Welcome to Edition 2! If you have missed out on Edition 1, it can be found here: http://theaquaticgazette.com/2011/04/24/frank-wazeters-francis-xavier-single-stone-iwagumi-ada-philosophy-guide-1/
Frank Xavier: I have my lighting period set from 10pm at night to 6am in the morning (8 hour photoperiod), which I will probably bump up as the need arises – sometimes playing with an 8-10 hour photoperiod can help make things easier. Not all planted aquariums are the same. Right now I start on the low-side to judge how algae will occur in the aquarium. Preventative measures in the fight against algae is always the best way to go (preventative doesn’t mean you won’t get algae, you’re pretty much always going to get it to some degree).
I did notice an interesting effect, and that is the effect of Penac W on the substrate in terms of oxygenation levels in the aquarium overall, I did perhaps go a little overboard in the dosing of it for this small size aquarium, ended up using double the recommended dosage by just simply putting in a more sizeable dosage to equal Bacter 100 & Clear Super levels:
As you can see there’s quite a lot of oxygen in the system, that’s just one side of the aquarium.
It’s important, for planted aquaria, that the system reach a stable (i.e. cycled) point as quickly as possible to enable the growth of healthy aquatic plants and deter from algae. For this reason, I am doing a water change once a day everyday for the first week, taking it down to about this level:
And you can see, still clear water and going pretty good (the Marsilea is melting a bit hard in the back, dunno if it will work out in the long-term, as the batch we got was pretty well melted to begin with)
Upon filling with water, I Dosed one squirt of Brighty K and 15 drops of Green Bacter (aids in replenishing Beneficial bacteria after a water change, as well as during the cycling process help’s speed up the process of cycling. This Amazonia should be ready for Amano shrimp in about 5 days). While filling the water – just do it slowly, try not to disturb the substrate too much, if at all. You shouldn’t be blowing aquasoil around.
The first week of this layout being up is almost over – and it’s gotten a water change every single day. Once the next week starts, it will turn into water changes every second day. So, from Saturday -> Monday, Weds, Fri, Sun.
But as you can see here as well, the aquarium is going through a pretty intense melt-down phase. Except for the hydrocotyl in the back, which really needs no encouragement to grow, there’s wholesale melting of the Riccia (which was semi-emersed), HC (which was totally emersed), and the Marsilea Minuta (which was totally emersed).
The Minuta was a lost cause – frankly it just came into the aquarium too late, given enough time they would bounce back as submergent growth was already seen, but the shipment of plants we get from our wholesaler is always a bit weak. If they aren’t put into water almost immediately upon receiving them, then usually they are a lost cause. In this case they were shipped two day instead of one day, and then didn’t see an aquarium until the third day.
So, the end result was the Minuta was mostly replaced with some of it already in the emerged form.
The HC is in a similar boat (having come from the wholesaler) – and may also need replacing. By and large it’s just best not to keep rotting plants in the aquarium.
I must say though, that by and large packaging of plants we get from hobbyists is always 400% better than from wholesale sources and have much longer vitality before needing to be put into an aquarium.
However, this is normal and expected – KWC warned me that this Riccia would go through this phase before bouncing back considering it’s original source, and it’s nothing that I’m not prepared for.
In the mean time, still dosing 1-2 drops of Green Bacter daily and 1 squirt (1 mL) of Brighty K daily. Let’s see how it keeps on going and bounces around. It’ll be more careful removal of dead plant material in the next week is my prediction.
Thank you for reading Edition 2. If you would like to continue on to Edition 3, please hit this link: http://theaquaticgazette.com/2011/05/08/frank-wazeter%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%9Cfrancis-xavier%E2%80%9D-single-stone-iwagumi-ada-philosophy-guide-3/
credit: Frank Wazeter “Francis Xavier”