Growing medium light/red color plants with Finnex HLC?

mukg

Would you classify the Finnex HLC as low/medium/medium high lighting with a single fixture? I have a 48" HLC on a 75G tank with sand substrate and use root tabs/NilocG fertilizer for my current low tech plants. I also have glass covers.

I am open to dosing liquid CO2, not comfortable yet with pressurized CO2 systems, and wanted to check how suitable the light would be to attempt to grow the following along with other low tech plants?

* ludwigia repens
* the red amazon swords
* riccia fluitan
* staurogyne repens
* dwarf lily
 

Chanyi

Without PAR data at your tank's depth, I would say it's medium light., especially considering any tank wider front - back than 12" is tough to get good spread with a single strip light. PAR close the surface is easily high light (100+ PAR) but it tapers off at depth / away from directly under the light. Glass covers also take away PAR ~10% (if clean).

Liquid CO2 is only found in pressurized canisters, Seachem Flourish Excel / Metricide 14 substitute will help control algae on tanks with stronger lighting, I would use it for that purpose.

Run the lights on a reduced intensity, and consider only running them for 6 hours per day to evaluate the algae situation before you ramp up the intensity / the amount of time the lights are on.

Your plants aren't super high light demanding, so I think you are set.
 

mukg

Thanks chanyi, is Flourish Excel or API CO2 booster not liquid carbon, and only useful as an algae control?
 

mukg

My lighting schedule approximately:

completely off 12am-6pm
gradual ramp up from 0% to 50% between 6am-12pm
12-3pm is about 75%
3-6pm is peak 100%
gradual ramp down from 30% to 0% between 6pm-12am

Would you suggest switching off for more hours?

2-3 weeks ago, I had weaker lighting than below and saw brown algae diatoms in the tank, did a deep clean of decorations/tank surfaces and increased lighting above above and noticed some cloudiness/green algae about 4-5 days prior to my WC. Not sure if it was becaused of the increased light or excess feeding, I mistakenly put in two cubes of frozen food when I intended to feed only one. Noticed that the tank had a lot of poop since that feeding.
 

kanzekatores

Could be either/or. While all that light is good for your plants it’s good to keep algae in mind too. I do ram up/down for one hour on either side of the time it’s on, about 3-12 (PM).
 

EbiAqua

Thanks chanyi, is Flourish Excel or API CO2 booster not liquid carbon, and only useful as an algae control?

They are technically a solution made with a biocide used to sterilize lab and hospital equipment, glutaraldehyde. However, it just so happens to make a great algaecide and plants can utilize it to an extent for growth.

Nothing beats good ol' Carbon dioxide.
 

-Mak-

My lighting schedule approximately:

completely off 12am-6pm
gradual ramp up from 0% to 50% between 6am-12pm
12-3pm is about 75%
3-6pm is peak 100%
gradual ramp down from 30% to 0% between 6pm-12am

Would you suggest switching off for more hours?

2-3 weeks ago, I had weaker lighting than below and saw brown algae diatoms in the tank, did a deep clean of decorations/tank surfaces and increased lighting above above and noticed some cloudiness/green algae about 4-5 days prior to my WC. Not sure if it was becaused of the increased light or excess feeding, I mistakenly put in two cubes of frozen food when I intended to feed only one. Noticed that the tank had a lot of poop since that feeding.
That's 18 hours of light in some form? Typical photoperiods are 8 hours, longer increases risk of algae especially in low tech tanks. Long ramp up/ramp down are not particularly useful, because the lighting levels at the ends of those are very low. Plants can use it but it would be better to give them better intensity lighting for a shorter period of time. Long photoperiods also deplete what little CO2 gas is dissolved in the water.
 

Chanyi

Low tech tank can bottom out CO2 in as little as 3 hours. There is roughly 3ppm of CO2 dissolved in water in most houses, so plants can quickly uptake that and now you essentially "wasting" light. Sometimes it's good to have the lights on a split photoperiod, 3 hours on, couple hours off (to let CO2 build back up) and then 3 hours on again. Plants are fine with this, and some claim it helps with algae.

I personally run high light on low tech tanks, but I plant heavy, I mean as many plants I can physically stuff in there given my budget, I don't care if those are the species I want or not, they are going in the tank until I can source the species I do want. From there, I run the tank on 50%-75% of my end goal lighting intensity for a while, 6 months - a year. During those months, my only goals are to 1) Get the plants growing as best I can given my setup 2) keep algae away and 3) source the plants I want long term. After I get the growth speed where I want, and the algae control that I want, I then increase my lighting intensity.

You have the luxury of a dimmable / programmable light. I would say go on/off for 5-6 hours per day total to start, and then you can work in your ramp up / ramp down cycle, and then you can increase total time they are on for as the tank matures.
 

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