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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, I just bought a few plants and got home to find my big tank was not done cycling. So I put together a SMALL, about 1.5 gallon tank with an airstone and some gravel to hold the plants for a few days.

My question is this....should I keep the lights on for 24hours while the plants are in such a small quarters? I imagine that without photosynthesis the plants would emit toxins during the night and in such a small tank it would hurt them? There are about 5 medium sized plants mostly swords and I have a standard small bulb to use at night, and an 18" 10000K bulb for a few hours during the day. And I also have no heater yet.

Does this sound okay to do? Should I add a couple drops of Leaf Zone in there? I am new to plants.
 

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I'm pretty sure you can put plants in an un-cycled aquarium without any ill effects, in fact I believe that they will help to speed up the cycle of your aquarium.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
yea but I did the fishless cycle, therefore added pure ammonia. You can't add plants into ammonia because it burns thier leaves. If I had started the plants before trying to cycle then I would have skipped the cycle, but I wanted a strong foundation. So now I sit and wait...lol
 

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If you added enough ammonia to burn the leaves of the plants then you added way to much ammonia. You should be able to cycle the tank just fine with the plants in the tank. Remember the entire point of the cycle is to build up the bacteria necessary to remove the nitrogenous waste of the fish. Because the plants uptake, thusly reducing, several of the intermediates of the nitrogen cylce if you have enough plants in the tank no cycle is even necessary. Unless you have way, way to much ammonia in your tank I would just put the plants in the main tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
But my plant has been set up for more than a month, and I added wayyyy more ammonia then I ever did the other day because I realized I was dosing it worng...i.e not dosing enough. They say to keep dosing ammonia to keep the bacteria alive and working even through the nitrite and nitrate phases. So now my ammonia is at 2ppm and nitrite is at 5ppm. I think I should just wait one more day.

Basically the plants have a little airstone and I put a basking light over them to heat up the tank.

I ended up turning the lights off last night. They will probably get about 8 hours of off-time. I only imagine them being in this holding tank another day or 2.
 

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But my plant has been set up for more than a month, and I added wayyyy more ammonia then I ever did the other day because I realized I was dosing it worng...i.e not dosing enough. They say to keep dosing ammonia to keep the bacteria alive and working even through the nitrite and nitrate phases. So now my ammonia is at 2ppm and nitrite is at 5ppm. I think I should just wait one more day.
Pretty much if you're still in the ppm order of magnitude, i think you're fine with putting plants in. If it was a 50:50 mix of ammonia to water or something similarly crazy, the plants would die a horrible death, but for the little bits of ammonia you're putting in, the plants will just love it. The cycle is for the benefit of the fish, not the plants.
 

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Yeah, 2 ppm shouldn't hurt the plants. Put the plants in, and they will soak it up, giving you a shorter cycle, and you can put your fish in faster. When I set up a planted tank, I just fill it up, put plants in as soon as I get them, and it's ready to go. I'll have fish in it within a few days and never even see any ammonia/nitrite spikes in the water tests. This is assuming it is a heavily planted tank though; if you have just a few plants, you don't have as much ammonia filtering power.
 

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2ppm NH3 and 5ppm NO2 is nothing for the plants. They just suck that right up and beg for more. Put the plants in the main tank.
 

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Throw the plants in, if they start to suffer than take em out! If you are still concerned, do a huge water change to reduce the ammonia a bit. But ammonia is eagerly consumed by plants. I agree with everyone here.
 
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