5 gallon planted nano for a child - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-31-2016, 06:14 PM Thread Starter
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5 gallon planted nano for a child

Hello,
I am glad I found this site. It has an amazing amount of info on it!
I am going to set up a 5 gallon nano for my daughter. I am thinking of a Betta or some shrimp and one or two small fish. I purchased a Marineland contour 5 and it sounds like it doesn't have the wattage needed to grow most plants. I don't want to go overboard with this one so are there some lower light plants I could grow with the stock lighting or is an upgrade going to be necessary?
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 01:44 AM
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Anubias species, Java Fern, Java Moss should be fine with a stock light. Plus they are the best way to go for low maintainance tanks.


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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, I'll order some of those up after I get the tank set up and cycled. I'm looking forward to setting this tank up for my daughter, I'll post some pictures when I get it going.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 11:51 PM Thread Starter
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I already decided to order a higher wattage light. I found a cheap 18w LED fixture on Amazon which brings me up to 3.6 watts per gallon. I feel better about that because the stock light was very dim and the tank is tall (for a nano) and has a glass lid which spreads out the light a bit.

So I have a mix of ADA aquasoil and sand bordered by some small stones we found by our cottage on lake Michigan. I ordered a décor rock off Amazon too. I'm happy with how it looks.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 12:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Opare View Post
Anubias species, Java Fern, Java Moss should be fine with a stock light. Plus they are the best way to go for low maintainance tanks.



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You can add Cryptocornes to this list. They look gorgeous in front of the anubias. Once they become established, they will reproduce by runners and fill in your tank nicely.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 11:33 AM
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Originally Posted by John H Kotcher Jr View Post
I already decided to order a higher wattage light. I found a cheap 18w LED fixture on Amazon which brings me up to 3.6 watts per gallon. I feel better about that because the stock light was very dim and the tank is tall (for a nano) and has a glass lid which spreads out the light a bit.

So I have a mix of ADA aquasoil and sand bordered by some small stones we found by our cottage on lake Michigan. I ordered a décor rock off Amazon too. I'm happy with how it looks.
Watts per gallon is an outdated way to measure light output, and using it with LEDs is kind of mixing apples and oranges. You really want to focus on PAR. For example, a finnex planted plus clip light only uses 5 watts, but is a pretty bright light (can't find PAR data on a quick Google search). I would think an 18 watt LED light for a 5 gallon would definitely be overkill, or just not very efficient.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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Watts per gallon is an outdated way to measure light output, and using it with LEDs is kind of mixing apples and oranges. You really want to focus on PAR. For example, a finnex planted plus clip light only uses 5 watts, but is a pretty bright light (can't find PAR data on a quick Google search). I would think an 18 watt LED light for a 5 gallon would definitely be overkill, or just not very efficient.
Great info thanks! I've been out of the aquarium hobby for awhile and I haven't heard of PAR measurement. The reason I got the light was it its less than 10 inches in length. I did look at some Finnex lights but they were wider than the tank.

It looks like there is good info or PAR on this site (and a few others). I guess I can return that lamp and get something else.
This is what I originally ordered.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-08-2016, 08:03 PM
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The finnex clip light looks pretty stinking awesome. Might eventually put one over my 2.5G, and see if I can't grow some tougher stuff in it.

-- 2.5 Gallon mini bowfront with a field of crypt wendtii, some java fern, java moss, 8 RCS, and several species of snails.
-- 55 Gallon long with Green Rotala, Crypt Wendtii, Red Ludwigia, Blyxa Japonica, Bacopa Carolinia, Banana Plant, Dwarf Sag, and an Amazon Sword. 2 Bolivian rams, 2 German Golden longfin rams, 2 German Blue Longfin Rams, 17 Rummies, 7 Neons, and a lonely Amano.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-20-2016, 12:29 PM Thread Starter
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https://www.amazon.com/Fluval-Mini-P...words=nano+co2
Has anyone had luck with this Co2 system? Do you think it will be needed for Cryptocornes and Staurogyne Repens?
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-20-2016, 03:11 PM
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https://www.amazon.com/Fluval-Mini-P...words=nano+co2
Has anyone had luck with this Co2 system? Do you think it will be needed for Cryptocornes and Staurogyne Repens?
I used it on an old 5.5g I had, I found that I didn't see much of a change after adding it. I don't think the diffuser works effectively and I tried adding a ceramic diffuser to it but the pressure was too high and it popped off since the gauge isn't very fine tuned its either on full blast or off. Crypts definitely shouldn't need co2, Staurogyne will survive and grow slowly without co2 but it will only grow vertically (this only worked for me when I had nutrient rich substrate and high light). If you're find yourself needing co2 I would go with excel or a similar liquid suppliment they're cheaper but do the job with easier plants.
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-20-2016, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice Sykith
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:10 PM Thread Starter
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Would it be wise to wait for my plants to start growing/spreading before introducing shrimp? If I attempt to house them with a male betta should I remove him while I introduce the shrimp?
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:39 PM
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Would it be wise to wait for my plants to start growing/spreading before introducing shrimp? If I attempt to house them with a male betta should I remove him while I introduce the shrimp?
If the shrimp are small, the betta will have a nice meal, at your expense. If you're doing cherry shrimp, I would suggest providing some kind of cover (densely planted area) so that any younglings can hide and potentially grow to adult size. I would think even adult shrimp would be fair game, but I have no experience in that.

You can introduce shrimp at any point, if you remove the betta out of the equation.

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-23-2016, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
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If the shrimp are small, the betta will have a nice meal, at your expense. If you're doing cherry shrimp, I would suggest providing some kind of cover (densely planted area) so that any younglings can hide and potentially grow to adult size. I would think even adult shrimp would be fair game, but I have no experience in that.

You can introduce shrimp at any point, if you remove the betta out of the equation.
OK, I read that its hit or miss with bettas and shrimp...sounds like its mostly miss. Its only a five gallon so I wanted to add something that wouldn't increase the bioload too much. I might just keep him in with the plants.
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-12-2016, 06:36 PM Thread Starter
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Here are some pictures out my tank. The betta is doing well and I added a pair of shrimp to see how he would act with them. It's been two weeks and he doesn't seem interested in them.
Any thoughts, tips, advice... fire away
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