The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone. I just joined this forum today, and this is the first thread I've started.

I've been in the hobby (mostly fish keeping) for about 4-5 years. Not much luck with plants so far. I'm trying to figure out some way I can get some nice plant life going to enhance some of my tanks.

One thing I'm really wondering about is how do you grow plants in the substrate or attached to decor on the tank floor when you also have floating plants? I've lost count of how many times I've heard floating plants kill everything else. What I'm working with is dwarf water lettuce. I would really like to keep at least a little because the fish I have in this tank (Pseudomugil gertrudae) are very timid and benefit from some floating plant coverage.

I just added some vallisneria and bacopa to the tank today, and kept about 5 dwarf water lettuce (couple big round ones and a few with nice long roots).

Here's a picture of what I have so far. I do also plan to get a better suited light soon. I recently upgraded to this size tank and still need to replace the little one.
1028935
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,141 Posts
I've tended to use low light plants like java fern and anubias with floaters, they enjoy the filtered light. The trick is to keeping the area where the floaters settle pretty open without plants underneath and planting around the shadow they cast. It's tricky but it's possible, just takes some planning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
702 Posts
You have some vibrant water lettuce with long roots. You can build a couple air line floating rings to contain the water lettuce at the corners leaving the middle open for light penetration to grow substrate plants. Water lettuce is fast growing so you have to thin them out often, and long roots is indication of low nutrients. Both Vals and Bacopa are low light plants, but Java fern and Anubias are even more shade tolerant.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,998 Posts
You need to balance the penetration of light through your floaters, the light intensity, and what you have growing underneath. If your floaters move around during the day then you have a better chance of growing plants underneath. Water lettuce being a thicker plant will block more light then say frogbit which also has long roots, or other common smaller floaters like salvina, giant duckweed, or red root floaters.

Most of my tanks have floating plants of one type or another... actually all of my current tanks do. They are all growing plants as well in the substrate. If the floaters grow too dense I remove some, or I increase the brightness of the light etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You have some vibrant water lettuce with long roots. You can build a couple air line floating rings to contain the water lettuce at the corners leaving the middle open for light penetration to grow substrate plants. Water lettuce is fast growing so you have to thin them out often, and long roots is indication of low nutrients. Both Vals and Bacopa are low light plants, but Java fern and Anubias are even more shade tolerant.
I thought about trying this. When all I had was the dwarf water lettuce and it covered the top though I did the opposite. I had a floating ring to keep them out of for feeding. It didn't work because the runners grow over or under it and bloom again. Also, how would you suggest keeping the rings still in the back corners?

I also was curious about the long roots indicating low nutrients?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
702 Posts
I thought about trying this. When all I had was the dwarf water lettuce and it covered the top though I did the opposite. I had a floating ring to keep them out of for feeding. It didn't work because the runners grow over or under it and bloom again. Also, how would you suggest keeping the rings still in the back corners?

I also was curious about the long roots indicating low nutrients?
Actually water lettuce is easier to contain than smaller floaters because it is thick in vertical dimension. There is no maintenance free containment as you need to prune out runners and escapees regularly as healthy floaters are fast spreader. You can tie the ring with a fish line to to drilled hole in the tank rim, suction cup or whichever object it can hold on to. Floaters tend to send out longer roots in lean water to maximize capture of nutrients.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
528 Posts
Floaters will definitely negatively impact plants that want high light if they are parked above them. I like floaters, I use Salvinia Minima which spreads like wildfire. I just constantly remove excess (throw some in my turtle tank) to keep large swaths of light open for fast growers.

The airline floater idea posted above is a good one to be more precise about your lighting!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'll probably try to rig up something with airline and suction cups. I might have to completely replant the vals where I can put the lettuce towards the back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It may not be the prettiest, but I feel a little better about this now. I connected two circles of airline tube with T connectors. The larger circle is right in the middle of the tank with 3-4 plants in it. The smaller is behind it with 1 plant. Do you guys think this will work?

1028968
1028969
1028970
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
28 Posts
I have used airline tubing to contain frogbit and it worked very well. I have seen airline suction cups used to keep the tubing in place, you just have to remember to pop the tubing out of the suction cup when doing a water change.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top