Hey everyone. I'm looking to start a nano freshwater planted tank but I have absolutely no experience in freshwater so I am hoping you guys can walk me along in my build thread. I have been in saltwater for about 7 years and currently have a 120 gallon reef tank set up, but want to try something different so figured I would try a planted freshwater tank. I have been reading online a little bit but am still far away from understanding this side of the hobby.
So far all I have accomplished was order a tank. I just bought a Mr. Aqua 3 gallon bow front tank from Marine Depot and should arrive early next week. Here's a pic of the tank.
And that's about all I got accomplished so far. Now for a few questions I have.
- I have my own personal well so its not treated at all by the city. It does have a lot of iron in it and I also run a water softener with Rust Remover salt pellets. For my saltwater tank I have a RO/DI unit and it takes everything out of the water down to 0 TDS. The water after the softener has a TDS of about 450. I hear different things about which water to use so hopefully someone can help me out there.
- I still am unknown on substrate. I am leaning toward some black Flourite sand but I also kind of like the brownish look of the Flora Sand. I just need to find a small bag of it b/c all I see online cost more than my tank.
- For Lighting I plan on using a desk lamp with a spiral compact fluorescent bulb in the 6700k range. I am guessing something around 13 watts, should that be enough?
- Starting out I dont want to hook up an elaborate CO2 system but was hoping I can dose stuff like Excel and Flourish to keep the plants alive and then see if I want to spend the money on a CO2 setup. I figure with a 3 gallon, I shouldn't have to dose to much.
- I would like to keep some fish in there but have not researched that far yet. I am going to go over the nano fish list on this site and pick out stuff when my tank is ready.
- How do you jump start it after water, rocks, and substrate are in? In salt, I just threw a hunk of shrimp in and let it rot. Guessing that's not going to work here. I think I read you can pour some ammonia in the tank but still have to read up on that.
- I figured you need something to harbor the good bacteria so I was looking at the Azoo Palm hang on filter or maybe a small biowheel. Is there anything else I should be looking at?
- I came across these tanks on the internet and would want my tank to look like these eventually.
Sorry for the long winded post. I know I got a lot more reading to do, but just wanted to throw my ideas out there and see what everyone thought. Thanks for looking.