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is this more native to their natural habitat? just rocks?
If you're talking about the rift lakes, yes, but there are still habitats in those lakes where plants are found. But, you've got quite a mix, not just rift lake cichilds.

What type of plants are you using? Some that are supposed to be easy and do well in low light are anubias and java fern.

Post a pic.
 

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That's a very nice setup with lots of territories. I'd leave it be. Very well done, pretty setup. I'd let you aquascape one of mine any day.

Many plants will shed most or all of their existing leaves when added to a new tank. But if you really want to try adding a live plant, try ordering some java moss and tie it to the driftwood. You can find it cheap on Aquabid. I don' t know all of the fish well enough on your list though to say whether or not they'd try to eat it. I tried adding it to my tropheus tank and they picked it apart and played with it.
 
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