat the heck out of them and they don't care.
I'm surprised you used Pantanal for this example. My experience is that Pantanal does not take uprooting/trimming kindly. I would think most other plants in your tank would not show much if any signs of looking bad as you say below after replanting. My experience is that Pantanal doesn't like being manhandled and even if it can still look great even 2-3 days after replanting, the top will progressively shrink and some side shoots might appear until it has properly re-established itself. You never experience that?
All other plants in my tank with no exception show 0 signs of degradation after replanting. To be fair I also don't have that many stem plants at the moment but all those stems plants I have kept in the last few years never showed as much stunting as L. Pantanal after replanting.
And keep in mind when you just trim back plants go through a period of not looking their best

and some like Myriophyllum Roraima it's every week or even more. It grows so fast
Yes that thing is like a bodybuilder on steroids. My Myriophyllum tuberculatum is the same. Sometimes I have to trim it mid week as it grows tall and thick quite indecently and I can see other plants running for safety.
 
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GreggZ

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4 Mar 2022
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279
Location
Novi, MI 48374
I'm surprised you used Pantanal for this example. My experience is that Pantanal does not take uprooting/trimming kindly. I would think most other plants in your tank would not show much if any signs of looking bad as you say below after replanting. My experience is that Pantanal doesn't like being manhandled and even if it can still look great even 2-3 days after replanting, the top will progressively shrink and some side shoots might appear until it has properly re-established itself. You never experience that?
All other plants in my tank with no exception show 0 signs of degradation after replanting. To be fair I also don't have that many stem plants at the moment but all those stems plants I have kept in the last few years never showed as much stunting as L. Pantanal after replanting.
I've kept the same patch of Pantanal for about 6 or 7 years. In that timeframe I've seen it do about everything it can do.

In my tank it likes good nutrient levels, high CO2, and high light. IME if you provide those, it barely skips a beat from trimming. I pull out the whole bunch and replant them every week (three at a time to speed things up).

For me it's a good indicator plant. If it's lacking something it's quick to complain, but it's also quick to recover when you make adjustments.

But as always that is just my experience. Others mileage may vary.
 

erwin123

Member
Joined
4 Mar 2021
Messages
991
Location
Singapore
I've experienced the 'head shrinking' of Pantanals as well. I'm wondering whether it has anything to do with the level of water column dosing.
If Pantanal is in a tank with rich water column dosing, the fact that it loses its roots due to uprooting and replanting would not be a big loss to it, compared to say, a Pantanal in a tank with leaner dosing.
However (fingers crossed), Meta appears more tolerant of trimming and replanting.
 
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