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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello,

I'm new to this forum (glad to be here) as well as planted aquariums... and fish keeping in general for the most part. I've started a nano in a cylindircial vase, which holds about 3 gallons of water (not including substrate which is about 4-5 inches of eco-complete- I know this is deep, needs to be for maximum footprint, is it okay?). I started a fishless cycle, adding ammonia until I got a reading of 5-6 ppm, with a temp of 84-86 (cycles faster if warm?). After 3 days or so I went to San Francisco's amazing store Aqua Forest and bought anubias nana (not sure which varietal), bolbitis, willow moss, rose moss, and needle-leaf Java Fern and attached them all to driftwood or rocks and put them in. Over the last week the moss seems to be getting brown, the anubias slightly weak (loosing a few leaves) and the bolbitis a bit transparent and brown as well. The java fern seems okay but not great. ... oh and I have water lettuce and frogbit which both seem fine.

Lighting: 21 LED clip on light, 18 white, 3 blue... right now it's on for 10 hours.

Filtration: using Zoomed 501 canister right now, but it's louder than I was hoping (maybe defective, I dunno) so I bought an azoo palm and when it gets here I'll see if I like it better ;)
parameters:
pH: 7.4-7.6
ammonia: 5-7ppm
I don't test for anything else, waiting for ammonia to drop
don't have a kH or GH test but SF water, I've heard, is quite soft 1-3 degrees
I did add about half a ml of Flourish a few days ago...
no CO2

Too warm? Too much light? Not enough ferts? Normal acclimation?
Advice? What should I do? Is this normal "melting"? I don't want to waste $40... I plan to keep red cherry shrimp, and possibly something else like scarlet badis or chili rasbora. Oh, and I haven't been doing water changes... again, waiting for tank to cycle. Thanks for any help! This forum has been a wealth of info.! I love it! :D
*Lenee*
 

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I don't know about that LED light. How far is it from the substrate? LED's come in varying strengths as well...I know they're popular with reefkeepers, but I'm relatively sure they use some sort of high output LED for this purpose. Also, "white" isn't really specific. White can be a whole range of kelvin ratings, and you want about 6400K. You may actually not have enough light.

Other than that, I'd vote for too warm. Try bringing the temperature down and see if they perk up, since that's easier to fix than the bad lighting on the spot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the reply! I have since turned down the temperature... it's about 77-80 now. The mosses and anubias have died... but I left them in just in case they feel like making some sort of miraculous comeback. The Java moss and bolbitus are still hanging on. The light is a Kotobuki 21 Daylight / Moonlight LED Aquarium Clip Light, (anyone have experience with this?) that I got off Amazon, I wasn't sure how much light this gave, or if it was a good spectrum etc (all the info it comes with is in Japanese), but I figured if I stuck to low light plants it would be okay? It is also by a north facing window.

... still no nitrites, and ammonia is still at 5-6ppm... two weeks in. I'm beginning to see why a lot of people go for the heavily planted tank with high light, that doesn't have to wait to be cycled :( Maybe my next tank! Thanks again!
*Lenee*
 

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I took a look at this kotobuki light...I would say that is not enough even for a low-light tank. You're better off just getting a spiral bulb from Lowe's for $5. Make sure it's rated 6400K. Most packages will actually say that.

I'm a big believer in microbial supplements to help cycling along. Dose your nano with some Microbe-Lift Special Blend or similar item.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks ms.alice! I did use a little Colonize from Dr. Fosters and Smith when I started it... but I really can't find any reviews on it besides their website. Today I got a high reading of Nitrites!! I have the API Masters kit and it was darker purple than 5ppm.

With the shape of my "vase", being a tall cylinder, the water column is about 12-14 inches... would 13 watts be okay even though it's a 3.5 gallon? If it's the height of a 10 gallon would it still be considered low light even though the wpg would suggest high light? Should I go with even higher wattage? I was thinking of switching to this light because I like the look and the price:D

http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?SKU=17204335&RN=262&

Would that work better? Also, any advice on good plants using that light would be great!

Thanks again!
 

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the look of that cliplight is pretty common. I would actually suggest you try a 26 watt CFL in the 6400K or so range...it's not so much the volume of water as it is penetration.

As for plants, I find that amazon swords and rotalas are pretty low-maintenance. Anubias are too on the whole, if you want to give them another try.
 
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