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Title The Planted Freshwater Aquarium
Author

Ralph Cabage

Last Updated

2014-11-25

Abstract

Freshwater planted tanks should be the wave of the future but will they? Aquatic plants can make a freshwater system look as naturally gorgeous as a miniature reef in a saltwater aquarium.


Freshwater planted tanks should be the wave of the future but will they? Aquatic plants can make a freshwater system look as naturally gorgeous as a miniature reef in a saltwater aquarium. Live planted tanks have been mastered by the Dutch and American hobbyists are quickly seeing the beauty in these systems. The biggest draw back to the planted tank is that aquatic plants have been given a bad rap by hobbyists who have been unsuccessful at keeping them alive and thriving in the aquarium. This is mostly due to bad information from stores and lack of understanding by customers. Planted tanks in Germany are advanced systems with heating coils in the gravel, trickle filters, advanced lighting, and automated injection systems for carbon dioxide and essential nutrients. Although no one can argue with the success with the German techniques, planted tanks need not be so complicated. The five simple rules for success are as follows: 1) plants do best in systems without undergravel filters; 2) plants need a minimum of two rows of lighting; 3) planted systems will have fewer fish than fish only systems; 4) nutrients must be added; and 5) liquid Plant Supplements by Kent Marine, or Ferrovit by Hawaiian Marine must be added. The advantages to the heavily planted system are significant. First, planted tanks will achieve a stronger balance and maintain higher water quality. Further, plants will saturate the system with oxygen. Finally, plants are extremely appealing to look at and add color and vibrant displays to freshwater systems that would otherwise be unnatural and become boring to hobbyists over time.

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