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Have you added plants to your mbuna tank?

  • Yes

    Votes: 3 75.0%
  • No

    Votes: 1 25.0%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to post this to share my recent success in planting my 75 gallon Mbuna tank. I have planted it with Java fern, Amazon sword, water lettuce, and various types of Anubias with great success. I have an 8 inch bumblebee who I was sure would kill the plants, but he has not touched them. Anyone who is wishing to plant a Cichlid tank, it is possible.
 

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Yes, it is possible, but some of the plants in your tank will not survive long-term in hard, alkaline water. The Anubias and Microsorum should be fine; the others, not so much. Some people also have success with Vallisneria in African cichlid tanks; I have not. :fish:

IMG_0572 2R1.jpg
 

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How long have the plants and fish been in the tank?
 

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How recent is your recent success? How long have these plants been in the tank?
 

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DJRansome said:
How long have the plants and fish been in the tank?
Sinister-Kisses said:
How recent is your recent success? How long have these plants been in the tank?
I assume that both of you are directing these questions to the OP, but just as a point of information, the Anubias shown in my Featherfin 125 have been in that tank for just over 2 years, and they have grown very substantially during that time. :thumb:
 

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The problem with the vote is I can say I added plants with mbuna, but you can't say whether it was a success or a failure. For me it was a failure.
 

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DJRansome said:
The problem with the vote is I can say I added plants with mbuna, but you can't say whether it was a success or a failure. For me it was a failure.
I also think it will be a failure with Mbuna most of the time. It is clear that Anubias, for example, do fine in hard alkaline water if the fishes leave them alone, but if you have Mbuna grazing on them all the time to collect algae, the leaves of the Anubias become damaged from the constant rasping to such an extent that the plants eventually die. I've seen this happen also with Tropheus. Java fern might fare better, but I've never been able to grow this stuff long-term under any conditions. :eek:
 

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I got java fern to do OK with haps, peacocks and Tangs, but only with CO2 injection.
 

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I have juvenile Mbunas with Anubias. They are picking on the leaves and the roots. Looks like they're just picking off algae. I understand that it's not good for the plants, but is it ok for the fish. I have Acei, Rusty's and Yellow Labs.
 

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Trademark said:
I have juvenile Mbunas with Anubias. They are picking on the leaves and the roots. Looks like they're just picking off algae. I understand that it's not good for the plants, but is it ok for the fish. I have Acei, Rusty's and Yellow Labs.
That may work whilst the fishes are little, but when they grow up, not so much... :eek:
 

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I would only call the setup a success if the plants grow and get bigger/ spread. Watching the plants slowly die and claim it is a success because they didn't get ripped up is not much of a success. Probably need more light if you are serious about growing plants.
 

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Sir_Keith and Noki,

It's looking as though that's what's going to happen. It's been a couple of weeks now that the juvies and the plants have been together. Still looks good but at the rate they're nipping on the leaves and roots the plants won't thrive as they should. I love the way they fill the upper half of the tank though. Any suggestions, artificial plants?

AA9DDB96-FB8E-4FEC-905B-1B77294BFB04.jpeg
 

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Check out http://www.elitecichlids.com

Great quality and I think they look pretty realistic. The bamboo ones are my favorite and I think one of the cheaper ones. They sway very nicely in the current too. This is a picture from a couple months ago. The bamboo is the one in the back on the left hand side. I added another one over there and it looks great. Very happy with their products. There are 10% off codes available online as well from various YouTubers that use them.
 

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Thanks fishboy, I'll check it out.

On another note, don't know why my pic came upside down
 

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I've tried artificial silk plants in the past. They look good initially, but decay over time and disintegrate- at least in African Cichlid water, leaving all kinds of debris that clogs your filters and generally causes a big mess. Be forewarned. :(
 

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Thanks, if I go artificial, it will be plastic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I have mixed artificial plants in with the live ones. This appears to stop nipping. My feather fin cat has been most interested, yet has not been able to do any damage. I have had them for around 2 months now. The swords have faired worse than the others, but are still growing like mad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Trademark, I recommend digging yours into the sand. That seems to prevent the roots from being damaged.
 

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GuitarShark said:
Trademark, I recommend digging yours into the sand. That seems to prevent the roots from being damaged.
 
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