fore ground plants

Discussion in 'Plant Help' started by Nick16, 12 Nov 2008.

  1. Nick16

    Nick16 Member

    Messages:
    1,761
    Location:
    Surrey, UK
    hi, as you guys are the experts, i had to ask you. i have just aquired a 240l tank and im hoping for a bit of a planted setup. i want dense planting but i realise it may take alot of plants, so maybe dense in patches (sides back corners etc.) i will have a substrate fert under my black gravel. i will be dosing, TPN and EASYCARBO (i mite have my diy co2 going as well) what i was wondering is: i need some low level foreground plants, that will be fine around 2WPG. some thatare not to expensive as im tight!! :lol:

    can i please have names, a link as to where to buy them if thats possible. cheers.
     
  2. Thomas McMillan

    Thomas McMillan Member

    Messages:
    1,127
    I think your only option would be Cryptocoryne Parva, will grow to about 6cm under your light. All other foreground plants demand hight light, good fertilisation and CO2 injection.

    It is quite expensive from Tropica - you can get it from www.aquaessentials.co.uk or www.thegreenmachineonline.com - both are our sponsors.
     
  3. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    You could get a large pot of Eleocharis Acicularis from the pond section of your local garden centre if you like the grassy look :) Enough in a single pot to do the entire tank almost, if you seperate it to plantlets. It'll soon spread!

    I've grown it reasonably well without CO2 in the past.
     
  4. vauxhallmark

    vauxhallmark Member

    Messages:
    569
    I think your choice might be wider than Thomas suggests - I've got Glossostigma elatinoides (available from the above links) growing well in a tank with approx 2WPG over it. The tanks 18x15x15", 60 litres or 15 US gallons, lighting is an arcadia luminaire with two 14w (15") tubes, total 28W:15gallons. The tanks 15" tall, and the luminaire means the lamps are another few inches above the tank. The Glossostigma grows via underground runners, and only produces leaves flush with the substrate, which is supposed to be an indication that it is not light starved. However, the tank is dosed daily with TPN+, and has a timed pressurised CO2 system, so you might have a harder time than I do. Also, I don't know how tall your tank is, or what the lighting setup is - I always find it easier to visualise tanks if I'm given dimensions rather than volume.

    If your tubes are movable and you choose a light loving plant for the foreground, and less demanding plants at the back you could look at moving at least one of the tubes to be right over your foreground. And if you've got a hood and you think your foreground needs more light, you could just add additional lamps.

    I love all the plants suggested so far (C parva, Eleocharis, Glossostigma) and have them all growing in amongst each other in my tank.

    Others to try could be Pogostemon helferi (doesn't seem to be too demanding at all, but might need replanting every few months if the old leaves start to look scruffy), many other small varieties of Cryptocoryne, or what about small stones/wood with low plants attached - mosses, Anubias, Riccia (light loving and high maintenance).

    Basically, the Riccia is extremely high maintenance, and quite demanding when grown submerged (highest maintenance), the Glossostigma and possibly the Eleocharis will need fairly regular trimming (medium maintenance), mosses might need the occasional trim depending on how fast they grow (probably not too fast with low CO2), Anubius will need almost nothing doing to them (perhaps remove very old and ugly leaves)(low maintenance) and Cryptocorynes will need only the most occasional maintenance (take off any very old leaves). In fact, the less you do to the Crypts the better, especially for the first few months - resist the temptation to do anything to them, or move them, and suddenly they'll take off.

    Look at pictures on the web and see what you like, decide how much effort you want to have to put in to keep the tank looking good, and just try things. If you start with a small bit of a plant and it doesn't do well in your tank you haven't made too much of an investment. If it does take off, and you like it, you can either buy more, or spread the new growth over the area you want. Don't forget that if it doubles in (eg) 3 weeks, then you will have four times as much as you started with in 6 weeks, and 8 times after 12 weeks!

    All the best with this tank!

    Mark

    PS - if its 48x18x18" it's one of my favourite tank sizes! Deep enough (front to back) to create a good effect, and not too tall to reach the bottom. It should look great!
     
  5. GreenNeedle

    GreenNeedle Member

    Messages:
    2,706
    Location:
    Lincoln UK
    You will struggle with the carpet plants like glosso without CO2. 2WPG over your tank needs pressurised anyway in my opinion.

    AC
     
  6. vauxhallmark

    vauxhallmark Member

    Messages:
    569
    Nick 16 did say that they might use DIY CO2, so they could have a chance with it.

    Just let him/her get the tank set up, and once they see some plant growth the bug will bite, and it will be new equipment for every Christmas and birthday from then on! ;)
     
  7. Nick16

    Nick16 Member

    Messages:
    1,761
    Location:
    Surrey, UK
    its 48 long 16 wide and 20 high. its a juwel rio 240. i do probably need pressurised co2 but as this will be my first real dig at a planted tank, i want to do it right! what co2 systems are good? and cheap! i can move the lighting around so i could have it more concentrated on the front or more on the back!
     
  8. Superman

    Superman Member

    Messages:
    1,804
    Location:
    Cheltenham
    I've had success with Crypt Parva and think it's a beautiful plant. I've had HC and P Helferi, and both of them were failures for me as they were high maint.
     
  9. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,953
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Nick, I second
    SuperColey1's advice. The best thing for you to do is forget carpet plants for now and just concentrate on comprehending and executing basic dosing, filtration, flow management and CO2 injection. Worry about the other plants first. You can always add carpet plants later after you've had a bit of success. There is no urgency here. The more popular carpet plants generally respond poorly to inefficient CO2 - and they tend to be more expensive. I'd advise to get your feet wet with sturdier plants first and add the carpet later.

    Have a look here for typical examples of equipment AE Regulators & Solenoids There are less expensive sample available. Just browse the Carbon Dioxide and Hardware DIY forums to get a feel fro what others use and ask additional questions.

    Cheers,
     

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