Ahh I can't believe I'm the first one lol, unless I take forever and someone beats me Welcome to the site. If he's the pic oin your avatar he's a veiltail :) I'm pretty sure the live plants are alright, mine are a bit cloudy at the moment but it's not effecting the fish any. When it comes to flakes vs pellets its all your fishies taste in food. My Walter wont eat blood worms :P
Feel free to message me any questions, I'll try to help the best I can!
Rummy- Mini Rex Rabbit
Diz jr- Betta
Yoshi- Crested Gecko