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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 04-28-2012, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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1st planted tank

Hello all -

I grew up with multiple tanks in my house thanks to my Father's fish obsession, and kept tanks into my late 20's, but got out as my career progressed. Now I've bought a house, and settled down a bit, it's time to build another tank.

I always wanted a planted tank as a kid, but never could convince Dad to go along with it, but now it's my money, so I'll do what I want.

I've got a corner in the kitchen that isn't good much kitchen duties, so I thought it would be a great place for a tank. Lots of windows, but it faces north east, so sunlight shouldn't be a big problem. Also, living in Seattle means generally speaking, sun light isn't a problem.

I'm off to check out a few aquarium shops today, looking for substrate and possibly fertilizer. Pictures to follow later this weekend.

One question concerning rocks and drift wood. Considering my easy access to more drift wood than anyone will ever need, how do I go about prepping a piece I've salvaged from the beach? Just soak it in water for a few days?


20 gallon $85 special from the local Pet Smart. It'll do:

Last edited by ntempleton; 04-28-2012 at 04:42 PM. Reason: fixed picture link
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 04-28-2012, 05:01 PM
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Well first and foremost welcome to TPT! You will find ALOT of great info and people on here.

Alot of people either soak it forever or boil it. Boiling will help keep anything that is in it whether it be bacteria, fungus, worms, algae, or whatever. You can also bake it. You can do the same with rocks but be careful because some can explode.

What kind of lighting are you planning on using? Is that a incandescent or fluorescent hood? Being close to windows and direct sunlight like that can end up being more work as far as algae goes.

Also, what kind of water are you going to use? Tap or RO? This could help with choice of substrate. Im a big fan of Eco complete due to its high CEC which means it can hold more nutrients throughout time and only gets better. Since I use tap, I dont have to hardly ever fert because alot of my nutrients come from the tap. Heres a good link for comparing substrates: https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/su...pros-cons.html

PS also be careful going to Petsmart and other places like that cause most of them dont know that much about planted tanks and will try to sell you whatever they can. Even as a big chain they get away with selling a lot of plants that are suppose to be aquatic but are not truely aquatic.


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Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 04-28-2012, 05:23 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice on drift wood. I might do some hunting this weekend.

The hood is fluorescent. An 18" F15T8 Natural Light bulb. Looks like nice light, we'll see how plants like it. I plan on blacking out at least the back, if not one or both sides to help with the light from the windows.

Eco Complete is on the top of my list for substrate, but I haven't completely decided, thanks for the link. I had planned on using treated tap water. Any recommendations on water treatment?

Thanks for your comments concerning large chain stores. I bought the aquarium kit there, only because it was on sale. I have on plans to buy anything else for the tank from them. I'm going to check out a few local shops this morning.


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