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Emerged/hydroponic Plant Suggestions Please

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Offline Andy The Minion

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Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« on: September 09, 2017, 09:32:51 AM »
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About 4 months ago I decided to try adding a terrestrial plant to the top of the corner tank by removing a section of lid and part of the evaporation cover below that. The plan was just to remove Nitrates, but its starting to look nice so I have moved on. The plants just have there roots immersed in 3/4cm of tank water and are loosely secured to the external filter pipes in the back corner, and were initially in low ambient room light.
The first item was a length of 'lucky bamboo' that was reduced. Its not actually bamboo, that attracts too many Pandas this is Dracaena sanderiana. It was just a single bare stem with a couple of tiny roots when I got it, but it soon sprouted and have since cut it in half. The leafy half now has roots and the rooty bit has leaves :)
Second I swiped a variegated Pothos leaf (Epipremnum aureum) from a customer's massive display pot in reception and smuggled it back from Barcelona, this is now 30cm long and has a dozen leaves. (I have asked the florist? who tends the office plants at work if he could save any prunings off other Pothos varieties he comes across)
The final items are two small Peace lily (Spathiphyllum on-its-last-legsilum) that were going for 50p. So you will see I looking for flowers now and would like some suggestions for the next items please.
As you will see in the picture I have added light now, these are two 6W clip LEDs so this should open up the options.
I would like some suggestions for something a bit more vertical upto say 50cm tall, ideally self supporting, perennial, flowering (or fruiting?) to fill out the corner and bring some colour.
I am going to the Gardeners Question Time garden party at Ness Botanic gardens next weekend so I will also ask them for suggestions and will report back. I know up-front that Bob Flowerdew will probably suggest something using old tractor tryes but I dont really have space for another one in the living room at present.

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2017, 09:45:04 AM »
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I'm impressed.

I've used the "lucky bamboo" stuff, still in their little containers, for a bit of greenery on the land part of one of my midskipper tanks, and it has grown quite well.

Offline Sue

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2017, 10:36:56 AM »
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Me too  :)

I've read of pothos being used before but not all the other plants you have there.

Offline Dominika

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2017, 12:47:14 PM »
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Ooo, this is something I was thinking of doing too. Great idea.

I found a guide on how to acclimatise house plants for hydroponics, which is pretty much the same thing as you're doing. They also recommended a list of plants that can be kept this way. Note that some plants from the list might be poisonous if eaten (fish might graze on the roots I imagine).

The guide recommended that the plant is covered in plastic for 2-3 weeks after being put in the water to prevent excess water evaporation.

Here's the list of recommended plants:
Abutilon, Achimenes, Adenium, Aeschynantus speciosus, Afelandra squarrosa, Anturium x scherzerianum, Ardisia crenata, Argyranthemum, Callistephus chinesis, Rhododendron simsii, Catharanthus roseus, Begonia, Begonia scharffii, Browallia speciosa, Brunfelsia pauciflora, Bougainvillea glabra, Zantedeskia, Celosia argentea, Cyklamen persicum, Senecio cruentus - mieszańce, Mimosa, Campanula isophylla, Aechmea fasciata, Echeveria, Euryops chrysanthemoides, Eustoma grandiflorum, Exacum affine, Freesia, Gardenia jasminoides, Gerbera, Gloriosa rothschildana, Gmphrena, Hyacinthus orientalis, Hippeastrum vittatum, Hoya, Hydrangea macrophylla, Ixora coccinea, Iris reticulata, Justica carnea, Jasminum, Kalanchoe blossfeldiana, Kalanchoe pumila, Kalanchoe 'tessa', Calceolaria x herbeohybrida, Camelia japonica, Anigozanthos flavidus, Hibiskus rosa-sinensis, Clivia miniata, Crocus, Selenicereus grandiflorus, Curcuma, Leptospermum scoparium, Lilium longiflorum, Catharanthus roseus, Mammilaria zeilmanniana, Medinilla, Passiflora, Citrus mitis, Hypocyrta glabra, Narcissus, Nertera, Impatiens, Orbea variegata, Calathea crocata, Pelargonium grandiflorum, Peperomia caperata, Pentas lanceolata, Primula obconica, Solanum pseudocapiscum, Capsicum annuum, Puschkimia scilloides, Rehmania elata, Rosa, Saintpaulia, Sreptocarpus, Spathiphyllum, Smithiantha, Senecio grandifolius, Stephanotis floribunda, Cymbidium, Dendrobium, Odontoglossum, Cattleya, Miltonopsis, Phalenopsis, Phragmipedium, Pleione bulbocodioides, Paphiopedinum insigne, X vuylstekeara, Strelitzia reginae, Justicia brandegeeana, Syningia, Muscari armeniacum, Oxalis, Tulipa, Euphorbia milli, Euphorbia pulcherrima, Ipomoea, Dendrathema grandiflorum, Lithops.

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2017, 01:13:10 PM »
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As usual with my phone photography is poor, in real life it does look better and I can see the potential for somebody without my complete lack aquascaping skills. It just needs a convenient method of lid modification, the additional lights I am sure are optional with the correct plant or tank location.
The big 'fish advantage' I can see is the improvement in plant growth rate, they don't need additional CO2 as the leaves take it directly from the air and use both fish waste and fertiliser that is in the water for the aquatic plants.
The lid I have is in sections so I just removed the small corner piece so it was very easy with my tank. I was a little concerned about light leakage from the internal tank lights, but with a small shade this is minimal. I have actually moved the low level blue navigation/moon light to cast a gentle glow up onto the wall behind the plants to give a subtle ambient light in the room when its darkness.
The only downside I have seen, and it depends on the tank design is that the plants could interfere with access,  I have supported them off fixed items them so they are fairly free standing even with all the other lid sections removed. I have used very loose loops of cable ties but it did occur that securing a 2/3cm length of open ended plastic pipe for the plants to sit in would allow the plants to be removable.

