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Advice/suggestions?


Reds12

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This may seem like a no-brainer to some...but I had a "hmm...maybe I'm missing something" moment. Do you think there would be any issue using aquarium plants outside?

I have a 350-400gallon outdoor, above ground goldfish "pond" and was going to add some aquarium plants to give it some ground cover in the water. Any advice on what type of plants would be ok for this?

I live inland San Diego so it typically doesn't get cold, but the water can still feel relatively cold in the winter months. I did build some insulation into this one so hopefully it should stay a bit warmer than previous tanks.

Thanks in advance!!!

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Dear Reds12,

I think the best way to go would be some pond plants as most goldfish aquarium plants like temperatures in the 60's and 70's. I keep anacharis in my pond and bring it inside to the tanks in winter--where the inside goldies devour it in about a week, Lillies, water hyacinths, water lettuce would thrive in your warmest months and probably not do much at all in your colder months. Here in upstate NY, we have real winters and the lillies and cat tails get cut back before the pond freezes and the water hyacinths/lettuce are taken out and become salad for the inside fish. Hope this helps.

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The only thing I notice is that the plants often need a very long adjustment to the light levels when moved outside. It takes me about 3 weeks of gradually introducing the plants to more and more outside light before they are strong enough to take it. I do have extreme summer day lengths, though.

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Thank you :) I do have water lettuce and lillies, its just hard to come by deep water plants here. I'll order some online instead of the aquarium plants. Thanks for the advice!

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The only thing I notice is that the plants often need a very long adjustment to the light levels when moved outside. It takes me about 3 weeks of gradually introducing the plants to more and more outside light before they are strong enough to take it. I do have extreme summer day lengths, though.

I was wondering about this. It is typically recommended that aquarium plants be given no more than 7 hours of light, which is far less than what they would get if outside. Do yours still do as well outside, after the initial adjustment period? And if that's the case, could I possibly work my way up to a couple more hours of light? I'm just curious.

I always thought the 7 hours max was because the plants would not thrive otherwise, but if it's only because of algae, well, I have a BN pleco who would love to have a little more algae in the tank. :)

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Amanda, the seven hours is not a maximum by any means, and in many ways, that number is set to offset the possibility of promoting algal growth etc., as well as providing rest time for the fish.

http://www.popsci.com/blog-network/our-modern-plagues/do-plants-sleep

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I say go for it. A lot of suppliers cultivate plants outside in ponds. The only thing to be aware of is outside the plants will revert to their seasonal state. In an aquarium the triggers that tell a plant what time of day it is, the season, when to die off and go to seed, etc are removed.

Edited by dan in aus
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In my experience, floaters and marginals do well in ponds, and the underwater aquarium plants die. You can certainly grow anacharis, but not as fast as the goldfish will eat it. Hornwort does well as a floater.

IMO, the last thing you want in a pond is "ground cover." Unless you have a pond bottom drain, clearing debris from the bottom is the most challenging maintenance problem in pond keeping. With plants covering the bottom it goes from difficult to nearly impossible. On the other hand, floaters and pond lilies provide shade and a feeling of security and marginals are valuable in water purification.

Please show us some pictures of your pond in the pond forum. :please

Edited by shakaho
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Amanda, the seven hours is not a maximum by any means, and in many ways, that number is set to offset the possibility of promoting algal growth etc., as well as providing rest time for the fish.

http://www.popsci.com/blog-network/our-modern-plagues/do-plants-sleep

OK, well that's good to hear. Many people told me to limit lighting time to 7 hours. If it won't affect plant health, I would rather increase it to about 9 hours, just because my mom (who "hated" fish until I added them to the tank [emoji6]) really wants to watch them when she gets home from golfing/running errands. I will try this out, thank you.
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A 9 hour light cycle isn't likely to change much in the scheme of things of your tank, I don't think. :)

The other option is to get a timer, and have the lights come on when people are home and enjoying the tank. :)

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A 9 hour light cycle isn't likely to change much in the scheme of things of your tank, I don't think. :)

The other option is to get a timer, and have the lights come on when people are home and enjoying the tank. :)

Oh yes, I love my timer! I got the Coralife manual one. I am only awake for 2-3 hours when I am home, so a timer is a must for me! [emoji1]

I just set it to 9 hours. This should make my mom much happier. I just can't get over the fact that she did NOT want a fish tank, but now she talks to the fish more than I do and even helped me name them! :rofl I think her initial dislike of fish had a lot to do with the tropical tank her dad and stepmom had back in the 70s. She said the fish just kept dying every time she would get attached to them. [emoji53] Fortunately we have a lot more resources available now.

Edited by *Amanda*
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