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Old 03-08-2012, 03:41 PM   #1 
LugiaChan
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Smile New tank set-up QUESTIONS, plants, metal, care

I'm up for any adjustments to my set up as i'm new and only looking to learn and keep the best atmosphere as possible for my betta fish. I absolutely have learning intentions here. I've owned 3 betta in the past and am new to aquatic plants.
My first intitial thoughts:
set-up...

3-5 gal. tank

Possible plants
Lucky bamboo.
Pink water lily.
Anacharis.
Fissidens splachnobryoides.
Cryptocoryne Wendtii.

Gigantea (Anubias gigantea)
Anubias, Petite Nana
Aponogeton, crispus
APONOGETON ULVACEUS

*My water might have a bit more iron in it than usual I think. Any good plants not requiring CO2 for this?

*Will I need CO2? Can I take out some plants (which ones) to avoid needing CO2? [[[If you have decided not to add CO2 to your tank you may need to add it later on. The best way to tell if you will have to is to do daily testing of your water parameters and keeping an eye out for the tell tale signs of "white powder" forming on the leaves.]]]

*I ordered 100% Blackwater Extract Catappa Indian Almond Leaf and Catappa Indian Almond Leafs to go with it. These are good for mixing into conditioner, correct? :)

*You need water conditioner AND to let the tap water sit out- both are required? Will these affect the plants?

*What conditioner will be best for my set up?


Lighting: 10 watts. A little less if smaller tank- *is it better to go over or under with wattage?
Substrates I like: Turface or Seachem Flourite or CaribSea Eco-Complete [2-4" in depth]

*Are there any subrates that are NOT good for betta fish or plants mentioned (toxic, etc).


*Washing hands before messing with inside the tank: Is it okay to wash your hands before cleaning and such- washing hands and fish items in tap water and drying (do you need to wait for two hours with objects, and why not hands?)- i'd like to know ;D

*I always wondered if its possible to have the right set plant-wise up to not require chemicals such as water conditioners, is a curiousity only.


3.69 gal tank (how do you do good measurements with .69?)

*I pulled out this tank I acquired over the years from a garage sale and cleaned it out best I can with hot/warm water. But.... I am not going to try it until I know well it's perfectly safe. On the outside there is metal, but only on the top part does it seem to be closer to contact. Is this tank safe????

* I should probably use a toothbrush to brush off the gunk as well, but I thought chemicals or toothpaste would not be good even if rinsed out really well?

I will do my best to update what questions have and have not been answered on the original right here, thank you for all your help!!!!!

Last edited by LugiaChan; 03-08-2012 at 03:55 PM.
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Old 03-08-2012, 06:52 PM   #2 
Bombalurina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LugiaChan View Post
I'm up for any adjustments to my set up as i'm new and only looking to learn and keep the best atmosphere as possible for my betta fish. I absolutely have learning intentions here. I've owned 3 betta in the past and am new to aquatic plants.
My first intitial thoughts:
set-up...

3-5 gal. tank
The tank you show - is it 3 gallons or 5 gallons? That's a fair difference.

Possible plants
Lucky bamboo.
I would not suggest lucky bamboo unless you are doing an open-topped tank, as it will die and rot if fully submerged. Open topped tanks are risky, as bettas can and do jump.
Pink water lily.
Anacharis.
Fissidens splachnobryoides.
Cryptocoryne Wendtii.

Gigantea (Anubias gigantea)
Anubias, Petite Nana
Aponogeton, crispus
APONOGETON ULVACEUS

*My water might have a bit more iron in it than usual I think. Any good plants not requiring CO2 for this?
Plants with a bit of red in their leaves (certain ludwigia and rotala species (I have both in my tank but a total brain blank is leaving me struggling to remember their names...I'll get back to you on that) will always appreciate more iron in the water. I have a low-light, low-tech, no CO2 tank (not even Flourish Excel) and both of these species grow well for me.

*Will I need CO2? Can I take out some plants (which ones) to avoid needing CO2? [[[If you have decided not to add CO2 to your tank you may need to add it later on. The best way to tell if you will have to is to do daily testing of your water parameters and keeping an eye out for the tell tale signs of "white powder" forming on the leaves.]]]
You don't *need* CO2. It will generally give a more vibrant, faster growth, but none of these plants are going to die without it, as far as I'm aware.

*I ordered 100% Blackwater Extract Catappa Indian Almond Leaf and Catappa Indian Almond Leafs to go with it. These are good for mixing into conditioner, correct? :)
You don't really need both - the leaves alone will do the job. However, the extract is never a bad thing. :) You don't mix them with the conditioner - just add them to the tank.

