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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2013, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
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Question New tank plans

Hi everyone,

This is my first post here. I was hoping to get some feedback from you. Right now, I have a 38 gallon low tech tank, which I have had for about a year. I am planning on starting a new tank in the middle of August. I love my current tank, including taking care of it. I decided that I wanted another tank and to add another challenge to it- high light plants.

Here is what I have bought so far:
-29 gallon tank (30" long by 13" wide by 18" tall)
-Clear lid for tank
-T5HO light fixture with two lights in it, each 24 watts (48 watts total)
-Aqueon Quiet Flow 30 filter and cartridges
-CaribSea sand and gravel
-Root tabs
-150 watt heater
-Under gravel heater

I may return the under gravel heater. I read that it is good for plants, but then I read that it doesn't really matter if it is in there. What do you all think?

I will probably use Flourish for liquid fertilizer because I read that it's good. I am also strongly considering CO2 supplementation.

The most important thing to me is the health and wellbeing of the fish. My second wish is for a stunning tank. I picked out a bunch of options for plants (most of which require high lighting), but I haven't picked out which ones I am going to put in yet. Do any of you have any feedback about what I am doing so far? I don't want to mess anything up and end up with a tank full of algae.

Thank you!
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 04:36 AM Thread Starter
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Hi again! Does anyone have any advice about this?

Thank you!
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 06:06 AM
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You will def want co2 with high light to avoid algae issues, and you will also need to dose macro ferts in addition to the micros.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 09:24 AM
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high light and algae go hand in hand. what plants are you wanting to grow? There are alot of nice low light plants but if you want to go high light give co2 a go, as for your under gravel heater save your cash, get yuor money back. There are alot of other ways to spend your money.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 10:34 AM
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CO2 will make a big difference. If you're considering high-light plants many of them don't show their full potential without CO2. The combination of higher lighting and CO2 will then require more regular fertilization. This combination will require more consistent maintenance overall compared to a "low tech" approach. Plants grow 5X-10X as fast which means fertilzation, pruning etc.

You should return your under gravel heater; many people who claim success with them are having false positives, just as many people have perfectly grown tanks without substrate heating. Also your lights aren't that strong that algae is a large concern; plant densely and if your plants grow well, algae will be a non issue.

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you, everyone!

I am sending back the under gravel heater today. I will use the money for other things, like a CO2 system or CO2 supplies. (I started looking into DIY methods, then realized it would be better with a timer and in a more controlled delivery, so I have barely started looking into pressurized CO2 systems. I will look into them more.)

I am still not sure what plants I will want. I have a book on aquarium plants, and the majority of ones I really like say "high light," so I definitely want to stick with the fairly high light I have.

I am used to cleaning my current tank (low lights, not a ton of plants) once a week. I am envisioning trimming the plants in the new tank maybe twice and week and doing a good clean once a week. Does that sound about accurate for maintenance for what I have described?


Thank you!
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-31-2013, 10:01 AM
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get your lighting sorted before considering co2, high light and no co2 alot of plants will grow well but low light alot of plants will not grow regards less of the co2, keep us posted and wish you well
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-31-2013, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasb View Post
get your lighting sorted before considering co2, high light and no co2 alot of plants will grow well but low light alot of plants will not grow regards less of the co2, keep us posted and wish you well
I disagree. Not only does it depend on which plants you have, but I would much rather have a carbon source and lower light compared to high light without CO2. The latter is an algae farm waiting to happen...
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-31-2013, 09:08 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you both for your advice. I am definitely going to use the 48 watt T5HO light fixture. That's 1.66 watts per gallon, but I heard that T5HOs emit 1.5 times the light intensity per watt, so that would be the equivalent of 2.48. I do think I want to supplement with CO2. Do you think I could grow high light plants with that setup?
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-31-2013, 09:45 PM
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I think pressurized CO2 will probably be what you're aiming for in the long run, so why not do it well your first shot? With such a high light, things can become out of balance relatively quickly due to room for error.

Worst case scenario, you could always raise your lights up higher if it is affecting your tank with excessive algae.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-31-2013, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
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I am almost definitely going to go with pressurized CO2. Is there away for me to prevent needing another light, though? I would prefer to not need to buy another fixture. But, I think CO2 would be a good thing to invest in now before my tank (when I start it) turns into algae city.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 08:43 AM
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M,y tank is almost the same as my wifes tank, Planted, ferts high light, but i have co2 and hers relies on excel. I rarely clean my glass, Her tank needs cleaning every few days.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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I bought a CO2 system!
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