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General questions about freshwater plants



 
 
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  #1  
Old December 11th 05, 02:13 PM posted to rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants
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Default General questions about freshwater plants

I am going to set up a plant tank ... or at least a tank with as many
plants as possible. I would like to keep a few fish in it to produce
some nitrates for the plants. What fish are plant friendly? (I was
thinking about some neon terta, a beta, and maybe some of the aquatic
frogs ... not sure what the real name for them are, but they are small
and spend 100% of their time under water. I also would like to know
what scavenger I can get for the bottom that will get the extra/hidden
fish food at the bottom of the tank.)

For the substrate, is fluorite necessary? Or what ratio of
gravel/fluorite will I need? I intend on doing this in a 10-gallon
aquarium. Is an undergravel filter good or bad when the tank is heavily
stocked with plants? Will a 40-watt soft white light due for green
plants, or will it require a fluorescent light (I can get a clip-on
desk lamp for $6, or I can get a fluorescent hood for $30. I want to
know if I can get away with the desk lamp.)?

Any info at all will help greatly. I am trying to learn as much as
possible before actually setting this tank up. I would like to learn
about water supplements, substrate, lighting, filtration, what plant
species are neat, and other general info.

I was thinking about getting the 30 gallon plant pack from
liveaquaria.com:
http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/p...fm?pCatId=2146 . I
have other tanks I can put plants in so if there are too many plants
that is not a big deal. A general opinion of the variety would be
appreciated.

(I am a college student so money is certainly a consideration ... I do
have money, but would like to spend as little as possible to set this
up successfully)

Thanks
Ed K.

  #2  
Old December 12th 05, 07:09 AM posted to rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants
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Default General questions about freshwater plants

On 11 Dec 2005 06:13:09 -0800, wrote:

I am going to set up a plant tank ... or at least a tank with as many
plants as possible. I would like to keep a few fish in it to produce
some nitrates for the plants. What fish are plant friendly? (I was
thinking about some neon terta, a beta, and maybe some of the aquatic
frogs ... not sure what the real name for them are, but they are small
and spend 100% of their time under water. I also would like to know
what scavenger I can get for the bottom that will get the extra/hidden
fish food at the bottom of the tank.)


Cory cats, any of the corydorous species should be good.


For the substrate, is fluorite necessary? Or what ratio of
gravel/fluorite will I need? I intend on doing this in a 10-gallon
aquarium. Is an undergravel filter good or bad when the tank is heavily
stocked with plants? Will a 40-watt soft white light due for green
plants, or will it require a fluorescent light (I can get a clip-on
desk lamp for $6, or I can get a fluorescent hood for $30. I want to
know if I can get away with the desk lamp.)?


flourite is not necessary, it can be useful but you can grow good
plants without it. It just saves you some problems with fertilizer.

40 Watt incandescent light is not much, and may cause too much
heating, but if you have it and want to try to start with it, go
ahead. Look for what are called low light plants. anubias comes to
mind, there are others. More light means more plants that you can
grow. the 40 W incandescent is about the same as 10 watts
fluorescent, or one watt per gallon in a 10 G tank. what the people
you reference are talking about is a lot more light.

Undergravel filter is not good for plants, some can grow with one of
those, but it's beter not to have one of them. with good plant growth
and low fish load, no filtration would be best.

Any info at all will help greatly. I am trying to learn as much as
possible before actually setting this tank up. I would like to learn
about water supplements, substrate, lighting, filtration, what plant
species are neat, and other general info.

I was thinking about getting the 30 gallon plant pack from
liveaquaria.com:
http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/p...fm?pCatId=2146 . I
have other tanks I can put plants in so if there are too many plants
that is not a big deal. A general opinion of the variety would be
appreciated.


I would expect about half of those plants to die in my tanks. the
anubias are good, quite hardy, low light demands, slow growing.
anacharis likes more light, I grow it outdoors. A good plant, by the
way. Cryptocornes can be a problem, they have wahat is called
Cryptocorne melt, where the whole plant dies back to the roots and
takes out all the rest of the plants in the tank. I haven't been able
to keep water sprite going for years, no idea why.

do you have hard or soft water, that can make a difference.

do you have access to a library? Look for a book be diana waldstad,
"Ecology of a planted aquarium." I hope I gopt the title right.

(I am a college student so money is certainly a consideration ... I do
have money, but would like to spend as little as possible to set this
up successfully)

Thanks
Ed K.


  #3  
Old December 12th 05, 10:14 AM posted to rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants
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Default General questions about freshwater plants

Light is the single most important factor. The general rule of thumb is
2 to 3 watts of FLUORESCENT light per gallon of water. A fluoescent is
5 or 6 times BRIGHTER than an incadescent, so a 60 watt soft white
incadescent would be much much too dim. 20 to 30 watts of fluorescent
light would be the best for a ten gallon tank. You can read more about
this he http://www.aquabotanic.com/begin.htm

Robert H
www.aquabotanic.com

  #4  
Old December 14th 05, 06:47 PM posted to rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants
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Default General questions about freshwater plants

I am going to set up a plant tank ... or at least a tank with as many
plants as possible. I would like to keep a few fish in it to produce
some nitrates for the plants. What fish are plant friendly? (I was
thinking about some neon terta, a beta, and maybe some of the aquatic
frogs ... not sure what the real name for them are, but they are small
and spend 100% of their time under water. I also would like to know
what scavenger I can get for the bottom that will get the extra/hidden
fish food at the bottom of the tank.)

