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I am a horrible and I mean horrible decorater....,

I am starting a planted tank this time around...and well I need help.

Here are some plants I like:

Lucky bamboo

Water lettuce

Moss balls

Babytears

Last, but not least... brazillian penny wort.

I have an eye for decorating.. but not in my fish tank!! XD

Do you pot your plants?

When do you prune them

^(and how)

Are these plants/mosses realitively beginner?

Do they nesicarally need to be fertilized? If I do, when.....

BABYTEARS:

-questions-

Do babytears grow on rocks?

How do I even plant them on rocks..

Does it spread throughout the rocks?

LUCKY BAMBOO

-questions-

Do I have to trim it?

Those little shoots, are those babies, so I can start new plants?

Can they be submerged?

MOSS

-questions-

Does moss grow long/stringy?

Does moss grow babies?

Can moss be fertilized like other plants I know of?

BRAZILLIAN PENNY WORT

-questions-

How long does it grow?

How big does its leaves get?

Do they fish like it? (Duh, probably)

WATER LETTUCE

-questions-

Does it need a special light to grow, or just the aquarium light?

How long does the root system grow?

My tank is a 29 gallon since I upgraded, what would be the best substrate to plant plants in? Thanks guys! :)

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One thing moss balls are super easy care since they are actually Algea :) and lucky bamboo can be submerged as long as the leaves are above the water level

I have some partiality submerged corkscrew lucky bamboo and its doing good and the roots aren't plant lets, the leaf stems if you cut them off and stick them in water they become new plants

Edited by Gustave
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I really like Anubias. I have 3 varieties in my 55 g tank. They are glued to rocks which is easier and cleaner than pots. And even without special lighting or fertilizer, they are all growing and regularly have new leaves. Plus, the Monsters don't eat them!!!

Edited by jmetzger72
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  • Regular Member

Yes, it is, it is an upgrade for the cow :)

I really like Anubias. I have 3 varieties in my 55 g tank. They are glued to rocks which is easier and cleaner than pots. And even without special lighting or fertilizer, they are all growing and regularly have new leaves. Plus, the Monsters don't eat them!!!

I just might have to try that, what type of glue?
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I know nothing about plants so thanks for asking these questions miss Katie! I can't wait to see the reply. I did watch a good video by Tithra on YouTube about how to disinfect new plants. I'd check it out. They had some really nice moss balls at petsmart today but they are like 8 bucks each and I want a couple of them for my baby moors. I think I'll wait until they are sone with QT

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Yes, it is, it is an upgrade for the cow :)

I really like Anubias. I have 3 varieties in my 55 g tank. They are glued to rocks which is easier and cleaner than pots. And even without special lighting or fertilizer, they are all growing and regularly have new leaves. Plus, the Monsters don't eat them!!!

I just might have to try that, what type of glue?

Yes, it is, it is an upgrade for the cow :)

I really like Anubias. I have 3 varieties in my 55 g tank. They are glued to rocks which is easier and cleaner than pots. And even without special lighting or fertilizer, they are all growing and regularly have new leaves. Plus, the Monsters don't eat them!!!

I just might have to try that, what type of glue?

The Super Glue Gel is the best because it doesn't run.

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Oh, and I am a total germaphobe...so, I only buy the plants in the plastic tubes at Petco.

I have never seen the tubes.... my petco has the glorious scoope your own plant from the plant tank, and put it in the bag while they tie it for you..... us san diegans are spoiled children x) so, anyways, the super glue is non toxic? Do I put it on the roots?
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Oh, and I am a total germaphobe...so, I only buy the plants in the plastic tubes at Petco.

I have never seen the tubes.... my petco has the glorious scoope your own plant from the plant tank, and put it in the bag while they tie it for you..... us san diegans are spoiled children x) so, anyways, the super glue is non toxic? Do I put it on the roots?

Yes, non-toxic. And I usually glue the rhizome to the rock first and then glue some of the larger roots, too.

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  • Regular Member

I am a horrible and I mean horrible decorater....,

I am starting a planted tank this time around...and well I need help.

Here are some plants I like:

Lucky bamboo—you cannot fully submerge bamboo; it is a terrestrial plant. If you want to keep some perhaps consider keeping it in a HOB filter?

