Acclimating new plants.
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Old 09-16-2003, 05:44 PM   #1
Algae Grower
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Hi everyone,
I'm new to the board.

Here's my question: do plants need to be acclimated to new water parameters (in particular from one extreme soft/acidic to the other hard/alkaline)? If so, how? Drip acclimation like w/fish?

From research/reading it seems that my tap is pretty well suited for most plants (well water (i.e. no chemical additives); pH 6.0, KH 1.5, GH 2.0) but I also keep African Rift Lake fish and have been wanting to experiment w/planting a Rift tank (w/non-herbivorous fish) and have been purchasing plants that are purportedly tolerant of those water parameters (not just Anubias species!).

The problem I've had with the few cheaper plants I've experimented with, is that they seem to experience a great amount of shock (i.e. loose A LOT of leaves within 48 hours) then just never seem to come back after that....Is it because of an extreme change in water parameters? Note: most of my plants are purchased online, I'm assuming that most of the dealers are keeping their plants in soft/neutral to acidic water...correct me if I'm wrong...

What about sensitivity to aquarium salt? Are most plants intolerant of the addition of let's say 1 tablespoon per 10 gallons of water?

And what about temperature? If I unpack a new plant and put it in a tank of water at 78 degrees will that cause shock?

Thanks for any help/suggestions.
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Old 09-16-2003, 09:28 PM   #2
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In my experience when you transfer plants from one tank to another some shock occurs. I recently bought a bunch from an online vendor and the plants looked fair. I put them in the tank and most of them lost a few leaves and such. This is to be expected especially after being shipped in a non submersed environ. Give them time. They should do fine in your tank. I have yet to get a plant (another tank or online) that dont experience some shock. Since the plants are not shipped in the H2O you should expect some leaf loss.....I would just put them in the tank and let them go unless you are concerned about snails then there are some methods of treating plants prior to putting themin your a search and you can find some information on that.

Good luck

100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 09-16-2003, 09:38 PM   #3
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The amount of shock your plants undergo depends on how they were grown last.

Most 'farms' grow the plants 'emmersed' or partially out of the water. This causes the plant to take on different characteristics and, as a result, will shock no matter what water/tank it goes into.

If you are maintaining the proper setup (CO2, Filtration, Light, Ferts...). The plant may very well shock, but I have not had a plant that totally shut down and died.

If you are dealing with heavily rooted/bulb plants like tiger lotus, crypts, etc...the leaves could very well "melt"...this is totally natural. Do not dig it up or remove the plant. Let it go and it will begin to sprout new leaves.

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