Don't get the dwaf african clawed frogs. They are great, but should be
kept in a species only tank as they cannot compete with other fish very
well for food unless you are planning on feeding live food every other
day or so.

I have a 180 gallon planted tank and I recommend the following fish:
Danios
Tetras (pretty much any type)
Cory Catfish
Ornamental Plecos (The kind that get only to 4 inches, not the common
pleco which can get to 18 inches)
Depending on your fish type, some ghost shrimp are also good for
cleaning the substrate.
Kuhli Loaches are great for mixing up the top inch or so of substrate,
but since this is only a 10 gallon tank, I would not recommend them.


For the substrate, is fluorite necessary? Or what ratio of

gravel/fluorite will I need? I intend on doing this in a 10-gallon
aquarium. Is an undergravel filter good or bad when the tank is heavily

stocked with plants? Will a 40-watt soft white light due for green
plants, or will it require a fluorescent light (I can get a clip-on
desk lamp for $6, or I can get a fluorescent hood for $30. I want to
know if I can get away with the desk lamp.)?

If you want long term success without having to constantly dose liquid
fertlizers, then Flourite or a substrate mixed with Laterite would be a
really good idea.

Just say no to the undergravel filter. Imagine when you have to clean
it, how would you pull it up, clean it, and replace it without a
massive overhaul of your substrate and all of the plants rooted in it?

If it's a 10 gallong tank go with something simple like a Whisper HOB
filter or even a sponge filter. I would recommend the HOB filter to
provide some current in the tank.

Definately get the flourescent light. Everything everyone else has said
on lighting is absolutely true. With small tanks like yours, you should
be looking at 3-4 Watts per Gallon (from what I understand, though I
don't know why this is) of Flourescent light.

Some good plants to start with would be Anubias, Java Fern, and
Cryptocoyns. I know that Charles mentioned Cryptocorn rot, but
typically what has happened in my experience is that the outer leaves
melt down but as long as the plant is left alone to root properly and
provide the nutrients and light it needs, new leaves will grow back
fairly soon. As it is a low light plant, it makes it a good one for
your a beginner's tank in my opinion.


Any info at all will help greatly. I am trying to learn as much as

possible before actually setting this tank up. I would like to learn
about water supplements, substrate, lighting, filtration, what plant
species are neat, and other general info.

Good for you! I did and still do the same thing on this and other
boards all the time!


-Kevin

  #5  
Old December 15th 05, 02:30 PM posted to rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants
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Posts: n/a
Default General questions about freshwater plants

"KStringer" wrote in message
oups.com...
I am going to set up a plant tank ... or at least a tank with as many

plants as possible. I would like to keep a few fish in it to produce
some nitrates for the plants. What fish are plant friendly? (I was
thinking about some neon terta, a beta, and maybe some of the aquatic
frogs ... not sure what the real name for them are, but they are small
and spend 100% of their time under water. I also would like to know
what scavenger I can get for the bottom that will get the extra/hidden
fish food at the bottom of the tank.)

Don't get the dwaf african clawed frogs. They are great, but should be
kept in a species only tank as they cannot compete with other fish very
well for food unless you are planning on feeding live food every other
day or so.


African Dwarf Frogs (not clawed) do quite well
in my 30 gallon-long community aquarium with 4
Bronze Cories, 3 pygmy Cories, 3 Kuhli loaches,
4 Bloodfin tetras, 5-6 Otocinclus. They get
speciality frog food several times a week (HBH
frog & tadpole bites), otherwise they appear to
enjoy and thrive on the same kind of food I feed
everyone else - a variety of flake food, sinking
pellets and the occasional frozen bloodworms
or frozen brine shrimp.

My tank is planted and the frogs do not bother
the plants. Sometimes they'll perch on the plants,
which is cute. If I had room I would get more.

[snip - no objections to the rest of the advice]

Gail


  #6  
Old December 23rd 05, 04:25 AM posted to rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants
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Posts: n/a
Default General questions about freshwater plants

Thanks guys, that does help a lot.

I do have a 10 gallon cichlid tank (total of 3 cichlids) that I have
put plants in. I figured the cichlids would rip up the plants first
thing, but it would at least give me a vague idea how to keep plants. I
replaced the incandescent bulbs with the compact flourescent bulbs (12
watts a peice, so 2.4 watts per gallon), and to my surprise they have
lived for 3 weeks, and have grown some despite being mildly harassed by
the cichlids.

All the advise has been very helpful. I will purchase the plants in a
few weeks and will set up the tank with as much lighting as I can. I'll
probably have to go for another incandescent hood, and replace the
bulbs with compact flourescents. I'll get the biggest bulbs that will
fit.

Thanks again for all the advise.

Ed K

 




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