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Low Tech 5.5 For a Plant Newbie

569 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  AGUILAR3
I have dipped my toes into the realm of planted tanks in the past, but never seriously. I've decided to actually work with a low tech, small setup in my new apartment. Ideas and critiques welcome.

5.5 Gallon aquarium
Azoo Palm filter
Old heater I've had for years
Frankensteined LED lights from two different stock kit hoods
Flourite black sand
Stone Buddha head
Malaysian driftwood

3 Crypt Wendtii
1 Anubias Barterii
Dwarf chain sword

Male betta
3 horned nerites

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Looks like a good start! My first plants were also anubias and crypt wentii green. As the crypts get bigger you can pull them up and seperate them. There will be about 5-10 plants per bundle and that's how they propagate.

The only thing I'd suggest is either osmocote tabs (maybe get from a forum member) or some seachem root tabs. I've never had good luck personally from the API ones. I get the Seachem root tabs if I'm at the store. Lately I found Osmocote+ at my local hardware store so I went to a vitamin shoppe and got a package of 100 gel tablets (size 00) and made my own. $15 and I have enough to make enough to last me a very long time.

Don't be surprised if your chain sword does well that it'll send out lots of babies. The runners are easy to clip off and replant if they grow in an area you don't want them to be in. Also very easy to remove extra plantlets. From 1 plant the size of yours, I now have a full front section of my 46 full.

Another cheap idea I figure I'd throw your way is that the next time you're at a store with a craft/school supply section is to get a single piece of poster board and cut it to fit your tank. tape to the top and bottom corners and Presto! cheap black background. I did this with my 5.5 till I took it out and ruined it and never replaced it. I liked it when I had it there though.

Hope this was helpful.
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Thanks. I actually have Seachem root tabs ordered. They should be here by the end of the week. As for background, my dad does car detailing and I'm getting essentially a free vinyl back cling next time I'm there. I just need to find time to visit. I look forward to propogating my plants. I have all the makings of a Walstad bowl for my window desk when that happens.
Tank looks great.

Speaking of car detailing, back in the day, I use to use limo tint for all my tank backgrounds. I think I'm going to try it on my next set up lol
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