Java fern and driftwood. (UPDATE)
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Old 12-06-2012, 02:48 PM   #1
dragonbat13
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Java fern and driftwood. (UPDATE)


OK, I got a substrate of playground sand. I want to grow live plants. I know I can work around the sand problem.

What I want to start out with is just go down to the pet store and get a small amount of java fern. I am thinking that I can just tie it to the backside of my driftwood.

Reason I want to go with live plants is that my ammonia and nitrites are just barely present at .25 on the ammonia and Between 0 and .25 on the nitrite. But the Nitrates are high.

I just did a water change (I cant do one for seven days in a row due to work,so the tank gets one change a week. So I am sure that the ammonia will come down.

I just want to see how it goes with a couple of plants and if successful I will plant the whole tank after a little research.

The tank has eight harliquins and one Gourami.

So should I have any problem just tying the java to the driftwood? Or will the fish I have eat up the roots?

Thanks
Mark

Last edited by dragonbat13; 12-10-2012 at 01:18 PM.. Reason: To post as an update to problem
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Old 12-06-2012, 03:14 PM   #2
Darkblade48
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You will be fine tying the Java Fern as you have described. The fish will not eat the roots.

A more concerning matter would be the slight hint of ammonia that is present in your aquarium. A properly cycled aquarium should not have any ammonia at all. Are you sure that your tap water does not contain ammonia?
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Old 12-06-2012, 03:18 PM   #3
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How long have you had the fish tank setup for. If its younger then a few months old it is very likely that you are cycling. Research what it means for a fish tank to cycle so you know what we are talking about. If you decide to do a fish in cycle and just keep the tank as it is then yes I would suggest getting some plants. Java fern do well attached to driftwood or rocks. I would also suggest getting some type of stem or floater and float it so help soak up the harmful chemicals. My first tank was a fish in cycle because I didn't know what I was doing. But I had a bunch of plants,the plants actually grew awesome during the cycle and I didn't lose a single fish.
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Old 12-06-2012, 04:29 PM   #4
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The tank is three years old in its current state,except for the fish. There are eight harliquins and one Gourami. Also one stunted pleco at about two and a half inches. (the current fish have been in for a year, after I finally got rid of the "free guppies".

The Test was done with about a nine days between water changes. What had happened was my son "fed the fish" and I had the automatic fish feeder set with too high of a feeding twice a day. When I had finally figured out what was going on with the feeding, there was some mold growing on some food. So I did a 50 percent change, siphoning all the food out, and had to go to work for a week and hope.

Also I have a biowheel which I cant stand, its noisy and the wheels stop turning. I have crutched the bio filter along with a bio bag in one of the two sections of the HOB filter. I still have the biowheels but I am sure I loose any bacteria when they stop.

The plan is to keep a close watch on the ammonia and swap to a canister filter soon, when funds allow.

I did another 20% change in the water this morning and put fresh filter media in the HOB. The last media was a week old, after the food problem.

I am glad the tap water was mentioned, because I havent tested in a long time, and things may have changed. Matter of fact I will start testing everytime before a waterchange.
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Old 12-06-2012, 05:18 PM   #5
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Some problems that I see from your previous post:

Overfeeding - Try to teach your son how much to feed the fish, or, have him not touch the aquarium and let the auto feeder do its job. The latter might prove more difficult than the former

Filter media - Why are you changing it out? By removing the filter media and replacing it with brand new media, you are essentially causing your aquarium to re-cycle. Old media can be used repeatedly, unless it is literally falling apart. If your media is dirty, just rinse in some dechlorinated water, and it will be fine. The majority of beneficial bacteria resides in the filter media; replacing it will mean you are throwing them away.

These two factors are more likely to have contributed to the slight rise in ammonia rather than tap water (though ammonia in the tap water is still likely, especially if you are on well water, etc).
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:55 PM   #6
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Huh,

I never knew that the slide in media was meant to hold bacteria. I thought it was just a debris filter and charcoal. In any case I'll quit swapping them.

The feeding problem is not really a problem. After I told him it would kill the whole tank and why, he doesnt mess with it anymore.
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:26 PM   #7
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UPDATE:

OK so I went to the store and got a small java fern and a broad leaf plant that the pet store worker said was a easy plant. I looked it up and he was correct on that. But I dont know the name of it because the container got thrown away.

In any case, I tied the two plants to the driftwood and over the weekend ensured that the roots were not in the sand, but they are close to it.

Did a water test on the tap water and there is no ammonia, however I tested the tank before a decision on a water change.

Ammonia at .25. BUT, it could be 0. My test kit is so close in color between the two that I may be reading it a little high, and since the tap water matches it I cant believer that the ammonia would be the same after four days in the tank. It should have went up or down, shouldn't it?

In any case, here is the good news. Nitrites at 0. Nitrates dropped from 20ppm to 5ppm. The plants look good, and already look alot better since they were introduced to the tank.

So I guess I am going to plant the tank if the trend keeps up. But I am not going to do anything till I build my canopy with some correct lighting and install a canister filter.
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Old 12-10-2012, 06:06 PM   #8
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Good to know everything seems OK.

If you want a picture of your plant, a photo would help greatly.

Perhaps it is an Anubias of some kind?
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