Table Of Contents
Start Your Planted Tank Slowly
No pond or ocean created a stable ecosystem for its watery inhabitants overnight, and neither should you.
Your planted tank should evolve over time and that includes adding or getting rid of plants…or fish…that are disrupting the system.
So if you have a fancy goldfish that puts off too much waste for the plants in your dirted tank to keep up, its time to move your fishy friend to a new aquarium or to add additional plants to offset the fishy deposits your aquatic friend contributes to the aquarium tank.
Maximize The Number Of Plants You Can Grow By Adding Floating Plants
Because floating plants are not limited by the amount of Carbon Dioxide available to them (as their leaves float on the surface of the fish aquarium, giving them full access to air), they can grow at a much faster rate than most submerged aquatic plants. They also grow roots directly into the water of your aquarium tank, drawing nutrients from fish waste and other remnants and using those nutrients to grow rapidly.
Floating plants are also useful in a Walstad Method fish tank because they provide an environment that some fish like to spawn in and attach their eggs to, which is useful if you plan on using your planted tank for breeding more fish. Floating plants can also give the fish fry a place to hide once they are born so that they can avoid being cannibalized by other fish.
Add Multiple Plant Layers To Your Dirted Walstad Method Tank
Walstad Method fish tanks are about creating an aquatic ecosystem where the plants keep the fish alive and the fish keep the plants alive in a symbiotic relationship. You can achieve the best stability in this system by adding as many plants as possible and different kinds of plants. As different plants take different sorts of nutrients to grow, having a variety of plants ensures that the water in your fish tank is getting the most thorough cleaning it can possibly get, while adding more plant surface area to your dirted tank. This is needed as the aquatic bacteria that convert fish and other wastes into plant food, need some place to live and, like the fish, need oxygen from the plants to survive.
Observe Your Planted Tank Regularly
Algae flaring up? Perhaps you’ve been feeding your fish a little more heavily and they’re adding more waste to your Walstad Method tank than your current number of plants can keep up with.
How To Maintain & Improve Your Walstad Method Dirted Tank Aquarium For The Long Haul
Find Solutions for Planted Tank (or Aquarium, in general) Problems
If your planted tank is still getting overwhelmed by algae even though the entire floor of your aquarium is covered with plants, then you must add more plants. There are various solutions for adding more plants when there is no more “floor space” including:
- Adding more floating plants, which can coexist peacefully on the surface of your aquarium and are easily controlled by scooping them off and discarding/giving them away to other aquarium keepers
- Installing a riparium which acts as an “aquarium bog” space and adding house plants to your aquarium to further maximize the amount of nutrients being drawn out of the water column
- Creating a “planted wall” that acts as the background, separator, or side walls in your aquarium, which will greatly increase the amount of growing surfaces you have for submerged plants
- Adding stones or pieces of driftwood with attached plants to create green hills or planted caves, which will also mean more planting surfaces for your submerged plants