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Old 05-08-2013, 09:43 AM   #11 
White Mage
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Sugar Land, Texas
My Mom's 3gal is cycled... it just has some nitrate issues :S I need to find some sort of plant to stick in there e.e
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Old 05-09-2013, 08:10 AM   #12 
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Location: Fungus corners
Plants for reducing nitrates is a common misconception. Plants eat ammonia first. This reduces nitrites and nitrates as well. It also removes the ammonia that the bacteria need for the cycle.

The more heavily a tank is planted, the less bacteria is in residence. A NPT has very little or no nitrifying bacteria. Plants remove ammonia faster than bacteria does.

If you have the skill and knowledge to maintain a heavily-planted tank or NPT, that's really the way to go. You can also run smaller tanks with less risk by planting a lot of fast-growers and floaters.

Tanks as small as 1g have been cycled. But they require more than the usual 1x50% change/week to remove dissolved solids and to replace minerals.
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