Any Tips For First Plant Build (fluorite)

YATT
  • #1
so I got a 20 gallon long. All my stuff is in transit from amazon/chewy. I got 2 bags of fluorite substrate. LFS warned me of algae problem from the get go. Anything I can do to minimize the algae? I’m starting from brand new tank, fishless cycle. Plan was wash substrate and condition water. Add ammonia and start n2 cycle. Add plants once ammonia was zero and continue to monitor afterward. Then add neon tetra school.
Thanks!
 
Ernest Sacco
  • #2
so I got a 20 gallon long. All my stuff is in transit from amazon/chewy. I got 2 bags of fluorite substrate. LFS warned me of algae problem from the get go. Anything I can do to minimize the algae? I’m starting from brand new tank, fishless cycle. Plan was wash substrate and condition water. Add ammonia and start n2 cycle. Add plants once ammonia was zero and continue to monitor afterward. Then add neon tetra school.
Thanks!
Rinse rinse rinse.....and when you've done that rinse some more....that stuff is terribly dirty and if you don't spend the time to remove all the febrile you'll have a chocolate tank....I've used the same substrate in my previous 75 gallon build which I recently upgraded to a 180...I had a terrible algae problem with the 75 but so far with the 180 it has been calm...again its goes back to how clean the substrate was as well as immediately introducing plants to the cycles tank so the algae is outcompeted for nutrients before it can get a foothold
 
YATT
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
Rinse rinse rinse.....and when you've done that rinse some more....that stuff is terribly dirty and if you don't spend the time to remove all the febrile you'll have a chocolate tank....I've used the same substrate in my previous 75 gallon build which I recently upgraded to a 180...I had a terrible algae problem with the 75 but so far with the 180 it has been calm...again its goes back to how clean the substrate was as well as immediately introducing plants to the cycles tank so the algae is outcompeted for nutrients before it can get a foothold

So you suggest to plant immediately to minimize algae?

If so, what simple plants should I start with? Thank you!
 
Ernest Sacco
  • #4
So you suggest to plant immediately to minimize algae?

If so, what simple plants should I start with? Thank you!


I've had great success with anubias and java ferns....depending on your levels of light and nutrients your java ferns will either grow larger or start budding offshoots from the tips of their leaves....if you regularly take these and replant them you can get good ground coverage quickly..
Anubias grow very slowly but are some of the most vibrant greens I own...and they thrive in nearly all conditions
 
-Mak-
  • #5
Minimizing algae also involves fast growing plants to outcompete algae, and anubias and java fern aren't fast. Try wisteria, hygrophila, anacharis, hornwort, and floating plants. Fertilize fertilize fertilize, or else they won't be able to grow fast.
Algae will be a result of too much light and not substrate because flourite is very low in nutrients. What light do you have? For the first couple weeks set the photoperiod to 6 hours
 
YATT
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
So confused. I was buying the substrate I did b/c I thought I didn’t need to fertilize! Makes me think I should just do gravel (plain) in the first tank to get the fish going. Maybe I’m not ready for plants. This substrate is expensive.
 
Nataku
  • #7
I agree as soon as you start adding ammonia add plants to outcompete algae.
Fast growing floating plants are best. Things like guppy grass, hornwort, anacharis, dwarf salvinia and frogbit are all super simple to grow - literally throw em in the tank and forget about em. They're all floating plants. No planting required. Remove excess as they grow. That's it. Super simple.
 
Ernest Sacco
  • #8
So confused. I was buying the substrate I did b/c I thought I didn’t need to fertilize! Makes me think I should just do gravel (plain) in the first tank to get the fish going. Maybe I’m not ready for plants. This substrate is expensive.
It doesn't have to be hard....the plants mentioned above are for the most part easy....and you don't have to go crazy with the fertz to maintain them....and from my experience java ferns grow fast like weeds...within 2 weeks of buying a new plant I'll usually have nearly every lead growing an offshoot...anubias is very slow growing but it absorbs a lot from the water.....I'd start with hornwart as said above and especially in a 20 all on the expenses won't be that bad
 
86 ssinit
  • #9
Yes you just can’t rinse that stuff enough. I got the red flourite just 20lbs mixed in with 120lbs eco complete and even after rinsing my tank was orange for over a month. Yes put in plants a day or two after you get it up and running. As said anubias and java fern grow slow. Get them just don’t expect them to grow fast. Anacharis is a good choice it grows fast in medium lighting. Others listed need good lighting to grow.
 
YATT
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
I agree as soon as you start adding ammonia add plants to outcompete algae.
Fast growing floating plants are best. Things like guppy grass, hornwort, anacharis, dwarf salvinia and frogbit are all super simple to grow - literally throw em in the tank and forget about em. They're all floating plants. No planting required. Remove excess as they grow. That's it. Super simple.

Thanks. Guppy grass and frogbit look great. Just so scared. I’m a planner and all of this is just “do it and see”. Freaks me out a bit.

I can wash the out of this stuff. I got the time to let it dry to. I’m a “do it once, do it right” kind of guy and willing to wait.

I could also return the substrate and get something else if easier.
 
Ernest Sacco
  • #11
Thanks. Guppy grass and frogbit look great. Just so scared. I’m a planner and all of this is just “do it and see”. Freaks me out a bit.

I can wash the out of this stuff. I got the time to let it dry to. I’m a “do it once, do it right” kind of guy and willing to wait.

I could also return the substrate and get something else if easier.
If you can 8d trade in the flourite for some eco complete....it looks the same but requires much less prep
 
YATT
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
If you can 8d trade in the flourite for some eco complete....it looks the same but requires much less prep

Thanks. I just bought it. Maybe I’ll trade it back in for fish and basic gravel. Get some lava rock and java fern. Learn my way up so to speak.
 
Bryangar
  • #13
It doesn't have to be hard....the plants mentioned above are for the most part easy....and you don't have to go crazy with the fertz to maintain them....and from my experience java ferns grow fast like weeds...within 2 weeks of buying a new plant I'll usually have nearly every lead growing an offshoot...anubias is very slow growing but it absorbs a lot from the water.....I'd start with hornwart as said above and especially in a 20 all on the expenses won't be that bad
So anubias grows super slow but takes a lot from the water...? I’m sorry but that’s wrong. Slow growth= slow and very little nutrient intake.
 
Ddogg2287
  • #14
I agree with the exo complete. I placed it onto my existing gravel when I converted to a planted tank. Stuck some reapens, swords and dwarf grass in and good to go. Didn't cloud my tank and I didn't have to rinse. Be sure to use root tabs if you have heavy rooted plants that I mentioned. Also worth mentioning is I have a high light tank. Sword and dwarf grass especially need it
 
-Mak-
  • #15
Despite both flourite and eco-complete having really misleading marketing on the nutrients aspect, they are more suited to root growth than regular gravel at least.
 
Ernest Sacco
  • #16
So anubias grows super slow but takes a lot from the water...? I’m sorry but that’s wrong. Slow growth= slow and very little nutrient intake.
It's a thick stem and broad leaf plant.....it takes a lot of nutrients and energy just to maintain itself....look I'm not saying it is profound but with mine though the leaves don't grow fast the roots begin to cover everything
 

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