So I eventually want to set up my 20g L and put some fish in there. I already have a planted 5g and 29g tank and don't really want to put up more money for another true planted tank lighting setup. I don't necessarily want to use the fake plants that I have (I love my planted setups), but can't justify spending more for planted at the moment. I was curious if there are any plants (I would assume Java Moss) that can live with only a regular light setup. Like the lights that come with the tanks in bundles at a store. They don't really have to thrive I was just hoping there would be some plants that could handle a lower light threshold.
I think Anubias, java fern and mosses would survive under stock lighting. Apons and some crypts as well, I had one apon survive several growth cycles under a very old bulb [couldn't be removed from the fixture] that had black plastic as a 'reflector' and was about 18" over the tank and the crypt sent out runners attempting to find light somehow.
Wow! A lot more plants than I had thought. Thanks for the quick response nate2005 and Kathyy. Would it be smart to do the 20g L tank with the Walstead Method if I kept live plants in with a stock bulb? Or would there be too many nutrients with not enough light and cause crazy algae blooms?
You don't need 'true' lighting, shop lights or house bulb lights work to grow many plants. Two of my tanks have those listed above. My 40 has fancy fish lights, but it's growing the same plants. No real difference other than the cost of the fixtures..
My hornwort stays healthy, but not "lush" with stock lighting. I'm also able to grow echinodorus parviflorus (sp?), pygmy chain sword, echinodorus "pinwheel" and a few other weird plants in my all stock aqueon 15 gallon.
I agree with OVT. Don't waste your money on 50/50 lights. A dirted tank is also not needed for a rhizome/moss feeding tank, which can be very nice. Dirt or nice soil is only needed if you are planning on root feeders, which with a low light tank, your options are pretty limited.