Aquarium Forum

  · Tropical Fish Home
· Fish News
· Aquarium Forum
· Calculators
· Equipment reviews
· Free Aquarium Ebook
· Feedback
· Link to us
· Photo gallery
· Plant species
· Tropica Plant DB
Tropical fish species
· By Common name
· By Scientific name
Tropical Marine fish
· By Common name
· By Scientific name


  · African Cichlids
· Algae Control
· Aquarium Decoration
· Aquarium Resources
· Aquatic Plants
· Barb Fish
· Betta Fish
· Breeding Fish
· Catfish
· Central American Cichlids
· Cichlids
· Clownfish
· Corals
· Corydoras Catfish
· Discus Fish
· Dwarf Cichlids
· Fish Diseases
· Frogs and Turtles
· Goby Fish
· Goldfish
· Gourami
· Invertebrates
· Jellyfish
· Killiefish
· Lake Victoria Cichlids
· Livebearers
· Malawi Cichlids
· Marine Aquariums
· Marine Aquarium Fish
· Other Fish
· Pleco
· Predatory Fish
· Photography
· Pond Fish
· Responsible Fish Keeping
· Rainbow Fish
· Shark Fish
· South American Cichlids
· Tanganyika Cichlids
· Tetra Fish
· Tropical Fish Food

User Tag List

Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1

    Default Advice for plants

    0 Not allowed!
    I'm wanting to put live plants in my aquarium and need some advice. First of all I have a 55g tank with small freshwater community fish. I have many questions. I've seen fairly pricey substrate for sale that claims to provide excellent plant growth, is it neccesary or just nice to have? My tank has been in use for over a decade and the gravel is very "rich" i gotta believe plants would grow pretty good in it. How much light is needed and for how many hours per day? Do the plants and light have any effect on water quality I should be aware of? And what are some easy to grow and readily available plants to start with? I'd really appreciate any info, suggestions , tips, or tricks that any one has. Thanks.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Tampa, Florida

    Awards Showcase

    Latest gifts & ribbons:

    No Message - korith   Just a 'Thank you' penguin to a water treatment guy :-D. Clean water and sanitiation is a CORNERSTONE of modern civilization that people take for granted and don't think twice about & I felt that way about it before I had fish lol. Thanks to my HS Hi - 850R   because I LOL'ed at your single neon 90 gal show fish - ddavis1979   For the help on CO2 and plants - Greentoads41   Great looking tank you have! - ~firefly~   


    0 Not allowed!
    Plant-specific substrates are good as they typically absorb nutrients from the water column and make it available to be absorbed via roots. Even though your tank has been is use for a long time, if it's plain gravel then it won't be "rich" with anything, except maybe detritus if not properly cleaned as it doesn't have the capacity to absorb nutrients like plant substrates. But many people have no issue growing plants in plain gravel or even cheapo play sand. On a 55g tank, I would suggest a 2-bulb T5HO fixture. The amount of hours is something that needs to be adjusted over time to create a balance between the light, nutrients, CO2 and algae. Algae is what many people base it on as the algae may start to out-compete the plants after a certain amount of time. 8 hours is the usual base recommendation but you could have them on as long as 16 hours. Plants will remove nutrients from the water which is great for keeping the water cleaner for the fish, and the brighter the lights (up to a point and depending on the plants chosen) the quicker the plants will grow which will remove nutrients at a faster rate. But like I said, it's very important to find a balance so having lights that are too bright or that on for too long could just create a tank filled with algae. Also, if your lights are too strong and/or on for too long and deplete the nutrients too quickly then your plants could start showing signs of nutrient deficiencies and die on you. Some low-light/slow-growing plants don't like strong light and need to be shaded or they'll get algae growth on their leaves eventually killing them. The types of plants you can keep will depend on the light fixture you go with. You should be able to keep most plants using a 2-bulb T5HO fixture but you may also need to dose CO2 and possibly dose ferts depeding on how heavily you plant the tank. If you go with a single bulb then you should still be able to keep low-light plants and likely won't need to dose anything as the fish waste and equilibrium CO2 level would be sufficient. Some low-light plants would include java fern, anubias, anacharis and hornwort, but there are many others as well.

    EDIT: For a larger list of low-light plants, you can visit this thread that genocidex just posted from another site that.
    Last edited by funkman262; 03-28-2013 at 12:51 AM.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Buffalo, NY

    Awards Showcase

    Latest gifts & ribbons:

    T.G.I.F.! - Slaphppy7   T.G.I.F. - showmebutterfly   Merry Christmas! - Slaphppy7   Happy Christmas! - Slaphppy7   Happy Christmas! - Slaphppy7   


    0 Not allowed!
    Here's a thread that I wrote up on my 55g tank... My set up is more for medium to high level plants. All depends on what sort of plants you like

  4. #4


    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks for the info. Funkman, your tank is wicked awesome. Definitely going with the T5 HO's. How about adding some substrate to my existing gravel? I'm thinking that would give me a large volume of decent material for root growth without me having to remove the old gravel or buy lots of bags of substrate. Any thoughts?

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Dec 2012

    Awards Showcase

    Latest gifts & ribbons:

    Merry Christmas! - ~firefly~   Merry Christmas - mommy1   Merry Christmas! - Slaphppy7   For Your 33 Gallon. Happy Holidays! - Taurus   Happy New Year! - jeffs99dime   


    0 Not allowed!
    Yes. Not going to work. But root tabs would.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    methuen ma usa

    Awards Showcase

    Latest gifts & ribbons:

    Merry Christmas! - Lab_Rat   thank you for the birthday wishes - mommy1   Happy One Year AC Anniversary! - Rue   For being understanding, thank you - Cliff   (closest I could find to a catfish) Thanks for the nomination! - sheamurai   
    World Trade Center Victims and Heroes - Fireworks Safety - genocidex   


    0 Not allowed!

    take a look there, you can find some great substrates for plants there. switching the substrates isnt much of a problem, not too hard either. the safetsorb and oildry would be super cheap and have a good ECE (what funkman was talking about).

    that would help you keep plants easier than with normal substrate.
    I wonder if i plant one of my tiger barbs would the demon seed grow to a full tree?
    gotta love them bunnies!
    I.R.S.: We've got what it takes to take what you've got!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts