Showing posts with label Plants. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Plants. Show all posts


Disposal of Aquatic PLANTS and ANIMALS

English: Duchesnea indica, invasive species, i...
Duchesnea indica, invasive species, in the "Wood of Citadelle"
(Photo credit: 
Too many times non-native plants and animals are released into the wild either unintentionally or because the aquarist can no longer care for them.

This poses a unique problem to many hobbyists…what exactly do I do with my aquatic plant/animal that I cannot care for? With the help of this wonderful thing that eats up most of my day (the internet, for you non-it people that actually work) I’ll try to cover some of the basics here…


Let’s say that John Q. Aquarist has an overabundance of a particular aquatic plant. “Whatever will I do with all of these plants?” John wonders. Well, there are a number of ways to safely dispose of these potentially invasive species, here are a few:

Burning: If allowed in your area, can be an excellent way of disposing of plants that have seeds.

Freezing or Drying: This will effectively destroy plants, but might allow seeds to survive. You can place them in a zipper-type plastic bag and throw them away after this.

Composting: Like freezing or drying, this will also do the job of destroying the plant, but seeds can potentially survive to be carried off by birds or animals that might ingest the seeds.


John Q. Aquarist got up this morning and discover that his tank contained a huge batch of baby platies. “Ruh roh, what I’m going to do now? My tank can’t support this many fish!” John laments. Don’t worry, John, there is a help!

Friends: If you have a friend that is into the wonderful world of fish keeping, perhaps he’d like some little guys. Use your head though: if he or she would like to have them, make sure you let your friend know the particulars about the species…it will just put your pal in the same position if he or she is not prepared.

LFS: If your LFS is like mine, they will take your unwanted pets…sometimes for a trade, sometimes not. Either way, it’s better than euthanizing or flushing. (Flushing is particularly cruel...a slow death is guaranteed by suffocation or poisoning)

Whatever you decide to do, never release them into the wild! Aquatic plants and animals could introduce diseases that the native population is not prepared for. At best, some species can out-compete the natives.

Some states have penalties for improper disposal of aquatic life. I hope this helps to answer some questions and prevent any unfortunate incidents.

If you have anything to add, by all means, do. In no way do I consider this definitive, so let’s see some other opinions!

(Remember, you can always contact your local Department of Natural Resources or Health Department for specific information for your area)


FRESHWATER AQUARIUM PLANTS - The Best Planting Techniques

Aquarium 60cm
There is nothing as spectacular as a freshwater aquarium with well-groomed live plants. If you have ever thought about incorporating live plants into your aquarium but haven’t done it yet – quit wasting time and get it done. It can make all the difference in the world. The benefits to your fish and the whole underwater environment completely out weight the extra effort it takes to care for the plants and their slightly higher costs.

Before you start, make a rough sketch of how you want the aquarium to look when completed. This will give you a simple plan when you go to buy the plants and a roadmap to follow when you begin the planting process.

One of the best planting strategies I’ve seen is to plant the taller plants toward the back of the aquarium and the shorter ones in front. This is a good technique to use if you are mixing plants that have different lighting needs. The taller plants can be used to shade any shorter plants that need less light.
These short bushy plants should be arranged to hide any unsightly equipment in the tank. Try to arrange them so they don’t look symmetrical in the tank. There’s nothing symmetrical about the way they grow in nature so don’t plant them that way in your aquarium.

When you start the planting process, make sure the tank is full. It may seem like it would be a lot easier (and it would be) to empty the aquarium to do the planting but that would be a mistake. You need the water to see how the plants will spread out in the water. You can’t do this with a dry tank.

Don’t bury the plants in the substrate below its crown. The crown is the area between the plant’s roots and the stalk. Be sure to place the plants far enough apart to let the roots grow properly. A rule of thumb is to separate them by the length of one leaf. Overcrowding causes the plants to eventually wither and die.

By John C Stoner - Article Source: EzineArticles



English: Floating lilies, the sun light showin...
Floating lilies, the sunlight showing its delicate petals structure and waxed leaves adapted for floating. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Ponds could not be more exciting for the backyard gardener. Flowing water and the excitement of enjoying a balanced aquatic ecosystem is unmatched by traditional gardening. A key piece to pond care includes water plants. The purpose of this article is to introduce water plant care to the pond hobbyist.

The “season” for most water plants along the Central Coast is spring. Starting in March, you’ll begin to see water plants become available at local nurseries. This is also the time when you’ll need to prepare your pond for the coming “push” of growth. This begins with the removal of unwanted “trash” and “rotting” plant material. In some cases, some plants will be ready for “dividing.” You’ll need to prepare for new additions to your pond as well. Thinning out floating plants by removing larger, older material is a good idea; crowded individuals display less flowering and stringy, non-energetic growth.

Feeding your aquatic landscape is the next important step in care and maintenance. Aquatic plants have all the same nutrient requirements as the plants you’ll find in your garden. Fortunately quite a bit of nutrient required by water plants are met with ambient water soluble materials and fish wastes. That said, I encourage every hobbyist to apply fertilizer spikes or “tablet” slow-release fertilizers to their plants in the spring.

It is worth touching on pests and disease of water plants as well. Fortunately, water plants don’t have nearly the number of problems our landscape plants face. The best solution is to avoid buying or collecting diseased specimens. Inspecting and quarantining new introductions and relying on a reputable dealer is your safest bet.

Fungus problems tend to be the most significant issue facing water plants. There are several “plant dips” and treatments that will help to control fungus. The most common baths incorporate either the strong oxidant, potassium permanganate or aluminum sulfate. Concentrations and instructions for their use are enclosed with their packaging. but basically a solution is prepared and the new plant material emerged for several minutes. The plants are subsequently rinsed and placed. If you do nothing else with new arrivals, be sure to look them over carefully, trim off dead/dying material, scrape away snail and insect eggs and hose off vigorously before putting them in your pond.

When it comes to pests, there are a few to mention. Aphids can be a real challenge given that their piercing and sucking of plants above water (especially lilies) can cause trouble. Watch for the appearance of winged females in the spring when they descend from certain species of nearby trees. If you act quickly, small populations of their offspring may be washed off by a strong blast of water. There some species of flies and beetles that also prey on aquatic plants. In most cases, they can be treated by removing the affected parts of the plants.

Fish can also be a problem for water plants. Many folks are recommended to plant directly into planting baskets or in areas where fish cannot nibble at roots and foliage. There are certain varieties of plants that fish will not even touch. Water plants offer a really exciting complement to a pond ecosystem. With the right care, feeding and maintenance, your pond will exceed your wildest dreams and bring years of beauty and enjoyment.

Steve McShane is Founder, Owner and General Manager of McShane’s Nursery & Landscape Supply. Steve is a Soil Science Graduate from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and has his MBA from Santa Clara University.

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