Can I dose LCA Carbon Plus and Seachem Excel at the same time?
No – the active chemical in both products is Glutaraldehyde, and using both products at the same time could be harmful to livestock.
Is LCA Carbon Plus shrimp safe?
Yes. When dosed correctly, LCA Carbon Plus should not harm shrimp or fish.
Is LCA Carbon Plus “liquid CO2”, or a replacement for pressurised CO2?
No. LCA Carbon Plus provides bio-available carbon and micronutrients to boost plant growth. However it is not liquid CO2 or a replacement for pressurised CO2.
Not enough water circulation, too much light.
Discover the 10 different types of 'common algae' - appearance and how to tackle it.
Most people will recommend your filtration should have a turnover of around 10x the total volume of your tank per hour. So for example, a 100 litre tank should have a 1000lt/h filter running on it (if not 1200lt/h to make up for filter media/hose length reducing this rate).
Anubias, Java Fern and Buce are attractive slow-growing plants, often praised for their hardy leaves and relative ease of care.
They flourish in a variety of water types and are tolerant of most lighting levels, growing happily even in very low light. Their slow growth speed makes their demand for nutrients low, requiring very little care for beautiful results.
A carpet of delicate green plants covering your substrate always looks fantastic. In high-tech aquariums, they’re generally easy to achieve, with intense lighting and CO2 allowing for rapid growth and a wide selection of plant species.
In low-tech, it’s a little more difficult, but not impossible! With the correct plant choices and a suitable low-tech setup, you too can have a carpet in your planted tank.
Some people will try to tell you their planted aquarium gets on just fine with no fertilisation. They’ll tell you that their livestock and the uneaten food provide all the nutrients their plants need. While this can be true for certain setups, usually where plant mass is low and the selected species are very slow growing and not nutrient-demanding, relying on fish and food waste to provide nutrients will simply not be enough in most planted tanks.
If you’re keeping a planted aquarium, you know your plants need a stable amount of light, nutrients and CO2 to really thrive. So what do you do when all of these parameters are perfect, but your plants are not looking their best?
It’s commonly asserted by planted tank hobbyists that dosing increased amounts of Iron in your aquarium will improve the red colouration of your plants, or make them more vibrant. Unfortunately this is a myth, although it is not altogether incorrect.
The EI method of aquarium fertilising, using products such as LCA All In One Premium, aims to supply an excess of all nutrients so that plants can grow without deficiency. At the end of each week of fertilising, a large (50%) water change is performed to reset levels back to baseline.
So why use the EI method of fertilising?
Planted aquariums can be a beautiful addition to your home, but the plants require regular maintenance to keep them looking their best.
Low-tech tanks without pressurised CO2 injection can still grow beautiful plants, and the slower growth rate makes them low-maintenance and easy to care for. They don’t require intense lighting and are easy to fertilise. With the right plant choices, you can have a stunning, lush planted aquarium.
If you’ve ever kept stem plants in your aquarium, at some point you have likely noticed fine white roots growing sideways from stems into the water column. Sometimes stems put out quite a few! They’re unsightly, and might make you wonder if your plant is getting all the nutrients it needs. So why do they form, and do you need to do anything about them?
Root tabs suit many planted aquarium systems and can provide an excellent boost to plant growth over a long period of time, creating lush, healthy stems, vibrant colouration and strong leaves.
For particularly nutrient-hungry plants, root tabs are an ideal solution to supply targeted nutrition directly at the root feeding zone.
The sudden appearance of holes all over plant leaves can lead many hobbyists to assume they have a deficiency in their planted tank. The problem is that it is difficult to diagnose a deficiency just by looking at a leaf – you would really need to measure all nutrient levels to confirm.
Can Subtrate be too deep?
Short answer – not really! You just need to make sure you set it up correctly, and don’t mess with it!
Organic matter (food, fish waste, plant parts, etc.) will always sift down to the lowest point it can in your substrate, and begin decomposing in the low oxygen conditions.
The decomposing matter encourages the growth of bacteria, which can potentially produce quite nasty toxins in these low oxygen conditions. Nitrates (not nitrogen gas) and ammonia will also be formed in decent amounts but remain essentially harmless under the substrate cap.
Maintaining a regular water change schedule is an important part of aquarium keeping.
Water changes help to remove organic waste (especially with targeted siphoning of detritus), inhibiting formation of algae.
Plants melt when stressed, which can be caused by a variety of triggers. In this stressed condition, the plant starts to scavenge nutrients from older, unhealthy leaves in an attempt to grow healthy new ones.
The plants in your aquarium need a supply of both macro and micro nutrients to grow lush and healthy. Without sufficient levels of these nutrients and a host of other considerations, plants will deteriorate. But how can you tell what nutrients you are lacking?
Let’s first have a look at the most important nutrients in planted aquariums so we can understand the roles they play, before examining the best methods for diagnosing issues...
To ensure your stem plants always look their best and to create dense, lush hedges, you should regularly trim and replant the top portions.
Lower portions of stem plants naturally deteriorate over time, and they won’t recover. Lower leaves will develop holes and become ragged in appearance. Lower sections of the stem will become thinner and weaker, and less able to produce side shoots.
Aquatic stem plants are always focused on creating new growth, and...
Beginner planted tank hobbyists will often set up their aquarium to look visually appealing to them, without taking into consideration a few of the most important factors. They tip in some gravel, put a big piece of hardscape in the middle, fill out the tank with slow growing plants and put on a HOB filter. Job done, right?