How much light - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2003, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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I'm setting up an old 40 gallon breeder as a vivarium. I need to know how much and what style of lights I should put over this thing. The footprint of the aquarium is 36"x18". My lights are going to be in a hood.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2003, 04:37 PM
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Depends a little on the type of plants you want to grow in there. Generally speaking, you don't need as much wattage as you need for a planted aquarium. OTOH, if you want to get Orchids and Bromeliads to flower, you need quite a bit. So... what do you want to do?

If you use a hood (not an open top style) any form of fluorescents should be good, if they don't get too hot. Think about ventilation to minimize condensation on glass surfaces.


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2003, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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I've ordered a number of Tillansias which I'd like to flower. I think my tank is too short for most orchids.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2003, 06:55 PM
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I hope someone with more experience than I do can help. There are many many Tillandsias with very different requirements. Generally the darker green ones need less light than the scaly, whitish/bluish green epiphytic Tillandsias. They are easy to keep alive, the question is if they will flower or not...


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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2003, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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Well, I was just wondering if anyone with experience with vivs can tell me whether I should do 2x55w CF or 2x36 w CF or 3-4x13w CF or 3x19w NO.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2003, 07:00 PM
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I would go with a pair of 55 watt bulbs. That should be plenty.


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-19-2003, 05:30 PM
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Yeah, the tillandsias without the whitish scaly exterior also need a dryer environment that what is found in most vivariums. I have one, I think it it T. bulbosum (or something similar) that is doing great and just now flowering (under a 250 halide). I have some of the whitish ones also and I keep them in areas that are high and dry. There are some nice small non-tillandsia bromeliads that do great in vivariums, check Blackjungle's selection.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-20-2003, 10:45 PM
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I havent built an viv. but I do have a planted tank and there is a rule of thumb 3 watts per gallon for high light plants. With 3 watts per gallon you can grow almost anything. Its too bad that there is not a rule of thum for viv. But if you do get 2 55 wat bulbs that should be plenty bright and enough light regardless of what your growing. One question though...how do the posion dart frogs react to really bright light?
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