Chinese Evergreen For A Balanced Water Chemistry

oldsalt777

Well Known Member
Messages
2,219
Reaction score
747
Points
148
Experience
More than 10 years
FL...

I immersed the roots of these Aglaonema house plants in some fish tanks a while back and they've kept the water chemistry stable with a water change about every three weeks on these tanks. I doubt I'd need to change out the water at all. Just use some form of sterile water to top off the tank to avoid a mineral build up that might affect all the fish. The more fish in the tank the faster the plants grow. The plants are pretty large already.

There's quite a bit of water evaporation, because the tank is open. No traces of ammonia or nitrite and nitrates most of the time in the single digits. The bacteria colony living on the tanks' inside surfaces work at night to use the nitrogen from the fish waste and the plants take over during the day. Lighting is cheap, just some florescent bulbs from the hardware store.

Sure makes tank keeping a lot easier!

Old
 

Attachments

Discusluv

Well Known Member
Messages
3,367
Reaction score
2,755
Points
208
Experience
More than 10 years
Wow! That Chinese Evergreen is beautiful! It sure is liking the fish waste.
So the roots are not rotting at all-- I guess that is obvious because the plants do not appear stressed.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #4

oldsalt777

Well Known Member
Messages
2,219
Reaction score
747
Points
148
Experience
More than 10 years
You should still be doing water changes to replace the minerals used by the fish and the plants. Great form of nitrate control though!
Hello TX...

Thanks. Thought about the trace elements issue. Am researching fish foods that contain these. Most flakes contain zinc and manganese. Haven't looked into the others. Thinking, if I fed the fish these elements, the food would provide the minerals and the fish waste material the plant fertilizer. Then, in theory, you could use RO water to top off the tank and never do a water change.

Old
 

TexasDomer

Fishlore Legend
Messages
33,060
Reaction score
9,020
Points
608
Experience
2 years
You should be doing water changes in a small, closed system, trace elements in the food or not.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #9

oldsalt777

Well Known Member
Messages
2,219
Reaction score
747
Points
148
Experience
More than 10 years
Pothos will work great as well! And forget the distilled or RO water. The plants and fish need the minerals.
Pothos and Philodendron root systems won't work for large tanks. They're too small and have little affect on the nitrogen levels in tanks with a lot of fish. For small tanks, possibly. The Aglaonema house plants gets much larger and can be used in larger tanks. The more plants you use, the more nitrogen is removed. The use of the RO or distilled water is so you avoid high mineral levels. The "trace" elements are exactly that, just a trace. Higher levels of any of these over an extended period will kill your fish.

Old
 

TexasDomer

Fishlore Legend
Messages
33,060
Reaction score
9,020
Points
608
Experience
2 years
Right, that's why you do water changes - to remove build up of leftover minerals and replace with fresh, clean water with minerals.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #12

oldsalt777

Well Known Member
Messages
2,219
Reaction score
747
Points
148
Experience
More than 10 years
Right, that's why you do water changes - to remove build up of leftover minerals and replace with fresh, clean water with minerals.
TX...

Actually, the reading I've been doing on a no water change tank, claims you can add small pieces of metal containing specific minerals that treated tap water contains. The RO water used to replace water lost to evaporation is of course sterile and adds no minerals. The water is never changed, only the small mineral pieces once they dissolve in the tank water. Like salt, these minerals never evaporate with the tank water.

I have a couple of smaller tanks a 38 and a 20 G that I can use to experiment and I plan to set those up in the coming weeks. I'm guessing the Chinese evergreen removes ammonia, nitrite and most of the nitrate in the water, while the small pieces of certain metals and a specific fish diet provide a constant source of trace minerals.

Interesting to say the least.

Old
 

Paradise fish

Well Known Member
Messages
1,254
Reaction score
548
Points
93
Experience
1 year
Pothos and Philodendron root systems won't work for large tanks. They're too small and have little affect on the nitrogen levels in tanks with a lot of fish. For small tanks, possibly. The Aglaonema house plants gets much larger and can be used in larger tanks. The more plants you use, the more nitrogen is removed. The use of the RO or distilled water is so you avoid high mineral levels. The "trace" elements are exactly that, just a trace. Higher levels of any of these over an extended period will kill your fish.

Old
I'm sure 20 stocks of pothos will do a better job than a single whatever else plant. And how does the root structure not work?

Are you aware that the plants, and to a lesser extent the fish, absorb the minerals in the water? They don't just sit in it, they absorb it and use it to grow. The minerals that once was in the water are now within the leaves and body of your fish. Therefore, once it runs out the plants will be stressed. But if it's been working for you so far then I guess keep at it.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #15

oldsalt777

Well Known Member
Messages
2,219
Reaction score
747
Points
148
Experience
More than 10 years
I'm sure 20 stocks of pothos will do a better job than a single whatever else plant. And how does the root structure not work?

Are you aware that the plants, and to a lesser extent the fish, absorb the minerals in the water? They don't just sit in it, they absorb it and use it to grow. The minerals that once was in the water are now within the leaves and body of your fish. Therefore, once it runs out the plants will be stressed. But if it's been working for you so far then I guess keep at it.
Hello Para...

Yes. Fish take in the bulk of their nutrients by eating them. By feeding the fish a balanced diet that includes the nutrients they require, their waste would provide for the plants. Salt stays in the tank until you remove it through a water change. the other minerals not used by the plants will do the same. Also, by using specific land plants that will remove ammonia, nitrite and nitrate as soon as it becomes available like The Aglaonema, the fish live in ideal water conditions. so, I'm relatively sure water changes could be done just a few times a year or possibly not at all.

What an opportunity for experimentation.

Old
 
Toggle Sidebar

Aquarium Calculator

Follow FishLore!





Top Bottom