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Pr0eve
02-26-2008, 03:33 AM
I have never had real plants before, I want to set up my 55G with all live plants. I will use what ever substrate I need to to keep healthy plants. can some of you type out some good noobie plants and substrate I should use. and what ever else I may need. this tank will be stocked with tetras for the most part. I would like to go with sand if I can so I will be able to see my shrimp, damn thing hide to much in the gravel lol


thank.

Pro..

Adrian
02-26-2008, 03:47 AM
I have never had real plants before, I want to set up my 55G with all live plants. I will use what ever substrate I need to to keep healthy plants. can some of you type out some good noobie plants and substrate I should use. and what ever else I may need. this tank will be stocked with tetras for the most part. I would like to go with sand if I can so I will be able to see my shrimp, damn thing hide to much in the gravel lol


thank.

Pro..

Well, I would love to be able to tell yah to go with sand, but it compacts so hard that the roots of the plants have a hard time growing. You could go with eco-complete, which is black, or flourite which is earth toned. Or spruce it up a bit and go with a mixture of both.

At least 3 to 5 watts per gallon of light, seeing as a 55 is relatively deep. Hard getting light to pentrate water.

Newbie plants? Any crypt, as it needs very little care, and some are really gorgeous. Any of the anubias would be good. Nice selection, and easy maintance. Camboba, anarachis are also easy to grow, and look nice. They get tall and are easy to propagate.

Just some suggestions.

Pr0eve
02-26-2008, 03:57 AM
how deep do I need the stuff to be if I mix?

but yea, I want smaller plants in front and taller in the back. maybe some drift wood,, I am really very open on this atm. fire away..

do I need a co2 system or what and maybe some thing else ???

richberstler
02-26-2008, 04:00 AM
I have an inch or two of substrate, but lighting it definitely the most important part of live plants... something I screwed up on. I suggest doing good research on lighintg before researching plants since it will limit the types of plants you can sustain.

Incredulous_Ed
02-26-2008, 04:02 AM
OK, first of all, what lights do you have in there now? what substrate? what filtration?

I like fluorite as a substrate, but it is expensive. Eco complete is around the same price (20$ for 20lbs). Go for around 3 or 4 inches in the back.

Try plants like hornwort and anacharis forst ans see how they do.

Pr0eve
02-26-2008, 04:09 AM
I can change the lighting if need, I half way expect to have to do that. my filtration is a AC 110 and a bed filter.

Pr0eve
02-26-2008, 04:10 AM
the lighting are 2 15W aquatic lights, made for fish tanks.

Pr0eve
02-26-2008, 04:11 AM
you do not ever have to replace the substrate for plants do you? like it does not get used up?

Adrian
02-26-2008, 04:12 AM
how deep do I need the stuff to be if I mix?

but yea, I want smaller plants in front and taller in the back. maybe some drift wood,, I am really very open on this atm. fire away..

do I need a co2 system or what and maybe some thing else ???

Generally I would go with 3 to 4 inches of substrate in the back, and at least 2 inches in the front.

Yes, I would suggest running co2, again, that is a bit pricey. But worth it in the long run. Drift wood will look nice, but watch the tannin levels. It will drop your ph, so will the co2. Away around that, would be to get the eco-complete for cichlids, as it has a high ph. Perhaps they will balance each other out.

Anubias nana is a smaller plant, some of the swords, can get quite tall. Remember my photo of my tank? Those swords I have are almost 22 inches tall. The center one is a crypt cilia. Lots of options are available, but it has to start with light, and substrate.

Pr0eve
02-26-2008, 04:19 AM
there will be no cichlids in this tank when I am done with it, and bring down the ph a few points would not really be a bad thing for what I want to do, as long as I can keep it stable.

Adrian
02-26-2008, 04:28 AM
Flourite and eco-complete are packed with nutrients, but like everything, they will eventually burn out...so to speak... Using seachums fert tabs will help then. I have had flourite in my 20 gallon h for over a year, and it is still leaching iron in the tank. They last for quite awhile. Too much fertalizer could produce algae blooms as some of our fellow colleagues have found out. Fertalize when you start to see the leaves starting to turn yellow. Then add ferts.

Power compact lighting will probably be best for you, as they have a tremendous amount of power, and can be upgradeable. Meaning you can run 6700k bulbs, and an actinic for color enhancement. Or you can use 10k bulb with a plain color enhancer, or both.