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Old 08-18-2006, 06:05 PM   #1
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real plants vs fake plants

New new 20 gallon tank, no fish yet, is set up and has all fake plants. Are adding some real plants a good idea for a fish tank. I want to make my tank as healthy as can be but I also know that rea plants can also cause some problems. Any suggestions or advice woudl be great, if i shoudl get a real plant or two, what kind/size should i get? If its not necesary to have them then yay!
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Old 08-18-2006, 06:24 PM   #2
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do you know how many watts of lighting your tank has?

Plants are a good way to increase the health of your tank, but not necessary. I know Java Fern and Java Moss are some popular low light, easy to care for plants.
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Old 08-18-2006, 06:29 PM   #3
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plants arent neccesary, but they help and are a nice healthy addition to a tank. plants usualy come in smaller sizes from the lfs, you could look at some low light plants like ciliata or a jungle vallisneria. theres lots of plants to choose from, im sure someone will add some more to the list.
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Old 08-18-2006, 06:59 PM   #4
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here are your choices for low light plants:
http://www.plantgeek.net/plantguide_...=1&filter_by=2

any of these would be great, and most of them are easy to take care od, and do not require co2, make sure you check their requirements before buying. Driftwood always looks nice with live plants too, just a suggestion.
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Old 08-19-2006, 05:00 AM   #5
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I have a 15 watt flouresent bulb
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Old 08-19-2006, 10:14 AM   #6
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Then you are most definately in the low light level. Stick to very slow growers that are tolerant of poor light nutrition. You need to realize that being a live plant they will cause more work in your tank. Leaves falling off and clogging the filter, pruning, algae, etc. I like you said, hey I want a couple of live plants in the tank. 5months later I spend 1 more effort on my plants than the fish (but I do enjoy it).

Please also make sure you are cycling your tank properly before addition of your fish.
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Old 08-25-2006, 07:26 PM   #7
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Yea i have another thread about cycling.
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Old 08-25-2006, 08:11 PM   #8
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Despite rumors, a low-light tank can be successful. It isn't as challenged as most would believe.

I keep a low-light tank with a variety of slow and fast growers. The trick is to monitor what is happening with the tank and making subtle corrections before things get out of hand. IME, it is fairly easy to do. For more info, click the links in my sig.
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Old 08-25-2006, 11:47 PM   #9
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Would decaying plants account for elevated nitrate levels?
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Old 08-26-2006, 06:38 AM   #10
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Yep, it's a part of the nitrogen cycle. The good thing is, plants will use this as a nutrient and depending on your plant load, it'll probably never cause a problem. In a planted tank, you have to keep a minimum of 10ppm nitrate at all times.

Quite the conumdrum eh? In a regular FW tank, you are fighting to keep nitrate levels down. In a planted tank, you have to keep nitrate levels up.
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Old 08-26-2006, 11:24 AM   #11
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Quote:
Despite rumors, a low-light tank can be successful. It isn't as challenged as most would believe.

I keep a low-light tank with a variety of slow and fast growers. The trick is to monitor what is happening with the tank and making subtle corrections before things get out of hand. IME, it is fairly easy to do.
I agree 100%.

I'll add everyone should at least try some low light plants....its to cool and to cheap not too...plus it looks great.
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Old 08-26-2006, 09:08 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Jchillin
Yep, it's a part of the nitrogen cycle. The good thing is, plants will use this as a nutrient and depending on your plant load, it'll probably never cause a problem. In a planted tank, you have to keep a minimum of 10ppm nitrate at all times.

Quite the conumdrum eh? In a regular FW tank, you are fighting to keep nitrate levels down. In a planted tank, you have to keep nitrate levels up.
Beauty.

Thanks for that peice of avice.
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