What Is My Plant? Why Is It Furry? Will It Survive A Fishless Cycle?

TimFok

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Hi guys,

I'm new to the site, and general tropical fish scene.

I've got a 23L Fluval Edge tank, and did relevant homework on fishless cycling. I bought a water testing kit, and am waiting on my pure ammonia. In the mean time I filled my tank with gravel and the first layer of plants.

First question - I forgot to get the name of the plant when I was buying it, can someone identify it please?

Second question - Day 1 of my tank looked great. But day two and now three and the water is looking a little... murky. And the plants are looking a tad furry. (See pictures below) Can someone hazard a theory as to what is happening?

Third question - I came on here looking for a some answers to questions 1 & 2, when I spotted a sticky about plants not surviving a fishless cycle. Is this something I should have anticipated? Have I added the plants too soon? And if so, what do I do now? My ammonia should turn up in the post tomorrow which is when I was planning on starting the fishless cycle.

Fourth question - Depending on the resolution to question 3, are there any additional nutrients/food I need to add for my plants? All they've had 3 days worth of Nutrafin Biological Supplement.

I did some tests today for info regarding this post..

PH level 7.4
0.25ppm Ammonia
0 Nitrate
0 Nitrite

pics:

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TimFok

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Is there's anyone that could help here that would be great. Today my plants aren't looking very healthy at all, they're starting to turn brown, and the furriness has spread to the gravel also

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Livewire88

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Hello and welcome to the forum, its a shame you have not yet had any advice but I will try and help.

First of all the plants you have in your tank are Vallisneria.

Second, it seems that your plants are melting, this may be because they are adjusting to your water, the murky water could be a bacteria bloom and the fuzz on the substrate is quite common in newly set up tanks.

And I wouldn't have added plants in till the cycle had finished. I dont have any experience with Nutrafin Biological Supplement but if you are only going to have Vallis in the tank you shouldn't need to dose any thing to keep them alive. I look after a tank the same as yours and the Vallis in there does fine without any supplements.

If I were you I would remove the plants and put them in a bucket of water and put them back in the tank when the cycle is finished, in the past I have left Vallis in a bucket in the garage for months and it even sprouted new leaves, just make sure it is getting some light during the day.

Your water reading seem strange because you have a reading of Ammonia but have no fish in the tank! and also your Nitrate level being zero is unusual if you are using tap water. When using the API NitrAte test make sure you bash bottle 2 on a hard surface so that it can give a more accurate reading, however NitrAte levels is something you dont need to worry about at this time (or ever IMO if you follow a decent maintenance routine)

Your heater is not in the best place and I would recommend placing it next to the filter intake on a slight angle, (7pm-1pm angle)

Here is a picture of the Edge I maintain for a family member;
 

Livewire88

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This picture is old but the Vallis at the back in the right hand corner has spread quite nicely.

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TimFok

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Thanks so much for your reply.

Ill take the plants out and put them in a bucket, and they'll be ok with de-chlorinated tap water?

So how come they struggle in a tank with no ammonia, but ok in a bucket?

Thanks for the heater advice, ill move it also. Could you explain the benefits of moving the heater there please?

With the plants out, is there a way of getting the flurry coating out? Or will it just return?

Thanks
 

snazy

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I've cycled 2 tanks with plants with no problem. I don't get why the problem to cycle it unless you are leaving the light for too long. Keep it at 6, or max 8 hours. Plants love ammonia. In the long run you can buy some trace fertilizer, also called micro nutritient. There are different manufacturers producing them.
The white stuff at the bottom could be due to lack of flow in the tank. Are the plants swaying a bit or staying still?
 
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TimFok

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The plants in the centre by the filter were swaying a fair bit, I turned the filter to the mid setting as it looked like it was giving them a hard time.

I've removed all of the plants now, and it seemed the ones in the centre were worse off. They're all in a bucket of tap water but I think they're too far gone.

Would I be right in saying I should just crack on with the fishless cycle and add plants once the fish are in?

Also, I've moved the heater as per recommended, but I'd love to know why it's recommended to move it to a slanted position in the centre? Thanks
 

snazy

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If the heater is next to the filter intake, the filter would work like a sprayer for the warm water provided by the heater and it provides a stable temperature around the tank. I always put them next to the intakes too and have had no problems with fluctuating temperature.
If you've taken the plants out, then go ahead and cycle it like that. But the tank needs a good flow to prevent certain types of algae, that of course depends on the type of fish. Plants would also benefit from a nice flow which would ensure all the plants get nutritients and CO2 at the same level. How bad were the plants swaying? Maybe just re-arrange them instead?
 
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TimFok

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I thought as much, thanks for the clarification.

My ammonia is at the post office, so cycling will start tomorrow.

I've turned the filter back up to full flow now, so will cycle it like this.

My plan is that when the tank is up to cycle, add plants for a week (to check they take to the tank ok), then add the fish. Unless someone recommends another order to do things?

Thanks for the help guys
 

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