View Full Version : Planted tanks?

01-10-2005, 08:33 PM
What are some good web sites for plants? I have never had live plants in any of my tanks and want to give it a try. I read that Java moss and fern are good starters. What are a few others? Thanks

01-10-2005, 09:31 PM
check out The Krib.Com,FreshwaterAquariumPlants.Com,and Aquabotanic.Com.those sites also have links to more useful sites as well.

i started out with some corkscrew vallisneria,and some wisteria.i didn't kill it so you shouldn't have any problems with it:D

01-11-2005, 06:30 AM

01-11-2005, 11:00 AM
Those are some good sites cich 1 recommended. Just do your research. If you really want a planted tank, then I suggest staying away from the larger cichlids. They'll be ok when there small but when they grow they do tend to rearrange tanks and chop up plants in the process. Try the anubias plants or even a sword plant to start. You should fertilize your plants as well. Worry about the plants first and the fish second. If your plants are doing well so will your fish. Good Luck

01-27-2005, 11:34 AM
Just to give an update. I have purchased some plants and put in ttwo of my tanks. I got Java Fern and Moss, Hornwort, Anubias Nana, and Wisteria. The only one I see having a problem with is the Wisteria. A couple of questions. What is a good fert to use ? My nitrates are high so how often would you use the Fert ?

01-27-2005, 02:31 PM
Once the plants are established they should help lower your nitrates. Water changes will also lower your nitrates. What is your Nitrate readings? How is your lighting? Wisteria likes a lot of light. You can let it float to get it closer to your light. As for felts I like to use Seachem's Flourish. Petsmart sells it. Don't use too much ferts at all, let your plants get settled first. Plants can store their food for up to a month. Putting too much ferts in the water, too soon will get you algae. Check out the plant websites and ask questions there. Good Luck

01-27-2005, 04:08 PM
My nitrates are 40ppm from the tap. I'm still a little concerned about the test kit itself. I contacted Aq Pharm and the said that the nitrate test is good for three years. The experation date on the bottle says it isn't even a year old yet. I get the same reading from all three tanks though. I checked some other water sources and got different readings. I still want to get a new test to see. My lights are the ones that came with the tanks. I have the Wisteria in my 29g right now with the roots half in the sub. I will have to look into a different light for that tank I guess. Maybe I can find bulb for know to fit the light . Do you know of a good one? It would have to be at least 60-80w? I will check on the Seachem Fourish when I go Petsmart this weekend. Maybe I can get a light there also. I would today but it's 100 miles round trip. I guess the fert would have how much to add on the bottle for tank volume and such. Thanks for the help.

z rock
01-27-2005, 10:19 PM
Hey Alfdawg,

Nice to see a fellow Westexan on the board! I would offer some advice but so far everytime I've tried plants they get consumed with algae.:( I guess most of them don't like hard water. I have seen java fern and vallisneria do well, just not in my tank.

Seems like the people that always have the nicest looking plant tanks live in an area where aquatic plants grow in the wild. There water values would be ideal.

Are you on well water? Seems strange city would have 40ppm nitrate.

Our sources for obtaining aquatic plants around here is pitiful. I've been waiting on Petsmart in Midland to get some in for months. If I were you I wouldn't waste my gas going there for plants just yet.

Right now I'm running a standard 20g w/2- 20w 24" chroma 50 tube's. $8ea. at Lowe's. I can't get passed giving Petsmart $25 ea. for plant bulbs. Has 1 $25 15lb ! sack of Seachem fluorite (one sack left at Petsmart) substrate mixed with sand.

I'm beginning to believe the process is to plant the tank, add only small algae eaters (also non-existent in our area) as fish, and do water changes like crazy till tank cycles and bacteria start producing Co2 to support plant life.

I've tried DIY co2 and Liquid fert's. Algae went ballistic! I'm thinking about adding some fertilizer tabs to substrate.

The trick is finding algae free plants and algae eaters. Growing plants can get to be an expensive undertaking. :)

01-28-2005, 06:59 AM
That is pretty cool to see someone on here localy.

