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Thread: Tom Barr's Non-CO2 method

  1. #21
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    (I think may be going a little out of topic. Mod: please split this if you deem neccessary.)

    The red plant is Barclaya longifolia "red". It went dormant for a few months. Now it has grown back. There is also a B. longifolia "green" at the same location. (You can see it in the last picture.) Both of them seems to take turn to go into dormant phase.

    BC
    Last edited by |squee|; 27th Apr 2006 at 21:21.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by bclee
    IMO, the major source of CO2 would be the substrate and maybe the filter. The substrate not only provide minerals for the plants. The bio activities (decomposition etc...)in the substrate will also produce CO2. Other than CO2, most plants are also able to use bicarbonates as the C source.

    In your case, the moss will probably not be able to utilise the bicarbonates. You will probably need a substrate with some organic matter to provide the CO2 that is needed by the moss. Soil substrate can help, but it can be a little messy. I guess from the plant choice you have, you may have neglected the substrate as a major success factor for a non-CO2 tank.
    I agree with your comments about the substrate and your point about the substrate as a major success factor for a non-CO2 tank. However, it just reinforces my point that if CO2 is the limiting factor (such as the case in which an inappropriate substrate is used), a higher CO2 level (be it due to a change of substrate to a more appropriate one or injection of co2) would support more plants, ceteris paribus.

    And if you extend the argument, if there is a change of substrate plus the injection of co2, the tank would be able to support more plants, provided co2 is not the limiting factor.
    Last edited by |squee|; 27th Apr 2006 at 21:26.
    Myron Tay
    Aquatic Gardener

    "The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." Genesis 2:15

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by bclee
    (I think may be going a little out of topic. Mod: please split this if you deem neccessary.)

    The red plant is Barclaya longifolia "red". It went dormant for a few months. Now it has grown back. There is also a B. longifolia "green" at the same location. (You can see it in the last picture.) Both of them seems to take turn to go into dormant phase.

    BC
    I don't think this is out of topic because we are really discussing the non-C02 method and what is possible / not possible under the method.

    I suspect that the reasons for the alternating fortunes of your two plants is because the co2 level has become a limiting factor in the growth of the plants in your tank.
    Myron Tay
    Aquatic Gardener

    "The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." Genesis 2:15

  4. #24
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    Barclaya longifolia is known to go into dormant phase. It happened after it flowered. It did the same thing when in CO2 tank. It has nothing to do with CO2.

    BC
    Last edited by |squee|; 27th Apr 2006 at 21:20.

  5. #25
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    I can accept this reasoning if being "dormant" meant disappearance because that is exactly what happened in the pictures you posted.
    Last edited by |squee|; 27th Apr 2006 at 21:20.
    Myron Tay
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    "The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." Genesis 2:15

  6. #26
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    When B. longifolia go dormant, it forms a bulb at the root and shed the mature leaves leaving some tiny leaves. Sort of "disappear" from the picture.

    BC
    Last edited by |squee|; 27th Apr 2006 at 21:20.

  7. #27
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    Thanks, did not know that. Have you tried growing other red plants that do not go into a dormant state in a non-CO2 tank?
    Last edited by |squee|; 27th Apr 2006 at 21:19.
    Myron Tay
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    "The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." Genesis 2:15

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    I am now having Myriophyllum tuberculatum (Red) in my non-CO2 tank. I have it for about a month already. It seems to be doing ok, but growth is slow. I just trim it very short thinking that this is a fast growing plant. Now I have a big lobang in the middle of my background.

    BC
    Last edited by |squee|; 27th Apr 2006 at 21:19.

  9. #29
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    lol.....any pictures to share(the lobang).

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    Please keep it to the topic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bclee
    Bioload is not the only factor. I have another shrimp tank in which plants are growing just as well.
    Hi BC

    I guess it depends on how you define Bioload. We can think of "Bioload" as those higher order creatures swiming in the tank (liked fishes), but bacteria living in the substrate and inside the filter can be counted as "Bioload" as well since they also take in oxygen and hydrocarbon and put out CO2.

    Cheers
    dc

  12. #32
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    have been in non CO2 planted tanks during my school days.(especially coz i could not afford it that time). results were not as good as with a CO2 injected tank. but one thing is there for sure, algae growth was limited & less maintenance. now i have a 70 gallon CO2 injected tank which requires almost daily syphoning because of algae problem & a lot of pruning coz the plants are just growing & growing.