Water lettuce—not something I would consider, but a lovely floating plant. It requires high lighting, an abundance of nutrients, and will reproduce prolifically.

Moss balls

Babytears

Last, but not least... brazillian penny wort.

I have an eye for decorating.. but not in my fish tank!! XD

Do you pot your plants?

This really comes down to personal preference. If you want to keep a tank barebottom, then, by all means, plant them in pots. Pots can also be visually appeasing. Take your time and plan out your design. Asking lots of questions is good too. :)

When do you prune them

^(and how)

You will want to prune/remove yellow stalks/leaves, or leaves that have started to develop a smattering of holes. The plant wastes copious energy keeping these dying portions of plant alive. By removing these dying sections, you encourage new growth. Really it is all about helping the plant with its resource management. You can also prune when feel the plant has become too large. Some plants grow rapidly, so regular pruning will be a must.

If the plant is a stem plant, you can replant the cutting.

Are these plants/mosses realitively beginner?

Some are whilst others aren't. The pennywort, moss balls and bamboo are all relatively low maintenance. Babytears can be difficult to grow, as are in some instances water lettuce.

Do they nesicarally need to be fertilized? If I do, when.....

If you use a liquid fertiliser, for example, Seachem Flourish, you can follow the dosing schedule on the bottle. Generally once or twice a week will suffice. That said, with the plants you've listed you could probably get away without adding any fertilisers.

BABYTEARS:

-questions-

Do babytears grow on rocks?

No. Baby tears may in time grow over rocks if left unmaintained, but they are a carpeting plant. They require a decent amount of lighting and grow best with Co2.

How do I even plant them on rocks..

Does it spread throughout the rocks?

Yes. With time it will spread out and grow in between any hardscape you may have in the tank. That said, you have to look after and nourish them correctly.

LUCKY BAMBOO

-questions-

Do I have to trim it?

No. I've never trimmed lucky bamboo before, but if it grows too large or sections of plant start to yellow, then, by all means, you can trim them.

Those little shoots, are those babies, so I can start new plants?

I believe you can, but I'm not 100% sure. Personally, I've never replanted any lucky bamboo shoots.

Can they be submerged?

No. As aforesaid, lucky bamboo is a terrestrial plant and cannot be fully submerged. You can keep roots and, say, 1/3 of the stalk submerged, but if you submerge the entire plant it will die.

MOSS

-questions-

Does moss grow long/stringy?

What type of moss are you talking about here? There are many varieties you can choose from, and they all have different, albeit sometimes similar, requirements. The moss balls you mentioned are fairly easy to maintain, but they are incredibly slow growing.

Does moss grow babies?

If by "babies", you mean shoots, then, no. Moss will cover what it is tied to as it grows. Some varieties are faster growing than others.

Can moss be fertilized like other plants I know of?

Certainly. Adding fertiliser to the water column (for example, dry mix fertilisers of Seachem Flourish), will provide the moss with plenty of nutrients.

BRAZILLIAN PENNY WORT

-questions-

How long does it grow?

I really don't know how to answer this. Given enough room, lighting and nutrients, it will continue to grow exponentially—for this reason regular trimming will be required.

How big does its leaves get?

Its leaves are about the size of a dime from memory.

Do they fish like it? (Duh, probably)

Goldfish like most plants. :P That said, every fish is different and some have fussy palates.

WATER LETTUCE

-questions-

Does it need a special light to grow, or just the aquarium light?

Not really. It does, however, require medium to high lighting. You will also want your light mounted, or, if this is not doable, you will want to drop your water level a little bit. Really it comes down to not letting the lettuce grow with it physically touching the light.

How long does the root system grow?

Hopefully someone who has grown water lettuce before will be able to answer this question. Theoretically your fish will nibble on the roots and keep them in check.

My tank is a 29 gallon since I upgraded, what would be the best substrate to plant plants in? Thanks guys! :)

Ideally the best substrate is a nutrient rich soil, for example, ADA Aquasoil Amazonia. In a goldfish tank, however, this is not a viable option (partly because no one knows what will actually happen) due to the soil's water softening properties. A substrate like Eco-Complete would be a good option. It may be inert, but it has a high CEC value so it holds onto added nutrients for awhile. If you go this route root tabs will also be beneficial—but this really depends on what plants you keep.

