Plants for low light conditions

  • Nina_W
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Nina_W replied the topic: Re: Plants for low light conditions

cebosound wrote: nina, can we see some close up pics of your plants you speak of.?

Of course - I'd be delighted to :) Although it took a bit longer than I thought it would to get passable pictures, a lot of them look like this:

Here is the whole tank as it looks today:

There are basically two regions where plants grow in Wicket's tank. On the left is the main area where she leaves them to grow, and where I can usually add plants as I feel like. On the right is the big driftwood where the catfish hide and her sleeping rock can be seen peeking out. On this side, only some plants are left alone, but anything else I put there is moved or shredded, depending on how offensive it is to Wicket's aesthetic sensibilities.

Here's the left side:

You can see the whole gamut of plant species here. The next lot of photos all come from this side of the tank.

Here's my pond weed/anacharis (Egeria densa, I think):

Close ups of the sunset hygro (hyrophillia polysperma - note - this is the one Ken pointed out is illegal in the US):

What you can't see here is the slight pinky-orange colour the top few leaves have. This is a beautiful plant. But it really grows like a weed. These all add between 1-2 cm a week to their height, which is fast for this tank.

Poor, struggling valisneria (valisneria americana gigantea):

They regularly get trimmed by Wicket, you can see some of the leaves have blunt edges. She likes her lawn short.

(and, then, of course )

Here's one of the lace java fern (Microsorum pteropus 'Windelov'):

And lastly, for the left side, the lily bulb:

Then, we move on to the right side:

This has two, nice, medium sized, normal java fern (Microsorum pteropus):

(you can still see the fern, silly fish - ha, you failed to block my picture :P)

A lily, anacharis and a small hygro:

And lots of moss:

the moss grows in long, rangey runners, like beans do, and not in fuzzy clumps like they do under better conditions. But they're green, and they grow fairly well.
(that's Lazarus the striped raphael sleeping just out of focus in the stump there)

This is on a really low light tank - 60 watts made out of 2 x 30 Watt T7 fluorescent tubes placed 16 cm above the water level with no reflectors and a great chunk of open glass where light just leaks out - this would be totally inadequate for plants except maybe java moss/java fern, and a few other weed-species that usually take over completely. There is no fertiliser except fish poop (although I am considering trying something (root tabs) to help my water lilies grow a bit better), and low nitrates (around 5).

Wicket can be harsh on the plants, but once they've rooted well, she leaves them be. Every now and again I have to replant anacharis. Luckily, they take this beating in their stride.
Wrestling matches with Java moss happens fairly regularly.

So yes, plants in an oscar tank, with low light, and no attention given to them - from a person who thought, up to the beginning of this oscar adventure, that she can't grow plants at all (not even Java moss would survive) for whatever reason. I guess the trick really is to not put them in with hungry malawi cichlids ;)

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aus-car replied the topic: Re: Plants for low light conditions

I don't know if it is available in the US, but the Asian Ambulia plant I put in my tank is going nuts, equally as well as the Wisteria, which is supposed to grow like a weed. Im seeing new growth and it's sending out runners starting new ones.
Plus it looks really nice when it's leaves are all spread out wide.

This pic from theplantedtank site but I will take some pics of mine when I have a chance.

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  • Matt
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Matt replied the topic: Re: Plants for low light conditions

I picked up some Java moss yesterday, so we'll see how it does. If it lives I'll consider some more plants, but we'll see.

cebosound wrote: Waterchange, Waterchange, waterchange... till your knuckles are bleeding. ;) :lol:

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