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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Will apologize in advance if I posted this in the wrong section. Long story short, the girlfriend decided that we needed some greenery in the apartment, and that the best way to go about getting it was with a small aquarium. She picked up this the other day on her way home from work https://www.bigalspets.ca/chi-aquarium-kit-gen-2-5-gal.html and has been going on about how good it's going to look when it's full of plants. I really want to help her make this work but need some advice from you fine folks in order to pull it off. I've got a few main questions that I think I need answered. Firstly is the lighting. I'm almost 100% sure that the lighting in this kit will not be sufficient for plant growth. Am I wrong? I also have no idea where to look as far as good plants go. We're both relatively new to aquarium plants, so options that are hardy and affordable would be appreciated.

Any information I can get would be a great help!
 

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I've not kept tah brand but Id on't think it will grow any decent plants.
If you want it easy you can do riparium style (roots in water leaves above) with house plants and jsut get a lamp with a 13 watt 6500k cfl bulb to grow them.
some easy riparium plants:
purple waffle
lucky bamboo (and other members of the Dracaena family)
dragone's tongue (related to purple waffle)
wadering jew
pothos
peace lily
dwarf palm (note: does not stay that dwarf: mines 24")
arrowhead plant
there's plenty more.I use these cheap $2 shower caddies as planters


If you want to do aquatic (underwater) plants some other light options include the deep blue solar flare 6700kmicro (suction cup light) or some small clip on LED lights. The desk lamp with cfl mentioned above is still a possibility.

Knowing your girl's taste would help with plants there are several easy ones like anubias and java fern or buce -rhizome based plant (rhizome is horizontal part that leaves and roots grow from) DO NOT BUY RHIZOME, instead gently tie to driftwood/rock/decor. Mosses (tons of options) tie down and they will anchor with roots over time. Crypts, vals, and stem plants (some easy stem beginners are water sprite and wisteria, ancharis, and hornwort.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
She is wanting an aquatic planted aquarium. More than likely will have very few fish (probably a betta, maybe a few otto's)

As far as the desk lamp goes, anything that can support that sort of bulb will work correct?
 

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You might just go for really low light plants and keep it easy: tie java moss on driftwood and rocks, tie subwassertang on a rock, plus an Anubias. Then you don't need nutrient-rich substrate, because they're all water column plants.

And please read re size and schooling needs of otos on seriouslyfish.com.

Everybody's different, but most will tell you a betta alone is as much as you'd want in a 2.5 (many believe it's too small for a betta).
 

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The specs for the tank lighting says it emits out 7600 'kelvin' but doesn't say what level of lumens. Honestly the cube style filter will diffuse your tank's natural CO2 content, making plant growth less optimal. A better option would be a submersible nano powerhead like the Aquatop NanoAquatop Nano Water Pumps | That Fish Place and a small sponge filter, that doesn't disturb the water surface much.

Like others suggested, driftwood and a shallow gravel bed will support Java Fern, Java Moss, and Anubias, a small group of 6 White Clouds or Celestial Danios would make a good group of fish for this tank. I'm taking a gamble that '17 LED' clip on light will have enough lumens to grow plants, but if not, a 13 Watt Full Spectrum CFL in a clamp on reflector base would do the trick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You might just go for really low light plants and keep it easy: tie java moss on driftwood and rocks, tie subwassertang on a rock, plus an Anubias. Then you don't need nutrient-rich substrate, because they're all water column plants.

And please read re size and schooling needs of otos on seriouslyfish.com.

Everybody's different, but most will tell you a betta alone is as much as you'd want in a 2.5 (many believe it's too small for a betta).
This one is a 5 gallon tank, which is the only reason I was thinking maybe a betta and something to keep the substrate clean. I don't have any experience with shrimp but I was told by a friend they might be an option as well.

The specs for the tank lighting says it emits out 7600 'kelvin' but doesn't say what level of lumens. Honestly the cube style filter will diffuse your tank's natural CO2 content, making plant growth less optimal. A better option would be a submersible nano powerhead like the Aquatop NanoAquatop Nano Water Pumps | That Fish Place and a small sponge filter, that doesn't disturb the water surface much.

Like others suggested, driftwood and a shallow gravel bed will support Java Fern, Java Moss, and Anubias, a small group of 6 White Clouds or Celestial Danios would make a good group of fish for this tank. I'm taking a gamble that '17 LED' clip on light will have enough lumens to grow plants, but if not, a 13 Watt Full Spectrum CFL in a clamp on reflector base would do the trick.
That was pretty much the plan I was going to go with. I've got a chunk of driftwood in the tank already during it's cycle period. Would it make sense to go with a second piece in the front to grow the moss on rather than look for a carpeting plant?
 

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Hi,

If you can find a piece of driftwood that has a sort of flat topography. Java Moss would do well to spread out over a fairly flat surface under good light, and IIRC having a the water flow along the wood's surface helps. I used to live in an area that you could collect appropriate shaped driftwood from the local creeks. Nowadays it is harder to find decent varieties of big driftwood, since I've gone with nano tanks I'm keeping my driftwood collection small.
 
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