HELP!! total noob needs lots of advice - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-31-2009, 04:44 PM Thread Starter
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HELP!! total noob needs lots of advice

Ok, so I need advice and guidance on a few things here. I need help mostly with lighting, CO2, and fert. Ok so I just bought a plant package, which included hygro sunset, asian ambulia, two-leaved pearlweed, tall sag (not sure which species) xmas moss and narrow leaf java fern. I was thinking about getting some Riccia as well. I would like to have a low tech as posible tank. I have a 25 gallon?(i think, how would i find out for sure?) tank. I have eco-complete for sub. I plan on having 25-20 neons, a betta, some sort of cleaning fish (need to find out who would be compatible with these plants and my exsisting fish). After my tank gets established with the plants and all i would like to add some rcs's and see how they fair with the betta... Hes been freindly in the past and is well feed, so he might not bother them to much. I would like nice plant growth but nothing crazy fast, especially once it fills in.
So my questions are what type of lighting and how strong would be best? I currently have a 15w T8 bulb in there. It is what came with the tank. I know i need to upgrade, but dont know were to begin. Next question is do i need any type of CO2? Can i start off with a higher lighting and CO2 to get the tank started up really nice then take away the CO2, or does that not work? Last question (for this post anyways) Do i need any type of fertilizer? Thanks in advance!!
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-31-2009, 05:39 PM
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Per a post I made in the fertilizer forum:

For ferts keep it simple at first:

KNO3
KH2PO4
Trace mix (CSM+B or pfertz.com's "M")
Gh booster (for after water changes only)

For dosing schemes I personally use PPS-Pro but you could also take a look at EI or PPS-Classic.

A good place to buy dry fets is:

[ http://www.greenleafaquariums.com/aq...ertilizer.html ] or [ http://www.aquariumfertilizer.com/in...ditU=1&Regit=2 ]

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-01-2009, 02:06 AM
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To find out how many gallons the tank size is, multiply the length times the height times the depth of the tank, in inches, and divide the answer by 231. Of course the tank won't hold that much water to the nearest quart, but it gives the number used to rate a tank for size.

I have been looking at putting a male betta in my 15 gallon riparium, so I did a lot of research about them. That, and my years ago experience with a betta make me think that it isn't a good idea to put a lot of tetras in a tank with a betta. The smaller fish will likely annoy the betta and nip its fins. When I did this years ago the betta didn't last very long.

A 15 watt T8 bulb is 18 inches long, so I suspect your tank is 20 inches long. 20 inch long standard tanks are either 10 gallon or 15 gallon, but if the tank is about 20 inches front to back it could be a 20 gallon, but I don't think it is a 25 gallon. In any case a single 15 watt T8 bulb is just barely enough light for a low light, non-CO2 10 gallon tank, and not enough for anything bigger. Very rarely is the light that comes with a new tank enough for a planted tank.

Hoppy
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-01-2009, 07:22 AM Thread Starter
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ok so i measured the tank and it is 24inx12inx14inch, so it comes to around 17.5 gallon, so i guess its a 15? So with that saidm i plan on a DIY light upgrade such is this. https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/di...tml#post535852 So i guess the question would be how many fixtures should i use and what wattage per bulb?
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-01-2009, 03:25 PM
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Here is another idea: https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/li...tml#post879394 Get a couple of these, make a simple box type enclosure for them, with the reflectors aimed down, of course, and suspend it above the tank with a bent conduit type support. Then you can try bulbs from 14 watts to 28 watts and see which works best. I haven't tried this, but since reading this absolutely great post, https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/lo...tml#post837592 I have wanted to try it.

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