Originally Posted by CarolC
I have a 29gallon tank that I want to put low to medium plants in. Could someone tell me what lights and supplies I would need. My husband is a electrician so he would be able to put it together for me. I just don't know what all I need or the size. Another question is can this be done in the light strip that came with the hood, are would it be better to make a canopy for it?
If your husband will also be the one building a canopy and not just wiring it, go ahead and make him retrofit the hood!
If you have to do it, or you're kindly, just go for a whole canopy. If you can raise the lights a couple inches off the water surface, you can easily pass on a glass/acrylic cover over the tank and increase the light penetrating into the tank substantially (especially with dust, dirt, and mineral buildup over time).
You can buy complete light strips in just about any flavour, but first you might want to decide what lighting type suits you best. I'm a big T5 fluorescent fan and will go to my grave swearing by them. If you like their form factor, you can't go wrong with high quality reflectors and T5 tubes (HO is great, NO is honestly good enough for practically any plants).
You can look at somewhere like reefgeek.com for T5 supplies. You can get entire retrofit kits that are actually a decent bargain for what you get. I skipped on that and only bought the reflectors because I have a local supplier for tubes and ballasts that's a little cheaper for me. Greg is also a great guy to deal with.
You can also go PC (power compact), which is ultimately very similar to T5, albeit with shorter lamp life and higher bulb cost.