Planted Tank VIP
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Winston-Salem, NC
The most useful feature a sump would have in a planted tank would be a place to put a large CO2 reactor and all your heaters and filters, etc. But the action of the surface skimmer would also deplete a lot of your precious CO2, so I would stick without one.
I'm glad you're open to going with a CO2 system. You can have some success without it but won't really enjoy the planted tank hobby unless you get the kind of lush growth that a CO2-assisted planted tank can have. And with your VHO lighting, the plants will need even more CO2 to balance out their requirements.
I use Flourite for my substrate, but if cost is prohibitive, I'd rather see you use cheap gravel and buy the pressurized CO2 system than buy Flourite and either have to run several Yeast Reactors or not use CO2 at all. A 25 lb bag of Kitty Litter from the grocery store (non-brand, no additives, fragrances, etc) will make an excellent base for plants, and then you can cover it with some other color to balance it out.
Ask away! We're glad to help!
- Sam P -
plantedtanker in limbo - all tanks currently in storage