When Should I Put In The Plants?

Punkus_Magunkus

So I'm wanting to do my first planted tank with java ferns, crypts, helanthium, and Amazon swords. I was wondering when I should put the plants in before or after the tank is cycled? Do they help with the cycling process and overall how do they affect the nitrogen cycle?
 

Charlie’s Dad

You can put them in at anytime. I myself would go ahead so they can start getting established. Nice variety too!
 

Fishy McGee

Put them in before. They can help cycle in my experience. They produce oxygen and typically have the nutrients for beneficial bacteria on them
 

Punkus_Magunkus

I'm planning to kickstart the cycling with some media from my other tank anyways, do the plants feed off ammonia or something else? Also what kind of light helps grow plants?
 

Fishy McGee

Do you understand the nitrogen cycle? And the light that comes with the tank kits work just fine. Ammonia converts to nitrate= great for plants
 

Bryangar

nutrients for beneficial bacteria? that’s a new one lol.

Technically, yes they do help with cycling a tank. Plants prefer to use ammonia as a nutrient source(over nitrates), but they’ll use any source.

You can do it whenever you’d like, they’ll help somewhat with the cycling process, but not by alot, unless you heavily plant it from the start. And since you’ll be using cycled media, you don’t have to go through it.

Any light with 6000-8000 kelvin rating will work, those plants you mentioned would do best in medium light. What light do you currently have?
 

kanzekatores

If you see your ammonia and nitrites go up and down, then it should be time. So just test the water regularly to see when it's time At least that's when I would add them because the plants get rid of nitrate
 

Punkus_Magunkus

nutrients for beneficial bacteria? that’s a new one lol.

Technically, yes they do help with cycling a tank. Plants prefer to use ammonia as a nutrient source(over nitrates), but they’ll use any source.

You can do it whenever you’d like, they’ll help somewhat with the cycling process, but not by alot, unless you heavily plant it from the start. And since you’ll be using cycled media, you don’t have to go through it.

Any light with 6000-8000 kelvin rating will work, those plants you mentioned would do best in medium light. What light do you currently have?
I don't have any lights right now, I want to know what to get before I order it, I'm looking on Amazon.
 

Fishy McGee

Fluval typically makes quality lights, and the kelvin rating should be in their description
 

86 ssinit

Yes plants will use ammonia first but most of us really don’t want ammonia in our tanks and down the line because of the lack of ammonia the plants intake the nitrates.
So to the op yes you can add all those plants now. Cycling is not going to bother them and it gives them a chance to root. If using media from other tanks to jump start the cycle you’ll need an ammonia source to feed that bb. Fish will work a few at a time.
 

86 ssinit

Now your second question. Lighting as mentioned 6000-8000 kelvin is needed for those plants to show good growth. What size tank do you have and how deep is it? Both the crypts and swords will benefit from root tabs and liquid fertilizers.
 

Punkus_Magunkus

Now your second question. Lighting as mentioned 6000-8000 kelvin is needed for those plants to show good growth. What size tank do you have and how deep is it? Both the crypts and swords will benefit from root tabs and liquid fertilizers.
Its a 29 gallon tank, about 17 inches deep
 

aquafrogg

As long as the plants have decent lighting, a food source, and carbon dioxide in the water, they can go in. I got the DA FSPEC for my tank and it works wonders. I’ve heard good things about nicrew as well. Nicrew will be cheaper.
 

Punkus_Magunkus

OP, As long as the plants have decent lighting, a food source, and carbon dioxide in the water, they can go in. I got the DA FSPEC for my tank and it works wonders. I’ve heard good things about nicrew as well. Nicrew will be cheaper.
I was looking at the nicrew lights and managed to find some that should work, as for the CO2 will I need Injections?
 

Fishy McGee

Fish produce the CO2 so only necessary if you want rapid plant growth. I find a zen to the slow growth... lol
 

Punkus_Magunkus

Thanks everyone for your input, I've ordered some nicrew lights and hopefully all goes well.
 

Fishy McGee

Good luck!
 

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