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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all, I thought I'd post a pic of my 75. I'd really appreciate any suggestions or comments anyone would care to make regarding the scape. I'm not much of a photographer and the color is a lot better in person. I guess a few words about my setup are in order:
filtration:fluval 404 and 304
CO2: pressurized with DIY reactor
lighting: 2x54 T5HO ( one Giesemann Midday and one Aquaflora )
ferts: standard EI
fauna: black skirt, serpae, von rio and cardinal tetras, and a few oto's
flora: java ferns, L cuba, L brasiliensis, P stellata, low grow hygro, and a few other assorted stems

Thanks for taking the time to look.

 

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wow...how did you do that? I can't for the life of me figure out why my plants don't grow like that. How long did it take that tank to fill out? Beautiful tank!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Carlos, it doesn't take too long to fill in. The ferns on the left and right I've had for 3 years in one tank or another. They just get a good pruning monthly to keep them that size. The narrow leaf in the center I've had since January and it has probably tripled in size or more and it also has to be regularly pruned. L brasiliensis started out as two pots in January and has spread to as it is now. L cuba started out as 10 stems about a month ago. It's a weed, putting out shoots like crazy and grows 4 inches or so a week. I have to stay on it or it gets overgrown quickly. There are a few other assorted stems that are also weeds and need a weekly trim. Keep in mind this is with 2x54 T5HO's. I don't see how everyone with 4x54 or more keeps up with their growth.
 

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Looks great. I agree on your light. I got two 96 watt cf on my 50 and only run one and my plants have really been growing quite well. Only use both for pics and sometimes for an hour or so. I think I'd add a bristlenosed cat if you have any algea on the tank. They are great and won't tear up any plants.
 

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Just a few questions....what do you use for a substrate? & Right now i have a 90 gallon tank with 2x54w of t5ho...what would be a better investment....more light up to 4x54w or pressurized co2? Do you think with co2 2x54 is enough on a 90g?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm using regular inert aquarium gravel. I had thought about trying Aquasoil or Eco but decided to just use what I had.

I'd go with CO2 instead of more light. You'll be amazed at the difference you'll have when you have a consisent level of CO2. After you get a good feel for managing your tank with your current lighting and CO2 then add more light if you're not getting the results you want.

I think 4x54 is a good amount of light to start with over a 90 especially since it's T5. Things will be much more manageable and you can grow a lot more than you might think with it, albeit more slowly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
How many bps of co2 do you run and do you turn it off at night. I have a tank very similar and am curious.
I'm guessing somewhere around 4bps. I generally go by the dropchecker and how the plants and fish are doing to gauge the CO2. It's on a timer and comes on a couple of hours prior to lights on and goes off an hour before lights off.
 

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Very nice.
 

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Jeff, the health of your plants is quite impressive. I like the layout a lot too. The only thing I might change is that it's a bit on the symmetrical side. Perhaps if the narrow leaf java fern were moved a bit to the right or left and the respective stand of L. Cuba were larger on that side than on the other side it might bring about a more natural feel.

Other than that little nitpick keep up the good work! :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
aren't they all money pits really?:)
Pretty much so but there are worse things to spend your money on. All things in moderation.

Jeff, the health of your plants is quite impressive. I like the layout a lot too. The only thing I might change is that it's a bit on the symmetrical side. Perhaps if the narrow leaf java fern were moved a bit to the right or left and the respective stand of L. Cuba were larger on that side than on the other side it might bring about a more natural feel.

Other than that little nitpick keep up the good work! :D
My wife occasionally mentions it has gotten a bit too symmetrical also. I can't bring myself to a major uprooting at the moment although it will be coming. You know how hard it is to keep the same scape for long.

The biggest thing at the moment is the cuba needs to be thinned. I have this habit of letting things get overgrown even though I do prune weekly. I have a hard time tossing out plants after the time and effort put into them even though it's better for them. You can't see them well in the pic at all but there are 6 stems of P stellata on the left in front of the cuba. They've grown kind of slowly but they're getting some nice size to them and starting to branch and they're coloring up really well. I'm the happiest about the success I'm having with them at the moment and I think I'll begin to replace the cuba on that side with the stellata as its growth allows. Of course that doesn't address the symmetry but it is a bit more variation in the type of plants and most of all I just really like the look of P stellata.

I'll take any nitpicks you care to offer. I'm more of a farmer than a scaper.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Re: My 75 gallon, Updated 4-29-10

It has been a while since I've been very active on APC but since I've been spending a bit more time here lately I thought I'd post some pics of the various scapes, and I use that term loosely, that my tank has been though over the last couple of years. They go from oldest at the beginning of this thread to most current which is the last one in this post, a lower light, epiphyte based sorta nature style layout.










Sorry the only pic I have of my current one is too far away and too dark but you all get the idea of what I'm after.

Here's one more of one of my RCS. Ignore the smudge on the glass. I leaned in too close and bumped my head on the glass :) .
 
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