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Old 05-01-2020, 01:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

Hey,

So I've had this tank for two to three years. When we set it up for my son, I set it up with a sand substrate. No soil, just play sand about a couple or three inches deep. I've had plants in it ever since, and they've done pretty well. No algae to speak of, and the plants get trimmed back probably every couple of months (Hygrophila corymbosa).

Anyway, so I had too much time on my hands and ended up watching some freshwater aquascape videos on youtube. Bad move on my part, lol. So now I've got some new plants, and am hoping that they'll do well. I got some dwarf baby tears (two pots), micro sword, Ludwigia repens, and some hygrophila difformis. Everything arrived safely and in good shape, and I went about getting everything planted.

Herein lies my problem. The dwarf baby tears won't stay on the bottom. When I initially planted them, I took them out of the pots and potting medium and planted each bunch as a single piece in the sand. the next morning one bunch was floating. So I did some more reading, and learned that in order for them to cover better, I should break apart the bunches and plant the smaller pieces separately so they could grow together. So I did that and pinned them down with toothpicks stuck in the sand at angles. The next morning several little pieces were out of the sand, some with toothpicks, some without.

How can I keep these plants on the bottom long enough to establish and anchor? I've got some MTS, and I wonder if they're pushing them and knocking them loose when they come out of the sand at night.

Thoughts? Recommendations? Ideas? Shoot, I'll settle for dumb looks if it'll help keep these little plants on the bottom where they belong.

Thanks!
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Old 05-01-2020, 04:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

Several years ago one of the regulars here found an almost foolproof way to plant those tiny plantlets. He lowered the water level to just barely above the substrate, then planted the little plantlets on the substrate, and let them grow there until they had spread out a lot. Then when he added a full tank of water the little plants stayed there. He called it the "dry start method". I haven't heard of a way to get them started with a full tank of water, but I'm sure someone has found a good way and will tell us about it.

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Old 05-02-2020, 03:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

If you have bottom dwelling fish, forget it, they’ll uproot small plants. Carpet plant usually need higher lights, CO2, and extra nutrients.
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Old 05-04-2020, 07:20 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

Thanks for the responses guys.

Hoppycalif: Unfortunately, doing a dry start isn't a possibility with this tank, since it's already set up, but I'll sure give that a try when I set up a new tank.

I've got it pinned down with toothpicks right now, and haven't had any come loose since Friday. Keeping my fingers crossed that it'll take root.

mistergreen: Thanks for the info on the carpeting plants. I didn't know that when I ordered the plants. Will keep it in mind in the future, though. Hopefully they'll make it.
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Old 05-04-2020, 11:04 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

Here's what I did once, I dry started baby tears in a separate container, outside in full sun, with a dirt & sand substrate. When it grew into a mat, I placed the mat into an established tank. Make sure to cover the container so it gets close to 100% humidity.
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Old 05-04-2020, 11:41 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

Quote:
Originally Posted by mistergreen View Post
Here's what I did once, I dry started baby tears in a separate container, outside in full sun, with a dirt & sand substrate. When it grew into a mat, I placed the mat into an established tank. Make sure to cover the container so it gets close to 100% humidity.
Any idea what kind of outside temperatures you were dealing with? It's May in Texas, and we're already seeing days in the low-mid 90's. In the last week, I had one day with the high below 85, and four days above 90.
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Old 05-04-2020, 11:55 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

I grew it in the summer. I guess it wasn’t in full sun. It had shade but maybe 5 hours of direct sun.
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Old 05-04-2020, 12:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

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I grew it in the summer. I guess it wasn’t in full sun. It had shade but maybe 5 hours of direct sun.
By that I'm thinking that maybe I shouldn't try it in full sun in Central Texas. Do you recall how fast yours grew under these circumstances?
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Old 05-04-2020, 12:59 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

It took about 2-3 months. You can also sell the plants off for some extra cash ��
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Old 05-04-2020, 02:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: keeping dwarf baby tears anchored

Thanks!
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