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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have to say, after reading some threads, I feel really bad for a lot of fish.

I'm not saying that I do everything perfectly. I've pulled my share of stupid moves... but at least I try to do my homework and listen to people's advice.

This is my plea to all of you people out there: Please do your homework before you buy your fish and be prepared to give them a good home and proper care.

Some of the things that people pull borders on torture IMO.

(Now I'll get back to caring for my poor young angel that got caught in the intake of my filter...)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That, plus randomly seeing a tank profile with someone trying to breed angels in a 2.5 (I'm really hoping that something's mis-written in the profile.)
 

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I can only thank my Uncle that he was there for all my stupid questions as a preteen and during my early fish keeping years. (I do not believe in the "there are no stupid questions" statement.)

If there were no stupid questions why do your trusted people either smile knowingly or their eyes twinkle like they are full of mischief. The reason they don't make you look or sound stupid is because they care.

Of course I have made mistakes, who hasn't? I am just grateful for the people who have, and still are helping me by their knowledge and experience. Hopefully I can pass on what I have learned. (Sometimes I wonder have I learned anything at all?)

Planted tanks are a brand new venture to me, although I have kept fish for over 40 years. Thank you for your guidance and willingness to help!

So much to learn so little time.
 

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Fish AND plants are new to me.

My wife is working one night, so I take my kids to a local school carnival fundraiser. while I was taking care of my daughter at another booth, my son wins a coupon for a free goldfish from a local pet store. I tell him he can get one.

The "free" goldfish was a baby from the feeder tank. But, I've told the kids they can have a goldfish-- so I start trying to learn how to care for them properly. Somehow I winded up here at this forum and now I'm I'm trying to figure out what fertilizers the plants are going to need that won't harm the fish.

MY TANK SIZE:

56 gallon (tall column with a small planting surface)
24 inches tall from bottom to top
18 inches "deep" from front to back
30 inches wide from side to side

MY SUBSTRATE:

Right now I have no water in it, but I have 1.5 inches of flourite and 1.5 inches of sand. If I am going to make a change in this plan, now is the time to do it. I bought the sand to cap the Flourite because I didn't want the goldfish to eat the flourite, but I can tell already it is impossible to keep the flourite off the surface. I am either going to a.) remove as much sand as I can and buy more flourite and cap it with pea gravel, or b.) mix the sand and flourite and cap it with pea gravel to prevent the goldfish from getting to the flourite as much as I can.


HERE IS WHAT MY WATER COMPANY HAS TO SAY ABOUT THE WATER HERE:

"Hardness levels leaving our water treatment plants in 2010 ranged from 52 (soft) to 450 ppm (very hard) or 3.0 to 26.3 grains per gallon. The average leaving our plants is 197 ppm (very hard) or 11.5 grains per gallon.

The sodium level is approximately 20 ppm.

Water within our distribution system averages 7.3 pH units.

Alkalinity is the capacity of water to neutralize acids; water within our distribution system averages 77 ppm.

The highest Nitrate was 0.29ppm and the highest Nitrite reading was 0.017ppm.

For more detailed information please see the complete report at http://www.amwater.com/files/KY_0340250_CCR.pdf"

HERE ARE THE PLANTS I WANT TO TRY:

1.) Already under my lights:

Right now I have a holding tank with some java ferns (microsorium pteropus), some anubias (nana), some wisteria (hygrophila difformis), some anacharis (egeria densa), and some Marsilea. The elodea and on bunch of java ferns came from a LFS and there are black dots on most of the leaves of the java fern that came from the LFS. The Anubias, Wisteria, and another bunch of Java Fern was that Top Fin kind from PetSmart and no black dots, though the wisteria was in kind of bad shape. The Marsilea came from aquabid and was in great shape, but I might have destroyed it trying to convert it to submerged from its emersed form. If it won't recover, I'll try it again later, or maybe try baby tears or crypt parva (though the goldfish might shred the parva).

2.) I just bought a package here that contained:
7x - Rotala Colorata
2x - Polygonum Kawagoeanum
5x - Ambulia
12x Rotala Singapore
2x - Myrio Red
2x - Ludwigia sp Rubin
3x - Lindernia sp India
2x - Limnohila Vietnam 'mini'
3x - Ludwigia Lacustris
2x - Ludwigia x Arcuata

3.) I have also heard that goldfish won't destroy other things, so I'd like to try:

Coffee Anubias (Anubias Barteri Coffeefolia)
African Water Fern (Bolbitis heudelotii)
Crypt (Parva)

THE BOTTOM LINE IS:

I have a new hobby that involves both science and art, and down the road... maybe even gadgets. But if this is going to be sustainable for me, it is going to have to be easy. My son is committing to doing weekly water changes, and I will make sure that happens for the health of the fish. But I do have other questions about other things...

We're not using any added CO2, or anything like that. I have two HOBs, an Emperor 400 and an AquaClear 50. I have a bubbler and a heater, but not much else.

My questions now involve substrate and fertilizer. I'm worried the goldfish will eat the flourite and get bowel impaction, so I am looking at Aquasoil-- but that has issues of ammonia and can slow cycling, so I'm in a quandry. I also just bought some OC+ gelcaps, and now I need to look into whether or not these extra fertilizers would be "torture" to the goldfish. I also wouldn't want to lower ph too much with aquasoil because I've heard goldfish are healthier in higher ph.

So much to learn so little time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My best advice:

Keep learning and taking things slowly. It sounds like you're already doing this so cudos.

I'm pretty new to it all, too, so I'm learning as I go.
 

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The goldfish is gonna eat most of those plants.
Alas, yes... I spent a great deal of time in many threads asking people what plants their goldfish won't eat, and I bought the ferns and anubias, and since then I have gone crazy and picked up three more packages of LOTS of different varieties to just add biomass and se what my particular fish will and won't destroy.

Now I am most concerned that if I go with aquasoil that I learn how to manage the spikes and that if I add frets for the plants they won't harm the fish.
 
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