How To Plant An Aquarium With Algae? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-11-2019, 04:24 AM Thread Starter
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How To Plant An Aquarium With Algae?

Hi, so I wanted to plant my aquarium after a couple of months of just having nonliving decor in there due to the algae take over and it just looking incomplete. I have some GSA and a tiny bit of hair algae in my gravel. What would you reccomend for planting my aquarium to make sure the algae dies off and the plants don't get infested with algae?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-11-2019, 04:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bettang View Post
Hi, so I wanted to plant my aquarium after a couple of months of just having nonliving decor in there due to the algae take over and it just looking incomplete. I have some GSA and a tiny bit of hair algae in my gravel. What would you reccomend for planting my aquarium to make sure the algae dies off and the plants don't get infested with algae?

Algae is an imbalance.... more nutrients/light than the tank can use and it causes 'other' things to grow. The idea behind getting algae under control is basically a controlled experiment. First off: what are your water parameters:
pH:
Ammonia:
Nitrites:
Nitrates:
What is your maintenance schedule?
What are the inhabitants?
Tank size and light level?

A picture would be great! Then we can best recommend how to proceed
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-11-2019, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by livebearerlove View Post
Algae is an imbalance.... more nutrients/light than the tank can use and it causes 'other' things to grow. The idea behind getting algae under control is basically a controlled experiment. First off: what are your water parameters:
pH:
Ammonia:
Nitrites:
Nitrates:
What is your maintenance schedule?
What are the inhabitants?
Tank size and light level?

A picture would be great! Then we can best recommend how to proceed

Ph: 8.0
Ammonia: 0.0
Nitrites:0
Nitrates: 20
Weekly 50% water change with algae removal
2 Platies, 6 Neons

20 gallon 15 in. deep, would say medium-low light but not sure


I will get a picture up later.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-11-2019, 05:50 PM
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Medium low, I would recommend a combination of mosses and plants. I did as my 'quarantine tank' I used:
  • Riccia Flutans (tied tightly) on rocks and branches
  • Java moss on branches
  • Wengeii
  • Sagitaria
  • Anubias

I dose Thrice C and Excel and it stays this way.... I ensured the pieces were removable for trimming! lol
I used Eco complete on the base, and some white sand for show and a some petrified wood.

Investing in some wood/rocks and play with the landscape. All these plants are low/medium light, require less ferts, and is great for certain varieties of fish (that you have). Other plants I would recommend:
Water Sprite
Coon tail
Vallisneria
Java Fern
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-11-2019, 06:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the advice. Here are some pictures of the tank:

Also, I was unclear. I meant like what I should do before planting the aquarium. I found some I think would work listed below:
Lobelia Cardinalis
Dwarf Hairgrass
Dwarf Water Lily Bulb
Bacopa Caroliniana
Staurogyne Repens
Vallisneria Spiralis
Bacopa Monnieri
Dwarf Hairgrass
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Last edited by Darkblade48; 05-12-2019 at 03:38 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 01:07 AM
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I would restart with an amazonia ADA substrate. If that's not possible, I'd get things I can glue to your wood or stone pieces, or things with big roots that the gravel can keep down.


What you want to do next is go in the fertilizer forum and figure out how to dose fertilizers to keep your plants alive.



You will always have a little algae on the glass you need to clean, but if you dose ferts right and have the light right, it will be minimal.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bettang View Post
Thank you for the advice. Here are some pictures of the tank:

Also, I was unclear. I meant like what I should do before planting the aquarium. I found some I think would work listed below:
Lobelia Cardinalis
Dwarf Hairgrass
Dwarf Water Lily Bulb
Bacopa Caroliniana
Staurogyne Repens
Vallisneria Spiralis
Bacopa Monnieri
Dwarf Hairgrass

Some of the items on that list wont work in low light- take hairgrass for example, it is expensive, but it will surely die off if not planted in amazonia (soil type substrate) and has high light, preferably CO2 injection and adequate ferts. If it starts to die off, it will easily muck up your water table.



I would scrub your glass down getting a decent amount of diatoms and GSA off. Make sure not to wash your filter, etc. You can technically use any substrate... as long as you dose the water column, but of course it is easier with something like amazonia.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 07:13 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ddrizzle View Post
I would restart with an amazonia ADA substrate. If that's not possible, I'd get things I can glue to your wood or stone pieces, or things with big roots that the gravel can keep down.


What you want to do next is go in the fertilizer forum and figure out how to dose fertilizers to keep your plants alive.



You will always have a little algae on the glass you need to clean, but if you dose ferts right and have the light right, it will be minimal.

Is plain silicone like GE fine for aquarium use?



I have a few ferts left over from my last attempt. Nicolg all in one liquid, seachem equillibrium, and Osmocote root tabs. I would like to reuse them also.

Quote:
Originally Posted by livebearerlove View Post
Some of the items on that list wont work in low light- take hairgrass for example, it is expensive, but it will surely die off if not planted in amazonia (soil type substrate) and has high light, preferably CO2 injection and adequate ferts. If it starts to die off, it will easily muck up your water table.

I would scrub your glass down getting a decent amount of diatoms and GSA off. Make sure not to wash your filter, etc. You can technically use any substrate... as long as you dose the water column, but of course it is easier with something like amazonia.

I will revise my list then. I want a jungle type aquascape with plants everywhere. Would some of these plants work better? :

Dwarf Water Lily Bulb
Bacopa Caroliniana
Staurogyne Repens
Vallisneria Spiralis
Jungle Val.
Banana Plant
Anubias Nana
Amazon Sword





I've been using a old plastic card to scrape off algae although it still is fairly dirty. I've been intending to try a razor although it can ruin the silicone so I won't go near it with the razor.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 08:15 PM
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If you want to be safe, there is glue specifically marketed for tanks. If you do glue moss, go crazy with it because it grows slooowww unless it's java moss. But yeah, your substrate is limiting you to larger plants with thicker roots, unlike say a dwarf baby tear which would be almost impossible in the gravel.

As for ferts, go to rotala butterfly and check out their dosing calculators. You need nitrate, potassium and phosphate at a roughly 10:10:1 ppm ratio. Then you need calcium and magnesium at a 3:1 ratio (can be lenient here) from gh boosters if you are using RO water. Then you need iron and micros, which CSM + B usually gives you easily.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 10:41 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ddrizzle View Post
If you want to be safe, there is glue specifically marketed for tanks. If you do glue moss, go crazy with it because it grows slooowww unless it's java moss. But yeah, your substrate is limiting you to larger plants with thicker roots, unlike say a dwarf baby tear which would be almost impossible in the gravel.

As for ferts, go to rotala butterfly and check out their dosing calculators. You need nitrate, potassium and phosphate at a roughly 10:10:1 ppm ratio. Then you need calcium and magnesium at a 3:1 ratio (can be lenient here) from gh boosters if you are using RO water. Then you need iron and micros, which CSM + B usually gives you easily.

I can get GE Silicone I All Purpose Caulk which is safe based off some searches on here.





Is there some way to set it to give you dosing based off the levels you want? I have been getting results like .5 PPM potassium while getting 7.5 PPM nitrate and 1.4 PPM phosphate.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 02:49 PM
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Silicone and calhk take eternity to dry. Your want to use super glue or use fishing line (or a combination of them)
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