Reverse flow undergravel filter - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-20-2002, 05:28 AM Thread Starter
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A LFS recommended using a reverse flow undergravel filter for a plant tank. What do you all think of it? On one hand, it would keep more dirt and stuff up, and into a power filter, but it would disturb the roots, right?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-20-2002, 01:02 PM
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I prefer never to mix an undergravel filter with plants. All the waste from the fish gets caught in the substrate and the plants USE it, so you don't want it to stay on top.

Also, even on reverse flow, chances are, the roots will get under it and get caught, I wouldn't do it.


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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-20-2002, 01:51 PM
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A RUGF was just the thing 15-20 years ago. The theory is that it would aerate the roots well and transmit nutrients to them. But a substrate that is rish in nutrients with a water column that is relatively poor in nutrients is an easier way to curb algae growth.

"Distrubing" the roots is a good thing. Stirring up the nutrients is not.

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-21-2002, 04:58 AM
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RUGF can be used sucessfully in planted tanks if the plants are properly choosen. Well designed RUGF's eliminate most of the flaws that condemn UGF's. However, plants that are heavy root feeders or plants that develop a large root system should be avoided.

A planted tank with Anubias, Bolbitus, Java ferns, Java Moss, and most fast growing stem plants will do well and not cause any problems with the RUGF.

Another option for those that are "sold" on the RUGF's efficiency is to "pot" rooted heavy feeding plants like swords. I have a friend from Usenet that have an incredible tank with RUGF and potted swords. Properly setup these tanks can be almost impossible to muck up.

All that being said, I failed at my single attempt at using RUGF on a planted tank...I don't have the discipline to limit the type of plants and to not achieve optimal plant growth.
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