• You are viewing the forum as a Guest, please login (you can use your Facebook, Twitter, Google or Microsoft account to login) or register using this link: Log in or Sign Up
  • You can now follow UKAPS on Instagram.

Liquid Carbon

EA James

Member
Joined
22 Jul 2019
Messages
442
Location
Staines-upon-Thames
Hi all,
What are people's thoughts on liquid carbon? I've never used it and don't know much about it. On a tropical fish forum on facebook i've seen a lot of people use it to spot treat algae and that it's just pretty much an algaecide but i read something the other day about someone dosing once a week, after WC i think? It was on here that i read that, somewhere!
I have a low tech tank, is this something i should consider using?
 

Kezzab

Member
Joined
18 Jan 2016
Messages
1,371
Location
Carlisle
Are you happy with your tank and the growth you are getting? If yes, then dont do anything.

If your plants are struggling then the daily addition of "liquid carbon" may help by providing an source of carbon available to the plants. In my experience, the general algaecide effect is limited, but if applied directly to algae it will kill it (but will also likely destroy the leaf itself). I tend to use it neat on hardscape, if required, that has algae applying with a tooth brush.

K
 

Mark.A

Member
Joined
22 Jul 2009
Messages
58
Location
Northumberland, UK.
Liquid carbon is not a replacement for CO2 injection, no matter what the advertising says. It is a source of Carbon but not a very good one. It is a good algaecide, which is what a lot of aquarists use it for - to get rid of algae.

If you have high light, or even medium light, you would be better off injecting CO2. If you have a low light tank then it can be useful as a slightly better source of Carbon than what's in the water anyway and it will also help reduce algae growth. This is why some aquarists with low light tanks dose it regularly. Some aquarists with medium/high light tanks that already inject CO2 also dose liquid Carbon, this is for the algae reducing capabilities.

I'm just setting up a low light, low tech tank myself and am going to be dosing liquid Carbon.
 

EA James

Member
Thread starter
Joined
22 Jul 2019
Messages
442
Location
Staines-upon-Thames
Are you happy with your tank and the growth you are getting?
No not really, The started the tank about 18 months ago and didn't really know what i was doing. i mean it looked great but i wasn't fully aware of keeping it that way, few of the plants died off and i didn't use a liquid fert for ages and i have a good few epiphytes too. Sand in the bottom with no root tabs so things got a bit bad!
I'm going for a full rescape with new hardscape and plants. Now i know where i went wrong last time so i'm hoping it to be a success this time round
Im going for mostly easy slow growers with a few stems, do you think its worth getting some and dosing from the offest?
Cheers
 

zozo

Member
Joined
16 Apr 2015
Messages
7,648
Location
Netherlands

EA James

Member
Thread starter
Joined
22 Jul 2019
Messages
442
Location
Staines-upon-Thames
@Mark.A Low light low tech. No co2 injection
I'm going mostly easy slow growers, Anubias and buce's etc
Which will you be using? I know TNC do one, I've been using their complete fert and that seems to be good and a popular choice too
 

dino21

Member
Joined
17 Mar 2020
Messages
128
Location
Derbyshire
Hi,

If you search the forum you will finds lots of comments about Liquid Carbon and sure other folks will have more informed views than us.

In our 50 ltr tank we first tried the disposable ISTA co2 gas canisters into a tank bell diffuser, but did not see any noticable improvement, but equally we did not test for co2 either.

We did try Liquid carbon for a couple of months and yes we did see some reduction in Algae and some plant growth improvement.

However after reading out LC in the forum and web, as said, its really a disinfectant, so seems a lot of doubt about how good or bad it its for the tank and livestock ?

We purchased a new 2kg Co2 fire extinguiser and a new single stage dual dial Co2 Regulator * for less than £60 and never looked back.

Plant growth has been like never before and can highly recommend you consider it as for the price the Co2 will last over a year in a small tank and will cost no more or less than the above methods.

Again the FE method is detail in this forum but the * regulator often recommended is the more expensive dual stage type, though as long as you watch the dials and weigh the FE to replace it before its becomes near empty the single stage ones should not be a problem.
 

Mark.A

Member
Joined
22 Jul 2009
Messages
58
Location
Northumberland, UK.
@Mark.A Low light low tech. No co2 injection
I'm going mostly easy slow growers, Anubias and buce's etc
Which will you be using? I know TNC do one, I've been using their complete fert and that seems to be good and a popular choice too
I've got the EasyCarbo. I just got this one as it's the cheapest option I could find. Use whichever you like, they all do the same thing.
 

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,752
Location
Bracknell
Hi Folks,

Apparently some plants will not tolerate liquid carbon (glutaraldehyde). I believe it may have been @dw1305 who pointed out that Vallisneria is one such plant species. I tried just now to find the relevant post but was unsuccessful and I don't think I imagined it.

JPC
 

dw1305

Expert
UKAPS Team
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
11,570
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
Apparently some plants will not tolerate liquid carbon (glutaraldehyde). I believe it may have been @dw1305 who pointed out that Vallisneria is one such plant species.
It wasn't me directly, but I think it is right.

