Originally Posted by Msheresy
I must be blind. I looked at the stickies in the lighting section and didn't see what you referred me to. I'm using tap talk for ipad but it only ahows one sticky and it's not by hoppy re lighting. Can you link me to the thread?
I am a noob at this but I have aquired a good amount of plants from my fish club. I thought that the quad would be better because the depth but if I did go worth a double, which bulbs should I get? I'm dosing now with flourish ( that I'm refrigerating) but how often should I dose? How far apart should root tabs be? Would I have to add more than that? I have a ceramic/ glass diffuser. Do these really do anything?
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Take a look at the second chart in the following link.
and this thread is a good read as well.
the worst assumption you can make is with lighting, you need less than you would think. There is only a couple scenario's that would allow for a quad bulb fixture and that would be with the light suspended almost 3' above the substrate. A double T-5ho fixture is all you really need, and with that depending on how high you had the light above the top of the tank you would probably need co2 injection and a good fertilizer routine to avoid producing an algae farm.
Look at the balance of a tank as a 3 leg stool. Too much or too little of one leg will make the tank an algae farm.
Light is the easiest thing to overdo, and with too much you will never get the tank in balance. If your light is too high, the plants are going to require more fertilizers and more co2 to grow correctly. With too much light it is impossible to provide that much for the plants.
I would first check out the light section, decide on how high the light will be above the tank, if it is in the medium or high category you will need injected co2, in which there are a plethora of topics on co2 systems available (fairly straight forward once you have the equipment on hand) Then comes the fertilizer method to choose. The flourish line of fertilizers is pretty decent, the directions are a bit light and work well for a low or low medium light tank, when you start into the high medium or high light tanks you will need quite a bit more. There is a cheaper method of fertilizing a tank, which involves using dry fertilizers and nightly dosing with a 50% water change to reset the system at the end of the week. It provides limitless fertilizers for the plants so you can cross one of the stool legs off the list of worries.
Check out this link for the fertilizer regimen (it looks more difficult than it really is)
As for the fertilizer tabs, I would put them at the decremented distance from each other per the manufacturers directions, or one under each of your root feeding plants.
Your ceramic diffuser do work great with a pressurized co2 system, I was unsure if you are using a co2 system.
It seems like alot to take in at once, ask questions around the forum, there are many people here that will help you as best as they can. it is well worth it, and very satisfying when you get things up and running smoothly.