Keeping live plants.
At the mo ive got some fake plants in my tank. im thinking of getting live one's and was wondering how much care they need and cons of keeping them.
it really depends on the plant in question if your worried about the plants you could stick to some of the easier to care for ones. Java ferns, anubias's, java moss and a few others can live with lower light and little care (just a trim every now and then and some fertaliser)
a good start would be to look at Beginner Plants. and choose from a few of them.
I just already answered your light post, this is the first important step, to make sure you have a light in the tank that will be next to ideal for the plants.
Then really the selection of plants depends on 2 things 1) Tank size? 2) Fish in the tank?
I don't necessarily thing the "Beginner plants" above are the only thing you can have. I'd love to help recommend you some if you could answer the 2 questions above. I'd not wanna recommend you plants that either outgrow your tank in few weeks and/ or plants that would be destroyed by the fish you have :-)
As for maintenance: Many people on here use fertilizers to help plants grow. I personally don't and mine are thriving well, all depends on your source water and light really.
Leaving the only 'real maintenance' which is trimming plants back if they get too large, which is mainly stem plent, you cut the top's off, stick them back in the gravel and watch them grow :-)
So really its nothing that takes a lot of effort, but it sure looks cool IMO
Here's a few new pic's of m newly set up planted tanks http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...ew-pics-33450/
Last but not least your substrate is important: Large grvel does not really help a plant to develop a healthy root system, while finer gravel or sand does - So what you got in the tank :-)
plants can be very complicating seeing how most usually you need to have light nutrients c02 and fert all in balance which is harder for some than others. if you go with a higher wattage on your tank compact floro's, halaides, or flourecent tubes that give you more than 100 watts you will for sure need to add fert and everything else. i would go and take a look on google and find low light aquarium plants or easy care aquarium plants somethign like that and you should come up with some nic eplants.
would there be any reason why not to keep live plants? because the guy from the aquatic shop said i cant habe it planted.... i cant remember why he said i couldnt.
I don't see any reason you shouldn't or couldn't have live plants in your tank, makes no sense.
Some cichlids enjoy rooting around in substrate and this could make keeping plants difficult. Is only reason I can think that you might have trouble.
Unless as 1077 mentioned you have fish in the tank that destroy plants (vegetarians or substrate diggers) there is every reason tohave them and no reason not.
The amount of filtration and water quality control provided by live plants cannot be overstated. There is absolutely no filter available that can accomplish what plants can in terms of water quality and cleanliness.
so plants do the tank good in a way??
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