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Old 12-08-2012, 05:32 PM   #1 
AyalaCookiejar
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3 gallon

My brother has his own ten gallon tank and for some reason he has an extra ten gallon and one he estimated to be 3-3.5 gallons and he asked if I wanted them. How could I say no?

I already have two male bettas, each in their own 5 gallon tank, but I want to make the 10 gallon a sorority tank (eventually) and make the 3 gallon for another male. My problem is, there is ammonia in my tap water and I know it's not easy to cycle a three gallon tank so I was thinking about planting it.

I know nothing, like NOTHING, about plants. At all. Every plant I touch usually dies. I have little LED lights in both my five gallons and I'm pretty sure any plants I'd try to put in their would die, but since I don't have anything yet for the 3 gallon tank, I could be prepared before even purchasing the fish.

I'd like plants that aren't extremely difficult to keep alive and specific instructions for each, and the type of substrate and lighting I need... Basically, start from the beginning, haha. I am totally clueless.

If I can manage to keep some plants alive in the three gallon (I do know it's harder in a smaller tank), then I'd also like to add live plants to the 10 gallon that will eventually be a sorority tank.
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Old 12-08-2012, 06:59 PM   #2 
homegrown terror
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we've had enormous success with water wisteria, primrose, anacharis, hornwort and java fern. any of those would be great, especially since they can all be grown either planted or free-floating, and all of our bettas LOVE having a floating canopy to swim in.
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Old 12-08-2012, 07:03 PM   #3 
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I know next to nothing too. But I've been advised plants like marimo (moss balls) anacharis and java moss. Low-light, don't need fertilizer, don't necessarily need to be rooted in substrate, and only need light 6-8 hours a day. So if you have a room that gets partial sunlight, put the tank there. I just got some marimo today and it's super easy so far xD

I had a link someone suggested to me to scope out possible live plants but I've lost it...so I hope someone else will have a link!

Also, I have lucky bamboo in my 10g and it's filter and a stalk in Phy's 2.5 g. Not sure if they do 'a lot' for the tanks, but they definitely make them look cool ;] Just remember if you use lucky bamboo, to bury the roots in a mug/glass so the roots don't go through the silicone of your tank, and the leaves have to be above water. Don't want dying bamboo in your tank. It's semi-aquatic (what out for stores selling semi-aquatic plants as fully aquatic).
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Old 12-08-2012, 07:04 PM   #4 
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If you are worried about fish dyeing because of high ammonia, you could always do a fish-less cycle. For plants, you could do a NPT. there are lots of threads and stickies on here about that. I suggest Water Wisteria. It can thrive in moderate to high light. You can get root fertilizer for them to help them grow better. Just prune them when needed. Make sure the fish you put in there won't eat the plant!! A betta will be fine in this case. I have 6 or 7 of them living just fine like this.


EDIT: Never saw any other posts on here so sorry if I seemingly copied any one.
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Old 12-08-2012, 07:14 PM   #5 
AyalaCookiejar
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I am planning on doing a fishless cycle in the 10 gallon, but I'm not sure if the three gallon will hold a stable cycle. I know it is possible, but since there is ammonia in my tap water, I really don't want to take chances. Right now, I have both of the tanks and a hood and light for both, but no filters or heaters, so I will have to be ordering that sometime soon before I even think about getting the fish or starting the cycle.

The three gallon actually has a long flourescent light in it. The tanks are used so I am unsure of the specifics. The ten gallon has smaller, incandescent lights.
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:04 PM   #6 
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Fishless is so much faster. Mine's cycled itself (just added fish food and the lbamboo and did a water change every other week) in 4 weeks since I took Phy out and today when I got a master's kit to test it. Everything's reading 0 =) And no fish got stressed in the process!
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:11 PM   #7 
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I didn't know about cycling when I got my first betta (nor did I have a filter, haha) and my second betta I didn't yet have a tank for when I got him but I just couldn't pass him up! I know those two will keep me busy while my other tanks cycle. Neither of them have filters or heaters, just the tank and hoods, so I will have to go buy those first, anyways. I'm willing to wait for my new fish while the tanks cycle... Especially since I now know there is ammonia in my tap water.

I've never done a fishless cycle but now I'll get to learn on two tanks. The filters that came with my five gallon tanks are very low-flow and they make one that is for even smaller tanks.. up to three gallons, so I think I should be able to get away with cycling the three gallon. It may even be a bit larger than three gallons.. Unfortunately it is not rectangular shaped so I can't just measure it to find out. Oh, math :(
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:14 PM   #8 
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You could measure by water volume I think....but yea, I think my 3gallon holds a bit mroe than 3 gallons, but I think the makers compensate for decor, substrate and filters dispersing water volume. Oh science! xD
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:52 PM   #9 
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I know... It's an irregular hexagonal shape. I'll have to go remeasure it and figure out the area of the base and take it times the height.. I'm good at math I just feel like being lazy. I also don't really want to measure it with water because I really don't have anything to accurately measure it with.. There were some plastic plants and the ugliest colored substrate I've ever seen still in the three gallon. It also has a filter that is missing parts. The only thing useful that I have with it is the hood and light... But it looks like there were flip open covers of some sort in the "feeding hole" section of both hoods that were broken off, so now there are rather large holes in each hood.

The tanks look like they were cleaned fairly well but the hoods are filthy. I have a rather exciting task ahead of me, it seems.

I also don't know what was in the tanks before or why my brothers friend stopped using them.. Like, if the fish got sick and died. They have probably been sitting around for awhile. Do you think that would kill any harmful things in the tank that may have gotten its previous inhabitants? Haha. I'm not sure how to go about cleaning the tanks..
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Old 12-08-2012, 11:18 PM   #10 
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You could always make custom hoods with plastic mesh. That`s what I did for Phy`s tank to allow for the bamboo and more natural lighting. I may do it to Demi too if/when I add her bamboo cane. So yea, Phy's hood is just mesh sitting on top. Even if he jumps he's not gonna knock it away. But lighting does become a problem...especially for irregular tanks. If it were rectangular I'd suggest just getting the flat clear lids from petSmart and then a strip light of some sort. I'll be showing off those tomorrow.

As for cleaning the tanks...if you're worried a fish died from an illness, then I'd suggest either a vinegar bath or clorox and super hot water and looots of rinsing. Lots. A ton. And if you go the clorox way, the best way to ensure all clorox is gone is letting the tank/etc dry in sunlight. >.>

Still, could just ask your brother if he knows why the fish might've died and how he cleaned it.
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