Need help with setting up 15gal tank with liveplants - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 10 Old 06-14-2013, 12:38 PM Thread Starter
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Post Need help with setting up 15gal tank with liveplants

Hi friends,
First of all, I am new to the fish world.
I have read about the nitrogen cycle. I need help with setting up an aquarium with live plants.

I currently have a 15gal tank (2ft-1ft-1ft) with an Internal filter with 140G/h filter capacity.

I need help with the kind of substrate to put in the tank. more specifically, is the fine 1-2mm dark sand gravel enough to start with growing plants? or do i need to have multiple layers of substrates(as i ve seen in many articles)?
I want to start with plants such as JavaMoss, Anubias, Wisteria, Anacharis, Corkscrew Vallisneria.

Also i m worried about my filter after i plant these plants. My filter throws a horizontal stream of bubbles nd water across the length of my tank. My current water stream seems more strong than it should be. Should i switch onto a HOB filter?
Which filter is best recommended for an aquarium of my size (15g) for live plants?

Will the Cycling process be easier with the plants in it or should i cycle the tank with substrate first and then add the plants?

A little too many questions but I M SO Sorry :(. I need help :(
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post #2 of 10 Old 06-14-2013, 01:22 PM
hey there an welcome! you can use that sand yes. i have a planted sand tank myself. i use seachems root tabs for my plants and use their flourish comp. fertilizer as well.
your filter might be a bit strong depending on how much "current" there is. im not sure on the filter since i use a canister filter on my 55g. i had a hob filter at one point but it wasnt good for top floating plants. too much current. ive read alot of things saying plants help with the cycling process and it also looks awesome :)
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post #3 of 10 Old 06-14-2013, 10:43 PM Thread Starter
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Thankyou rexpepper651..
i will check for both, root tabs nd plant substrate when i head to my fishstore :)
i think i will sell off my Internal filter and switch to a hob filter. my current seems too strong.
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post #4 of 10 Old 06-15-2013, 08:34 AM
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Don't be sorry about asking questions!

I use this method on my planted tanks including 10g. So should work fine on 15g also.

I like your selection of plants.

First I add 1" (2.54 cm) of canadian spahgum peat moss (no ferts). Add water to soak the layer but nothing is floating. Level and clean the glass. Then do the same for 1" of play sand and finally for 1" of pro choice select (a red clay used on sports fields) (or aquarim gravel).

Then plant your plants and finally fill the tank with water poured over a dish.

Second, let it set a week.

Third add one fish if live bearer a single male. Don't add food for a week (this is important).

if live bearers add a couple of females. if not then 4 other fish.

Start feeding a single flake per day and you night increase the feeding after a few weeks.

Just to be clear no mechanical filters no circulation not even an air stone, no water changes just replace water that evaporates. No chemicals no water tratements etc etc


The idea is the plants themselves do all the water conditioning plus balance out and stabilize operation.
my .02

maintain Fw and marine system with a strong emphasis on balanced, stabilized system that as much as possible are self substaning.

have maintained FW systems for up to 9 years with descendants from original fish and marine aquariums for up to 8 years.

With no water changes, untreated tap water, inexpensive lighting by first starting the tank with live plants (FW) or macro algae( marine)

see: http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/a...-build-295530/

Last edited by beaslbob; 06-15-2013 at 08:52 AM. Reason: numerous spelling errors. LOL
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post #5 of 10 Old 06-15-2013, 10:08 AM
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First off, dhaval0603, welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.

Now, to your questions. First being the filter. Is this a Fluval "U" series, by any chance? If it is, you can adjust the flow, and you can also direct it against the end wall to further lessen it. On a 15g tank with plants, I would not recommend a HOB. You want more control over the flow, as this is not only going to benefit the plants but suit the type of fish one keeps in a 15g tank. If you want to change filters, a sponge would be a better choice, connected to an air pump. But what you now have may be perfectly fine with some adjustment.

