New 25 gallon tank.. advice needed - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-27-2005, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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New 25 gallon tank.. advice needed

Hi everyone,

I am planning on setting up a planted tank. I have been in the hobby for a good 5 years breeding angels, bettas and discus with the odd apisto here and there, but have never tackled plants-- I have only ever had java moss and watersprite as fry protection and to produce infusoria for fry food. But I am now tearing down my fishroom and I am bringing one tank into the house (from the garage, where the fishroom is) and it will be a 25gallon tank.

I need some advice. I have a budget for this tank. I have the tank, heater and filtration available to me, whether I use an AquaClear without the splash or not I don't know yet.

For my substrate I am thinking of flourite. How many bags to fill a standard 25gal bottom? Any other recommendations? Mixing with other media?

For lighting I was thinking of the 96watt kit from AH Supply, using a Coralife Colormax-6700K 96W Power Compact light. This would give me essentially 3.5WPG. This is where I am planning on spending the most money as it is apperantly the most essential. Keep in mind I know nothing about planted tanks besides what I have read!

As for plants, this is what I'm planning for... Finding them in Canada is another story!

Didiplis diandra
Rotala Indica
Micranthemum umbrosum
Limnophilla aromatica
Ludwigia repens
Glossostigma elatinoides
Riccia fluitans

and maybe some moss to cover a nice piece of driftwood if I can find any.

As for C02, I honestly have no idea. I've alotted a 100$CDN budget for it but if I can do DIY at reasonable effort I will give it a try. I was looking at the Hagen setup with the ladder but it seems to be pretty frowned up? What about the Carbo-Plus from Belowwater? Anyone used one of these? How much do pressurized setups cost?

http://www.belowwater.com/products/c...lus/index.html

I know it is a bit more pricey but if it fits the bill I may give it a try.

THANKS!

Owen
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-27-2005, 08:20 PM
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It sounds like everything is in order except the CO2. I would stay away from the carbo+. Initial setup (if you buy a tank and regulator and controller) is a little less but the refills are far more expensive and don't last anywhere near as long as filling up a 5-10# CO2 tank. It's more to do carbo+ if you simply decide to put your CO2 on a timer rather than a regulator and many people on this forum do with great success (not me, I like toys too much to skip the regulator). If you need any more advice don't hesitate to ask as there is always someone that can answer your questions or guide you through the process.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-27-2005, 08:32 PM
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Looks like you have a good grasp of what you need to get all set up for a nice planted tank. For that size tank I would just go 100% flourite for the substrate.
https://www.plantedtank.net/substratecalculator.html
Use the substrate calculator here to see what you need. If you get flourite be sure to wash it thoroughly.

I have always been an advocate of the pressurized CO2 system. It is a lot easier, and more inexpensive than the carbo plus. Spending the little extra money on a pressurized system will be worth it in less than a years time. Do a few searches on the Carbo+ on the boards here and you will see/read a lot of stories on why not to invest in it.

With a HOB filter DIY may not work as well as you might hope unless you can keep the surface agitation down to a minimum.

With that lighting and CO2 be sure to stop by Greg Watson's site or look into ferts for it.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-27-2005, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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That's one other thing I have no idea about-- FERTILIZERS! Can you explain what fertilizers I may need? Also, a good link to all the pieces I would need for a pressurized C02 system.

Thanks, I appreciate all the advice I can get.

Owen
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-28-2005, 04:40 AM
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Take a few minutes and read my Guide. Ferts are covered quite well there.

For a basic pressurized system you need a cylinder, regulator, needle valve. You can build your own bubble counter and use a nice little Hagen ladder to get the CO2 into the water.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-29-2005, 05:18 AM Thread Starter
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So my plant list has changed... and I have a plan.


Foreground:
  • Riccia fluitans
    Hemianthus callitrichoides (or glosso, I have yet to decide)
    Elatine triandra

Midground:

  • Ranalisma rostrata (or dwarf hairgrass?)
    Bacopa australis
    Rotala sp Green

Background:
  • Ludwigia inclinata "Cuba"
    Some sort of long, tall plant. (valisneria (sp?)
    Rotala macranda



Now I just need to find a nice piece of wood to fit into the tank, order the substrate and lights and finalize my plant order with the supplier. Woo. I'm on my way. Ooh, and to get some altums, too.

