Live plants to help fish in cycle???? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 04:56 AM Thread Starter
Live plants to help fish in cycle????

I went to LFS today and my guy up there advised that adding a live plant may help in lowering ammonia and help with the general cycle process. Anyone have opinion or info to add to this? Anything to help my fish through the cycle process.

(read about fishless cycle AFTER i added my fish...that will be preferred method from now on)

Tank:
6gal fluval edge
1 Serpae tetra
Week 4 of cycle

ammonia is back and forth between .5 and 1 ppm depending on day

feed the fish every other day now (started that one week ago from twice daily)
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post #2 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 05:17 AM
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Hello and welcome to the forum

Your LFS person is right. Live plants are beneficial any time but especially to help with cycling.

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post #3 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Romad View Post
Hello and welcome to the forum

Your LFS person is right. Live plants are beneficial any time but especially to help with cycling.
Thanks for the quick response. I was looking at a Java Fern bc they had them on sale at the LFS. Do you have any recommendations for which plants are easiest for a first timer. Or any over all keys to keeping a healthy plant in the aquarium?
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post #4 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 06:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xfatdannx View Post
Thanks for the quick response. I was looking at a Java Fern bc they had them on sale at the LFS. Do you have any recommendations for which plants are easiest for a first timer. Or any over all keys to keeping a healthy plant in the aquarium?
Would buy three or four of the java fern and attach to rock or wood with fishing line or sewing thread.
Perhap's that which you see at fish store is already attached to wood /rock?
Would look for fertilizer such as flourish Comprehensive to add each week as per instruction's.
Java fern does not need much light but does need at least eight hours of light and period of darkness.
Not familiar with type of lighting the tank came with? but one or two full spectrum T8 bulb's with 5000 to 6700 K rating which should be stamped on the bulb somewhere, would suffice.
Anubia is another plant that does well in low light, and should also be attached to wood /rock.
Watersprite is another low light plant that does well either rooted in substrate ,or left to float on surface.
Hope some of this help's.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #5 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 07:57 AM
Welcome to TFK!

+1 - Plants (even floating) will assimilate ammonia so little to no nitrites and nitrates are produced. In some respects, this makes cycling a moot point. Oh cycling happens, but there are few if any dangerous spikes as seen with non planted tanks.

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post #6 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 08:32 AM
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The plants mentioned are great; however, you might think about adding a few stems of fast growing stem / floating plants also. They are especially helpful in keeping your ammonia level safe and stable.

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post #7 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 09:14 AM Thread Starter
The fern they have in stock is wrapped in coconut husk with the rhizome exposed at the top (where the stem enters the husk wrap). There are maybe 10 - 15 separate plants per husk.


If i am around 1ppm ammonia, how long after introduction of plant life should i see a reduction of ammonia on my tests?

Last edited by xfatdannx; 02-12-2013 at 09:22 AM.
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post #8 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 09:50 AM
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I put Anubias Nana, Vallisneria Spiralis, Java Moss, and Java Ferns right from the get go. I saw my ammonia and nitrates go up to .5 max during cycling, and even that was for a very short time. I couldn't recommend plants enough. :) I don't know how long it would take to make make a noticeable difference, as I had mine in right from the beginning. But, get them! They would do nothing but help. Until the plants take care of your ammonia problem, you could do more frequent water changes and maybe dose with some Seachem Prime. The Prime will make the ammonia and nitrites less toxic for a short period of time.

Edit: It may be hard to find Prime locally. I had to order mine off of Amazon.
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post #9 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 10:10 AM
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Ideally,,we would not place fish in the tank until biological filter has been established but for various reason's,,folk's end up with fish or fishes in uncycled aquarium's.
In this instance,,the more plant's the better.
One or two plant's will not be as helpful as many.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #10 of 18 Old 02-12-2013, 01:18 PM
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Also what's gotta be mentioned are that java fern and anubias are slow growing plants, as in they won't take up ammonia/nitrite as fast as other plants, like say wisteria, water sprite, anacharis, even duckweed.

Do you know what lighting you have on your tank?
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