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    hi, i am new (both to this forum and to fishkeeping). my partner and i bought a 20 gallon freshwater set-up (already established: fish and plants) that is non-C02. we have had it for almost four months and it is doing very well. however, we are starting to get hair algae as well as brush algae and green spot algae. we do water changes roughly once a month but this month we have done a water change mid-month to try to reduce the nutrients in the water.

    from this thread, it suggests that a water change can actually encourage the algae to grow at the expense of the plants? can someone explain that to me again please? should we be doing water changes at all?

    we do not "dose" the plants (other than feeding the fish). our water parameters are: ph 7.6, dH 12, nitrates are at 10ppm and there are no detaectable traces of ammonia or nitrites and the temp is 80F. we haven't tested for any other nutrients or elements (cost of all these test kits!). we are housing 2 angelfish (have spawned several times but lost all fry!), 7 danios, 2 clown loaches, two otos and a farlowella. in terms of plants, we have 2 anubias barteris (one is the daughter), several hygrophilas and another plant that looks like stand of tall stiff grasses that we have not been able to identify. we have recently added small hornwort bits, in the hopes that they will grow and take up extra nutrients. we have a sand substrate and it is quite established with bacteria and waste (at least so it looks).

    we have also set up a 10 gallon tank which currently has 2 ancistruses, same plant make-up, plus a much larger hornwort (from which we took the daughter bits for the 20g). the water parameters are the same and we are using a sponge filter.

    i really don't want to get into CO2 injection because we have a small place & small budget. i was intrigued by tom's article but it all seemed so complicated for a non-CO2 system! i am wondering if we are doing everything right or, if water changes encourage algae, what we should do to maintain cleanliness without changing the water.

    ps. i feed the fishes once a day and force them to fast on sundays.

    thanks in advance for your advice!

    lily

  14. #34
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    how much lights do you have?

    trying to reduce frequency of water change is just to induce the plants to adapt to a non co2 (or co2 limiting) environment where they will start to make an enzyme to cater for that constraint. thus frequent water changes will fool the plants, since with WC you willl introduce more Co2 to the tank. that is why only topping up is required.
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    lights

    well, we only have one 24" 20W tube (flourescent) so i guess our lighting is 1 wpg that's low, i suppose? also, we don't add any CO2 whatsoever, so i guess we are already non CO2.

    our filter is new because the one it came with konked out. it shouldn't need cleaning for a while, especially as we want it to have lots of good bacteria.

    i have done fairly massive pruning over the months we've had it, and have populated our 10g with the cuttings as well as increased the plant density with daughter cuttings, mostly from the anubias and the hygrophilia. all are doing very well, although i should cut away the fading leaves more.

    i recently cut and tore out a section of the parent anubias' roots, as they were covered with the hair algae and thick brush algae. is that bad? it doesn't seem to have affected the plant much.

    lily

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    Tom reccomends no water changes so as to keep the CO2 level in the water as stable as possible. BBA arises from fluctuations of the CO2 level so I guess that's how you got BBA. In all the tanks I've done based on Tom's non-CO2 method I've never gotten BBA.

    I guess now what you can do is to do a cleanup of the algae in your tank as much as possible, do a 80% water change after that, stock back the tank if plant density ends up too low and then don't do anymore water changes, not even monthly. Just do water top ups.

    I feed my fish once daily in light dosage. Your light level should be fine for a non-CO2 tank. Just keep water circulation up and not overfeed fish and things should be fine. The presence of algae means there's not enough plant mass/too much waste.

  17. #37
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    thanks for the advice. we'll try that today. our new oto seems to be making an indent on some of the bba on our grass plant, which makes me glad.

    how does using a sump tank fit into the non-CO2 method?

    lily

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    after thinking for awhile, i guess i am a bit confused over the water change thing. if i don't do regular water changes, won't the nitrate levels in my tank rise to toxic levels? won't it get very dirty?

    lily

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    Quote Originally Posted by lily View Post
    how does using a sump tank fit into the non-CO2 method?
    That I can't help you, since I've no experience with sumps.

    Nitrate levels will rise, but if your tank has fast growing plants/lots of plant mass it will take an extremely long time for nitrates to rise to toxic levels. Plants take in forms of nitrogen that include ammonia and nitrate compounds.

    In your case your tank depends only on fish food feedings. In my case I actually feed as well as do a weekly very light fertilisation of KNO3 and KH2PO4 as well as Seachem Equilibrium and trace elements. This is to provide non-limiting nutrient levels for plants so they grow their best and algae is combated naturally.

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    Basically, your aim is to grow plants and not kill algae. As for nitrate buildup... i wouldn't worry unless your tank is heavily stocked. To simplify what squee said nitrates are fertilisers. As long as you have growing plants there's nothing to worry about.

    And i notice you're trying to reduce the amount of nutrients, bad idea. Plants require adequate amounts of several fertilisers (potassium, magnesium, iron, nitrates/ammonia) and light and carbon dioxide to grow. Whereas algae just needs nitrates. Long story short, let nature handle it. Just grow plants.

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