Is CO2 necessary? Question

Discussion in 'Aquarium Plants' started by GMCMaxx, Dec 15, 2009.

  1. GMCMaxxValued MemberMember

    I just added some low-light live plants to my tank for the first time today. After I put them in I started wondering if it is necessary to add co2. I added Java Fern, Anubias, and Crypotocoryne. I would like to avoid the added expense of the co2 if it isn't needed. If it matters the plants are all 3-6" tall. Total of seven plants (although some are bundeled and count as one).

  2. mathasWell Known MemberMember

    CO2 is not necessary until you start providing higher levels of light. Exactly where that threshold lies is debatable, but it's certainly higher than the .72WPG your aquarium info indicates.

  3. GMCMaxxValued MemberMember

    Excuse my ignorance, but what does ".72WPG" mean?

  4. GMCMaxxValued MemberMember

    Ah, It just clicked- "Watts per Gallon"
  5. AdkRaptorNew MemberMember

    how do you find out your hoods watts
  6. clickWell Known MemberMember

    Read the watts indicated on the bulb, if you have more than one bulb...add them. Hope this help.

    GMCMaxx, you might need more light. I had <1WPG and my plants were not doing that great. I now have ~1.4WPG and the plants are looking much better. Just keep an eye on the plants for a few weeks and if they don't look good, the first thing I would look at is increasing the light.
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  7. GMCMaxxValued MemberMember

    Thanks. I'll keep an eye on them. I've increased the amount of time my lights are on by a few hours to help the plants more. The plants have been in the tank for about a week now and I can see some new root growth on the anubias.:;rocker
  8. TedsTankWell Known MemberMember

    I agree with the above statements....light is the most important. My tank is maintained with a 32Watt bulb (4ft standard aquarium light). All plants are doing good except micro swords which are too far from the light. I do approx 10 hours per day...and mostly low light plants except near the top.
    Here is a pic of what works for me. IMO CO2 is not necessary.
    I should up the wattage some day....those regular sword plants are 3 years old!!!

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  9. speed0factoryValued MemberMember

    if you are worry about the CO2 insufficent you can try to add in more fish as the fish will provide more CO2 to the tank.
  10. NutterFishlore VIPMember

    That's a good looking tank there Ted.

    Speedo, what's your theory behind more fish means more co2? I've never heard that one before. I would really have my doubts that if the fish produce co2 it would be in sufficient quantites to make a difference to plants.

    GMCMaxx, I don't think co2 is needed in a low light set up either. If you do add more light it may be needed but I don't think anything under 1.8wpg really gets much benefit from it. If you want to experiment with co2 a little try doing a diy co2 set up. That way you can see if there are any benefits to be had in your set up without incurring any great expense.
  11. speed0factoryValued MemberMember

    For what i know as long as it wasn't overstock and the plant isn't that much, the CO2 produce by the fishes is sufficient for your plant to do their photosynthesis.

    But if you have a very heavy planted aquarium, you would not like to try this as the fishes could not produce that much of CO2 which is sufficient to supply to the plants you had in your aquarium.

    Photosynthesis is the process, whereby plant make food with water, CO2, sunlight, and nutrients from fishes poop or some other food watse.

    Therefore, if i'm right and following the process, the plant actully can take in the CO2 produce by the fishes. Again however, if you had a really heavy planted tank, better buy a CO2 tank. For GMCMaxx case, i think there's no need of the CO2 tank.:D
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2009
  12. NutterFishlore VIPMember

    I'm very aware of the processes Speedo, I was wondering how the fish produce co2 & why you think it would be enough to assist plant growth. I've read heaps aobut planted tanks & been keeping them for many years as well as knowing lots of others with planted tanks & this is the first time I've ever heard anyone reccomend adding more fish to produce co2. I think the co2 your talking about is actually the 3-4ppm that is present in our atmosphere & mixes into the water during oxygenation. I'd like to see some evidence to the contrary though.
  13. speed0factoryValued MemberMember

    mmm, because my LFS said that i had enough fish to support and advise me not to buy the CO2 tank first. and this is what he had explained to me.

    and fish do breathe right, and they take in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. that's is why i'm saying fishes produce CO2.
  14. aquatic mouseValued MemberMember

    I never used a CO2 machine in my planted tank. I did use a plant fertilizer called Flourish. I swear by this stuff. It WORKS! My wisteria was growing like crazy. I kept having to bring clips to my LFS to keep it from over taking my tank.
  15. NutterFishlore VIPMember

    Sounds like you just didn't need co2 to be added Speedo. The amount of co2 produced by fish, even in an overstocked tank isn't even going to raise co2 levels by 1ppm. Certainly not enough to make any difference to your plants. The only benefical thing the fish do for plants is produce ammonia which the plants take in as a source of nitrogen. The amount of oxygen actually taken in by a fish is absolutley miniscule & even less of that is expelled as co2. I'm afraid I just can't see it making any noticable difference. Each to thier own though & at least your LFS didn't try to sell you something you seem not to need. I'm also interested in Aquarium two in your Aquarium info, that bit about 5000w lighting is a typo, isn't it?

    Aquatic Mouse, Flourish is good stuff all right. I've been using it for many years in my tanks always with good results. If you have enough lighting to make use of it, try out a diy co2 rig sometime. Your plants might go ballistic then. Doesn't sound like you need it though. No point messing with something that already works well unless your in the mood for experimenting.
  16. speed0factoryValued MemberMember

    sorry for the misunderstanding nutter, i understand what you mean. as i always thought that the fishes produce the CO2 would be enough for the plant. thanks for telling me that the fishes even overstock wouldn't even incressed 1ppm thanks.

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