Is this a good setup for live plants? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 3 Old 03-15-2012, 03:02 PM Thread Starter
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Is this a good setup for live plants?

I have a 2 gallon tank(no fish or plants) that I'm using to grow some plants. I plan to stock it only with shrimp (that's all that will fit in it). So I want to know if I have the right stuff to grow plants(never done it) Here's the stuff I'm using: API FIRST LAYER pure laterite, LED lighting, and API leaf zone fertilizer. Is this good for plants?

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post #2 of 3 Old 03-15-2012, 06:51 PM
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I've never used LED lighting for plants, and I can't imagine that it would provide the correct spectrum and intensity of light for plants. Pure laterite is great for plants and they should do well with it.

Instead of the API leafzone I recommend seachem flourish excel. It's a much more well rounded liquid fertilizer and is more concentrated (a better value) than the leafzone. I hope this helps!

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post #3 of 3 Old 03-15-2012, 06:55 PM
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In the absence of fish, you will probably need more nutrients that what API Leaf Zone and the laterite contain. From what I can find on their website, Leaf Zone seems to be iron and potassium and nothing else. Laterite is usually an iron-rich clay; the site doesn't say what nutrients (if any) are in their product.

Plants need 17 nutrients and light in order to photosynthesize. Fish provide most of the nutrients via fish food becoming waste and being broken down by bacteria in the substrate. Tap water via water changes provides some minerals, depending upon the degree of hardness. Without fish there would seem to be quite a shortage of essential nutrients, especially carbon (as CO2 from the fish respiration but primarily the breakdown of waste organics in the substrate) and nitrogen (as ammonia/ammonium).


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

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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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