Help me plan my next tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 08-25-2015, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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Help me plan my next tank

So due to an H2O2 catastrophe, I have a newly vacant tank. (sad, but moving on)

This tank needs some special planning that focuses around 2 problems:
1) Lighting is partially out of my control. The tank is kept at my wife's work place, and as such it gets a little light most all day long from the overhead fluorescent tubes. This means algae is a bit difficult to master, and light levels are a bit harder to predict and adjust.
2) Money is tight.

My desire is to get a very easily-managed tank.
Low tech as much as POSSIBLE, though with that lighting issue, carbon in some form is not out of the question to help manage the algae issue. (glut could help with this)

I have the following:
1 40gallon TALL tank (18" to substrate from light I believe)
1 filter for said tank
1 Heater
1 cheap hood with a new T8 grow bulb inside (only designed for 1 bulb)
Lots of typical inert fish gravel

I also have:
Ferts: KNO3 and KH2PO4 and Osmocote+ tabs
Jungle Val
Amazon Sword
Willow moss (I think, either way it's an easy grow moss)
Dwarf Hair Grass
Micro Sword
What I think is round pellia (could be subwassertang)
Dwarf Water Lettuce
Guppy Grass/Water Nymph
Green Rotala

So here's what I need to plan:
If all I have is some indirect light and a single T8 bulb, is that enough light for any of those plants? (all of them are being kept in a med-light tank right now)
That single bulb only comes out to about 0.5 watts/gallon. Not much, especially when said tank is a taller model, not a longer model. (a 24" tube is obviously lower watt than a longer one, and is farther from the sub than if the tank was a longer/shallower one)

IF that is just straight up not possible with the plants I have.
THEN, should I pay $15-$40 for different plants, or is there a better lighting option?
My wife says it needs to look nice, so shop lamps to replace the hood aren't a solution unless I can spray paint them or something.
Perhaps I could gut the plastic hood, then run some new wire and sockets for regular, spiral cfl bulbs?
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