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Old 04-21-2013, 10:29 PM   #21 
Laki
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You can make an ad on kijiji or craigslist asking for extra clippings of plants. I got my tank stocked on free clippings from someone on reddit, and there's usually people on my kijiji looking to sell their extra plants. Some grow crazy out of hand and people just want to get rid of them. So try that avenue.

Another thing, go to large chain pet stores (I went to one called PetsUnlimited under the PJ's Pets logo) and asked for a "bit" of salvinia for free bc they were struck with such a pile of it which wouldn't stop growing. I got that a little over a year ago and it's low light, been growing it very well.

Good luck!
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Old 04-21-2013, 11:28 PM   #22 
fishnewbie1419
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Ok great! I'll ask around and see what kinds of plants I can find once I'm home for the summer.

Also, if I'm understanding this cycling thing correctly, I should NOT be putting Gertrude in her new tank once I set it up this week, right? From what I gather, I'll need to buy the plastic tub and some starter plants and just let it all sit for about a month and a half without her in it? Should I add the filter while I let it cycle?

And I'm guessing I'll need to buy a water test kit? I have a strip test kit for my betta now, but it looks like I'll need to get the fancier version.
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Old 04-21-2013, 11:47 PM   #23 
thekoimaiden
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Actually it will probably be easier on Gertrude to do a fish-in cycle with plants. This is going to mean water changes every couple of days depending on how much bacteria is on the decor from her old tank as well as how many plants you can get. With luck the tank she is currently in is cycled, and placing all the decor that is in that tank directly into her tub will speed up the cycling process. It is important that you DON'T wash it in tapwater because this will kill the good bacteria.

I know this is a lot to take in, but you'll get the hang of it! And we're here to help with any questions you have!
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Old 04-21-2013, 11:57 PM   #24 
fishnewbie1419
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Hmm.. Ok I think I got it now! Only problem is that my mom just replaced all of Gertrude's water yesterday and likely rinsed out the gravel with tap water. They just got back from Florida and the water had gotten pretty dirty. This was all before we came up with the idea to get Gertrude a new tank that then evolved into a tub and ultimately a pond. I'll ask her tomorrow just how much she cleaned the tank, gravel, and the lone little silk plant.

I'll get as many plants as possible, so hopefully that will help the process. Do you think 50% water changes twice a week using a gravel hose thing will be enough while it's cycling? Should I get a liquid test kit or just assume it's working? My mom will be handling all of this for the next few weeks, so I'm hoping to keep maintenance at a minimum for her.
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Old 04-22-2013, 12:47 AM   #25 
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I'd certainly recommend getting a liquid kit. They are just really handy to have around, but it will be a pain for your mother to test the water daily. Your schedule of 50% twice weekly should be good with lot of live plants.

With the cleaner water you should begin to see a bit of growth on her. She's stunted so she won't reach max size, but you should be able to get 5-6 inches from her. Let's hope she looks so much bigger next time you see her! :D
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