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NA Style ADA 60P

erwin123

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I have double WRGB2 running at 90/70/80 (seems very common to have highest Red, then blue, then green...) which is roughly the same wattage as a single Vivid 2...

Tank is 60x45x45 but substrate is 12cm deep, so effectively 60x45x33cm....
Whatever the light setting I have, I get algae on the aquarium glass anyway, so I might as well crank up the light. Weeds like Rotalas grow so fast under high light, they are probably vacuuming up all the nitrates judging by the amount of stems I have to toss after each trimming ...:)
 

Sid.scapes

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Updates from this week.

It's been about 5 days since the substrate change. I am doing ~50% water change a day this week and will cut it by half with every passing week.
According to my API Test kit (not very confident about the results!)

Ammonia - .20 to .25 ppm
Nitrates - 5 ppm
Nitrites - 0 ppm
Gh - 6
Kh -0 (I wonder if this will be a problem for Microsorum, my limited research suggests it won't be but happy to hear if you folks have any thoughts)


I am currently dosing 1ml APT complete a day which should add approximately 7.6ppm Potassium (K), 3.6ppm Nitrogen (NO3), 1.4ppm Phosphorus (PO4), 0.1ppm Iron (Fe), 0.8ppm Magnesium (Mg)
Haven't worked out the math for Seachem Advance but I believe that's adding some extra Phosphorus as well.

I have also just purchased some K2SO4 and depending on how the plants grow, I might add some amount per day in a combination of APT Zero or Complete.
 

Sid.scapes

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I also added some new plants this week from @Horizon Aquatics Aquatics . A fresh tissue culture pot of Hemianthus Micranthemoides and some good old Rotala Orange Juice. I will probably add some Rotala Blood Red SG as well if I can find some and some more Anubias Nana Petite or Bonzai once the ammonia levels are more reasonable.
 

Sid.scapes

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1689ae8bd9bdec6a4ae9eb2ecda2d2b0.jpg



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Sid.scapes

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Quick update on the scape.

Plants are doing great and growing steadily. I add two new plants in the background this week (Thanks to @Courtneybst !) - Limnophila Aromatica Mini and the one and only Rotala Blood Red SG (the one from Dennis Wong - 2HR Aquarist's tank).
As mentioned last week, I was planning on adding anubias in the more shaded part of this scape but I am not tempted to put more microsorum philippine mini. I am off to AG workshop this week so may pick up both the plants and see which one looks best,

Also, I have removed the Chihiros Doctor (Twinstar steriliser alternative) as I was not convinced that it was making any difference in the scape and interestingly I have a little bit of Green Thread Algae popping up here and there so maybe it was working after all? Unfortunately, there is still no clear way to establish that it was the only reason why the algae didn't pop up until now. However, I have added 5 clithon corona snails in the scape (again from @Courtneybst ) so hopefully, they will keep it in check.

As for diatom situation, it's not as bad as it was before but it's still present on hardscape and the plants which are in the direct path of flow which is making me wonder if I should reduce the flow. If there is no change in this situation, I will most likely change to the aquario circular outlet and see if it helps.
 

Sid.scapes

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Bolbitis difformis from @LondonAquascaper and anubias nana bonzai on the hardscape. I haven't glued them yet because I am still bit iffy about their their final positions in the scape but loving it so far. Since this area is really shaded, I think Anubias will work out better than most plants I had in mind.



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Sid.scapes

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1ce6caa6ccb9197314a1f262a103109d.jpg

Rotala blood red SG slowly getting that beautiful red colouration. Rotala orange juice on the left for comparison

Interestingly, blood red SG care get intense red colouration even without nitrate limitations. I only have a stem or two but my plan is to have 1/3 of the background covered by these


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Sid.scapes

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I’ve not been using my DSLRto take photos lately but picked it up today for a change. Should have turned off the co2 to take a picture but was feeling lazy so here it is.

For some reason, it’s pretty much impossible to take nice bright photo of this scape. May be it’s time to retire the 18-55 stock lens and get a better prime lens instead


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LFNfan

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For some reason, it’s pretty much impossible to take nice bright photo of this scape. May be it’s time to retire the 18-55 stock lens and get a better prime lens instead

You have quite a wide light range from front to back - hard to expose both evenly without a bit of 'snooted' off-camera fill flash for the foreground. Two flashes would be ideal, one on each side for even lighting. You'd have to work out the angles to avoid reflections, but it's do-able. You could go the other way as well and go for a very diffuse off-camera light to brighten up the foreground. Or you could go the HDR route and bracket a couple of exposures that expose the foreground and the background correctly and merge them - some DSLRs have that capability built-in. Most smartphones do (!). I suspect your kit 18-55 is doing its job just fine, but a new prime lens couldn't harm I'm sure ;)


Love your scape and setup. I also had issues with diatoms and 'hairy diatoms' in the flow-iest area of my tank. S Repens. In the end I ended up taking most of the plant out :( Maybe that was my newbie solution rather than the right approach! Do you think reducing the flow is the answer? I have a low-tech tank.
 

