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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. I just seen some inspirational vids on youtube and thought it would be a nice bday gift to my mom to setup a planted tank.

So anyways I have reef tanks. But never a planted fw.
I was thinking of going with a 10gallon with an aquaclear HOB with purigen inside.(anything else I should use?)
I think the substrate I saw was eco complete.
so what I want to know is what low tech plants can I get?
What lighting would be sufficient?
Schooling fish?
id like to start off not using any co2.

I really like the low grass look on some of the tanks. Some almost look like its not even underwater..very impressive.
thanks for any help
 

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you can get some micro chain grass or HC which are carpet plants that will look nice, you can actually get a lot of lowlight plants! i asked my store guy and he has like three tanks dedicated to lowlight so just ask the guy.
 

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For my low light, i use a 24w t5ho 12000k on my 24 inch. There are actually a few low light plants : Java fern, jave moss, anubias and many more from those classes. Caution, some other non-low light plants can survive in a low tech setup BUT not really thrive although some can get away with it. Ive read on a site that light with a 6500k + temp causes plants to grow tall whereas those with a 10000k + temp cause bushy and short grow. For fertilisers, u can google PMDD.

Why use purigen? It removes nitrates which are ferts for plants.

Schooling fish: celestial pearl danios, ember tetras, glowlight tetras, pygmy rasbora and others.
 

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Note: there must be a balance between lighting, ferts and co2. Eg: When there are lots of ferts and light but not enough co2, co2 becomes a limiting factor and algae will overtake plants. Basically, plants control algae by using their nutirents in the water column. So try to start of with a few fast growing plants. I use water sprite and Hygrophila polysperma, then replace them with slower groing plants.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
do java moss, water sprite, anubias, all require co2 or can they go without?
If I really do need co2 id rather just buy the regulator than diy.. Is there a good one to look at?
 

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I have no experiences with co2 cannisters as my tank is low tech. Normally low tech means no addition of co2, only from fish. The plants above do not need co2 as they are slow growing except the water sprite. They are satisfied with just co2 from the fish. For my case, i fill my tank to my aquaclear output lip to reduce surface agitation to keep the co2. Anyways, my water sprites grew fast without any additional co2.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ok thanks alot , thats a big help. Ill try to post pics of the start up.

Is there a cycle to these tanks, like in reef tanks? or is it pretty much ok to put in declore and add stuff?
 

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Plant ASAP. The plants become part of the tank's biofilter as they will help absorb ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate. It's POSSIBLE to cycle a tank completely with plants- but given the small water volume you're working with, there's not much room for error so I'd go ahead and do a fishless cycle just like you would with a SW setup.

I'd estimate anywhere from 2-4 weeks once you've got the plants installed and growing.

I personally stick with 15 watt T8 strips over my own 10gal low tech setups. Very easy and is a perfect light level for a low tech, non CO2 setup. Java ferns, mosses, Anubias, crypts, chain swords all do well at this light level.
 
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