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Cichlids and plants

1082 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Scooter Trash
Hi everyone,

I think I'm going to venture out into a planted tank.

My current set up:
Eheim canister filter
Texas holy rock
Sand substate
Dual flourescent lights

Will I have any problems with growing and maintaining plants with the following fish?

Demasoni's, Acei's, Cobalt Blue's and Socolofi's.

Also, what would be good starter plants.

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I tried java fern with my mbuna and had little success. I didn't do anything special for plants, just used the tank lights (1-1.5 watts per gallon). The fish chewed the plants and algae smothered the leaves.

I moved the plants to a carnivore tank (Tanganyikans) and increased the light to 3 watts per gallon. I also added fast-growing vallisneria and planted the vals and some crypts in Fluorite substrate enclosed in "pillows" of thin polyester quilt batting. (Suggestions by Number6, thanks!)

Night and day. The remaining narrow-leaf java fern is recovering. The plants are outgrowing my tank. I have no nitrates. Now my only problem is a population explosion of snails who hitchhiked in on the plants.

I don't do CO2, but I do have 2 daily light/dark periods. I don't know if it helps or not. I also add Flourish Tabs every 3 months, but otherwise...that's it!
Anubias, Java Ferns, Vallisneria, Brazilian Swords and Cryptocornes are the plants I've had the most success with. They key is not to add in a couple of plants, but 15-20+. If you add in a few, they will be curiousities, and will be chewed on. If you add many, they might get a little nibbled on, but there will enough it won't matter. I don't use fertilizers, or CO2, the fish provide enough ferts for my liking. But, the key is, go big, or don't bother.
Thanks guys.

Fogelhund, any idea about how much those types of plants cost? If I need 15-20 to start I'm trying to get a feeling for how much that would cost me.

Also, can all the types of plants you mentioned be planted in sand substrate?

Thanks again.

I just planted my little 20 gallon community tank today to see if I have any success with plants at all before I jump into stocking my 125 gal (mostly) Mbuna tank. Currently, I have two silk plants in there that they generally ignore except to pick off some occasional algae....I'm hoping they'll do the same with the real ones.

Keep us posted on your plants, I'd be interested in hearing about the results.
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