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I suppose you could just shove them in deeper, but I have had problems with that method.....yeah sometimes it works but most of the time the bottom of the stem rots away, the plant then grows no root system and again your plants are floating. I use "plant weights." They are little lead strips that are made just for this problem. You cut them in a little quarter inch piece and wrap it around the base of the stem(not too tight tho you can crush the stem, which cuts off nutrients from getting to the rest of the plant). Then you drop the stem in the tank and it sinks to the bottom. This way the bottom of the stem sits atop the substrate allowing roots to grow and take hold. Good luck
What about the lead? Does it poison the fish? eventually?
I am having the same problem only my tank is FOUR gallons! It is damned cramped in there trying to plant with my hands. Using tweezers would help but still the Flourite is so lightweight that I think it would be much simpler to attach the plants to something with some weight.
Obviously lead is the material of choice for a weight in water, but I worry about the long-term consequences of having that lead in the tank.
And please don't someone tell me I can remove the lead weights after the plants get established! Can you imagine trying to do that?! :hand:
 

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Don't know if this applies to your plants specifically, but if they stems are branched at the bottom, like after a cutting, I use a toothpick in the crotch of the plant and bury that, works good. I've thought about piercing individual stems with a toothpick and planting it that way, but am scared of the damage it might do and haven't had the cahones to try it....;)
HI and thanks for the reply. As it happens my bacombas are just single stem cuttings - no way to attach a toothpick ;) What I have come up with might be worth describing. But keep in mind it is still in the idea stage. I have found that I can weigh down the plants by using some rocks around the bases of the stems. From that observation I moved on to a more elegant approach.

"What if?" I asked myself, "I used silicone cement to attach some plant ties to the underside of the rock?". Then use those plant ties to wrap around the stems of the plants. The rocks would be partially buried in the gravel (actually Flourite) so that the plant ties were also below the surface of the substrate. Then if I wanted to, later on, when the plants had rooted I could remove the plant ties/rock - or just leave things as is. The rocks look natural afterall.

Thus far I have found that the silicone cement does effectively stick the rock to the plant ties. Tomorrow a.m. I'll try to go the next step.

I considered other possibilities, incl. using heavy hex nuts (too shiny), lead-free solder (too shiny and not heavy enough and still contains some lead), or just using more substrate. But as this is a small 4 gallon "nano" tank, more than one and a half inches of substrate begins to decrease the available space for other things, like fish and plants and water, pretty fast! ;)

all for now, gasteriaphile
 
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