Good luck, Katie. :)

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Hi! I am in no way a planted tank expert, but thought I'd offer up my experience as another newbie to planted aquariums.

I have a 55 gallon with 2 aqua clear filters... I had numerous potted hygros, 2 moss balls,an java fern and a few anubias.

My fish liked to tear in to the moss balls which ended up clogging my filter intakes and wearing down my aqua clear motors.....they also liked to scavenge through my potted hygros and uproot them (Ah!)

I recently moved so I got rid of everything except the anubias because my tank maintenance became a huge pain for me personally! I decided an easy maintenance regime was more important in the end and decided to stick with the slow growing anubias haha!

In regards to substrate, I potted the hygros (stem plants) in Eco Complete and they were flourishing (until my fish uprooted them!). They seem to drop a fair number of leaves so I found I was constantly pruning and removing a lot of leaves from the tank!

I've never had Baby Tears, because I hear they are finicky and not beginner plants...

Too save money, I'd personally start with easy, slow growing plants like anubias and java fern for a while and expand with other plants once you feel comfortable with those! I must have tossed over $100 worth of plants because I couldn't keep up with the maintenance regime in the end! Now I also have overkill wattage output on my tank lighting system and crazy green algae issues!

I wish I would've started with just the anubias and java fern glued to some aquarium decor for decorative vertical interest and called it a day! Let us know what you decide on and post pictures too!

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This is my pennywort a month ago.

june152013009_zps17b83b3c.jpg

With natural sunlight the leaves get larger. It has small white flower bunches that do grow but mine hasn't this year, probably because I don't have it planted in dirt. When I had it in the basement with just a grow light on I lost about 3/4 of it and the 'pennies' were very small (about the size of a dime). In the right conditions as you can see it grows very fast and proliferates.

Because it grows so fast, the fish can easily eat it without it dieing off completely. (like what happens when you add duckweed) You would need exposure to natural sunlight or a strong powered light to do it though. It is very light dependant I find.

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I just wanted to pop in and say that most of the plants you listed are ones your goldfish would like to eat. Just be aware of that.

they like to eat the bamboo? I thought that would be thick for them... maybe I will put the bamboo in the hob filter then...
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I just wanted to pop in and say that most of the plants you listed are ones your goldfish would like to eat. Just be aware of that.

they like to eat the bamboo? I thought that would be thick for them... maybe I will put the bamboo in the hob filter then...

Not really the bamboo itself. That is mainly because the bamboo, like Daniel said, shouldn't be submerged and within reach of the goldies anyway. It definitely belongs in the HOB filter. I know at most chain pet stores they have it submerged in those tanks, but this causes the bamboo to slowly melt and rot.

My fish have always liked to eat the water lettuce roots, which finally killed all of my water lettuce. :( It got to the point that there were no more mature plants to make babies because they just couldn't take in the nutrients to grow anymore due to not having any root system. I find that this plant does much better outside, where it can more quickly grow and make little lettuces.

Babytears are something I've seen others complain about their fish eating.

I think I've only seen two people successfully keep marimo in a goldfish tank without it being ripped up and devoured.

Pennywort has small, delectable leaves. If unprotected, (100%submerged) I can definitely see fish devouring it. I think what makes Una's (bodoba) plant stay alive is the fact that it is partially emerged and protected from the fish that way. :)

I'm not saying that these cannot be successfully kept ever, but just warning you of the potential for your beautiful new plants to become a goldfish buffet quickly. I do wish you luck if you still want the plants, and hope for updates and pictures. :)

Edited by ChelseaM
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Hi Katie, though there are really great ideas here on all these plants, I have to agree with Julia, start small and simple. Get a couple of anubias and java ferns. Tie or superglue them to rocks or decorations. See how they do and if your fish are interested in eating them! See how they do with your current lighting as they don't require much light. You can always expand to other varieties down the road that need to be planted or can be floated. If you buy the in-tube ones at Petsmart or Petco you won't have to disinfect them as they are grown out of water and are snail free ;)

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