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Adding live plants to tank


jml1075

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I am getting ready to order some live plants from planted aquariums central. I currently have no live plants, is there a general rule about adding plants to a tank? Can I add all at once or should I start out with just a few? I have about 6 different varieties (picked from the recommendations for goldfish) with 2 of each picked out so that would be about a dozen plants. I have a 50 gal with 3 (3-4 inch) goldfish. 1 black moor, 2 orandas. Thanks

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Could you please list all of your intended plants? That will help quite a bit as we can tell you what type of disinfecting and/or quarantine the plants can handle. Also, please list your substrate and the make/model of lighting you have. :)

Edited by ChelseaM
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The majority of plants should survive a bleach dip. The ratio is 1 part bleach to 19 parts water. Leave them in for a few minutes and rinse well afterwards. You can add all your plants at once. :)

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Posted in mistake trying to respond back and don't know how to delete, ignore this and read below. New to online forum :wacko:

Edited by jml1075
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Could you please list all of your intended plants? That will help quite a bit as we can tell you what type of disinfecting and/or quarantine the plants can handle. Also, please list your substrate and the make/model of lighting you have. :)

Good evening - thank you so much for your post.

Okay, I thought 6 but I actually have 7 in my baskets, here is the list and other requested info.

Plants:

Water Sprite – Ceratopteris thalictroides

Ancharis, Egeria densa

Cryptocoryne Spiralis

Java Fern, Microsorum pteropus

Amazon Sword – Echinodorus Bleheri

Vallisneria Spiralis – Italian Vals

Cryptocoryne parva

Substrate: I have basically a bare bottom with just 3 larger rocks and about a dozen sm/med pond stones

Lighting: Elive LED Track Light – 7 Pod - &W – 36 in. Model: 01303

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Under the Main Goldfish Info for Goldfish plants I just read " LEDs are the newest technology in aquarium lighting, and while some may be good for growing plants, many of the fixtures currently on the market do not produce the correct lighting for plant growth. So, if you choose to go with an LED fixture, make sure to do your research on it."

Looks like I need to research my lighting.

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After a bit of research - My lighting uses these little light pod, it has 7 pods but you can add up to 23 which can go from 400 - 1840 Lumens. Not sure if this info helps any.

Edited by jml1075
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You can bleach all of them to sterilise. Crypts and swords prefer to be planted in a nutrient rich area—give them a root tab and they will be happy.

I don't know anything about Elive LEDs, although a quick Google search suggests they are pretty mediocre for plant growth. You can always give it a go and upgrade your fixture later down the road if finances are no problem and you get more into the hobby. :)

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Since crypts and swords require some planting to thrive, you could purchase these for them. You will want the large size to support a good, strong root system. The Vals can also be planted this way. Just make sure to leave the bases of the plants exposed and plant only the roots.

I warn you that the Water Sprite has a chance of becoming goldfish salad quite quickly, as does the ancharis.

If you are looking to not have to plant anything, there are several varieties of Anubias and Java Fern to purchase. Those can be glued directly to the rocks in your tank with a daub of super glue gel.

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I wouldn't keep an amazon sword in those planters, their root systems are monstrous given time. I wouldn't keep parva in them either, it's essentially a slow growing grass. The stems would be fine, but then you could float them too. :)

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I plan on doing a combination of some floating plants, tie some with string around rocks, and also purchasing votives to put in a substrate. I am going to just go ahead and upgrade my lighting to support the plants...any suggestions?

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I wouldn't keep an amazon sword in those planters, their root systems are monstrous given time. I wouldn't keep parva in them either, it's essentially a slow growing grass. The stems would be fine, but then you could float them too. :)

I've kept both swords and aponogentons in them and they grew monsterous. The planters were originally designed to restrict growth for the tank, but don't seem to.

:)

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I plan on doing a combination of some floating plants, tie some with string around rocks, and also purchasing votives to put in a substrate. I am going to just go ahead and upgrade my lighting to support the plants...any suggestions?

I just bought the Marineland Double Bright LED, and am very pleased with it. I have yet to add plants, but based on the PAR data and my research (there is a great pinned post on that in this area of the forum - I highly recommend reading it), it's a good light for low- to medium-light plants, which is what I want. I was also looking at other light fixtures, like the T5HO bulbs, but decided against it because higher light requires pressurized carbon dioxide. I'm fine with adding Excel as needed, but don't want to set up a pressurized CO2 system at this time. The LED lights are also very low energy and last much longer. Here is my setup:

6usy9u6u.jpg

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

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Sorry this is going to be a long post lol... I'm lying in bed and have time on my hands :rofl

Under the Main Goldfish Info for Goldfish plants I just read " LEDs are the newest technology in aquarium lighting, and while some may be good for growing plants, many of the fixtures currently on the market do not produce the correct lighting for plant growth. So, if you choose to go with an LED fixture, make sure to do your research on it."

