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pictures of my aquatic plants

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
by Sorathien on March 19, 2006 03:41 PM
i have a 20g freshwater aquarium that has been running for about 6 weeks. the fish are one red honey gourami, 6 glowlight tetras, and 3 otos.

Lighting: 48" shop light with two T12 full spectrum flourecent bulbs. if you exclude the 18" of overhang off the tank, i have 2.75 watts per gallon. no fertilizers, and no injected CO2


Green Cabomba
Cryptocoryne Wendtii
Aponogeton Crispus
Rotalia Indica
Nymphaea lotus 'Zenkeri'
Hygrophila polysperma 'Rosanervig'
Red Ozelot Sword
Dwarf Hairgrass

here is a picture when i first set it up


and here are a few picture of it now, 6 weeks later



by netty on March 19, 2006 08:44 PM
Great job Sorathien! [clappy]
Looks great! You must have very happy fish!

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by margaret e. pell on March 20, 2006 06:41 AM
How do/will you avoid brown algea? All the plants in my aquarium wind up coated with it and decline more or less slowly, then die. Yours are BEAUTIFUL!! And such growth!

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may God bless the WHOLE world!
by Amy R. on March 20, 2006 08:06 AM
Awesome job! I love aquatic plants, but haven't had the best of luck with them. That and the snail likes to decimate them in no time flat. Your pics make me want to try again!
by Sorathien on March 20, 2006 11:22 AM
i have 3 otocinclus catfish. they get about 1.25-1.5" long, and brown diatoms (algae) are their favorite food. i had a bunch of it in my tank too, and in about 4 days the otos had it cleaned up.

otos need to be kept in groups though, of 3 or more. they will stress out and die if they're not in groups. they are very peaceful and quite fun to watch. they are little clowns.
by Cricket on March 20, 2006 11:39 AM
Beautiful tank! What kind of plant is the feathery one in the center?
by Sorathien on March 20, 2006 12:46 PM
hornwort. its a weed. it would take over my tank if i didn't keep it trimmed back. its been known to get into lakes and rivers and grows so prolifically it will actually clog water ways, snag on boats, and birds even get tangled in it and drown.

but if you keep it under control, its a pretty nice plant. because it grows so fast, it out-competes algae for nutrients and also releases a natural algecide.
by prasad on April 01, 2006 08:33 PM
Iam prasad from India how come you have
managed grow plants in indoor aquarium.
I have tired but failed due to lack of
sun-light.what is the option you have used
for sun-light or your fish tank is placed
in bright sun light.what are the precautions
you took to avoid green alagal growth.
by Sorathien on April 01, 2006 11:58 PM
i have a light on top of the aquarium. the bulbs are full spectrum, which means they are the same kind of light as sunlight. there are many different kinds of light, different colors of light, etc. the light bulbs i have over my tank are the same spectrum as sunlight. they are flourecent bulbs, the long tube kind. i put them in a fixture and set them ontop of my tank.

lights are measured in watts, and each of my bulbs is 40 watts. i have two bulbs over the tank, but the fixture and bulbs are longer than the tank, so if you subtract the part that hangs off the side, i have about 2 and 1/2 watts of light coming into my tank per gallon of water in the tank, because it is a 20 gallon tank of water.

you must not only have the right kind of light, but enough of it. medium light is 2-3 watts per gallon, and you can grow most plants in this ammount of light.
by gardeningmomma on April 02, 2006 12:08 AM
Do you have to trim the plants in the aquarium? And do you have to feed them anything special? How did you go about selecting the fish? I'm curious as I have a small tank set up at the moment with artifical plants and I wouldn't mind using real plants in there.
by gardeningmomma on April 02, 2006 12:09 AM
P.S. I meant to say your tank looks fabulous!!!
by Sorathien on April 02, 2006 02:45 AM
i do have to trim some of the faster-growing plants like the hornwort (which died on me and has been replaced with wisteria and myrio) most of them i just break off the part that's too long and either replant it by just sticking it down in the substrait, or throw it in another tank, or throw it away entierly.

i do not fertilize right now, but i have very mineral rich water in my area, so they get a lot of nutrients already. i will be adding some fertilizer soon called "Flourish Excel" which adds carbon to the water without the use of CO2 injection, which can be expensive and messy.

i chose the fish because i liked them, and i knew they would not outgrow my tank. i hate the idea of buying a jeuvenile fish that will get too large for the tank with the idea that "I'll upgrade when it gets bigger" because something can always happen that keeps you from being able to upgrade the tank, and then you end up with a miserable, stunted, sick fish, and that's not fair.

when keeping live plants, you have to keep in mind substrait, nutrients, and lighting. substrait should be deep, much deeper than you would keep it if you had no live plants. its better to have a fine-textured substrait, such as small gravel, flourite, or sand. if you use sand, get some Malaysian trumpet snails. they do breed like crazy, but the spend all day burrowing through the substrait and keeping it aerated and fluffy, which the plants like, and they keep toxic pockets of methane from forming and getting trapped under the sand.

nutrients, there are many fertilizers specifically made for aqariums that are safe for fish. the Flourish searies by seachem is great.

and for lighting, flourecent is better, because you get more wattage with less power usage and the light quality is better. you need to have 2 watts per gallon of water or more to grow most plants. that means for a 10g tank, you'd need a 20 watt bulb, though its easier to get two 15 watt bulbs and just have 30 watts, which would be 3 watts per gallon.

there are some great forums for aquatic plants, like Aquaria Central. try asking on there for some more advice.
by Sorathien on April 02, 2006 03:28 AM
here are some more pics. the hornwort died and was making the whole tank look brown, and the cabomba wasn't doing much better. so i pulled them both out and replaced them with water wisteria and myrio (milfoil)

it looks much nicer. i also added some java fern "windelov" onto the driftwood.


by CatherineC on April 26, 2006 04:36 PM
wow, very nice!
i use the flourish excel in my 75 gal planted tank and also half the dose in my 60 gal, which is no where near as heavily planted as my big tank.... the flourish excel works great!!

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by CatherineC on April 26, 2006 04:38 PM
oh, almost forgot.... sand is not a good substrate to use when doing aquatic plants.... a fine gravel (i use a black, "bio"-gravel from caribsea that contains alot of nutrients and seems to work great!) would be much better....

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by Jiffymouse on April 28, 2006 01:36 PM

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