And buy some ferts. Damn, plants are expensive. OH, C02 too. Lets get shoppin'!
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-29-2005, 01:04 PM
eds
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2 bags of flourite would be fine for a 25gal.
Depending on prices, you could go as low as 50/50 gravel/flourite. But since you are only talking 2 bags ...
Also, DIY Co2 would work well on a tank that size - at least to start.
Your lighting sounds great.
Looking forward to some awesome pics!
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-31-2005, 12:09 AM
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These are for your references pick the one that will work for you. Good luck on getting H.C. but it should be challenging enough for you just stay with it. I am sure you'll get it down pack since you used to breed Discus.

http://www.aquariumplants.com/cgi-bin/cart/pr840.html
http://www.aquariumplants.com/cgi-bin/cart/pr333.html
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-01-2005, 06:39 AM Thread Starter
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I went scouring for rocks and driftwood and found a piece that I really like. The rocks are red/orange and black and the driftwood is really a nice piece. It is being waterlogged right now.. hope it sinks eventually! Any tips for sinking driftwood?

My plant list has changed yet again:

Glossostigma elatinoides
Riccia fluitans
Bacopa australis
Blyxa japonica
Hemianthus micranthemoides
Rotala sp. "Green"
Ludwigia inclinata "Cuba"
Rotala macranda
Eusteralis stellata

No more HC.. i'd rather have something fast growing like glosso. I am ordering from Vic at victri.net. He has been extremely helpful and prompt - highly recommended! Just a matter of getting the money in place!

Looks like I will go with a 2x55watt 6700K kit from AH, and pressurized C02 with a milwaukee regulator. Just need to get a diffuser.

Owen
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-01-2005, 08:48 AM
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The best way I've found to sink driftwood is to boil the crap out of it. Find a big pot, put it over a burner or two and just let it go for a few hours. Remember to keep it topped off, and, every few hours, dump the tannin stained stuff and start over. Even the largest pieces I've gotten to sink within a few days.

Good luck, and keep us posted. I for one, would love to see pictures along the way!


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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-01-2005, 08:52 PM Thread Starter
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The rocks look like this one..



And this is the wood..



MUST SINK IT!! :P
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-07-2005, 06:14 AM Thread Starter
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Okay, so I FINALLY did some buying and not just talking!

- 2x55watt bright kit from AH plus 2 55watt 6700K bulbs
- two 28L bags of ADA Amazonia soil
- fertilizers from Greg Watson

All I need now is the regulator for my C02 tank, bubble counter and the plants, which are ON ORDER!!

Final plant list is:

Glossostigma elatinoides
Riccia fluitans
Bacopa australis
Blyxa japonica
Hemianthus micranthemoides
Rotala sp. "Green"
Ludwigia inclinata "Cuba"
Rotala macranda
Eusteralis stellata


in a layout such as...


The substrate will be sloped upwards towards the back with the driftwood is in the middle of the tank. The substrate will be piled into the back, behind the driftwood to give an almost terraced effect. Glosso will be the predominate plant in the front. Small rocks similar to the larger rock on the right (still deciding on that!) will be interspersed amongst the glosso. 2/3 of the way over to the right the riccia will meet the glosso and carry on up the slope and behind the driftwood on the right side. Here I will be planting a bush of E. stellata and L. inclinata 'Cuba'. I don't know what to do with the middle. The "top shelf" of the tank (behind the driftwood) will be quite red. I think I will do some either riccia or glosso on the top shelf directly behind the B. japonica in the front. Speaking of the front, for foreground plants I am planning on doing them as follows. A large bush of H. micranthemoides, Rotala sp. Green and lots of blyxa japonica, next to some bacopa australis. A very green front, with some red in the blyxa. I think I will put a ceramic pot in between the blyxa japonica and bacopa for Apisto shelter. As you can tell, I want a completely covered substrate.

What do you think?
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