The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I’m new to this forum and new to planted aquariums. I've kept fish since I was about 10 years of age, Started with cold water, then tropical (which my mum still has running) and then finally went over to marines. I had the marine tank for nearly 6 years and all was going well on it until I started having equipment failures. First was the aquatronic controller then the skimmer and without the funds or the heart to invest in it anymore, I decided to give all livestock back to lfs and any remaining equipment to friends. That was six months ago and I am missing not having a tank in the house.

So..... I decided to start again but this time on a smaller scale. I manage to get my better half to agree to let me have a small tropical planted aquarium situated in my office. The vague idea I have in my head that I would like to achieve is a small tank with easy to keep plants, a few shrimp and a shoal of small fish like black neon’s.

The equipment I have so far:

Aquaone 40cm cube rimless and braceless tank
Fluval u2 internal filter (might be a problem for shrimp, need advice??)
Fluval 50w titanium heater
Arcadia 11w pod light (not sure if this going to be enough WPG?? but I am willing to buy another one if need be)

For co2 I plan to buy the jbl proflora bioCo2 vario. (Haven’t brought this yet as I’m not sure if I actually need this or if it’s up to the job?)

this is where I get a bit lost in terms of setting up a planted aquarium, I’ve been reading allot of information on the internet and its just left me even more confused?!?!?

So my first big questions are:

Substrate?? (Which ones to use and how much?)
Tank cycling? (How quickly can u add plants is it the same as fish?)
Any other comments you have about where you think I might also be failing?

Thank you for help

Mael
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,329 Posts
Welcome to the Planted Tank!

It looks like all your equipment is okay, but could you please specify the volume of the tank? You'll probably need a stronger light. Cube tanks are relatively deep, and you'll want a strong light. I would suggest 1.5 watts of light per gallon. If you keep that lighting level, CO2 probably won't be necessary.

A good substrate to use is Seachem Flourite. An ideal substrate depth is around 2 inches. If you use Flourite alone, make sure to wash and dry it before putting it in the tank. You could also add a thin layer of pea gravel to the top. If you add the water gently, you will not disturb the Flourite and there will be very little clouding.

Plants can be put in the tank initially. They will use ammonia and nitrates. Some people will put the fish after planting the tank heavily, but slow growing plants will not use the nutrients as quickly. I would plant the tank, and let the plants grow for a few days or weeks before adding fish.

One of the most important things to consider when setting up a planted tank is how you want the tank to look. Will it just be a fish tank with plants, or do you want it to look beautiful? Also, you must take into account what plants you want to keep. If you want to keep easy plants, I would suggest Cryptocorynes, Rotala rotundifolia, Bacopa, Java Fern, Anubias, Bolbitis (African Water Fern), and moss. These plants are pretty easy to keep and don't require too much light. A general rule of aquascaping is tall plants in the back, short ones in the front. In a cube tank, I would have one corner in the back of Rotala or Bacopa, sloping down into a field of Cryptocoryne. Plan out your scape before you buy plants, and plant the plants in their locations. Just putting the plants in and rescaping later while they're established can create quite a mess!

For fish, I would suggest getting Celestial Pearl Danios (Danio margaritatus). They have a maximum size of 1 inch, and are very pretty. Large black neon tetras will eat shrimp, so if you want to keep those tetras, make sure that they are well fed. A good species of shrimp to start with is the red cherry shrimp.

Hope your first foray into the wonderful of world of planted tanks is successful!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The tank volume is about 64l/14gal, and it is 40cm deep. With current lights that’s 0.78 WPG. Guessing I am going to need that extra light, with another arc pod that will bring it up to 22w in 14g, so 1.57 WPG!

I'll have a hunt round for substrate tomorrow and sit down and plan out my plant arrangement as well. Hopefully if all goes well I’ll have some nice photos of the tank taking shape soon.

Lol I haven’t been this excited about doing a fish tank in ages! Especially a tropical one :)

Cheers

Mael
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top