Hi everyone. I'm new to this forum and am on information overload on how to start up my 55 gallon as a planted tank. I've read so many methods for trying to start up the tank from using different substrates, to ferts, etc. My end goal is to have a low tech tank (not planning to use CO2). I just have a stock 55 gallon tank with hood, so I'll be switching out my bulbs in the hood to up around 1.5 to 2 watts per gallon (from what I've seen, that's about adequate if I don't want to use CO2, right?). If I can't change out my bulbs, I'll purchase a new light fixture to give me what I need for lighting. I've been reading over the posts in Tom Barr's forum, and I'm very intrigued by him method of setting up a planted tank using a sort of dry method of emersing the plants in wettened substrate and then allowing the plants to grow in before adding water and fish. Love the idea of not having to deal with algae or constantly monitoring water parameters like one normally would during a tank cycling. Has anyone tried this method and would you recommend it? I've looked around for the ADA Aqua soil that he mentions in his write-up, but can't find a local source in Canada. From what his write up states, I understand that one would use 1" of substrate, and then fill in about 7/8" of water and keep it at that level, while keeping the tank covered and the lights on for a normal 8-10 hour day. Would Eco Complete work in the same way? Also, has anyone had issues with excessive bacterial buildup or mould growth or anything like that? It would seem to me that with the moisture buildup on the tank and whatnot, that there would be issues with mould/mildew. Any other advice that anyone could give me on this method would be greatly appreciated. It seems to be a great way to start a tank and having it mostly dry would allow one to easily maintain the plants without having to worry about disturbing the substrate or mucking around armpit deep in water. Thanks folks!