*You need water conditioner AND to let the tap water sit out- both are required? Will these affect the plants?
No. You only need the conditioner. Good conditioners will work instantly - I'm not aware of any that don't. I strongly recommend Prime.
Water conditioner has no effect on plants. :)

*What conditioner will be best for my set up?
Again, I suggest Prime by Seachem. It does a whole bundle of amazing stuff above and beyond removing chlorine, and is incredibly strong so it lasts forever.

Lighting: 10 watts. A little less if smaller tank- *is it better to go over or under with wattage?
Again, I'm not totally savvy with all the species you have mentioned - you can't go wrong with 2 watts per gallon, IMHO. A little over won't hurt. You may just see changes in the way things grow in different lights - for instance, in high light some plants become very compact and spread outwards, whereas in low light they will grow tall and stringy, or vice versa.

Substrates I like: Turface or Seachem Flourite or CaribSea Eco-Complete [2-4" in depth]

*Are there any subrates that are NOT good for betta fish or plants mentioned (toxic, etc).
For plants, you can't go wrong with the ones you've mentioned. If you decide to do an NPT, you want a plain soil with no additives or fertilisers. If you want gravel, go for small grains (for the plants) and smooth (for the fish).

*Washing hands before messing with inside the tank: Is it okay to wash your hands before cleaning and such- washing hands and fish items in tap water and drying (do you need to wait for two hours with objects, and why not hands?)- i'd like to know ;D
I don't tend to wash my hands immediately before cleaning - I don't want to risk a stray bit of soap getting into the tank. I just make sure I don't have anything like hand cream on before I do it.
You could always rinse your hands thoroughly in some dechlorinated water, if you are worried. :p

*I always wondered if its possible to have the right set plant-wise up to not require chemicals such as water conditioners, is a curiousity only.
Nope. The one chemical you will ALWAYS require is dechlorinator. Plants suck up ammonia, nitrates etc, but they won't get rid of chlorine.

3.69 gal tank (how do you do good measurements with .69?)

*I pulled out this tank I acquired over the years from a garage sale and cleaned it out best I can with hot/warm water. But.... I am not going to try it until I know well it's perfectly safe. On the outside there is metal, but only on the top part does it seem to be closer to contact. Is this tank safe????
I wouldn't necessarily trust it...can you cover the metal with aquarium safe silicone at all?

* I should probably use a toothbrush to brush off the gunk as well, but I thought chemicals or toothpaste would not be good even if rinsed out really well?
Get yourself a new toothbrush and delegate it to being purely tank-related. It never hurts to have a tank brush handy. :) To clean the tank, white vinegar and water, 1:9, is something you can't go wrong with. Just rinse it thoroughly afterwards until you can't smell vinegar any more. :)

I will do my best to update what questions have and have not been answered on the original right here, thank you for all your help!!!!!
Out of curiosity, are you planning on a filter? :)
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Old 03-08-2012, 08:30 PM   #3 
LugiaChan
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Originally Posted by Bombalurina View Post
Out of curiosity, are you planning on a filter? :)
Yes I am, after I get the set up going and some other things I am looking into filters and would like to know what you recommend that's cheap and does the job for what i'm gearing towards
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Old 03-08-2012, 08:50 PM   #4 
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Oops, I didn't notice you replied to all of my questions! You are such an awesome helper!!!! Seriously <3 I think the tank was 3.69 gal. A very strange number for having to figure out how much solution to add in.

Oh yes I do know about the bamboo ordeal and betta fish jumping. I was thinking I could put a hole where the bamboo are free to grow once they're large enough, i'd have to start with very small stalks. I have a question about them.
Is it best to keep them in just plain water, Turface or plain jewels/gems? Will they grow fine with just water/turface?

Very cool i'll look into those plant species! I know that low light might not require CO2 though sometimes it may be something to test out. :)

Awesome I just got NutraFin Aqua Plus a few moments ago.

Ah thank you for the plant lighting thoughts! :D

What does NPT mean? Oh yes I know a lot about bettas that's why I chose the grains to not hurt the fish's fins ^_^

Ah alright, I guess hands aren't too scary for fish then :O i'll best wash with bottled water..

Plants wont get rid of chlorine: How interesting! Thank you!!

I do have aquarium glue stuff left over. I can coat over the metal neat the top but I don't see any traces of metal inside the tank. Should I still coat in interior side edges with it just to be safe? Is this still dangerous?

To clean the tank, white vinegar and water, 1:9, is something you can't go wrong with. Just rinse it thoroughly afterwards until you can't smell vinegar any more. :) AH AWESOME! I heard that bleach is good too but I want to do the vinegar method and rinse as best as I can !

I still think I want to wait 2 hours or so for the chemicals of the nutrafin solution evens out before adding the fish, i'm extra careful ^_^ let me know any thoughts you're my fave A+ :D
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Old 03-08-2012, 09:51 PM   #5 
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I do have aquarium glue stuff left over.
Oh by this I mean aquarium sealant... Would there be possible dangers from the strange casing at all if I use this?
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