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Everything deficiency - Thinking toxicity (Low tech)


6 Sep 2020
Im not sure why it is interesting to see my FTS's,
It's part of the rules. Gotta have an FTS. Otherwise none of the other photos count :p. I have to say hats off for a second stab at H. Pinnatifida. I might do the same - but not until some dim and distant point in the future when I am older, wiser, have a long flowing white beard and at least a faint idea of what I am doing.


Thread starter
22 Aug 2019
Belated sunday-ish update.


I think I have found a pretty sweet spot with the lights at 15% each. Its possible the plants could grow even faster with a bit more, but I think I would also get more algae that way so I will stay on this light level for a while and just enjoy. Faster isnt always better anyway. Plant growth is really nice, duckweed index is happy, Ludwigia Super Red didnt die when I replanted it a while ago. What more could a girl want?

I feel like I can just tinker with small adjustments now to get things running as perfectly as possible since there are no major issues.
I have no doubt I will eventually run out of things to change at this level and start to up the light just to see what will happen, but its a little while away still :twisted:

Im making a few tweaks to the ferts, for two seperate reasons.
My new weekly totals are as of today;
4 ppm NO3
0.2 ppm PO4
7 ppm K
0.5 ppm Mg

0.0375 ppm Fe DTPA
0.075 ppm Fe EDTA
0.0165 ppm Mn
0.0105 ppm Zn
0.009 ppm B
0.00135 ppm Mo
0.0015 ppm Cu

Reason one is ive had some strangeness with curling leaves of some plants and slight symptoms of ~something~ in others, see this thread for more details.
I added a touch of Magnesium to my daily macro dose, to make sure Mg continues to be available during longer periods of no water changes.
I upped my K a bit to see if the Hygrophila polysperma will have less holes in old leaves, but this symptom could also be caused by lack of CO2, so this change might not do anything.
I also increased my Iron and traces by +50%, because the Hydrocotyle tripartita and Anubias coffeefolia were showing some possible chlorosis in new leaves, and I was running on a very low dose already. I believe some of the traces could cause leaf curling when they are deficient, so a general increase may also help that if im lucky. Im not going to adjust individual trace ratios at the moment, im planning to go down that rabbithole of insanity at a later point.

The second part of the tweaks are to reduce build up of ferts for the times where the tank may go a few weeks between water changes. Since I am now changing only 25% water because of the shrimp, the build up is even more pronounced. So I am cutting NO3 and PO4 dose by approximately half. I want to note here that I have never experienced algae related to fertilizer dosing in my tank. I could dose 7 ppm nitrates or 30 ppm nitrates, the thread algae stays at same level. If I run my lights at 100% however, oh boy will I get algae, regardless of ferts. I just wanted to make that part clear, im only reducing these because I am seeing build up, not because of anything else. If you are changing 50% of your water every week without fail then build up is nothing you need to worry about. My tank is much more heavily stocked than it was in the beginning of this journal, and thus is producing more nitrate and phosphate from fish waste. This means I can get away with adding less of these two from ferts.

I also wanted to say that if you are reading this journal and there is something you dont quite understand or something I could make clearer, please feel free to post asking me to elaborate. Worst case I would refer you to an existing thread on the subject 😃 I have realised my journal is a bit of a weird mix between low tech peasantry and in-depth chemistry/fertilizer talk.

On to the plants:

The two top pots of Hygrophila polysperma contain old shoots that were prevented from growing due to shade by dominant stems, and trimmed bottoms, hence the ratty looking leaves.
Bottom pots are replanted shoots. Im working on propagating this plant a little bit so I have more large stems and can fill out the new scape better.

Blyxa looking pretty good minus a few issues, inert grown on the left this time and in tropica soil on the right.

20210414_114849.jpg 20210414_115007.jpg
Dominant stems of Nesaea got replanted into the Bolbitis, brilliant trick I learned from Ady's journal, looks pretty cool I think.

The Limnophila sessiliflora from the Tropica pot, and the bunch that came in looking weird has turned out to be the same plant after all.
The pot from Tropica has been the most steady growing once it got going, the other stems have taken forever to recover from some sort of grave mystery insult I accidentally inflicted upon them, and are still not growing 100%. Im also propagating this one a bit as I think it will make a nice backbone of fast growing plants together with the H. polysperma.