Looks like I need to research my lighting.

I think I wrote that :P sounds like me lol.

If it was me, my opinion regarding LEDs has shifted a lot recently, as many manufacturers have begun putting out LEDs specifically made for planted aquariums, and many people have demonstrated success with LEDs in planted tanks. I think when I wrote this, LEDs were not nearly as common place as they are now, and it was one of those things that was obviously up and coming, but not a ton of solid info about it.

The one thing that I will say is still an issue with LEDs though is the coloring. Flourescent bulbs have a much more warm feel to them (although it also depends on what type of bulb you buy), and do a great job in general of bringing out colors in a tank, particularly reds/oranges, which is a concern if you are keeping red plants, and could be a concern with brightly colored fish. It's unlikely it's something you would notice though unless you saw side by side pictures. But things can end up looking washed out.

These are not my pics, they are from another forum and are from a user named hedge_fund. He posted this comparison of the finnex Ray 2 (which are just 7,000k diodes) versus a flourescent fixture to demonstrate how the flourescent brings out reds in the tank more than the LED.

Finnex Ray 2 LED

55D1BE86-293E-4824-B11D-ACC10B3591A9-366

Flourescent:

90BE9C38-93BF-4FD2-AFC4-CC4583D2EF54-366

Now, would you notice this if you didn't have side by sides? probably not. Does it matter much? probably not unless you are planning on keeping a planted tank with some colors other than green in it ;) But it is a good thing to be aware of with LEDs. You might take a look at this link if you haven't already http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/topic/113173-using-par-instead-of-wpg-to-measure-light-level-in-a-planted-tank/

All that said, many lighting companies are now building lights that contain some red spectrum in them in order to help combat this washed out issue. Finnex recently came out with the planted + that incorporates 660nm diodes which should warm things up, build my led also has options for lights that include this red spectrum. There are probably other companies as well....I think current also makes some that contain more than just white diodes.

LEDs definitely have lots of pros including the fact that the diodes will last you 10-20 years depending on photoperiod, whereas flourescents need to be replaced about yearly... which can get expensive. They are also cheaper to run in terms of electricity cost.

I don't personally know anything about the lighting you currently have. The one thread I found about it suggested that it contains too much blue spectrum not enough red and that even in a shallow tank using it for a planted tank would be dicey at best.

Lots of people are very happy with the marineland double brite LEDs here and they certainly do a good job growing plants. I would also encourage you to check out the finnex line, particularly the planted +. You can check out buildmyled.com if you are willing to spend a little more money - these fixtures are nice as they are highly customizable and can be dimmed to reduce or increase light as needed, but they will cost you for these features ;)

Regarding the plants:

Some of the plants you chose are not ideal for a bare bottom tank. Pots are definitely an option, but I would try to choose pots that give a little bit of room/depth for the swords and crypts in particular because as Dan noted they do have large root systems. I have successfully kept swords in containers when I had a bare bottom tank, but needed to 'upgrade' their containers in order to accommodate the root system as the plant grew. I also kept crypt spiralis in pots without issue. Vals are going to be a little tricky, although I have done this too lol. They reproduce by sending runners, but in a pot the runners have nowhere to go, so they will begin growing out of the pot and will need to be clipped and replanted regularly. I would use an open container for these as opposed to the riparium containers, because of the way the reproduce. Crypt parva is a low growing foreground plant, so this too is going to be a little tricky. It won't grow taller than about an inch in my experience, and reproduces sort of similarly to vals, in that it grows lengthwise, adding plantlets to the side of the mother plant. This will need to be in an open container as well, and would probably do best in a wider/shallower container, whereas the swords and crypt spiralis would do better in a slightly deeper container. Java fern will do best tied to a rock or piece of wood.

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I agree with Tithra - bare bottom tanks can limit the types of plants you can keep. I chose substrate for this reason (plus I'm not a huge fan of potted plants in an aquarium, unless the pots themselves are really pretty - but that's just my personal preference). [emoji4]

You could also add some driftwood and tie anubias to it or grow java moss on it. I am planning to do this once I find that perfect piece of driftwood. Also keep in mind that a lot of the plants that will work best in a bare bottom tank seem to be low light, so if you choose these plants you won't want to go too high on the lighting or else you will have to add CO2 (and some of the lower-light plants may not thrive).

