Rooibos tea

#1
So I managed to find some unblended rooibos tea in an Eco store yesterday.
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I'd like to try it on my new Santa Isabel fish first before I used it with my Altum.

I read in another topic (where I don't want to go off topic any further) that it is good to boil the water with the tea sacks in it a bit longer. But does the boiling not reduce the potential of the good things in it by bursting the cells?
Is it not better to let it soak in water just under the point of boiling?

What are the effects on ph?

How much should I be using?

Apart from coloring the water, what are the beneficial effects on the water and fish?

Thnx! I am interested in learning more about it :D
Video's of my Pt. Altum, Pt. sp. Santa Isabel and Pt. Sp. Rio Nanay:
http://www.youtube.com/results?search_q ... type=&aq=f

Re: Rooibos tea

#4
Hi Joost, as to the rooibos, I can tell you (as Dirk told me a short time ago), you can use a lot more of it. At the dilution you are starting off with, I don't see any practical or possible benefits. It's good to be cautious, but by my experience I can tell you responsibly that you can go stronger, quite more.

I am using approximately two full cups of pure rooibos that I put in my coffee brewer. I put about 12 cups of pure RO water in the carafe (that is the complete volume it contains) and I make the first brew that comes out a nice light orange color. Then I take this brew and add it to the brewing machine water receptacle and make a concentrated brew of the rooibos, obtaining a final darker red/orange brew.

I add half to 3/4 of this to my tank which holds a total of about 280 gallons, including the sump, so that is about 1100 liters. So let's see, I think I am adding about 3 liters of double concentrated rooibos brew to some 1100 liters and these 3 liters of concentrated brew contain the extract of 2 cups (roughly 480ml) of dry rooibos. I really don't know how much 2 cups of dry rooibos is in dry weight, but in any way... it is way lot more than two tea bags.

In the next days, I promise you I will make a video of the process all the way until I add it to the tank.

And don't forget to make some for yourself and enjoy drinking a nice hot cup with a bit of honey while you watch your altum.

Ed
God listens. He may not always give you everything you want, when you want it; but he always gives you what you really need, when you need it most!
E.R.

Re: Rooibos tea

#5
It comes to my mind that just as I can safely recommend the Rooibos... the tabebuia (pao d' arco) in the form of inner bark cuttings or shreds is a very strong substance that needs to be used with caution and observation. In low concentrations, providing the water with a very light yellow amber tint, I've had no issues... but do not use it to try and try and give color to your water... by the time can give any true color, it will be strong enough to produce foam and even become toxic. It will stress and irritate your fish. I believe most of the tannin in tabebuia are contained in the outer bark (which I have used as ornaments in my tanks in Venezuela) and that is why I had no issues back then. Since the wood is very dense and heavy, it will allow the inner ingredieants, such as lapachol, to leak into the water column very slowly... and given the water changes, it helped me in the past. But now that I have tried some of the shredded inner bark, I have it in the medicine cabinet. I will be working with it when I have ill fish to see how it helps.

Ed
God listens. He may not always give you everything you want, when you want it; but he always gives you what you really need, when you need it most!
E.R.

Re: Rooibos tea

#6
Thnx ed :)

I am not sure if the latter can be obtained out here.

Today I have used rooibos tea in my Altum tank for the first time.

I am adding it slowly, 1 liter at a time. I noticed though that it causes ph to rise just slightly. Adding 1 liter of rooibos brew, made of 1 liter RO water and 3 tea bags, makes my ph go up by 0,02. (There is normally hardly any fluctuation to it, so I am sure that this the tea doing it)

7 tea bags in total now have given my 2000 liter Altum setup a nice look already.
Video's of my Pt. Altum, Pt. sp. Santa Isabel and Pt. Sp. Rio Nanay:
http://www.youtube.com/results?search_q ... type=&aq=f

Re: Rooibos tea

#8
I have been using the tea for about 4 mo now and my recipe is even stronger I believe than Eds. I use 9 tea bags to 4 cups of water. I add the tea bags to the water right as it boils turning it off and leave them in till the water cools. I get a dark red practical black solution which I add the entire contents to include squeezing the bag out to my 300 ( including sump). The Altums love it not only the tinting of the water but it does add something to the tank which seems to relax them in turn they are much more social and swimming... I have to agree with Joost I have notice this too!!

Re: Rooibos tea

#9
I'm thinking of using Rooibos tea as well in my Heckel/Manacapuru tank which is about 1000 litres including sump volume.

My concern is the amount of Rooibos tea this requires, considering that I do 30-40% water changes twice a week on that tank. This would require me to probably add 2 cups full of tea leaves (suitably brewed) into the tank, which may end up being prohibitively expensive.

Ed, how often do you water change and how often do you add the tea brew in?

Re: Rooibos tea

#10
I paid somewhere between 5 and 6 euros for this box of tea. If I compare that to the price of Catappa leaves, peat etc. then I can't say it is incredibly expensive. Keeping Altum is an expensive hobby anyway.

I change about 600 liters every 5 days. Straight RO water. I have to put new peat to my filter every 2 - 3 weeks.

I guess for my altum tank I will be using about 6 tea bags a week. Not so bad I would say. But I am not using the same large amounts like the others do.
Video's of my Pt. Altum, Pt. sp. Santa Isabel and Pt. Sp. Rio Nanay:
http://www.youtube.com/results?search_q ... type=&aq=f

Re: Rooibos tea

#11
I guess it seems expensive for me considering I get a bag of 20-30 catappa leaves for $1 (about US$0.70), and this lasts me 2 weeks or so if I'm going for a light brown tinge in the water.
Joost wrote:I paid somewhere between 5 and 6 euros for this box of tea. If I compare that to the price of Catappa leaves, peat etc. then I can't say it is incredibly expensive. Keeping Altum is an expensive hobby anyway.

I change about 600 liters every 5 days. Straight RO water. I have to put new peat to my filter every 2 - 3 weeks.

I guess for my altum tank I will be using about 6 tea bags a week. Not so bad I would say. But I am not using the same large amounts like the others do.

Re: Rooibos tea

#13
Shipping costs would probably jack the price up for you really quick. The reason it's so cheap here is because the alternative is to pick it for free yourself. We have loads of them Indian Almond trees here in Singapore, and the nominal charge of $1 per 20-30 leaves is the cost of having someone else pick them up by the bushel and pack them into bags for you.

Re: Rooibos tea

#15
That's why I have broken down to using oak leaves here in New England. There pretty easy to get that s if the kids are charging me for having them pick them up.. Haha. I really have become a true fan of the Roobis Tea for that issues with getting almond leaves here in the US
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