Obligate aquatic plants ("hydrophytes") don't have a stomata or a cuticle ("epidermis") (<"Underwater photosynthesis of submerged plants...">*), because these are mechanisms, that terrestrial plants use, to control water loss. Once they have an epidermis the plants need stomata (basically holes in the leaves surface that the plant can open and close) or there isn't the possibility of gas exchange.

Schematic-diagram-of-nanoparticle-transport-inside-watermelon-plants-The-stoma-openings.png

Nearly all the plants (that are commercially available as aquarium plants) are actually terrestrial plants that can withstand extended periods of immersion, so they possess an epidermis and stomata, although these features may be less well developed in underwater leaves.

The similarity between Vallisneria, mosses etc and the "algae" is that gases and nutrients diffuse directly into the plant through the cell wall. I assume this is also what happens with the glutaraldehyde which, even for plants with a cuticle, is a <"biocide at higher concentrations">.

*In case the link stops working: Pedersen, Ole, Timothy David Colmer, and K. A. J. Sand-Jensen. "Underwater photosynthesis of submerged plants–recent advances and methods." Frontiers in Plant Science 4 (2013): 140.

cheers Darrel
 
Last edited:

EA James

Member
Thread starter
Joined
22 Jul 2019
Messages
442
Location
Staines-upon-Thames
Vallisneria is one such plant species

It wasn't me directly, but I think it is right.

Ok thanks guys, i have giant Vallis in my tank and plan on getting more for my rescape so i won't be using that!
Is it worth looking into a proper co2 set up when i'm planning on the majority of my plants being 'easy' slow growers with a few stems?
upload_2020-4-30_18-54-14.png

This is the sort of thing i'm going for but more wood and probably a few more plants
Cheers
 

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,752
Location
Bracknell
Nearly all the plants (that are commercially available as aquarium plants) are actually terrestrial plants that can withstand extended periods of immersion...

Hi @dw1305

This may necessitate a new thread but if @EA James doesn't mind my asking this question here, why are we growing terrestrial plants in our aquariums? We are not just expecting our aquarium plants to live for extended periods underwater. I, for one, am hoping that my aquarium plants will live indefinitely. It sounds like we're expecting these plants to do something that they never evolved to do. :confused:o_O

@EA James - would you prefer that I start a separate thread rather than detract from your original topic - liquid carbon?

JPC
 

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,752
Location
Bracknell
No it's fine, carry on

Thanks.

OK, so I guess my first question is - where does one find a list of obligate aquatic plants and would Vallisneria be included on this list? And does it follow that all obligate aquatic plants would be intolerant of liquid carbon?

Or, am I still barking up the wrong tree?

JPC
 

dw1305

Expert
UKAPS Team
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
11,570
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
why are we growing terrestrial plants in our aquariums? We are not just expecting our aquarium plants to live for extended periods underwater. I, for one, am hoping that my aquarium plants will live indefinitely.
Some "terrestrial" plants will grow indefinitely under-water. Many come from areas where there are regular seasonal monsoons etc. which mean that they are used to periods of emersion/immersion, other will mainly grow underwater, but if they are exposed to the air it will trigger aerial leaf production and flowering. Hygrophila corymbosa is a <"perfect example of this">, it will grow happily underwater for years at a time, but once flowering is initiated <"the plant will flower and usually die">. You can find pictures of flowering <"Rotala, Echinodorus, Cryptocoryne"> spp etc.

Plants like <"Bolbitis heudelotii & Anubias barteri "> (and many mosses) are slightly differen, they will grow terrestrially in very wet situations (spray zone of waterfalls etc), and being underwater makes very little difference to them.

d76a6a6158abb92d4b0058bff2d696ef.jpg


That we grow a lot of plants that can potentially grow emersed is mainly to do with the way the plants are grown commercially. This is from "Tropica"


cheers Darrel
 

dw1305

Expert
UKAPS Team
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
11,570
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
where does one find a list of obligate aquatic plants and would Vallisneria be included on this list? And does it follow that all obligate aquatic plants would be intolerant of liquid carbon?
My guess would be that obligate aquatic plants are much more likely to be damaged by liquid carbon. I think Vallisneria is the one most often mentioned, possibly because it is much more commonly grown than Blyxa spp. etc or possibly because it is more susceptible to damage? Some-one else will know.

Vallisneria
spp. are obligate aquatic plants, and even produce underwater flowers. Most other obligate aquatic plants will flower above the water line, and may have floating leaves etc (like Cabomba spp.).

I don't have a definitive list, I'll see if I can find one.

cheers Darrel
 

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,752
Location
Bracknell
Hi @dw1305

Thanks for your reply - just the sort of stuff that I am looking for. When I 're-build' my main (community) tank, I would like to re-create as natural a biotope as possible. I have a blank canvas so I am free to choose as I like - within reason! I spent a lot of time this morning searching the Web for a list of 'true aquatic plants', 'obligate aquatic plants', you name it! But I had only very limited success of which the following is an example:

http://www.aquaticplantlife.com/article-true-aquatic-plants.html

I don't have a definitive list, I'll see if I can find one.

That would be great. Thanks.

JPC
 
Last edited:

Similar threads

Top