Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   Upgrading to real plants (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/beginner-planted-aquarium/upgrading-real-plants-2386/)

Brandon 01-10-2007 06:45 PM

Upgrading to real plants
 
Q1. Hey i was desiding to upgrade to real plants soon and wondered if i could put real with fake.

Q2.I just wanted to know if i could use a 30 dollar light from petcetera(for 15 gallon)

Q3. I wanted to do the grassy stuff like in the totm pic and wondered ram if ram cichlid and gold guarami would eat it.

Q2. i wanted to know if i need a bubbler.

Thanks

Lupin 01-10-2007 09:23 PM

Re: Upgrading to real plants
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Brandon
Q1. Hey i was desiding to upgrade to real plants soon and wondered if i could put real with fake.

Yes.:)
Quote:

Q2.I just wanted to know if i could use a 30 dollar light from petcetera(for 15 gallon)
What brand and how many watts is it? Fluorescent light tubes are better than incandescent in case the light you chose was incandescent.:)
Quote:

Q3. I wanted to do the grassy stuff like in the totm pic and wondered ram if ram cichlid and gold guarami would eat it.
No, they won't.:)
Quote:

Q2. i wanted to know if i need a bubbler.
You can but I prefer doing so only when the tank's lights are switched off. Due to respiration process, the plants compete the fish for oxygen in the dark hence the oxygen supply is easily depleted at night.
Remember though that strong agitation can have dire consequences for the plants. They need CO2 and the lack of CO2 brought by constant stirring of the water surface will easily harm and even kill them.

fish_4_all 01-10-2007 10:32 PM

I use air stones on both my tanks with great success. If you plan to add DIY or pressurized CO2 then a bubbler defeats the purpose completely. You may not have much success with airstones in the tank but my plants thrive, well at least the plants in one tank do. I run them all day and night. You will have to see what works for you if you don't plan to inject CO2, If you do plant to inject, then an airstone during the day is going to defeat the purpose and should only be run at night, turn on 30 minutes before lights out and then off 30 minutes before lights on if you can time it that way. If not it really doesn't matter.

As for fake and real, maybe to start with but if you get any descent growth, the real plants to obscure the fake and they will be the spots where algea grows the worst.

For a 15 gallon, you want at least 30 watts to grow plant with a noticeable growth rate. Anything below that will still grow a lot of plants but the choices are a lot more limited.

Grassy, low carpet plants require a LOT of light. For a standard 15 gallon, I would say 50-65 watts to grow them at a rate faster than a snail in winter. I have 33 watts over a standard 10 gallon and can not grow glasso, HC or clover.

flatcam1 01-10-2007 10:36 PM

Just to let you know,
if you happen to have corys or Bristlenose, they are likely to wreck the real plants.
This happened to me and i had to demote my plants status to fake :(

fish_4_all 01-10-2007 10:42 PM

Yes both Cories and BN can be a pain but deep rooted plants will work fine. I have both cories and BN in my tanks with plants and it just takes a while for the plants to anchor themselves so the fish won't uproot them. Deep substrate helps too.

Lupin 01-10-2007 10:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fish_4_all
Yes both Cories and BN can be a pain but deep rooted plants will work fine. I have both cories and BN in my tanks with plants and it just takes a while for the plants to anchor themselves so the fish won't uproot them. Deep substrate helps too.

The same thing here as well. When I had cories and a BN, I kept avoiding new plants for fear those catfish will try to dislodge them over and over again.:shake:

Brandon 01-11-2007 11:34 AM

I do have a julii cory. I dont know how many watts the light is but i could check it out. Would led christmas lights work?

fish_4_all 01-11-2007 12:22 PM

No, LED lights won't work. You need a flourescent type bulb to grow plants well especially a carpet plant.

Brandon 01-11-2007 07:54 PM

Ok thanks. I just went to petcetera and took back one of my fish and i looked at the light i might get and its a 15 watt is that enough?

dasmall1 01-11-2007 08:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fish_4_all
For a 15 gallon, you want at least 30 watts to grow plant with a noticeable growth rate. Anything below that will still grow a lot of plants but the choices are a lot more limited.

That is not completely true. 2 wpg on a 15 gallon tank is medium low lighting. The only carpeting plant I would risk with such low lighting is HC. You would also need some sort of nutrient rich substrate or additive for a carpeting plant since most are heavy root feeders. CO2 would not be necessary for the lighting, but it would be beneficial. The easiest thing to do in that situation is fertilize with Flourish Excel. I don't know for sure, however, what lighting you have at all. Just a little ramble.


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