Anchor Floating Plants?
Just curious how some handle floating plants with surface current. I have wisteria and anacharis floating, yet due to surface current it all ends up bunched against one side.
My tank is a 55 gallon 48", using a Fluval 406 with a homemade spray bar pointing from one end to the other lengthwise. Surface is a steady current with just a very light rippling effect (no splashing). I enlarged the holes to slow the current yet keep a higher flow, and it seems to work well without any dead spots. Don't want to go against the glass as while it decreases surface current it increases current along the bottom.
Thinking of tying some of the plants in a loose bunch to the center support bar with fishing line, lol. Possibly might also create a calm area so the hatchets can relax at the surface as well? Wondering if anyone else has dealt with this and what worked for them...
Edit skip to the next one. Want a new, unique idea that I haven't tried yet but may suit your tank? They make a flexible plastic webbing consisting of little empty squares that they make so you can keep the birds off tyour grass seed - it's black. You could attach it over the top of the tank and just plop the floaters into their spaces. Just an idea...
Also, I'm thinking that larger floating plants, enough of them to fill the surface, would work better, and without the webbing. :-) I'm having the same problem in my 10 g with Water Sprite clipped from a planted plant. I'm hoping they will transform into big-leaved Water Sprite floating plants.
Other than not having the current agitating the surface theres not a lot you can do really, I had this same problem and asked the same questions, and in the end I just put up with my floating Salvinia and water lettuce, and now I have some amazon frogbit also being spun around the surface.
I posed the question about lack of surface agitation causing lack of oxygen in the water, and kind of got the answer that surface agitation is not entirely required in a planted tank. Which I have, and I tried having the filter return pipe pointing down and at the back of the tank, so there was NO water agitation, my floaters looked lovely and tranquil but I had a crisis with nitrite around the same time and freaked out, and turned the return pipe back to the surface, and left it that way since (I am not saying that was the cause, but I wasn't taking any chances). I am no expert, but apparently having water agitation in a planted tank set up is a bad thing, as it drives Co2 out of the system which is needed by the plants... I worry about the fish though.
Using some kind of baffle has also been suggested, something that sits in front of the holes that disrupts the current flow.
Instead of your present arrangement, consider attaching those plants to the side glass. This can be done by purchasing pH probe holders with a suction cup. The probe hole is approximatley 1/2 inch id. You will also need to attach a small weight around the stems of the plants to keep them from floating out of the probe hole. Just be sure the weights are not made of lead.
There are a couple species of Water Sprite out there. Ceratopteris cornuta and Ceratopteris thalictroides. C. cornuta is the one that will have broader leaves and does best floating, but C. thalictroides is the one you will most commonly see sold in stores and online which has the much finner leaves, even when floating. I have C. thalictroides floating in my tank and it grows like an absolute weed, but the leaves are very fine.
Thanks for the replys all! I'm probably going to be trying out several different things this weekend if I can squeeze in some free time. I'll post back and let you know what worked for me...
I ran across an idea that someone is doing - two filters at either end of the tank going from back to front or front to back. I think that the water flow from the filters would tend to move the floaters to the middle of the tank because when the water flow hits the other side, there is some side-to-side movement. A difficult problem. Less water moveement/surface agitation would tend to keep in CO2 and oxygen would still enter the water at the surface and be distributed around the tank, as an altternative. In a planted tank, the filter is really most useful at filtering out organic particulate/dissolved matter, and according to the Eccentric Gardner or somehing close to that, does that in a half-hour.
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