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post #1 of 9 Old 06-28-2008, 07:33 PM Thread Starter
Kim
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what works best with live plants

Hello,
I am looking to update my betta's tank from a 5.5 gallon tank with silk plants to a 15 gallon planted tank. I have been reading a lot about how to care for plants and have gotten contradicting answers. For starters, would using a plant substrate eliminate the need for root tabs and liquid fertalizers? My tap water comes from a well, so it probably has minerals and the like in it already. I read that you do not want to over fertalize. Also, what works best, flourish excel or DIY CO2. Thank you.
Kim
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post #2 of 9 Old 06-29-2008, 01:30 PM
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If you want to do plants, you have to be careful of adding too much phosphate, that causes algae out breaks.

I would go with good substrate/gravel. Like Eco-complete or Flourite and C02 additions.

I don't like messing with flourish liquid supplements because I had a nasty algae breakout that took forever to get under control.
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post #3 of 9 Old 06-29-2008, 02:05 PM
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I have tried a few different combinations of things for keeping live plants, and what I've found to be best for me is a combination of Eco Complete and API root tabs.
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post #4 of 9 Old 06-29-2008, 07:18 PM
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It really depends on a lot of factors: primarily light and what you're looking to grow. Rooted plants generally require lots of substrate fertilization whereas floating/stem plants need a liquid fert like Flourish. CO2 doesn't work in the same way as a fertilizer, and actually works best WITH both substrate and liquid fertilizers, but it's sort of overkill if you have low lighting. If you have high lighting it may be necessary to add co2 in order to prevent algae problems.

The key is to have a balance of fertilizers, lighting and co2.
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post #5 of 9 Old 07-01-2008, 02:33 PM
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I know my questions have been asked many times before by others and I know how lazy I appear for not going back
through past threads to find the answers....
I have no excuse other than to get the info quickly. :)

When you mention adding C02 what does that mean exactly?
As in, what is the delivery method and form of the C02?

My tank is currently cycling but when it's ready I want fish and live plants. I plan on a sand substrate.
When you have live plants are you limited to the types of fish you can
keep due to the plants specific fertilizer needs?
Or, are you limited to the types of plants you can keep when you also keep fish?

Thanks!
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post #6 of 9 Old 07-01-2008, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Fat_Fender_40
If you want to do plants, you have to be careful of adding too much phosphate, that causes algae out breaks.

I would go with good substrate/gravel. Like Eco-complete or Flourite and C02 additions.

I don't like messing with flourish liquid supplements because I had a nasty algae breakout that took forever to get under control.
CO2 might be a little much for a 15g. Co2 can cause monster water condition fluctuations if not monitored. It can also cause a healthy dent in the pocketbook.

I prefer EcoComplete for the substrate. Using liquid fertilizers like Pfertz is also recommended with root tabs for the root feeders.
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post #7 of 9 Old 07-01-2008, 04:39 PM
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I dunno about the co2 thing- if you have high light it's certainly worthwhile. Pressurized co2 is definitely overkill, but diy co2 is great for a tank that size.

I have a 10G with a 40 watt compact florescent (half 6700k half 10000k) and I use DIY co2 generation. I use 1/4 tablespoon of yeast and 2 cups of sugar every few weeks and that it my only expense- probably comes to less than $10 a year.
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post #8 of 9 Old 07-01-2008, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by okiemavis
I dunno about the co2 thing- if you have high light it's certainly worthwhile. Pressurized co2 is definitely overkill, but diy co2 is great for a tank that size.

I have a 10G with a 40 watt compact florescent (half 6700k half 10000k) and I use DIY co2 generation. I use 1/4 tablespoon of yeast and 2 cups of sugar every few weeks and that it my only expense- probably comes to less than $10 a year.
I was talking about the more advanced systems using CO2 bottles, monitors, and more advanced delivery systems. The least expensive of mine ran about $500 installed.
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post #9 of 9 Old 07-02-2008, 03:48 PM
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Oh fully- they're sooo expensive! No way am I ever getting one of those, unless I end up with some crazy setup. I shoulda clarified that I meant DIY co2- or one of the small non-pressurized systems like this:
http://www.thatpetplace.com/pet/group/243/product.web
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