On the substrate, as rexpepper said, sand is good. Liquid fertilizer is the first thing you need to use, and it may be sufficient depending upon the plants, fish, and water parameters of the tap water (GH or general hardness, which is the prime source of the "hard" minerals like calcium and magnesium). Substrate fertilizers benefit large substrate-rooted plants, but you are not going to have any of these in a 15g. Do you already have the sand gravel you mentioned? Or are you still looking at options? I ask because no mention is made of intended fish, and some substrate fish are better with sand, so this should be decided first.

And on the cycling, with live plants you do not need to fuss over a "cycle" because the plants take up the ammonia and the fish will be fine, provided there are sufficient plants and few first fish.

Hope this helps you get started.

Byron.
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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 #6 of 10 Old 06-15-2013, 01:47 PM Thread Starter
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Thankyou beaslbob.. i scanned my pet market here in mumbai.. specialized aqua soil and many other things are not available here.. :(.. sand is.. brown nd golden sand..
I ll keep ur advice in mind about fishes.. :)
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post #7 of 10 Old 06-15-2013, 02:00 PM Thread Starter
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Thankyou Byron..
Thanks for the welcome :) :)
My Internal filter is not the Fluval U.. its Sobo 950f Internal.. with 500 l/h capacity.. it does hav an adjustable flow direction but it does not hav a flow power regulator..
I think ur idea is better.. i ll rather block some of the outlet to reduce the flow or rather direct it towards the back of the tank on a wall..
And as i mentioned in the earlier post, special substrate like Eco-Complete nd Amazonia are not available in the pet market here.. i ll hav to order it online from some other country (lol).. i spoke to some aquarium shop owners too.. sand is enough with some fertilizer or root tabs.. i dont have the sand substrate but der is very little variety available here..
i m mostly going to go with Golden Sand (as shown in the image)
http://i1206.photobucket.com/albums/...1133S-Copy.jpg
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post #8 of 10 Old 06-15-2013, 02:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhaval0603 View Post
Thankyou Byron..
Thanks for the welcome :) :)
My Internal filter is not the Fluval U.. its Sobo 950f Internal.. with 500 l/h capacity.. it does hav an adjustable flow direction but it does not hav a flow power regulator..
I think ur idea is better.. i ll rather block some of the outlet to reduce the flow or rather direct it towards the back of the tank on a wall..
And as i mentioned in the earlier post, special substrate like Eco-Complete nd Amazonia are not available in the pet market here.. i ll hav to order it online from some other country (lol).. i spoke to some aquarium shop owners too.. sand is enough with some fertilizer or root tabs.. i dont have the sand substrate but der is very little variety available here..
i m mostly going to go with Golden Sand (as shown in the image)
http://i1206.photobucket.com/albums/...1133S-Copy.jpg
Plain sand will be fine. You do not need enriched substrates like Eco-Complete, I haqve tried them and they are not (in my view) worth the cost. Sand is fine.

If the filter can hang in one of the rear corners, direct the outflow against the end wall and that will lessen the flow down the tank.

Byron.
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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 #9 of 10 Old 06-15-2013, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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Exactly what i thought about the filter :)
Will start with the sand and the plants in a couple of days..
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post #10 of 10 Old 06-17-2013, 09:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhaval0603 View Post
Thankyou beaslbob.. i scanned my pet market here in mumbai.. specialized aqua soil and many other things are not available here.. :(.. sand is.. brown nd golden sand..
I ll keep ur advice in mind about fishes.. :)
Understand.

I just use what is available locally here. Not specific aquatic stuff. Just from the home building supply stores. the idea is the sand traps the peat moss and keeps thinc clear and g clean. You could use any soil that grows stuff but if it has fertizilers in it you may have to wait longer for the plants to suck out those. Or you'll get algae problems. In that case just kill the lights until the tank clears up.

still just my .02

maintain Fw and marine system with a strong emphasis on balanced, stabilized system that as much as possible are self substaning.

have maintained FW systems for up to 9 years with descendants from original fish and marine aquariums for up to 8 years.

With no water changes, untreated tap water, inexpensive lighting by first starting the tank with live plants (FW) or macro algae( marine)

see: http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/a...-build-295530/
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