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Plants in Sand

2112 Views 4 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  gtsum
I am upgrading and getting a 55g, but i want to stick with the sand. Is it possible for me to have live plants in sand? If yes what kind of plants can I have>by the way I would like to have the cool looking grasses and etc. Thank you
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I've got plants in sand, they seem to do about as well as the plants in other substrates. Valisineria seems to prefer sand over gravel and is one of the cool looking grasses you mention.
In my exp, sand does fine as long as its a bit "dirty". If its fresh sand it doesnt have many organic compounds and plants have a hard time getting enough ferts from the substrate. Old sand thats been in a tank a long time does good with certain plants. I've tried many plants with my sand and low light setup, here's what I've found:

The good plants, cant kill em, grow like weeds
Java Fern
Java Moss
Cryptocoryne wendtii

Ok plants, survive but never thrive
Dwarf Hairgrass
Corkscrew Vallisneria
Giant Vallisneria

Bad plants, might as well just pour mud in your water
Bannana Plant
Amazon Sword

Note: These are personal observations, differences in water chemistry, fish inhabitants, substrate, light etc could produce different results.

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I have different experiences. I have sand in my 29g with 40 watts of light and java moss is the ruler. After that is anarcharis (elodea) and amazon swords. Then anubias and wisteria. They all grow great. Plants I don't have succeses with are vallis and hornwort. I obviously have sand. Tank inhabitants are teras, cories, and the usual community fish (but no cichlids)
in my 75g, I have java fern, anubias, and amaz sword in black tahitian moon sand. I have a nova extreme T5 light (108 watts), and I dose with excell flourish a couple times a week and they do well. The swords can be planted in the sand with no issues, the java fern I wedge between rocks (they will attach themselves to the rock over time) and the anubias can be wedged in between rocks as well, or they can be planted in the sand, but if you plant in the sand, make sure the rhyzome is exposed (not buried), otherwise they will die
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