This is my first planted tank, and it needs some help. Please guide me!! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-15-2011, 09:34 AM Thread Starter
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This is my first planted tank, and it needs some help. Please guide me!!

I'm new to the whole planted tank thing. I've been flopping around between various types of aquascapes, tanks, setups, fish. I had no idea what I wanted to start out with. Everything was pretty much up in the air. Well on a trip to petco to stare at and price things, I saw some Julii Cories. It was decided. I have always have had soft spot for cories, and these ones stole my heart. So I purchased a 6.6 bookshelf aquarium from petco and put 3 of them in. This tank is as long as a 20 gallon. 24"L x 8"W x 9"H. Most people think its at least 10 gallons, alot of them think its around 15. Nice little tank as long as your careful with the acrylic.Anyways, Petco was having a huge sale. But not on my tank. I got two bags of CaribSea Moonlight Sand for $2, and the cories for $5, and two pieces of lace rock for $2. So Everything was pretty cheap (which was good since I only had $70).
It came with a hood, that had one strip and one 18", 15 watt, 6,500K, T8 bulb. It is red tinted I believe. I'm not sure if this is ok lighting or not. The light itself is only 7 inches or 8 inches above the substrate. Its a really shallow tank. Is this fine? Should I get a new bulb? Or add another strip?
My friend had some leftover plants from her tank. So now theres some Red Ludwigia in the right corner. Some java moss on slate on the right side. Water Wisteria on the left, and a few sprigs of MoneyWort right next to it. Also two Mondo grass plants that she had in her tank for a few years.The moss is below the Ludwigia. The Substrate is the CaribSea Moonlight Sand. My LFS was out of root tabs, but I'm going to get some when they get them in.
Now since the main point of this tank was the cories, I want there to be lots of open floor space for roaming and foraging. I really want to replace the mondo grass with something else that will stay small and looks sort of similar. This plant looked nice . The middle looks a little bare. I like the look of it high with plants on the sides and sloping down towards the middle. I've seen it before, but don't know what its called. Mine doesnt slope down nicely. What kind of plants could I plant on either side closer to the middle, that would create that slope? Obviously I don't have much room for large plants. I'm digging the light green and red colours going on, and it would be cool if I could stick with that. Also I want to create some more "shade" on the ground. The moonlight sand is very bright and I want some shade to help counteract the brightness. Anyone know of some small unobtrusive plants, maybe one or two smaller ones.
I'm gonna attach a picture. But it was taken with my webcam so its not very good, I hope it gets the general Idea of how it looks across. There were hills and the like to create some depth. But my planting and shifting of the tank, plus the fact that the cories were freaking out over what I suspect is their first contact with sand in their whole lives, left them kind of obliterated.
All tips, advise, and info are helpfull. I wasn't sure if this went in nano tanks or aquascaping. So sorry if this is in the wrong section.

Last edited by Eldachleich; 08-25-2011 at 06:17 AM.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-15-2011, 08:13 PM
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It's a 7.4 gallon setup, as for lighting I would go with something from this website

But you want to make sure that the bulb is between 5,000k & 6,500k
The reason for the correct bulb is because the plants respond better to bulbs that help with photosynthesis.

45g Long - High Light Planted Tank / 30g - Plant Grow Out Tank / 100g Tank - currently resealing
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