New to planted tanks need some guidance. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
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New to planted tanks need some guidance.

So I am planning on buying a new 75 gallon tank and I want to try out a planted tank for the first time. I am going to be using the Current led+ as my light source. I want to use Pool filter sand or silica sand for the bottom of the tank but what else would I need for the eaiser plants to grow?(eg. Java fern, Java moss ect.) Just root tabs? or do I need to use soil under that sand?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 11:10 PM
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Java Fern and Java Moss doesn't grow in the substrate. They require being attached to rocks or driftwood. Java Fern takes in nutrients through their leaves in the water column, and if you were to try to plant the rhizome under the substrate the plant will slowly die off. Try attaching Java fern and Java Moss to driftwood or rocks with sewing thread or even super glue. The sewing thread will dissolve on its own and by that time the Java Fern or Java Moss will have attached by then. This is the same for Anubias as well, another great beginner plant, however it does require the rhizome being attached to something above the substrate.

If you were looking to actually plant some plants in the substrate, i've heard sand can be difficult however I am a beginner myself and haven't tried growing anything in sand. I think the plants that do best in sand are grassier carpet foreground type plants which aren't best suited for beginners and require more light (but that's a whole other subject).
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 11:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by butters View Post
So I am planning on buying a new 75 gallon tank and I want to try out a planted tank for the first time. I am going to be using the Current led+ as my light source. I want to use Pool filter sand or silica sand for the bottom of the tank but what else would I need for the eaiser plants to grow?(eg. Java fern, Java moss ect.) Just root tabs? or do I need to use soil under that sand?
Good for you. Congrats.
btw, pool filter sand is silica sand, but be sure to get it from a reliable pool supply store, nowhere else, to make sure you're getting the proper product. Suggest #20 grade density if it's available, but # 25 or 30 grade is ok too.

All you need to grow many plants well is to use root tab ferts placed into the sand near/in the planted areas, and you don't need to use soil under the sand (they'll likely just get mixed up together and not look good).
Replace them every 4 to 6 months.
For the plants that you attach to driftwood or rocks, I suggest you occasionally dose macros into the water column, like Plant-Gro NPK or the Seachem Flourish products.

Just to give you some idea of the different types of plants that do well in a low-tech environment, using nothing more than the ferts I've suggested, along with Seachem Excel, here's a couple of set-ups of my low-tech 75 gal discus tanks, using white quartz-based silica PFS.

http://s1105.photobucket.com/albums/...spaul/Sept2011
http://s1105.photobucket.com/albums/...3RedSnakeSkins

Best of luck to you.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 11:50 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by discuspaul View Post
Good for you. Congrats.
btw, pool filter sand is silica sand, but be sure to get it from a reliable pool supply store, nowhere else, to make sure you're getting the proper product. Suggest #20 grade density if it's available, but # 25 or 30 grade is ok too.

All you need to grow many plants well is to use root tab ferts placed into the sand near/in the planted areas, and you don't need to use soil under the sand (they'll likely just get mixed up together and not look good).
Replace them every 4 to 6 months.
For the plants that you attach to driftwood or rocks, I suggest you occasionally dose macros into the water column, like Plant-Gro NPK or the Seachem Flourish products.

Just to give you some idea of the different types of plants that do well in a low-tech environment, using nothing more than the ferts I've suggested, along with Seachem Excel, here's a couple of set-ups of my low-tech 75 gal discus tanks, using white quartz-based silica PFS.

http://s1105.photobucket.com/albums/...spaul/Sept2011
http://s1105.photobucket.com/albums/...3RedSnakeSkins

Best of luck to you.

Thanks you so much for that, I've been banging my head against a wall trying to figure out what to do. And also your tanks look amazing too. One more question though can a carpeting type of plant like Dwarf Hair-grass or Dwarf sag be able to grow in the sand with all the above mentioned items?
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 12:01 AM
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Thanks you so much for that, I've been banging my head against a wall trying to figure out what to do. And also your tanks look amazing too. One more question though can a carpeting type of plant like Dwarf Hair-grass or Dwarf sag be able to grow in the sand with all the above mentioned items?
When it comes to substrate, both plants would do well with a sand substrate, but from what i've heard dwarf hair grass does best in high-tech tanks (lots of light, CO2, ferts). I haven't kept either plant but i've definitely heard of dwarf sag doing better than DHG in a low tech setup. Check out pygmy chain sword, it has that grassy look (not as fine as DHG) but I've heard it's easier to keep in a low tech setup.

Good luck to you and enjoy!
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 12:02 AM
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Depends on the type of carpet plant. But in my experience with carpet plants, most, if not all, do not generally do well in low-tech environments, and if so, they're still very slow-growing. Many carpet plants require more intense lighting (than what you would have in low-tech), and will therefore not thrive without the additional daily use of a pressurized C02 system, and a more sophisticated fertilization regimen.
You could try the dwarf sag though - that may work ok.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 08:22 PM Thread Starter
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What should filter should I use for a tank this size?
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 09:18 PM
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There are of course many options. Many use either canister filters, or HOB's, or sponge filters, or a combination of these, with great success.

For keeping discus though, quite a number of hobbyists shy away from using canisters, as they are generally more time-consuming (for fairly frequent cleansing/maintenance), but rather prefer using HOB's or Sponge filters, for the ease of maintaining them well, and the ready ability to interchange/vary/ and refresh media.
(keeping in mind that for those using canisters, the tendency is to clean them less frequently than other types).

In my 75 gal planted discus tank for example, I use 2 AC 110 HOBS, which I find are terrific for easily maintaining well and producing good water quality.
I swear by them, and wouldn't use anything else.
You could consider that, or use one 110 and one 70, or even 2 - 70's.
A couple of large sponge filters would be fine too, but detract from the aesthetic looks of the tank, imo.
Use whatever you prefer, but no matter what you select, get a filter or filters that is/are rated for a much larger tank than 75 gal, so as to significantly hike up the water turnover rate.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 09:55 PM Thread Starter
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I'm most likely going to go for a HOB filter. I'm just worried about the noise as this tank will be in a bedroom.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 10:37 PM
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You should check out the threads in the low tech forum if you don't want to go the CO2 route. If you're not planning to rescape/replant often, dirt with cap of sand or gravel makes a good substrate as it provides both nutrients as well as a carbon source(small source though). You can grow many types of ground cover with dirt; glosso, DHG, dwarf sag, microsword, staurogyne repens, crypts. It expands what you can grow by quite abit compared to using pure silica sand.

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 11:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by butters View Post
I'm most likely going to go for a HOB filter. I'm just worried about the noise as this tank will be in a bedroom.
Since your tank will be in your bedroom (or a bedroom used every day by someone else in the family), then the safest approach for very quiet operation would be a good canister filter.

I have no problem with any noise from my HOB's, but I make sure to keep the tank water level right up to the filter outflow level, to prevent the 'tinkling water splash' sound - also leave the tops off, and keep them well maintained.
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