Help Me Aquascape My 30 Gallon? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 02-20-2014, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
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Help Me Aquascape My 30 Gallon?

I'm picking up a 30 gallon tank + stand + lighting + filters next week for 20 bucks. My two African cichlids will soon outgrow the 10 gallon tank - and my clown pleco clearly wants more space. Here is what I will have in the tank

Two African cichlids, one African Dwarf Frog, one Clown Pleco, some snails and ghost shrimp. If the snails get out of control my dwarf puffers will be vacationing in that tank to take care of the problem.

So, since I have no experience doing things the right way, this is what my goal is - maybe you guys can help

I want the most self sufficient tank possible. I would like to run it without an air pump. I want my aeration to be completely done by plants if possible. I'll be using liquid fertilizer and root tabs. I would also like a variety of plants and mosses. I think java ferns are ugly unless you can show me a way to place it better.

I have no idea what to do about substrate. I'd like one that never needs replaced and minimal vacuuming if thats possible.

SO - who wants to teach me? Haha
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 02-20-2014, 08:15 PM
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If that's a 30H tank instead of a 30L tank it may not have enough aria at the top for enough Oxygen toget disolved in the water. Enough surface aria. I am referring to the fish you talked about being larger than you think when full grown so their Oxygen consumption may run you short on it. I did say may. An HOB filter on the end instead of the back will bring more water to the surface though by way of a circular current in there. Though some plants prefer certain types of substrate for their roots to grow best actually any sub is a matter of choice rather than need. And either you vacuum it or get used to the look it has when not vacuumed.
I do believe that most people go with whatever color suits them most and pool filter sand seems to be very popular these days either with or without something under it.
People will tell you that you "need" exotic soils for the plants but if you don't mind the cost of it you may still not want to change it every year as most of them only last about that long or perhaps just a bit longer.
Any store bough liquid ferts and/or root tabs are incomplete but may be enough for a few plants because the fish waste suppliments ferts to a point but not enough for lots of plants. Low light and using plants designated as low light plants helps minimize fert needs. When you find out what kind of bulbs the light takes and how many let us know.
The dimentions on the tank would be helpful as well.
The ghost shrimp will end up being food for the fish.

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