Hey, dear friends. Have you ever been in a dilemma when you single foreground aquatic plants out for aquascaping? If you want to say “Yes”, the article today will help you out. Exactly, this article will share one kind of foreground aquarium carpet plant for freshwater – Monte Carlo. Let’s take a deep dive into the plant.
Micranthemum SP Monte Carlo plant
Monte Carlo belongs to the Linderniaceae family. Its scientific name is Micranthemum tweediei, while its Latin name is Micranthemum SP “Monte Carlo”. Monte Carlo is light green with round leaves as well as long and tiny roots. Monte Carlo is a great aquarium carpet plant, and it can grow up to 1-2.25 inches. One interesting fact is that Monte Carlo grows outwards, rather than upwards. It makes the plant provide a broad and flat carpet for your fish tank. Besides that, Monte Carlo is easy to care for. Here are some requirements.
- Water temperature: 68-77℉
- pH level: 6.0-7.5
- Water hardness: 0-15 GH
- Light level: moderate-high
- Carbon dioxide: needed for dense growth
- Substrate: needed
- Minimum tank size: 5 gallon
Plant Monte Carlo in aquariums
Aside from the basic information, there is a lot more to know about Monte Carlo. In general, it takes 1–2 months for Monte Carlo to carpet. It is determined by the environment. With sufficient lighting and carbon dioxide, it can grow quickly. And regular trimming is vital. This segment will discuss how to plant Monte Carlo in a fish tank.
Monte Carlo preparation
It needs appropriate materials and experienced techniques that cultivate Monte Carlo with its seeds. Consequently, it is best to buy live potted Monte Carlo plants, which is easier. Then, how many potted Monte Carlo plants do you need? Just follow the basic rule – two pots of Monte Carlo plants per ten gallons of water in an aquarium. Usually, 2–3 pots of Monte Carlo plants are sufficient for a small tank.
On the other hand, you should check the plants before paying, including the leaves and roots. Or the plants may cause bad impacts on your tanks, like illness. The leaves should be bright green and intact, rather than damaged or melting. You should check whether there are holes or pests on the leaves. In the meantime, the leaf’s shapes are circular.
Moreover, without any slime, the roots should be clean and white. After that, it is recommended to isolate the Monte Carlo plants in a quarantine aquarium, just like the process of introducing new fish to a fish tank. Spray some pesticides on the leaves, then keep them in quarantine for 24–48 hours. But you should ensure the pesticides are harmless to fish. In the end, you need to separate the Monte Carlo plants into several equal sections and remove the dead leaves.
Sand, gravel, and aquarium soil are available. But Monte Carlo requires a fine substrate. Accordingly, to grow better, adding aquarium soil is necessary. Before planting Monte Carlo, you should build the substrate first, and the substrate should be about 2 inches in height.
Monte Carlo planting
Monte Carlo possesses tiny roots, thus, it is difficult to keep the plants anchored. For this case, you should plant the plants on the substrate before adding water to the aquarium. You can do this with your hands or curved tweezers. Nevertheless, you should make sure that the roots are pushed into the substrate. Furthermore, do not forget to leave one inch of room between each plant.
At present, the substrate is loose. If you create a strong water flow now, the water in the aquarium will become cloudy. Hence, adding water should be gentle. It is better to place an aquarium sponge above the substrate. Then, make the water flow into the aquarium along the sponge.
Monte Carlo maintenance
1. Light requirement
Light is essential for Monte Carlo. It requires moderate to highlight levels. Without sufficient light, its stalk will grow vertically and its leaf color will be duller, while it also grows slowly. A full spectrum clip-on light can meet your demands. In addition to this, you should also make sure to keep the aquarium light on for 8–10 hours each day.
2. Carbon dioxide supply
An additional supply of carbon dioxide is not critically important. However, additional carbon dioxide is beneficial for dense growth. On the other hand, an insufficient supply of carbon dioxide will cause thinner stalks and leaves. It is recommended to provide an additional carbon dioxide supply once or twice a week. Meanwhile, you can adjust the frequency accordingly.
3. Monte Carlo trimming
To avoid growing upwards or clumping together, Monte Carlo needs trimming occasionally. Curved scissors will give you hands. Cutting off partially to prevent the plants from becoming too high and thicker. You can keep your Monte Carlo plants 2 inches in height. Nonetheless, you can replant the trimmed ones. In addition to this, you should observe your plants from time to time. If there are dead plants, you should remove them as soon as possible. Or it will cause damage to other healthy ones.
4. Water changes
In the primary period, it is feasible to change the water every three days and change one-third of the water each time. As the plants grow up, you can just change them once a week. An aquarium vacuum can give you a hand for cleaning and changing the water quickly. Also, do not forget to test the new water before adding it to the aquarium.
Why the Monte Carlo doesn’t carpet
There are two main causes that why Monte Carlo doesn’t carpet the planted aquarium, including insufficient light and high water temperature. As we have mentioned above, Monte Carlo needs moderate highlight. With dim light, the plants would grow upwards and chase for light to photosynthesize. Also, the plants do not receive sufficient light because of deficient lighting hours and the blocking of light. On the contrary, intense light will limit the growth of Monte Carlo. In this case, you can shorten the lighting hours accordingly. Furthermore, the roots can not firmly attach to the substrate due to high temperature.
Then the plants can not gain the necessary nutrition and finally can not grow well. You can remove some plants from your aquarium, then check the roots. Provided that the roots are white, it means the plants are healthy, just waiting for the carpet. Besides that, the roots are yellow, which shows that the plants are not firmly pushed into the substrate. You can deal with it by adding more aquarium soil or fertilizer. But if the roots are black and smelly, there is no remedy. You should remove them and throw them away.
Monte Carlo can finish propagating by dividing a matured one into small sections, and then replanting the sections in the aquarium. Quite easy, right? Monte Carlo is a friendly aquarium carpet plant for beginners. With proper maintenance, the plants can grow well and improve the ornamental value of your aquarium. Finally, thank you for reading!