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  1. #1

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    Default Just Basic Questions?


    0 Not allowed!
    Well i've decided to keep my 10 gallon tank, that was originally a quarantine tank, as a full time aquarium for my male black molly and my male balloon molly/platy hybrid. Atm its a simple tank with a piece of driftwood, some fake plastic plants and gravel. Its steady at about 79 degrees. Ammonia 0ppm, Nitrites 0ppm, and Nitrates at about 20ppm. Lately I haven't enjoyed the look and if my father can afford it I'd like to upgrade the tank to a planted one. And I have a few concerns.

    Like what substrate should I use? I know gravel isn't a good choice for plants but is there any cheaper plant substrate that would work well? I would prefer not to use any sands or dirt based substrates.

    Also what if any fertilizers should I use? Brand names?

    I don't think I'm going to use CO2 I just really don't have the money for a big system plus I'd like to keep it low-tech and I don't really want to use CO2 for this tank.

    Lastly does anyone have any recommendation on plant species? I'd like some taller maybe stem plants, maybe some crypt species, anubias species. Thanks for the help!!!

  2. #2

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    It depends on quantity... I love pool filter sand. Home depot has a 100lb bag of it for 9 bucks and its worked for everything from discus to kuli loaches for me.

  3. #3

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Like what substrate should I use? Gravel works fine. Slightly more of it is a good idea to give them more room for their roots. If you want to go a step further there are nutrient rich substrates like Flourite. These are not necessary to grow plants, but they help.

    Also what if any fertilizers should I use? Brand names? I've never personally used it but I've heard many good things about Seachem's Flourish.

    Lastly does anyone have any recommendation on plant species? Depends on your level of light, but two of my favorites are Broad Leaf Ludwigia and the very common Java Fern. The ludwigia is nice because it grows tall and isn't that same exact shade of green that every other plant is. I'm a fan of the java ferns too because they are very versatile. They can grow in the ground or attached to driftwood or rocks. With several pieces attached to a tall piece of driftwood it can make the fern look huge and tall, even though it's several different plants.

  4. #4

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I think I'm going to choose a brand of flourite maybe with a layer of gravel on top or incorporated some how. Looking up a few species of plants.. I know for sure I want anubias. I haven't decided on lighting yet. But I need something thats in the mid to high level range. So if anyone has recommendations for bulbs, that'd be fantastic.

  5. #5

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Okay so I'm looking online and I found something called Real Laterite. Has anyone used this as a substrate for plants? Does it work well? If not I'll just go with flourite but I've never heard about Laterite and I wanted to hear what you guys had to say.

  6. #6

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I don't have any experience when it comes to real laterite but I found that pool filter sand and flourish root tabs work great for me. You can get a pack of 40 on amazon for a little over $18, that pack should last you at least a couple years.

  7. #7

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Trying to keep away from sand. XD have had problems with it in the past and I always found it a pain to clean. I think I'm going to go with flourite I really like the black color as well.

    Okay now does anyone have any good recommendations on lighting? I need lights for plants with low - medium lighting needs.

  8. #8

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Yeah it's really a task to initially clean it, don't forget you have to rinse the fluorite also, it's quite dusty.

  9. #9

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I assumed I would have to XD I don't mind. I had to clean the gravel as well.

  10. #10

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Flourite is going to be a lot more messy than sand... and more expensive. I thought you wanted cheap and less hassle?

    Sand or Gravel + Seachem Flourish Tabs will do fine, plus a liquid additive (Flourish Comprehensive) and possibly liquid CO2 additive (much cheaper than the high-tech option you're probably thinking).
    Adventures in Aquaria - The KevinVA Story

    When in doubt, ask yourself... W.W.L.S (What would Lee Say)?

    Have a fish problem? Fill out and post this completed questionnaire in the General Aquarium Forum, when you start a new thread.

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