I wanted to introduce myself to the betta community as I have recently decided to pick up this awesome hobby. After some initial struggles and difficulties with setting up a new tank and battling the cycling process, I think I have my 10 gallon pretty much set up how I want it to look. Here's a picture of the new betta I purchased from Aquabid set to arrive sometime soon and my planted tank!
When I first began this idea to set up a betta tank, I underestimated the intricacies of the ecology of a freshwater planted aquarium. I unfortunately had to do the fish-in cycling method since I had already purchased my neon tetras and cory catfish. I had chosen some black and white gravel initially and decided to scrub the whole landscape for Eco-complete, which offset the development of bacteria. I also majorly underestimated the effects of nitrogen and carbon deficiency in addition to poor lighting in a newly started tanks so, I saw some withering plants. But, with Seachem ferts they are now flourishing except for my HC. Sadly, I know my HC are dying, mostly because my WPG is low and still waiting on my CO2 diffusor, but backing this all up with t5 HO 2x18w light at 6500k and a nano diffusor. Hopefully they can survive til them. But all in all, this has been a very cool experience!
I've acquired most of these plants from petco or another LFS. I've done my best to try to identify these (staff at either store was probably as helpful as asking myself), but still had some maybes.
a) The red one on the left i'm thinking is an Indian Red Sword. It has roots but still am not sure exactly what it is.
b) The red bunch on the right I'm not sure what it is, it seems like rotala indica but the leaves are crinkled (been hoping that it is a deficiency which i'm correcting with Seachem ferts).
c) The green bunch behind the reds on the right are bacopa I believe but may be kind of hard to tell from the picture.
I'm also experiencing a crypt melt I believe in the far left corner which I'm trying to hide with the java ferns (man was it a struggle to tie these down with water in the tank!). I think the crypts are crypt spiralis based upon my id from pictures online, they have long leaves and there's this adventitious stem with roots coming out. The new growth seems to be experiencing curvature in the stems so I'm not sure if I am still nutrient deficiency or if that's the case with the crypts.
Is it okay to keep the plants on the right bunched and planted? I could not plant each stem individually with the water in and with the water out, they would just fall. I see some dying foliage near the bottom but the top is doing great, so I'm not sure if bunching would hurt.
For the cabombas, what happens to the areas where you trim them? Do they continue growing or do they just end with a stub?
Well, I've blurbed quite a bunch but just excited to share.
Oh yes, the tank is stocked with 6 neon tetras (getting a bit nippy at each other at times), 2 peppered corys, and 10+ ghost shrimp.