Sid.scapes

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You have quite a wide light range from front to back - hard to expose both evenly without a bit of 'snooted' off-camera fill flash for the foreground. Two flashes would be ideal, one on each side for even lighting. You'd have to work out the angles to avoid reflections, but it's do-able. You could go the other way as well and go for a very diffuse off-camera light to brighten up the foreground. Or you could go the HDR route and bracket a couple of exposures that expose the foreground and the background correctly and merge them - some DSLRs have that capability built-in. Most smartphones do (!). I suspect your kit 18-55 is doing its job just fine, but a new prime lens couldn't harm I'm sure ;)

All good ideas! I admit, I didn't think about the HDR option but I did use some Exposure compensation (+2 Points). Unfortunately, I don't have the external flash or the skills to use them but I definitely want to explore that and external lighting at some point. :)
I also had issues with diatoms and 'hairy diatoms' in the flow-iest area of my tank. S Repens. In the end I ended up taking most of the plant out :( Maybe that was my newbie solution rather than the right approach! Do you think reducing the flow is the answer? I have a low-tech tank.

I have never had a low-tech so not completely sure if it's relevant but in my limited experience, I've noticed that too much flow almost always causes trouble - From BBA to diatoms everything seems to be flourishing in the high flow area. Even in my most stable tanks, I've noticed the same situation. I will be installing Aquario Circular inlet on this scape and will report back if it helps.
Meanwhile, definitely check this with @CooKieS . I had an impossible Diatom outbreak in my 45p and his advice saved the scape (and my sanity!)
 

LFNfan

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V interesting re. diatoms and flow. I had read in a few places that getting a filter that does 10x tank capacity per hour was desirable. So that's what I spec'd my filter for. But maybe there's a balance to be achieved rather than an absolute flow rate?

Re. photography, you could have a look at Strobist.blogspot.com - it's an amazing off-camera lighting resource if you are interested. Perhaps a bit 'OTT' though. The other other option is tinkering in software to brighten up the darker zone. Anyway - off topic!
 

CooKieS

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All good ideas! I admit, I didn't think about the HDR option but I did use some Exposure compensation (+2 Points). Unfortunately, I don't have the external flash or the skills to use them but I definitely want to explore that and external lighting at some point. :)


I have never had a low-tech so not completely sure if it's relevant but in my limited experience, I've noticed that too much flow almost always causes trouble - From BBA to diatoms everything seems to be flourishing in the high flow area. Even in my most stable tanks, I've noticed the same situation. I will be installing Aquario Circular inlet on this scape and will report back if it helps.
Meanwhile, definitely check this with @CooKieS . I had an impossible Diatom outbreak in my 45p and his advice saved the scape (and my sanity!)

Hello there,

I had the worst issues in the past with high flow on plants and hard scape, and I still have today, just try to direct an outflow on some hard scape and you’ll be surprised how many algae gets there, red algae especially (like bba and staghorn) seems to love it.

I think the whole key is to have huge filter media capacity but without storm in the tank, to do that just observe how Ada does it: one superjet es 600 for an 90p tank, coupled with lily pipe outlet.

I’m actually running the neo pipes too but I arranged the outflow to make sure it breaks on the glass, to avoid any mess in the tank.

Interesting fact: I NEVER get any diatoms/bba/staghorn in my low flow/low tech or even no filter setup.
But I get green algae or fuzz.

So yeah, better find the balance and stop believing you need an oase 850 for an 60p sized tank. ✌️😁

Btw, nice evolution @Sid.scapes , glad to see this tank back in shape!
 

plantnoobdude

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I had the worst issues in the past with high flow on plants and hard scape, and I still have today, just try to direct an outflow on some hard scape and you’ll be surprised how many algae gets there, red algae especially (like bba and staghorn) seems to love it.
I'm guessing its a combination of sugars/organics leaching from wood and high oxygen from filter which allows algae to flourish.
 

Garuf

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Just to clarify, what exactly is the problem, lingering diatoms?
 

Sid.scapes

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Just to clarify, what exactly is the problem, lingering diatoms?
Yep. Especially where the flow is highest. If you notice the lower part of ludwigia, they are all covered under the diatoms. I also have some issues with my fern as well but I think that's because the water is too soft for them (Kh 0, Gh 6).
I have had Trident in my previous tank and it used to grow insanely huge in no time. I wonder if it's because that tank was run on SaltyShrimps GH/KH+ instead of Gh+ that I use currently.
Sorry for the ramblings!
 

Garuf

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Java ferns come from karst run off so need a good hardness to grow best. They like high flow and higher levels of po4 in my experience.

In regards to diatoms, have you used h2o2 in the tank? Also have you checked that the wood isn’t soft? I’ve had persistent diatoms before and the wood id used was mushy, once removed the diatoms went away.

Plant density helps, if I were in your position I’d throw in a load of stems floating for a few weeks to get things a touch more stable.
 
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