13 January 2017

notes on the tank

Trying to make more small improvements to my routine. I cleaned the glass lid of the thirty-eight last week; had always thought some obscurity was fine for my low-light low-tech tank but plants are looking even better this week so maybe that is one of the small things that helps. Certainly nicer to look down into the tank occasionally when the glass doesn't have hard-water deposits fogging it up. It took some doing to get most of it off- algae scrubber pad, vinegar which I left on for five minutes, and plastic fake-credit card. One area I wasn't able to get entirely clean, but it's much better.

I'm leaving a bigger gap of time between dosing macros and micros, and keeping up the back-to-normal increased micro dose (just under 10ml for the tenner, approx 30ml on the thirty-eight). I used to dose macros after everything was done for maintenance, then do cleanup, then come back and dose micros. I'd been told that with such a small dose (1/3 EI) it didn't matter to dose the macros and micros at same time- although usually it is recommended to do micros the next day. Now I'm dosing the macros before I'm even done with all the maintenance- and wait longer afterwards to add the micros- at least twenty, thirty minutes. I think it's made an improvement. I'm seeing regular pearling in both tanks after the water changes.
Some of the plants appear healthier- hornwort is growing faster and has thicker, stronger needles. Ludwigia and echinodorus in my main tank are finally showing some growth and not discarding as many leaves. My crypt wendtii has three baby plants right now, both clusters of green crypts have several babies and the newer crypt petchii each have a baby offshoot as well (here below right of the parent crypt petchii- just above the subwassertang):
Unrelated plus: the stone of flame moss is growing up from its glued pieces, laid down in lines. Just like I'd hoped, the tiny new shoots are growing up at intervals along the pieces, not just the ends, so I think it will end up nice and thick.
Flame moss strips are all growing out tall enough I could trim and make new stones . . . . I don't really like looking at those white strips though, so I've moved them behind the subwasser baskets so they lie between other plants and aren't as noticeable.
Last time I redid subwasser baskets kept the trimmings in a plastic jar on top of the tank- just behind the light strip. I had quit keeping it in a jar on windowsill for the winter, because it was looking poorly- probably from the cold. I thought this jar on top of the tank might not stay warm enough or get enough light, but to my surprise those subwassertang bits look great and have been pearling on a regular basis (not just on water change day). I'm keeping them to grow out enough to sell again.

Apono capuronii is getting taller and taller.
For a moment today one leaf bent down in front of the bacopa, and it looked pretty the textures together.
Side shot:
Full tank shot. I'm a bit concerned that the barbs seem to hang out in front of the filter outflow a lot, and sometimes I see them at the surface as if for air. Worry that my use of the sponge to block Tiger escaping has reduced surface movement enough that the barbs don't have enough oxygen at certain times of the day...?

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