View Full Version : Want to get rid of fake plants...

01-03-2011, 03:17 AM
I'm fairly new to the whole aquarium scene.. I have two 10 gal and one 5 gal. I'd really love to try and get some real plants into these tanks as I don't really like how the fake ones look. Any advice on some easy plants to use and what kind of set-ups I'll need?

01-03-2011, 03:38 AM
What is your current tank lighting? If you have standard incandescent hoods you can just swap those bulbs out for some screw in CFL bulbs in the daylight 6500K spectrum and grow most any low light plant. Java fern, anubias, moss, crypts, rotala rotundifolia, moneywort, and floating species are excellent beginner plants. You will need root tabs around crypts if you choose those, the others will benefit from a weekly dose of a good general aquarium plant fertilizer.

01-03-2011, 03:43 AM
Would I need to take the fish out for the process? The tank I want to plant has 4 guppy fry in a breeder net, 2 panda cory's, and 2 mollies.

01-03-2011, 03:48 AM
What is your substrate, is it larger gravels or small? Larger gravel makes it hard for plants to root, smaller grade stuff is actually an acceptable plant growing medium. If you need to swap out substrate then yes, you would do best to momentarily remove the fish. Java fern do best attached to wood or rock, same holds true for moss and anubias. You can plant anubias in your substrate but only plant the roots...never push the rhizome(thick stem looking thing leaves grow out of) into the substrate.

01-03-2011, 03:55 AM
It's the larger gravels, marble sized at least. How would I go about changing the gravel without totally having to recycle my tank? I've had it up and running for 3 months now, would hate to have to start all over again. Would you suggest the smaller gravel that comes in diff colors or would sand be the best way to go?

01-03-2011, 04:15 AM
To go with live plants, I would personally choose something that is natural in color. If you feel like spending a few extra dollars plant substrate such as Flourite or Eco-Complete is the way to go. Walmart/Petsmart has a smaller grade natural shade of gravel which is decent at growing plants especially if you use some root tabs. If you keep your filter running while changing the substrate(as the filter media contains a good portion of your bacteria) you should not suffer a spike in levels nor have to cycle your tank again.