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Problems, problems, problems- continued.

        The story so far: I've been keeping the plants ok for the last year or so,
but all of the sudden, it took a nose dive. My tank started dropping like it has
been cursed! I got over ran with algae and the plants are all dying right now.

- continued
        Thank you all for the replies I got! I guess I should have specified more
carefully the setup of my tank. I'll try to describe it as fully as possible. It is
a 2 ft high, 50 gal (approx. 43 gal if u subtract the gravel and all), acrylic
hexagonal tank. I only have gravel for substrate- I did not intend for this to be a
planted tank initially. I have the tank in a place that receives about 2 hours of
sunlight a day, also, I have two 20-watt florescent bulbs and one 18-watt
full-spectrum that I keep on for 12 hours a day. That is all I can think of right
now, is there anything else I'm missing?

>> Your fish are not compatible with plants
>> It seems like your fishes are not really suitable for planted tanks

    I know how strange it may sound to hear of such a tank. The plants seem to be OK
with the fish, oddly, it has worked out OK for me. Theses are still very small
cichlids, and cannot do much harm to the plants, I will remove them when they get a
little larger.

    I received many letters that tell me I should read up more on the basics. I have
been doing that, for the last 6 months. I do know some of the very basic stuff. But
every time I find something interesting, I always find another that tells me to
complete opposite. For example, I would hear that acidic, soft water is essential
for a planted tank. Then I would hear that hard water is better because it provides
traced elements.
    Anyway, I will keep browsing the net for more info. If I'm missing anything,
please let me know.

Again, Thank you so much to all those nice people who were ever so helpful!