My first serious planted tank.
Hello everyone, This is my first post here although I have been lurking around for some time now. I am building a project tank that is 7 foot by 2 and 1/2 by 2 and 1/2 foot. It is going to be a planted discus tank. I have had experience with discus for a while now, But am pretty well an amateur when it comes to a planted tank to the likes of which I wish to achieve. I would like some input into the best way to go, and corrections with the Ideas that I have. I would like to use sand, with a soil base, although I am not entirely sure about the best base to use, I would like to be able to use co2, I have access to the parts as to be able to rig one up myself, (I'm a welder by trade) But would like some guidance in the specifics,, E.G dosage etc. I wish to use one large filter, but would like to split the output hose into 2 spray bars to lessen the current for my discus. I only want 1 filter so I can run it off an inverter when the power go's out. (fairly common in my area) Is this common, or should I use 2 or 3 smaller filters, Or Is a sump filter the best way to go? I would like to know the best plants to start with, I intend to use 4 metal halides but would like to know the recommended distance from the water to hang them. I use a UV sterilizer on my current discus tank, Is that recommended for a planted tank? And lastly, the golden question, whats the best way to combat the dreaded algae? ( I don't expect miracles, just some hints!) Please, any help would be much appreciated!!!!