Re Aquascaping During Cycling - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 11 Old 08-02-2011, 08:29 PM Thread Starter
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Re Aquascaping During Cycling

I have a ten gallon tank that has been cycling for about a week and I've decided that I want to plant dwarf hairgrass. I had originally bought some blue gravel as substrate but i figure that won't go very well with the grass and other small plants.

So to the point:

Can I use sand as a substrate for the grass?

To keep my cycling going can i take the water out, put it in a couple of buckets, get the sand and grass in the aquarium then put the water back in. Or does it even matter if I keep the same water because the good bacteria is built up in the filter.
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post #2 of 11 Old 08-02-2011, 10:08 PM
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I think the sand would work fine, although I have not used hairgrass so in not 100% sure.

On the cycling, most of the bacteria is growing on the surfaces; substrate, glass, filter and driftwood. So you don't need to keep all the water, although maybe it would be good to keep at least half. Also it may be a good idea to leave some of the substrate in the tank in a mesh bag to keep the bacteria in the tank.
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post #3 of 11 Old 08-03-2011, 12:43 AM
sand is harder to clean when you get algae orif you keep cories that constantly dig it will be a mess.use fine gravel it's easier.if you keep hair grass you'r gonna need snails or cherry shrimps to clean off the algea from the leaves. the fine leaves are harder for ottos to clean

5x2x2 aro,highfin bat,fei feng,ST,albino tinfoil,c.perch
4x1.5x1.5 planted tetras,harlequins,
otto,WMM,2 types of celebes rainbows,rcs,amano, bamboo,red ramhorns,MTS
3.5x2.5x2 flowerhorn,pleco
3x1.5x1.5 russel's lion,blue cleaner,sixline and leopard wrasse,maroon clown pair,green chromis,scorpion,tiger cowrie,turbo,lyretail anthias,jewel,anemone,star polyp,marbled and giant green mushi,zoa
2x1x1 nano sw shrimps
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post #4 of 11 Old 08-03-2011, 08:47 AM
my DHG grows in sand and it does very well. It does get to be a pain to clean, but once your DHG gets to carpet, you wont really see the sand and it looks very good.
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post #5 of 11 Old 08-03-2011, 09:07 AM
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Agreed just take the gravel out and add the sand.

I use estes reef sand from my LFS- it's a bit larger than play sand (about 1 mm), and doesn't require much rinsing. They also have it in black.


Keep an eye out for Dwarf Hairgrass sp. Belem, it looks much better, and can be sold as a cash crop since it's a bit hard to find.

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post #6 of 11 Old 08-03-2011, 10:01 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys, I'll probably just go with fine gravel and I'll post back up here after I have finished.
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post #7 of 11 Old 08-03-2011, 10:03 AM
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Agree on what's been said concerning replacing the substrate.

Once planted, the plants will handle the "cycle" for you. If there are sufficient live plants, a few fish can go in and the plants will assimilate the ammonia/ammonium and you won't even notice a "cycle" as such.

One comment on the water, if you have been adding ammonia to the tank, I would replace all the water when you cange the substrate. Use a good water conditioner, that's all you need.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #8 of 11 Old 08-03-2011, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Well I went with the gravel and have planted a few clumps of dhg. I got my water tested again today and my nitrites are still pretty high but the lone goldfish in the tank doesn't seem to mind.
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post #9 of 11 Old 08-04-2011, 07:57 AM
whoa gold fish.. i do hope he's not in your planted tank

5x2x2 aro,highfin bat,fei feng,ST,albino tinfoil,c.perch
4x1.5x1.5 planted tetras,harlequins,
otto,WMM,2 types of celebes rainbows,rcs,amano, bamboo,red ramhorns,MTS
3.5x2.5x2 flowerhorn,pleco
3x1.5x1.5 russel's lion,blue cleaner,sixline and leopard wrasse,maroon clown pair,green chromis,scorpion,tiger cowrie,turbo,lyretail anthias,jewel,anemone,star polyp,marbled and giant green mushi,zoa
2x1x1 nano sw shrimps
22 May 2012
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post #10 of 11 Old 08-04-2011, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah he's just a little feeder fish that i had in there to test the water. He's the only survivor out of the 8 i bought though so I've grown attatched to him
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