new tank setup, any thoughts, comments?? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-11-2010, 02:37 AM Thread Starter
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new tank setup, any thoughts, comments??

hello all , im new to planted tanks. Ive been in the hobby for close to ten years now, and like many other have decided that i hate fake plants and decorations, and want the look of a real natural looking tank, how else to acomplish this than by using real and natural plants and decorations.

I have a 30 gallon long aquarium. as for my setup.

I use a hob penguin emporer 280, and 2 aquaclear 50 powerheads on an rfugf.( ive been told not to run the rfugf, but i have no problem of it up rooting plants and the plate is only half length of tank, centered).

After a few trips to the lfs and home depot , put a custom light fixture I built on top that houses 2 24'' t5 power glow bulbs, putting out 1.6 watts per gallon.

As far as substrate, Im using a mix of seachem flourite, and seachem onyx sand, its actually a very nice looking mix of red black.

I got myself the full line of seachem liquid ferts( flourish, excell, trace, iron, nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus), i wanted to go dry ferts, but this is just easier at the time. Ive only been using the flourish,excell and trace so far. The others say to use only if you see signs of need. although i was gonna start dosing the 3 macros once a week, just to add some more nutrients.

The tank had cycled for a week and i added 2 upright peices of driftwood( on the ends) and a nice big chunky peice( in the center). after that i added 2 agrentine swords. 1 java fern( attached to wood). 1 dwarf anubias(attached to wood). 1 anacheris(elodia). and one moss ball( i think its java moss rolled into a ball held with fishing line, lfs was selling for 1.99, thought it looked cool) it floats and is held down by a small peice of line attached to a sinker.

Its been about a week since Ive added the plants now. The anacheris has about doubled in size, lots of lush green growth. Ive noticed a few new chutes on the 2 sword plants(been told they grow much slower than the anacheris) and they look very good and green. As for the javafern and the anubias, no new growth but they look very healthy(been told they are the slowest of my growers).The odd mossball has also almost doubled, covering all the fishing line that was holding in ball shape.

Im planning on adding fish, next week sometime. maybe monday or tuesday. Im planning on going with malabar Dwarf puffers, they are one of the few truly freshwater puffers. I used to keep African cichlids, and love them but they would destroy all of my gardening work so far, so no africans. From what ive read dwarf puffers love heavily planted tanks. so they should go quite well i think.

So if anyone has any tips or comments for me, i would love to hear them. anything from setup, to plants, to fish. As i said im fairly new to the whole planted thing. I really love some other suggestions on some other plants i could add that would do well with my lighting. I would love to get some for color, someone recomended red temple plant and red ludwigia. my lfs can order just about any fairly common plant so let the suggestions flow. Ill try to upload some pics soon. after this post is up for a while, im planning on starting a tank journal. hope for lots of posts, thanks Dwarf puffer man!!!
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-13-2010, 12:39 AM
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I would love to see a HUGE school of Neon or Cardinal Tetras... You should buy like... 30 of them.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-15-2010, 06:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwarfpufferman View Post
I have a 30 gallon long aquarium. as for my setup. Put a custom light fixture I built on top that houses 2 24'' t5 power glow bulbs, putting out 1.6 watts per gallon.

I would love to get some for color, someone recomended red temple plant and red ludwigia.
The 30 gallon long is 36in long and you have a 2 24in bulbs over it? Are those T5 NO bulbs or T5 HO bulbs? I don't think you can grow any red plants with this. I had a similar set up with 2 24in T8 bulbs over a 29in long tank.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-15-2010, 07:09 PM
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How about Tiger Lotus? It grows in my low light tank. I have a tall tank and it's about 1 WPG.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-15-2010, 07:35 PM
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-15-2010, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chrisinator View Post
How about Tiger Lotus? It grows in my low light tank. I have a tall tank and it's about 1 WPG.
Tiger lotus may be an exception for it can grow to the top. Also using tabs with iron would help plants like ludwiga to have some color in a low light set up.

The WPG rule is out of date, for it is based on the output of T12 bulbs. The smaller the dimension the more output the bulb has. Also PC bulbs, which look like dual bulbs put out more than most straight bulbs.

What bulbs and which brands are they?
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-16-2010, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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Im using GLO lightbulbs, they are made be hagen. They are POWER GLO t5 high output 24" 24 watt, i have 2 of em. They offer 3 bulbs, LIFE GLO, MARINE GLO, and POWER GLO. power offered the most red and blue light, Much Much higher than any other blub i could find. while i was in the store they actually had a T8 And T5 bulb side by side in 2 differant tanks, it was visable that the T5 put out about twice as much light, so thats what i went with.

I was thinking Red ludwigia, they guy at the lfs told me it could be tempremental, i couldnt find much about it on my own. i know its a stem plant, and should do well with my substrate. can anyone tell me more about it?
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-16-2010, 02:04 AM Thread Starter
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Ive been told that the wpg rule of out of date before.

so i guess you could say i have 1.6 wpg of high output light??
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-16-2010, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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also i was wondering if anyone can recomend some low growing foreground plants. i was thinking i might add a banana plant, but have not been able to find a nice looking one at any of the lfs'
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-16-2010, 04:45 AM
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T 8 63 Lumens per Watts
T12 55 Lumens per Watts
T5 HO 92.6 Lumens per Watts
Generates 1-2X the light output than standard T8s & T12s.

Ludwigia repens would be a good one. The deep red Ludwiga would need 2x the light. I think Ludwiga need nitrogen or iron. Had problems with it until dosed with Seachem comprehensive and Seachem Nitrogen. Now using Seachem tabs, which have iron, since I got them free and Potassium sulfate. Another alternative would be iron chelated and

Dry ferts are cheapest in the long run. Cheap and fast service from aquarium fertilizers.

For low grown plants I like anubias and sags. Anubias easiest to grow. May be hard to find until it warms up. Sometimes on Ebay.
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-17-2010, 11:54 PM Thread Starter
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awsome thanks man , I feel alot better about the light now , that's a lot of lumens on my tank ! I took a bunch of pics today. also added the 6 dwarf puffers they love the tank, they look so happy in there. ill try to upload the pics later im on my phone right now
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-18-2010, 04:58 AM Thread Starter
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finally heres the pics

after messing with the camera i finally got the pics, heres a few they're not the highest quality, its a cell phone camera, but they're not bad either
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-18-2010, 05:00 AM Thread Starter
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next 5 pics!!!
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-18-2010, 05:02 AM Thread Starter
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last ones
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-18-2010, 05:04 AM
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Interesting how some items in your tank are a glowing white. You could probably create virtual reality of a pond or stream with the rocks that are showing glowing white.
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