Procedure for setting up planted tank
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Procedure for setting up planted tank

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Procedure for setting up planted tank
Old 10-02-2012, 08:58 AM   #1
 
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Procedure for setting up planted tank

I will be setting up a 55 gallon tank in the next few weeks and am wondering if there is a best method for setting up the planted aquarium. I know that I have to lay down the substrate (sand) add water, driftwood, filters, etc. but my concern is with the additon of plants and fish.

Is it best to order the plants and quarantine them in advance in a separate tank or order them and put them in the aquarium and keep an eye on them? How soon after adding the plants can I add the fish? Can the plants potentially carry anything that is toxic to the fish?

If I need to quarantine the plants then I probably need to go ahead and order them so I can quarantine them in a spare tank.
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:57 AM   #2
 
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Originally Posted by SusanB View Post
I will be setting up a 55 gallon tank in the next few weeks and am wondering if there is a best method for setting up the planted aquarium. I know that I have to lay down the substrate (sand) add water, driftwood, filters, etc. but my concern is with the additon of plants and fish.

Is it best to order the plants and quarantine them in advance in a separate tank or order them and put them in the aquarium and keep an eye on them? How soon after adding the plants can I add the fish? Can the plants potentially carry anything that is toxic to the fish?

If I need to quarantine the plants then I probably need to go ahead and order them so I can quarantine them in a spare tank.
as far as the initial setup goes you can do a few things to aid your plant growth my favorite is adding about an inch to the back half of the tank of natural untreated peat and then covering with gravel

how ever this can prove hard to find so if you cant find it on the net go for pond compost
now you say you want sand so to make this still possible you would have to add a thin layer of gravel before adding the sand this is mainly in case you have or end up getting things like weather/clown/horseface loach or anything else that will want to dig and mess the peat up leaving your tank cloudy
doing this will stop the mess before it starts

also there is no need to quarantine pants the only worry is getting the dreaded pest snails that sometimes come with plants you can solve this by getting a snail treatment and dipping the plants in a strong solution which will knock the snails out and stop you having a potential out break of the nasty things

Last edited by madyotto; 10-02-2012 at 10:01 AM..
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Old 10-02-2012, 12:17 PM   #3
 
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I never worry over new plants in new tanks. If the plants are purchased from a fish store where there are fish in the tanks with the plants, then the plants can carry many of the diseases fish may carry. Here we are basically thin king of parasitic issues like ich (white spot). It can be worth quarantining new plants just as one would fish, in the case of plants a week in a fish-less tank. To be honest, i don't.

I personally would not use anything but just sand as the substrate. Mixing sand with gravel will always result in the sand being at the bottom and the larger gravel on top. And the issue of fish digging up any underlying layer substance is valid. Plus it is not necessary. I have play sand in my tanks, or fine gravel in a couple, and for 20 years i have maintained vibrant planted tanks with these substrates. Nutrients can be added according to the plant needs, via liquid and in some cases substrate tabs.

Plant the tank fully (as fully as you can). Include some floating plants, as these being fast growing will assimilate more ammonia. A few fish can go in as soon as the tank is planted and running. While the nitrifying bacteria will still establish, the plants use most of the ammonia and the fish are spared any ill effects of cycling. Delicate fish should not be added until the tank has matured/established though.

Byron.
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