That has been my problem here with the well water I have had tanks running for 6 yeras or a little longer. A few months ago I had a nitrate spike in the water well and had no change. The brown algae has been bad since then. Either way I going to try to make this work. The two tanks I have put the plants in, I have noticed a change in the behavior of the fish. They seem more active (I guess is the word to use). It's been real cool. I got my plants of the internet from Aquatic Scapes. The shipping was real reasonable. I only paid 10.00. It was 2-3 day shipping and the plants came in in great shape. I got 8 plants total for 35.00 shipping and all. Check them out.

Petsmart is only good for food and additives (which still don't have a good selection) and a few fish. Thanks for the heads up on the lights. I will check them out this weekend. I'm also going to try and find some AE's this weekend. I guess I will have to try some other stores. Alot of people have mention Adobe wells. I'm sure there are a few others. I want to go to Odessa also I heard jerry's pets is going out of business. Might find some deals. I have not been there in ages.

I got to get ready for work. I keep in touch. Not to many people around here I know with tanks. Be cool.

z rock
01-28-2005, 08:07 AM
Last time I was in the mall the whole Jerry's Pets area was gutted!:eek: I couldn't belive it!:confused: I don't know if they downsized to the Lubbock mall, or they may be moving.

There's a lot of new strip malls opening up. They needed to move if they intended on making a living and compete with Petsmart. None of the major pet chains have discovered there are dogs and cats in Odessa also.

Last time I was in Adobe Wells they had a couple dusty UGF's on sale. No fish.

I'll write your screen name down and if I discover any thing I'll give you a heads up.

01-28-2005, 09:26 AM

Unfortunatly, You won't get enough light out of the strip light that comes with your tank. I use DIY lighting on my planted tanks. Def get plant bulbs at Lowes or Home depot. They sell 2 types. Strip light plant bulbs (T-12) or spotlight plant bulbs. The spotlight bulbs have a higher wattage.( 120, 75 and 60 watt bulbs). The strip lights are usually 20 watts ( 24") and 40 watt (48"). I use the spotlight type over my 55 and 40 gallon planted tanks. I use the strip lights( 2- 48" bulbs over my 45 gallon tank. This tank only have low light plants ( anubias). They also sell retrofit kits at ahsupply.com for the strip lights that come with most tanks. Good Luck

01-28-2005, 09:30 AM
BTW, What is your PH, KH and GH. Plants like soft water and a lower PH. Some peat moss in your filter will help lower your PH. Just keep researching.

01-28-2005, 11:29 AM
Thanks Z rock. Saved me a trip to Odessa. I do thank you and appreciate the heads up. Do you know if we have any clubs here?

Heyguy thanks for the reply. I am going to look into the lights this weekend. I thought I did pretty good at choosing the plants except for the wisteria. They all seem to be doing good so far , but its only been a few days. My water is HARD(cant remember the number) My ph is 8-8.4. It comes from the tap at about 7 but I have holey rock which I know raises it. I will get the KH test this weekend along with Phos test. Are there any other you can think of? I have amonia, nitrite, nitrate,ph and gh right now. I thank you on the heads up on the peat and will read up on it. Thanks all

01-28-2005, 11:55 AM
The KH test is all you really need. The phosphate test kit isn't that accurate. When i first started keeping planted tanks, I got a phos test kit and an iron test kit. Everytime I tested for phospahte I got the same reading. Read up on them, also. The do sell phospahte removes but like carbon they only last a month or so.

01-28-2005, 12:13 PM
cool thanks again

01-29-2005, 03:36 PM
Hey Zrock, I went buy petsmart this morning and they have a bunch of plants in. Just thought I would give you a heads up.

z rock
01-29-2005, 05:27 PM
Yea? Thanks! It's about time! I hadn't been to Midland since Thursday. They had a bunch of boxes on the floor then but I didn't wait around for them to unpack. I have a batch of Java Fern and Moss, bacopa, cryps, and some val. most of them seem to do pretty well even though I am fighting algae like crazy.

The java moss covered in algae makes for a disgusting mess!

Wish they would get a variety of anubias.