My First Tank (Under Construction) - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-19-2013, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
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My First Tank (Under Construction)

Hello everyone! Thank you for all the wonderful information and knowledge I have already gleamed from your threads. I have never had a fish tank before let alone one that grow plants under water. Here are some specifications for it so you all can get an idea.

Tank Size: 10 Gallon
Heated Temperature: 81 Degrees
Filter: Tetra Whisper 10i Internal Power Filter
Lighting: Two 6"L 10watt Mini Compact Fluorescent Daylight/Bluelight

Here is a picture so far...

10g Planted Tank.jpg

I bought a tube plant from Petco that is an Anubias Afzelii. I also purchased a package of plant bulbs and got 2 Aponogeton, 1 Water Lily, 1 Water Onion. To my knowledge that only makes 4 plant bulbs but the package had 7 so I consider myself lucky. I have an 1 1/2 of Flora Max planted aquarium substrate with a 1/2 inch of small diameter gravel. I will not be adding fish until the plants are very prominent in the tank. I plan to purchase some floating plants and some moss or grass I just havent seen many option at my LFS. Will the plants grow on their own or do I need fish to be present to produce CO2. Do I need to buy snails and shrimp with some guppies right away or can I wait till the plants grow up? How long will that take; not approximately but a ball-park number? All the water has been run through a RO System. Please any and all advice is welcome.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-19-2013, 05:12 PM
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Awesome project! you'll need to pull the anubias up a little more so the rhizome is exposed; it will start to rot if buried. It actually pulls nutrients out of the water column, so you can tie it to decor too.

Those plant bulb packs are great, just make sure you hold onto the package because they're notorious for not growing. Out of my plant pack, only one sprouted (the water lily) and it is gorgeous! You can send in the package to the company that sells them to get any bulbs that won't sprout replaced for free. Just a word of caution, both the water lily and aponogeton can quickly outgrow a tank if you're not aggressively pruning them. My water lily grew 20+ leaves and started blocking out the light to the rest of my plants, so I had to rip it out of my tank... Fortunately some roots were left behind and I now have two separate manageable water lilies, and I remove leaves as soon as they reach the surface to keep it under control. The plants will grow on their own, but they will benefit from the ammonia produced by fish or snails. You may wish to add a couple of snails for now so you don't have to worry about feeding anything.

Plants grow at very different rates, it depends on lighting and nutrients too. Your anubias Afzelii will be slow to grow, whereas once they get going the water lily and aponogeton plants will grow very quickly with enough light. I think after the first sprout mine totally took over the tank within three weeks :P

Some good sites to find plants that aren't generally available locally are http://bobstropicalplants.com/home/ and http://www.aquariumplants.com/
I've ordered from both sites multiple times and been very happy. Bob especially goes above and beyond, once he was out of one of the plants I ordered, so he sent me 5 plants of different varieties for free to make up for it.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-19-2013, 05:25 PM
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Nice tank! Your fish will be happy!
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-19-2013, 06:16 PM Thread Starter
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Recommendations for snails? I read the thread on snails and am now educating people who tell me my tank will be completely overrun if I even mention snail : )
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-19-2013, 06:46 PM Thread Starter
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...and what part is considered the rhizome?
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-20-2013, 09:31 AM
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I have both Malaysian Trumpet Snails to aerate the soil and ramshorn snails to work on plant detritus. You will end up with lots of snails, but a healthy ecosystem will only produce what it can support :) A 10 gallon tank can easily support 100+ MTS but with them in your substrate most of the time, it won't seem like that many.

The rhizome is the big chunk of plant that looks like a root which all of the leaf stems sprout from. It will grow longer over time and eventually you will be able to break it in half and you'll have two separate plants. Java ferns and bolbitis propagate the same way.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-20-2013, 09:54 AM
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If you have a cat be warned the peace lily is fatally toxic to them if they eat it....and it eill
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-20-2013, 11:31 AM Thread Starter
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Are there ways to control the snail population? whether that be a fish that eat them or snails that dont produce so erratically
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-20-2013, 12:04 PM
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Get Nerite snails. They may lay eggs but the eggs won't hatch as they need brackish water to hatch. They are great algae eaters. I have a couple in each of my tanks. They come in many dufferent and intetesting patterns such as striped, spotted etc.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 07:55 PM Thread Starter
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It has been 2 weeks since I started my tank. I knew that I needed more plants and probably should of held off until I had amassed a larger amount but I will just write that off as being young and impatient at times. I added a narrow leaf java fern, water wisteria, and bought some anachris. I also made a horrible decision and bought a measly amount of micro sword when I could have gotten 4X the amount for 2 dollars more at petsmart...gosh I felt like an idiot! I was blinded by sheer desire for the green grass!!! The plant bulbs I purchased are slowly growing, one of the aponogeton is growing rapidly which is a nice change from the other bulbs. I have been on the lookout some kind of floating plant but I would need a big one that I could maybe tie off to something so that it doesnt flow into the filters waterflow and sink down. Recommendations for common floating plants?. How does one go about tieing plants off? tips & tricks? Without further adiou here she is...
1359678455945.jpg

Also, I added 3 ghost shrimp and a golden mystery snail his name is Midas.
1359679407603.jpg
I am still on the hunt for MTS or nerites but am at a loss here in the blue ridge mountains. Thanks you for all your help ladies and gentlemen.
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