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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, so I just got my plants into the tank- for brand new plants trying to adjust to a new tank, should I be taking it easy on them with lower lighting levels? All my plants are beginner friendly... things like Moneywort, Spiral Val, Dwarf Saggitaria grass, java moss, and an Anubis Nana.

I have the Fluval Plant LED light and have it on 50% levels for max the max lighting, and for only around 6 hours... but I want to make sure I am giving them enough. My first inclination is to give them 8-10 hours of 100% light, but I don't think that is ideal lol.

Second, once I start stocking the tank is there a light scheme I can use late at night that won't stress the plants or the fish (or cause a huge algae bloom)? One of the reasons I got the tank was because I tend to suffer from chronic pain induced insomnia and I thought staring at the tank might help me. So when I am up from 11pm-3 am I'd like to be able to have some low level light on to watch the tank. Suggestions? It might not be every night but I normally have 2-3 nights a week that are tough.

Thank you in advance for any suggestions!
 

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Not sure if you have co2 injection or not, but on my injected tanks, I give them a minimum of 7 hours full light, what I believe is full Co2, what I believe is the right dose of fertilizers for the plant density I have (I used a modified EI regimen), water changes of 50% for the first week, the. Once every other day until I see the plants are doing well and not melting back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Not sure if you have co2 injection or not, but on my injected tanks, I give them a minimum of 7 hours full light, what I believe is full Co2, what I believe is the right dose of fertilizers for the plant density I have (I used a modified EI regimen), water changes of 50% for the first week, the. Once every other day until I see the plants are doing well and not melting back.
I was really trying to stay away from Co2... this is my very first tank ever, so I was trying to just start as simple as possible. Is there a "beginner" system that is easy to set up? Im not sure having to utilize the yeast method is right for me since Im assuming you have to hook up a diy system. Not very good at that since I also have 5 dogs running around lol
 

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CO2 is not required, it just changes the recommendations. Tanks that run CO2 can handle more light and more fertilizer and get faster plant growth in return. In low tech tanks plant growth is limited by the lack of extra CO2. This is fine as long as you stick to easy plants, which you have, but if there's too much light it will drive algae growth, not plants.

Unfortunately there's no set formula for success. You'll have to trial different lighting amounts and see what works in your tank. I have two low tech tanks with very different lighting schemes - one gets 4.5 hours of light and one gets 7 to 8 with a siesta in the middle. I recommend starting out with less light at first.

That said, I feel free turn the light on the 4.5 hour tank for an extra hour or so from time to time either to watch or do a water change. As long as I am sure to turn it off, it doesn't make a difference. I think the real problem you are going to run into is that many fish sleep at night, so it's not a great time to see what's going on. Either the light is dim and they don't wake up, or you do wake them up and they don't like it and look stressed. But there are nocturnal fish, so maybe get a few of those and turn on a dim light to watch them when you can't sleep?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
CO2 is not required, it just changes the recommendations. Tanks that run CO2 can handle more light and more fertilizer and get faster plant growth in return. In low tech tanks plant growth is limited by the lack of extra CO2. This is fine as long as you stick to easy plants, which you have, but if there's too much light it will drive algae growth, not plants.

Unfortunately there's no set formula for success. You'll have to trial different lighting amounts and see what works in your tank. I have two low tech tanks with very different lighting schemes - one gets 4.5 hours of light and one gets 7 to 8 with a siesta in the middle. I recommend starting out with less light at first.

That said, I feel free turn the light on the 4.5 hour tank for an extra hour or so from time to time either to watch or do a water change. As long as I am sure to turn it off, it doesn't make a difference. I think the real problem you are going to run into is that many fish sleep at night, so it's not a great time to see what's going on. Either the light is dim and they don't wake up, or you do wake them up and they don't like it and look stressed. But there are nocturnal fish, so maybe get a few of those and turn on a dim light to watch them when you can't sleep?
Thank you!!! I can do dim. And I will search out a nocturnal fish or two!!
 

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I was really trying to stay away from Co2... this is my very first tank ever, so I was trying to just start as simple as possible. Is there a "beginner" system that is easy to set up? Im not sure having to utilize the yeast method is right for me since Im assuming you have to hook up a diy system. Not very good at that since I also have 5 dogs running around lol
People have great results with out CO2. I have not ran a tank without CO2 in many years, but for what I remember I ran a light with relatively low par with a similar photoperiod as my other tanks. That being said there are folks here who know what their are doing with no co2 setups
 

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+1 to previous post from Minorhero.

I have a Fluval 3.0 on mine. I had the white light at 100% and the others probably averaging 80%? On a 75 gallon so 22" (24" is the actually height of the tank) from substrate. Anyway, I have it adjusted down now because it started to produce algae. I do run CO2 but nothing crazy, not the biggest fan of the bubbles so I keep just to the point they are distracting at all. I did just bumped it up cause I am trying to boost the plant growth for a bit, just re did the tank.

Without CO2 I would bet you could run all the settings at 65% and then make minor changes as needed. Watch for algae. Always try and change only one thing at a time and give it couple weeks. It will let you know if the thing you changed helps or not, instead of guess what changes you made were helpful or not or detrimental.

Just to clarify, I would recommend averaging all your lights to 65% with white counting as two lights; count the white twice when creating the average of your lights. With CO2 on that light I would assume you would adjust up to about an average of 75% pretty quickly. Without CO2... well 65% sounds like a good starting point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Given the strength of the fluval 3.0 (I am assuming it's a 3.0?) You can turn it up to full strength for 6-8 hours even though the plants are new and this is a low tech tank. 24" is indeed a deep tank especially for a tank 36" long.
OK, thank you! Yes its the 3.0. I'll go ahead and boost the lighting a bit then

+1 to previous post from Minorhero.

I have a Fluval 3.0 on mine. I had the white light at 100% and the others probably averaging 80%? On a 75 gallon so 22" (24" is the actually height of the tank) from substrate. Anyway, I have it adjusted down now because it started to produce algae. I do run CO2 but nothing crazy, not the biggest fan of the bubbles so I keep just to the point they are distracting at all. I did just bumped it up cause I am trying to boost the plant growth for a bit, just re did the tank.

Without CO2 I would bet you could run all the settings at 65% and then make minor changes as needed. Watch for algae. Always try and change only one thing at a time and give it couple weeks. It will let you know if the thing you changed helps or not, instead of guess what changes you made were helpful or not or detrimental.

Just to clarify, I would recommend averaging all your lights to 65% with white counting as two lights; count the white twice when creating the average of your lights. With CO2 on that light I would assume you would adjust up to about an average of 75% pretty quickly. Without CO2... well 65% sounds like a good starting point.
Thank you! Right now I just need to have patience I guess and see what happens...
 
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