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

Edited by *Amanda*
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Sorry this is going to be a long post lol... I'm lying in bed and have time on my hands :rofl

Under the Main Goldfish Info for Goldfish plants I just read " LEDs are the newest technology in aquarium lighting, and while some may be good for growing plants, many of the fixtures currently on the market do not produce the correct lighting for plant growth. So, if you choose to go with an LED fixture, make sure to do your research on it."

Looks like I need to research my lighting.

I think I wrote that :P sounds like me lol.

If it was me, my opinion regarding LEDs has shifted a lot recently, as many manufacturers have begun putting out LEDs specifically made for planted aquariums, and many people have demonstrated success with LEDs in planted tanks. I think when I wrote this, LEDs were not nearly as common place as they are now, and it was one of those things that was obviously up and coming, but not a ton of solid info about it.

The one thing that I will say is still an issue with LEDs though is the coloring. Flourescent bulbs have a much more warm feel to them (although it also depends on what type of bulb you buy), and do a great job in general of bringing out colors in a tank, particularly reds/oranges, which is a concern if you are keeping red plants, and could be a concern with brightly colored fish. It's unlikely it's something you would notice though unless you saw side by side pictures. But things can end up looking washed out.

These are not my pics, they are from another forum and are from a user named hedge_fund. He posted this comparison of the finnex Ray 2 (which are just 7,000k diodes) versus a flourescent fixture to demonstrate how the flourescent brings out reds in the tank more than the LED.

Finnex Ray 2 LED

55D1BE86-293E-4824-B11D-ACC10B3591A9-366

Flourescent:

90BE9C38-93BF-4FD2-AFC4-CC4583D2EF54-366

Now, would you notice this if you didn't have side by sides? probably not. Does it matter much? probably not unless you are planning on keeping a planted tank with some colors other than green in it ;) But it is a good thing to be aware of with LEDs. You might take a look at this link if you haven't already http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/topic/113173-using-par-instead-of-wpg-to-measure-light-level-in-a-planted-tank/

All that said, many lighting companies are now building lights that contain some red spectrum in them in order to help combat this washed out issue. Finnex recently came out with the planted + that incorporates 660nm diodes which should warm things up, build my led also has options for lights that include this red spectrum. There are probably other companies as well....I think current also makes some that contain more than just white diodes.

LEDs definitely have lots of pros including the fact that the diodes will last you 10-20 years depending on photoperiod, whereas flourescents need to be replaced about yearly... which can get expensive. They are also cheaper to run in terms of electricity cost.

I don't personally know anything about the lighting you currently have. The one thread I found about it suggested that it contains too much blue spectrum not enough red and that even in a shallow tank using it for a planted tank would be dicey at best.

Lots of people are very happy with the marineland double brite LEDs here and they certainly do a good job growing plants. I would also encourage you to check out the finnex line, particularly the planted +. You can check out buildmyled.com if you are willing to spend a little more money - these fixtures are nice as they are highly customizable and can be dimmed to reduce or increase light as needed, but they will cost you for these features ;)

Regarding the plants:

Some of the plants you chose are not ideal for a bare bottom tank. Pots are definitely an option, but I would try to choose pots that give a little bit of room/depth for the swords and crypts in particular because as Dan noted they do have large root systems. I have successfully kept swords in containers when I had a bare bottom tank, but needed to 'upgrade' their containers in order to accommodate the root system as the plant grew. I also kept crypt spiralis in pots without issue. Vals are going to be a little tricky, although I have done this too lol. They reproduce by sending runners, but in a pot the runners have nowhere to go, so they will begin growing out of the pot and will need to be clipped and replanted regularly. I would use an open container for these as opposed to the riparium containers, because of the way the reproduce. Crypt parva is a low growing foreground plant, so this too is going to be a little tricky. It won't grow taller than about an inch in my experience, and reproduces sort of similarly to vals, in that it grows lengthwise, adding plantlets to the side of the mother plant. This will need to be in an open container as well, and would probably do best in a wider/shallower container, whereas the swords and crypt spiralis would do better in a slightly deeper container. Java fern will do best tied to a rock or piece of wood.

Thanks so much for your time. I really appreciate the information. I've also spent some time watching your youtube videos...very informational!

I agree with Tithra - bare bottom tanks can limit the types of plants you can keep. I chose substrate for this reason (plus I'm not a huge fan of potted plants in an aquarium, unless the pots themselves are really pretty - but that's just my personal preference). [emoji4]

You could also add some driftwood and tie anubias to it or grow java moss on it. I am planning to do this once I find that perfect piece of driftwood. Also keep in mind that a lot of the plants that will work best in a bare bottom tank seem to be low light, so if you choose these plants you won't want to go too high on the lighting or else you will have to add CO2 (and some of the lower-light plants may not thrive).

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

Thanks for your input!!!

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