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The Hygrophila pinnatifida has gotten its own "floating" island made out of a bit of redmoor wood fastened to the background with a suction cup.
I took these pictures mainly so I can look back and know which leaves have grown in my tank. Id like to monitor closely how its doing and im sure there are readers here who are equally interested @Karmicnull 😉 The island is located very close to a filter outlet because this plant grows on top of waterfalls in nature and is adapted to quite a lot of flow.

Im hoping my filter shrimp will find their way up here, as I intentionally made it so that they can hide behind the piece of wood. They were so happy in the holiday colony tank, and had even stopped reacting to us approaching the tank. But now in the main tank they have sadly gone back into hiding and I am constantly trying to make them feel more comfortable. They greatly prefer spots with lots of flow obviously, but the gabonensis species also seems to prefer the filtering spot to be dimly lit or under something, so that they feel protected. Lastly the spot should ideally be reachable by climbing, as they dont normally swim around much looking for good areas. I will try to make some sort of bridge for them to get up there.

Bonus Sturisoma


Here is the legally required FTS 😁

I wrote last time that I had finally made a spraybar setup that was slow enough for leaf litter to settle on the bottom, but overnight the leaves blew away and made a liar of me 🙄
A lot of cussing and sweating and a week later I finally have a solution, although it was not what I thought I would end up with.
I now have two "hobo lily pipes" made out of plastic bottles 😂
One is in the back right and the other one is left front.
Im really not a fan of glassware intake/outlets for aquariums, every time I just see the many pictures of aquarists' sliced up hands when they invariably break, and they require constant cleaning keep them from looking cruddy. They are also not DIY friendly and are made for open top tanks.
Both filters are running completely unthrottled now and the leaf litter sits securely on the bottom. Food also isnt blown everywhere which is a huge plus. The shrimp can walk comfortably across the sand without looking like they are working on their cardio.
I find it a bit amusing that aquascapers who are so concerned with maximum flow and beastly filters are using an outlet that is apparently great for making gentle flow 😉
Ive ordered a couple of acrylic lily pipe ends from Aliexpress to de-hoboify my setup slightly, but as usual they will take a while to arrive.
Until then the bottle pipes will see me through 😄


My Loricaria simillima (gothsticks) have ever since I added them to the main tank insisted on taking up residence in the left hand side of the tank. This is all fine and good I suppose, except that I am rapidly running out of substrate space with all these happily growing plants. Every time I try to place a few plants over in their area they get immensely offended by this obstruction and start thrashing through the plants and angrily swimming up the glass to get where they want to go. They also want their area to be a little bit shaded but not by leaves because that is apparently "too in the way" 🙄 So after a little bit of trial back and forth like this, I remember I have a U shaped piece of mopani wood in my hardscape hoard that I could make into a nice secluded garage for them. I even put the Windelow ferns on top of the wood, freeing up further space. In front of the wood I made an open sandy area where I can put their food, so that I wont have to feed them so close to the filter intake. After rearranging I patted myself on the back and went to bed, expecting them to be happily resting under the wood the next morning.

The gothsticks seem to hate the secluded garage and are now congregating in the sandy area in front of it.



Ah the joys of fishkeeping. At least they are easier to feed here.
Last edited:


Thread starter
22 Aug 2019
A few bonus pictures of the inmates taken this afternoon :snaphappy:


There was a bit of a fishstick smorgasbord happening at dinnertime.


An oto searches the leaves for food with the help of a shrimp.


Even the Rineloricaria made an appearance.


Bought a few amanos this week, they are still quite young, almost the same size as the neocaridina. Hope they like thread algae :happy:


Who could resist this face :pompus:


6 Sep 2020
The Hygrophila pinnatifida has gotten its own "floating" island made out of a bit of redmoor wood fastened to the background with a suction cup....Id like to monitor closely how its doing and im sure there are readers here who are equally interested
I am standing on the side of the playing field cheering the HP on! There was some on sale in the forum today which I happened to see in the 7 minute window before it was snapped up, and I was thinking to myself, if Hufsa's survives, then maybe....

Here is the legally required FTS
We expect no less. I love the way the home made bottle-top intake/outlet look so similar to the ADA glassware - it's satire in a fish tank! You should keep them as a post-modern artistic statement.
Spectacular fish photos as always. Keep 'em coming!

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