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Old 09-06-2010, 08:25 AM   #1 
Kaiopaka
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Hard Water and Plants

Hello all,

While I am not new to fish tanks, the betta fish I had previously in high school survived by luck as much as anything else. Now that I have a place of my own, I've decided that I want to get a new betta fish, and I am currently in the process of fishless cycling a 10gal. (I plan on adding an apple or mystery snail for my husband, and maybe, if my betta's not very aggressive, some tetras in a few months). So now I have two questions.

1. We have hard water. What is a good way to reduce the hardness? I've seen chemicals at the pet store, but I was thinking of mixing in distilled water with tap water.

2. What are some good live plants to put in the tank, and how many? I was thinking that about a third of the tank should be heavily planted. I'm not worried about the snail eating them, I will replace any it kills.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-06-2010, 09:47 AM   #2 
fishman12
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This water conditioner *NUTRAFIN BETTA PLUS* says it has Tropical Almond Leaf Extract which i think helps the water not be as hard. I don't know though, hopefully someone who knows more will tell you!
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Old 09-06-2010, 10:11 AM   #3 
karlhague
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Originally Posted by Kaiopaka View Post
Hello all,

While I am not new to fish tanks, the betta fish I had previously in high school survived by luck as much as anything else. Now that I have a place of my own, I've decided that I want to get a new betta fish, and I am currently in the process of fishless cycling a 10gal. (I plan on adding an apple or mystery snail for my husband, and maybe, if my betta's not very aggressive, some tetras in a few months). So now I have two questions.

1. We have hard water. What is a good way to reduce the hardness? I've seen chemicals at the pet store, but I was thinking of mixing in distilled water with tap water.

2. What are some good live plants to put in the tank, and how many? I was thinking that about a third of the tank should be heavily planted. I'm not worried about the snail eating them, I will replace any it kills.

Thanks in advance.

What Ever you decide to do, Do not buy anything that alters your pH.

Swings in pH can kill your fish.

Alot of people here keep betta's in hard water, just dechlorinate it.
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Old 09-06-2010, 11:06 AM   #4 
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I agree, don't try and change it, hard water is fine. However, driftwood, and indian almond leaves are known to naturally very slightly make water softer. IAL are good for bettas, but they stain your water slightly brownish.

some great plants would be: java moss, java fern, any anubias, (those first three are pretty much inedible to snails and such) hornwort, those plant bulbs from walmart (when/if they grow, they look really nice) and water wisteria. There are more, but those are the ones from the top of my head.
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Old 09-06-2010, 11:30 AM   #5 
Kaiopaka
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Thanks all, I think I'll try java moss and java fern, and some driftwood to lower the pH and hardness (our water is really hard). If I can find some IAL, I may try those. I don't care if the water is brownish - as long as the fish are happy.

Last edited by Kaiopaka; 09-06-2010 at 11:32 AM. Reason: clarification
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Old 09-06-2010, 11:52 AM   #6 
Rawriie
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What`s hard water? wow, im such a newb Dx So, some things you put in the aquarium can change it`s pH? Is pH water hardness? Help Dx
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Old 09-06-2010, 02:29 PM   #7 
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How hard water is depends on how many minerals are dissolved into the water. Example: water that is filtered through multiple layer of let's say limestone will probably be hard because it has been erroding away at the limestone, causing little bits to be dissolved into it. Water that has been through peat will be soft water because the peat will have absorbed the minerals from it and made it slightly acidic. PH is not water hardness, though generally the higher the Ph, the harder the water.
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Old 09-06-2010, 02:52 PM   #8 
wallywestisthebest333
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PH is how acidic or basic the water is. If you're in middle or high school you'll probably learn about it in science class. =] Earth Science has always been my favorite science! =]

Hard water is actually good for plants! =] I wouldn't worry about softening it unless you plan on keeping crowntails whose fins tend to dissolve in hard water. =[

I think I heard that Canadian Peat Moss was good at softening your water. I can't remember if it changes PH though. =/
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Old 09-06-2010, 04:12 PM   #9 
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I'll remember that about the crowntails! Thanks.
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Old 09-07-2010, 02:00 PM   #10 
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2. What are some good live plants to put in the tank, and how many? I was thinking that about a third of the tank should be heavily planted. I'm not worried about the snail eating them, I will replace any it kills.
Anubias are a good choice as accent plants, and they're typically hardy.
Water Wisteria (Hygrophila difformis) and Hornwort (Ceratophyllum demersum) are also good if you want some thick vegetation. I also personally like lemon bacopa, since it smells good and grows well, but it can be hard to find in some places... (I say these plants because these are the ones I have :D).

Hornwort is especially good because in inhibits the growth of blue-green algae.
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