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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, im new to the planted tank forums and new to tropical fish keeping. Only had my tropicals for about 6 months, however i have kept coldwater fish in the past - nothing exciting only goldfish!!
Right now I have a 54L/15 US gal tank with all my fish in (only has 3 real plants and I have no idea what they are!! I only got them yesterday for my gouramis) and I want to turn my old 19L/5 gal tank into a nano planted tank. I've never grown plants before, and im a bit confused about everything, and I cant seem to find any info on small, easy to look after plants on the internet. I know that java fern and java moss are easyish to look after, but I just don't know how to look after them. Im kind of interested in dwarf hairgrass and anubias nana petite as well, but again, how idea how to look after them. I also don't have any (good!) ideas about how to arrange the plants. I've looked for ideas on here and on aquascaping comps, but they all seem to be very complicated and slightly too big for my tank. I have designed a very simple idea for my tank, but Im just not sure and I think its too plain.
I really like the heavily planted tanks, but I think mine would look messy and is it too much for a beginner? Any help or ideas would be very much appreciated :)
 

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ok here is perhaps the easiest scape to grow and create
the grassland scape

plants: Riccia, Echinodorus tennelus, elocharis a. (dwarf hairgrass), elocharis vivipara
all theese should be easy to find and are easy to grow

next get 3 rocks going from large to small, and do some iwagumi
if you are stuck copy something from this link (just lay them out ona table)
http://translate.google.com/transla...=es-es&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&prev=/language_tools

ok so when you have all your stuff
1. use card to make curvey partition in your tank to separate the sand and the aquasoil
2. fill in both parts and remove card
3. tie your riccia to lots of small flat stones and place along the border between sand and aquasoil
4. fill a tiny bit of water up to conver the riccia stones
5. seperate your bunches of echinodorus tennelus and plant in a dense clump near the focal point (where the big rock is, should be slightly off center)
6. plant elocharis a. to fill all the remaining space (but leave a strip at the back
7. plant elocharis vivpara along the back
8. fill carefull with water, by placing a plate in the tank and pouring water onto it
9. wait 2 weeks then add amano shrimp and ottocinclus
10. after 3 weeks add your fishys and trim the riccia
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thankyou for all your ideas and advice! Ive just been researching those individual plants, and they all seem to like a lot of light, do you know how much WPG i need? also thankyou for the link, a few interesting shapes there. I presume the amano shrimp are for keeping the algae down, however the otocinclus ive heard to be quite agressive to fish. they also seem similar to my corys (being small armoured catfish), would it be necessary to have both corys and otocinclus? thankyou again for your help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
actually im finding it a bit hard to buy riccia on UK websites. anybody know any sites that sell it? or maybe you're selling some? also, anybody else with any planting ideas just in case? :D
 

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oh great your from the uk!
same here
i got all my equipment www.aquaessentials.co.uk
they also do the top quality plants from tropica

i got the bulk of my plants from here www.plantsalive.co.uk
they are quite cheap and if you are not satisfied with the quality (just say you arent) they will send you more for free without any quibbling

ottos are non aggressive, and the wpg rule doesnt apply for small tanks
generally just put as much as you can over it
my riccia is flourishing with 80W or ikea lighting over it (cost only 4.99)


another planting idea, though harder is the crypt and wood scape
get some nice driftwood, and an assorted 50 cyrpts from plants alive (like £15) then some stem plants and moss, and bolbitis and java fern
make a sandy forground, put moss rocks on the border, then place your driftwood and tie moss to it then plant all your crypts around and infront of the wood (smallest and front largest at back). plant your green stems on each side and the red stems behind the main part of the wood. tie bolbitis onto the bends in the wood, and plant a java fern were the peices of wood meet(off center)

i would really advise purchasing the ADA 2006 catalouge from www.aquaessentials.co.uk, as this has full color picture tutorials on how to scape and loads of ideas and equipment to drool over
 

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Just to give you some ideas and the names of some small plants, see this.

If you are going for easy low light plants, they include: Anubias, Bolbitis, Java ferns (Microsorum), mosses - all of these are 'epiphytes', grown on stones or driftwood. For ground cover: Marsilea species. Cryptocoryne and some small swords (Echinodorus) for bushes.
 
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