Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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BarbH 06-07-2011 12:38 AM

New Plants Finally Arrived
After having ordered my plants through sweet aquatics they finally arrived and are in my tank :lol:. Now to start getting some pictures taken, a project to be taken on in the morning I think. All my fish seem to be interested in the new additions to their aquarium. I am waiting on placing any fertilizers in, although I am planning on getting some root tabs for my two amazon plants. The plants that I got are as follows 2 amazon swords, water wisteria, 3 vals, pennywort, some amazon frogbit, and myriophyllum mattogrossense ( a fern type plant from Brazil). Any suggestions of the type of fertilizers that I will want to use with these plants? New to keeping fish and to doing a planted tank so any advice would be appreciated. I am not using CO2 on this tank since I am trying to keep things as simple as I can. Hopefully will have pictures uo soon, and hopefully I have good luck with the selection of plants that I got.

Romad 06-07-2011 06:24 AM

Seachem Flourish Comprehensive supplement is a great liquid fert. That and proper lighting will be the perfect combo for your new plants.

redchigh 06-07-2011 09:05 AM

I agree with Romad, if your lighting is adequate then Flourish Comprehensive should be fine. If you can, your swordplants and vals might appreciate some root tabs...

Byron 06-07-2011 09:54 AM

If fertilizer is needed, liquid will suffice and cover all plants (substrate-rooted, floating, etc). Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive Supplement is the best I have found; make sure it is the Comprehensive, they make several products under the "Flourish" name.

For swords, root ferts will increase their growth. I have grown swords in plain gravel with just Flourish Comprehensive, and with both Flourish Comp and root sticks/tabs. They grew fine either way, but were larger with the addition of root ferts. If you can find them, the Nutrafin Plant-Gro sticks are in my experience better than the Flourish tabs, plus they are much less expensive. A pack of six was $8 and they last a year, compared to $12 for the Flourish tabs that need replacing every 3 months.

I started by saying if fertilizer is needed. Nutrients occur from the breakdown of organics in the substrate [never clean the substrate in planted tanks], and some from the tap water [another benefit of water changes]. It sometimes takes some experimenting to work this out.


BarbH 06-07-2011 10:15 AM

Thank you Romad and redchigh :-)

The bulbs that I have in right now are Marineland Natural daylight F15T8/18", that came with the replacement hoods that I had gotten for the aquarium. Trying to look online to find the Kelvin temp for these bulbs, from what I have found thinking might be 4600 k. So might need to upgrade the bulbs. If so any suggestions?

BarbH 06-07-2011 10:22 AM

Thanks Byron will look for those fertz. I want to be careful about adding them since I have read about people using the recommended doses and having found out used too much. I think one of the biggest things now is making sure that my lighting is adequate for my plants. Already mentioned in post above specs from the bulbs. Also I have a window that faces east in this room and get fairly strong light in the morning. The tank is not directly in front of the window but it does get light in the morning.

Byron 06-07-2011 11:11 AM

I dug around a bit and from what I can see, the tube you have should be fine. Several give the kelvin as 6500K, and it is called a natural daylight which usually equates with around 6500K. I also saw a photo and it certainly appears to be that. So I would stay with it.

Daylight from a window can be tricky to manage. The advantage of tank lights is control; we can limit the period of light easily. Just keep an eye out, algae can creep in very quickly and almost unnoticed with uncontrolled light. My windows in the fish room are covered with blinds (closed) in the winter, and heavy drapes in the summer.

On the ferts, your tap water hardness has a big role to play. Plants need calcium and magnesium, along with sulphur, manganese, copper, zinc. These minerals are often contained in tap water, and sufficient for the plants' needs. [Of course, conditioners that detoxify metals remove some of this, which is why one should use a conditioner that does not detoxify metals.] Fish foods provide everything, and this gets turned into organics naturally. The more fish and/or the more food they get, the more nutrients. It is possible to have everything necessary for a low-tech setup without adding prepared fertilizers. I use them because my water is very soft, no mineral at all basically, though I am finding out that I can do with less than I was adding.

BarbH 06-07-2011 12:02 PM

Thanks Byron good to know, question on hardness and softness. If I understand right GH is determined by the amount of minerals disolved in the water. My GH is 7, and KH is 3. Would my water be considered to be moderate in hardness? So much to learn with this hobby :-)

Byron 06-07-2011 01:24 PM


Originally Posted by BarbH (Post 694664)
Thanks Byron good to know, question on hardness and softness. If I understand right GH is determined by the amount of minerals disolved in the water. My GH is 7, and KH is 3. Would my water be considered to be moderate in hardness? So much to learn with this hobby :-)

With GH at 7 (degrees), you are at the high end of soft, just under medium hard. Very good. And KH at 3 is low, but it will buffer pH a bit. You should have no trouble with soft water fish. You are actually better than what I have to deal with, which is very soft.

BarbH 06-07-2011 10:37 PM

Thanks again Byron :-) So much to learn with this, but it has been fun so far learning.

Took some pictures of my tank which I need to work on getting resized to be able to post them to the site. Hopefully I will have them ready before I go to bed tonight

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