Plan b is to add a running plant like Pothos to the big tank. This tank had an open top when I got it but I added a solid black acrylic lid to prevent upward light leakage. There is a 15cm void where the tank lights live between the lid and a clear PVC condensation lid below. I plan to train the plant around the inside lip on suspension hooks. The plant wont be visible in this tank but it will still have its beneficial effects.

Edit after posting... Eek vertical water again!

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2017, 01:16:46 PM »
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Thanks @Dominika Wow that list have given me some reading to do. Do you still have a link to the site please?

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2017, 01:31:42 PM »
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Off topic item... I just discover 'Likes' (this is embarrassing after a year of membership) so gave one to Dominika for the first time ever and see I have received some in the past.
Just to say to everybody that has helped me in the past and received nothing :( Thank You ! I like you all !

Offline Dominika

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #7 on: September 09, 2017, 01:39:20 PM »
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Thanks @Dominika Wow that list have given me some reading to do. Do you still have a link to the site please?

I do, but it's in Polish,

The guide is here.

The list is here.

If anything's unclear in google translate, just let me know.

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2017, 02:10:10 PM »
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No problem my boss is Polish :)
I gave him a pair of Goldfish (for Goldfish read Carp Dominica) as a Secret Santa gift one year :) Devil of a job to wrap a goldfish and get it in to the office without being revealed as the evil sod that gave it!

I also have a project running with a Polish sales lead, but I wouldn't ask him anything as in his private life he is weird, self published writer of romantic (in a creepy way) novels. That however has absolutely nothing to do with him being Polish, it does unfortunately say far more about the companies promotion policy.

Offline Matt

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #9 on: September 09, 2017, 02:31:13 PM »
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I imagine from the list that hyacinth would make a really attractive option... however I think they are seasonal. 

Just showed your first image to my wife and she loved it. You might have a copy cat in the making here @Andy The Minion  :cheers:

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2017, 09:20:30 PM »
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For the moment I think I'm going to try some strawberries in front, apparently they can be grown and fruit continually indoors, and maybe an Iris and one of the mints at the back, so long as the damn cat leaves it alone.
We have some strawberry plants that the chickens haven't discovered yet so I will see if I can liberate one from a pot tomorrow. Chicken dont eat mint, its one of the few plants not on their menu, they just sit on it or dig it up so we have some of that clinging tenuously to life as well.
I noted that one list suggested cannabis - obviously it would just be there for the hemp as the flowers are .... smelly.

I had picked some wild marsh marigold that I found early in the year growing well in waterlogged soil on the rivers edge. I sat it on the window ledge in tank water to quarantine any snails. Although I now see it appears on suitable lists it did very badly and just dissolved while I was setting the others up, so there probably still luck needed with some plants.

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2017, 09:05:36 PM »
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An update on the planting, the experts at gardeners question time weren't able to suggest much - I guess they don't go too near hydroponics in their day to day dealings. Matt Biggs was the most helpful he suggested Aglaonema, Chinese Evergreens and a Philodendron but both are very similar to the current plants.
One of the dealers who was giving a talk and then a Q&A afterwards took a different tack and said that the conditions the tank provide will suit virtually any plants needs and just try anything that grabs my fancy, so I have my eyes peeled for likely victims.
I checked the garden and the chickens have found all the strawberries so I added a dwarf Crocosmia bulb with just the roots dangling in the water and the bulb wrapped in some foam to keep the light off it (no idea if it's needed, just seemed a good idea) I also have a nice variegated spider plant that is flinging off loads of flower spikes and spiderlings so I will try splitting that at some point.
I have also added a few leaves off a larger Epipremnum that just happened to be in the hotel we stayed in (I did ask first) to the big tank along with a runner that was growing out of a ground cover evergreen plant with medium sized deep blue flowers in the car park at work and a section of an outdoor climber with large red/white five sided trumpet flowers we have in a pot (no clue what either are) All three appear to like the conditions and are noticeaby growing after just a week. It is early days and I'm not sure if it's a direct effect yet but the water test this week showed a noticeable reduction in the weekly NO3 production. This tank is fed heavily as there are a lot of growing Blue Acara in it and I have been doing big twice weekly changes to keep the NO3 below 40ppm. Today's reading was 31.5ppm without a mid week change, so if it stays this way the plants have almost halved the Nitrate production.
None of the plant in the big tank are visible as they are inside the hood and I'm resisting the temptation to start modifying the Perspex lid, let's see if I can keep to this when they are all around the tank top.

If anybody has an interest in gardening or even just nature I can thoroughly recommend the BBC GQT garden party, it's a fantastic day out and this was my 3 year. Ness is a good location and because it's attached to Liverpool University, they have professors lurking around and giving talks on the experiments that are running there. One also took us pond dipping, the pond was chocked full of weed and absolutely full of life, I got a macro photo of a Great pond snail egg sac which came out very well. I wish I had kept it as I'm sure they would have done well in the sump living off the algae in the scrubber section.
I will post two pics after I post this as with this much waffle I don't want to risk the photos crashing the post.

Offline Andy The Minion

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Re: Emerged/hydroponic plant suggestions please
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2017, 09:26:16 PM »
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After three attempts. Nope, as usual the web site says "No" to posting a pictures, one was just 640k and a .jpg so who knows.
Anybody in desperate need to see a snail egg sac IM me :(

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