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I had no issues using plain old T12 under the counter lamps/fixtures, a cool white, 2 x 15 w at 14" away, or about little over 30cm.

No reflector other than the white ones that came with it.
Hair grass is a fairly low light plant. Many claim otherwise, but somehow mine grew fine at 1.7 w/gal for years(80 W of T12's on a 55 gallon tank, about 50cm from the light. It had a reflector though.

Good CO2 and keeping it clean(use a comb, lightly vacuum, mow like a lawn every so often etc) are the main issues.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks a lot Tom, that really relieve me... my tank is 10 gallon (link is on my sig), about 30 cm distance from the light. It's just that i read everywhere, hairgrass is a high light plant that worried me.

So i hope my hairgrass will do well at 4.5 watt per gallon (is that really the count? i read that formula can't be applied to smaller tanks).
 

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In my experience, hairgrass does best with direct light. Any shade from larger plants and it'll grow poorly, just like a real lawn under a tree.

I've only ever tried it with high light 3-5w/g and CO2, where it grows short, fast and thickly as it puts out more runners rather than going for more height, again just like a lawn.

45w on a 10g should be fine. See how it grows over the next few weeks to determine for yourself if you have too much or not enough light and it's growing the way you want it. If it's tall, dark and thin then it's 'low light'. If it grows short and lighter green it's 'high light'. Your main problem may be dealing with algae in amongst the grass.
 

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It's just that i read everywhere, hairgrass is a high light plant that worried me.

So i hope my hairgrass will do well at 4.5 watt per gallon (is that really the count? i read that formula can't be applied to smaller tanks).
If anything, you have too much light, you have HLD, high light disease.

Hair grass is not, like most all FW plants. a high light obligate plant, if fact, there is not a single species that cannot be grown at about 2-2.5 w/gal unless the tank is really strange shaped etc.

Folks have never bothered to test light and make assumptions, much like they did about CO2, nutrients etc.

To make matters worst, they have never bothered to test light in tanks at the plant leaf surface with the proper units such as micro mole/M^2/sec etc,m instead using some green light lux standard that is focues for our own perception.

Another issue is that many folks about 7-8 years ago, of which there are few today posting etc, used 2 w/gal or less, heck........that's all that was availble for most of us at the time prior to that.

HLD is namely a USA disease, few others seem to suggest or tell folks that hair grass requires high light.

Another problem is the types of FL lighting have changed and the reflectors and T5/PC lighting have developed and add even more light per watt.

More light is not better, it places more demand on CO2 and nutrients and that can give folks problems by giving you method adjustments that use to work well on the lower lighted tanks, but now cause issues at higher light.

Non CO2 vs CVO2 methods are one example of what happens when you add more light, you need more CO2, then nutrients if you add the CO2.

The amplification of growth has it's trade offs, but many are too stubborn to acknowledge it and use that knowledge to modulate their routines to reduce the rate of growth. Some still want break neck growth, but not after a couple of years, it gets tiresome.

Having the control to do slow, moderate and fast growth is a far far better approach. If you are new, suggesting you need super high light would not be a good idea.

But they still do it.................:icon_idea

Several shops and scapers routinely use 1.7 w/gal of T5 lighting and have super short dense hair grass.

Miracle?

No, common sense and seeing if you can limit the light and supply good nutrients/CO2.

Stop off at Aqua Forest if you do not believe me.

2x54w on a 65 gallon tank and it's enough light for any ADA style set up you and or anyone might have in mind and a nice short lawn of hair grass.

Shading is an issue as mention it will grow taller if that is done.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

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Shading is an issue as mention it will grow taller if that is done.
I'm actually finding the small tuft which I kept of my lawn, but which is now shaded by anubias at 2' depth under 2w/gal of T5s has stayed very short and has grown very slowly. Barely at all.

Out in the open with the light direct (no shade) from the same fixture it grew to a thick lush carpet from sparsely planted sprouts within six weeks.

Perhaps I'm totally wrong about the height being dependent on light, and the key to the grass height may perhaps be just CO2 then as both scenarios I mentioned have CO2, but different light - one in shade and one in direct light, but both are still short growth. One is just much faster short growth than the other.

Here's the pic I just posted in another thread of my old lawn growing in direct light (2w/gal, 100g). In the shade under the H corymbosas it still stays short, but is more sparse. Just like a real lawn under a tree, as I mentioned.

 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
awrieger, your tank is one of the inspiration why i want to develop a grassy lawn theme in my current tank. this thread is giving me a lot of information that i need. So about this HLD, how are the symptoms? should i reduce my lighting to optimized WPG to avoid this problem and get maximized result?
 

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High Light Disease afflicts humans. The symptoms are the obsession for more watts per gallon. I have this disease, as do many others. I just added another two 55w power compacts to my tank this week to take it over 4w/g. A side effect of HLD is the need for more CO2.

The only problem I can imagine is as Tom says, it throws things out of balance like the need for more nutrients and CO2, so you may have an algae issue without using any CO2. Your grass should grow fine with high light and no CO2, but algae may likely grow much better. In which case I would suggest try using a substitute carbon source like Seachem Flourish which is liquid organic carbon you can dose (as per instructions on bottle).
 

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actually, and i beleive tom may agree with me here, red plants are influenced to turn red due to Nitrogen limitation. with more light, they grow faster an suck the N out faster, limiting N.
 

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hmmm, there are many many exceptions to that, red and bronze crypts- low light, sunset hygro, a few others.\
leaves-cabomba, hornwart, myriophyllum, mayaca, all medium light plants.
 

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I personally don't believe that. Maybe when you buy a punnet of hairgrass grown emersed or semi emersed and going to seed, it may work to promote putting energy into new runners and leaves instead of into the old soon-to-die-off-anyway emersed leaves.

Once in the tank though, my experience is direct light (doesn't have to be high light, just direct) and CO2 is the best for fast and low spread.

A Kleinar Bar sword plant (similar to a Red Ozelot) in my possesion always goes redder with stronger light. Again like the grass, direct light is best. Shade from other plants like a bunch of quick growing stem plants fades the red to a brownish dark green and any new leaves come in green too. NO3 has remained constant throughout it's colour changes. It's currently shaded by several corymbosas, so its leaves are all coming in green now (and its growth is stunted). But if I were to take the plants shading it away, its new leaves will come in red again.
 
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