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Discussion Starter #1
I planted my 24G using the mineralized method:
http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/...strates/52192-mineralized-soil-substrate.html

For about 5 weeks I battled what I thought was a bacterial bloom.
Then I got brown algae on the plants, added an ABN & two ottos.
Now algae is gone abd after many water changes the water finally cleared up. It's crystal cleanr now.

However the nitrite level climbs to .25 every day. So I'm still doing 25% WC's to bring that level down.

My question is: What would happen if I didn't worry too much about Nitrites?

I have Hornwort, two large swords, three medium swords. some baby swords and a crypt.

The fish are four Buenos Aires Tetras, one ABN, and two ottos.

DIY CO2.

Estimate on ODNO lighting is 60 Watts = 2 1/2 WPG.

Thank you
Charles
 

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I'm not fimiliar with that method, but maybe something with that method is causing your nitrites. You really should be seeing no nitrites in a planted tank. The only really fast growing plant you have is Hornwort, so adding some more fast growers will help uptake those nitrites.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
trenac
Thank you for your answer.
It's a fascinating procedure that I found on APC:
http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/el-natural/32043-el-natural-twist-long-56k.html

AaronT, the author of the article has been helping me through the process.

I fought the cloudy water and it finally cleared up.
Now if I could only settle the Nitrite level.
The plants are growing very well. The tank is 13" tall and three of the swords have leaves floating on top. I will have to move them to my 46G.

Thank you
Charles
 

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Hi,

Your problem is not nitrites - it's ammonia, which is much more harmful to the fish.

In an aquarium, ammonia is created by decomposition of organic matter and fish waste. The ammonia that isn't consumed by the plants is converted by bacteria to nitrites. Nitrites are converted by different bacteria to nitrates.

I suspect that something is rotting in the substrate, producing more ammonia than the plans can consume. The fix, as was suggested, is to add more fast growing plans, like hornwort, and continue with the water changes until nitrites (and ammonia) are zero.

BTW, I think that the "mineralization" method is far more effort than it's worth. If the cheap topsoil is left in the sun for a few days or soaked for week with water changes, it came be added directly to a tank, as Ms. Walstad suggests, without the additives. And eventually, probably sooner rather than later, that tank will require the dosing of nutrients.

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Aqua

I think you are correct.
I have bubbles coming out of the substrate. I have moon sand on top of the mineralized and bubbles pop up occasionally. I use a metal nail file and probe the substrate to release the bubbles. I have not checked the ammonia lately, I will after this post.
This gas should quit after awhile, don't you think?

Thanks for the input,
Charles
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Just checked the ammonia, it's at 0.
BUT, I did a 50% WC. So, I'll check it again tomorrow.
Charles
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I just tested the water again.
Ammonia - 0 mg/L
Nitrite - .25 mg/L
Phosphate – 2.0 mg/L
PH – 7.8

I can tell by the PH level that I need to replenish the DIY CO2

Charles
 

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OK, but I don't think one can get nitrites in an aquarium with having ammonia.

There is always a first, though.

Your test kits are accurate, right?

Bill
 

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OK, but I don't think one can get nitrites in an aquarium with having ammonia.

There is always a first, though.

Your test kits are accurate, right?

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #10
They're almost new. I bought
the NH3/NH4 API kit about 6 months ago.
Bought the Nitrite kit last week from LFS.

The only kit that looks old is the phosphate kit. The package is different, but it say Aquarium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. on the bottom It may be old.

The ammonia/nitrite thing bugs me also. I am doing daily WC's, most are 50% with an occasional 75%.

I'm not really new at planted aquariums. But, I am new at using the mineralized substrate system.
Just though i'd try it.
Here's some old pic's of my 46G BF. Look at the 9th & 10th pictures. They were taken about 4 months ago. The last 2 pics are about 9 months old. I don't have anacharas in that tank anymore.

http://s215.photobucket.com/albums/cc2/cbwmn/

Most of the plants now are either emmersed or trying to grow that way now.
The ends of the swords just dry up when the stick out of the water.

Thanks for your assistance
Charles Bowman
 
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