what floating plant will suck up nitrates? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-22-2005, 06:51 PM Thread Starter
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what floating plant will suck up nitrates?

Hi all,

I have a 75 gallon (fish only) tank. Temp at 84 degrees and only 1 watt per gallon. Is there a floating plant that will eat up the nitrates and survive in this setup?

If you are wondering, this tank has 4 discus and a dozen or so small tetras. I am having a hard time getting my nitrates down. It comes out of the tap at 10 ppm and is now around 30 ppm.

Maybe one day, I will upgrade the lights and convert the tank to a plant/fish tank, but funds are limited right now.

Thanks for all your input.
Dave
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-22-2005, 06:55 PM
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Riccia, floating.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-22-2005, 07:28 PM
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Phyllanthus fluitans, duckweed, and frogbit will all do the trick.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-22-2005, 09:19 PM
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try hornwort
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-22-2005, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! I am off to my LFS tomorrow to pick up some of the plants you have recommended! Let's just hope they have some. Pickings are usually pretty slim.

thanks again
dave
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-22-2005, 11:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grandmasterofpool
Phyllanthus fluitans, duckweed, and frogbit will all do the trick.

I doubt that Phyllanthus fluitans will do well at those low light levels. I would be very surprised if any actual floating plants will do well at those light levels.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-23-2005, 12:47 AM Thread Starter
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So you think none of the above will work. If that is the case, I don't see to many options. Outside of huge water changes and/or invest in more light. Is that what you are saying?

Dave
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-23-2005, 12:59 AM
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I'd recommend water sprite, Ceradopteris thalictroides. Phyllanthus needs more light. What about java moss? Not floating, but you can attach it to driftwood or other decoration to bring it closer to the light.


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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-23-2005, 04:00 PM
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Rex, I disagree

My two tanks both have only a bit more than 1 watt per gallon, but frogbit, honwort, riccia and duckweed all do fantastic - the hornwort and duckweed grow so fast as to be a nuisance! The nearness to the light bulb probably helps.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-23-2005, 04:06 PM
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I don't think watts per gallon make a large difference when plants are floating right underneath. As a matter of fact, if you had a PC or VHO tube anything emersed will probably get sunburnt.
If you really want to get a cool look in your tank with a floating plant get Water lettuce, they have great looking full roots.
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-23-2005, 11:29 PM
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What LFS do you go to? I'm on the east side of cleveland and go to RMS aquaculture. They usually have a decent selection but never anything exotic. If you don't find anything at your LFS I'd give them a try. I think they have 4 different stores around the area.

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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2005, 03:51 AM
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While your intentions are good I don't think you'll have enough plant biomass with just floating plants and enough light to get fast enough growth to completly lower those nitrates. I think a large part of your problem is that tap water. Have you considered getting an RO unit? I think a combination of plants and 50% tap 50% RO water would be ideal.
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2005, 09:22 AM
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I agree, floating plants are so close to the light they should grow fine. A floating plant that grows above the water will grow even faster, in fact its leaves may even be singed from the light. Water lettuce grows like gangbusters. Just realize that these plants will block the light to anything below it. You can also use house plants like Pothos. You let the roots grow in the water and the plant outside the tank.

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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2005, 05:32 PM Thread Starter
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I would love to get an RO unit, but I don't have the funds for that. I am going to the store today (RMS in middleburg heights Brian) and see what they got. I will let you know how the nitrate reduction goes.

Thanks everyone
Dave
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2005, 09:19 PM
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If you feed your discus properly, with such low light level, I don't think any plants in any reasonable quantity will help lowering nitrate, they will help slowing down the accumulation though.

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