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So everyone seems to be in agreement that more healthy plants equates to less algae problems. What if I put these plants in the sump, and they run off a reverse light cycle, will the same principles apply?

I'm hoping this will allow me a more minimalist planted tank while still enjoying the benefits of a heavily planted tank. Main tank is 400L and sump will be 100L, so I have a bit of space to pack stems.
 

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So everyone seems to be in agreement that more healthy plants equates to less algae problems. What if I put these plants in the sump, and they run off a reverse light cycle, will the same principles apply?

I'm hoping this will allow me a more minimalist planted tank while still enjoying the benefits of a heavily planted tank. Main tank is 400L and sump will be 100L, so I have a bit of space to pack stems.

Reef tanks do this all the time. The reverse light cycle helps to stabilize ph in a reef tank. I’m not sure if it will have the same effect for planted . Are you running CO2.


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I'll be running c02. Liquefying it in the sump and letting it run 24 hrs. I figure there will be enough circulation for this to not be a problem. Haven't yet given any consideration to the plants. The main criteria would be that they are easy to maintain (no up rooting, trimming, then replanting stems thanks). Would a floating plant like duckweed work? My feeling is that a surface only plant is an inefficient use of volume, since the space underneath will be void.
 

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a couple of sq feet of floaters can suck up a lot of nutrient , duckweed won't stay in the sump though, it will get into the tank, any other tanks and your bath tub too if you leave the plug in for more than 5 minutes so if that is an issue try something bigger like salvina or water lettuce that is easier to eradicate where it isn't wanted
 

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Technically yes it would rip more ammonium/ammonia from the water before it turns to anything else. I wouldnt expect more than 10ppm co2 from the plants in their night cycle. That is a Uneducated rough guess if even that. The main thing is having the sump tank clean because if algae takes that over it will just flow into your show tank.

Also do floating plants even release their co2 into the water or even get their co2 from the water? Technically they breathe with the bottom of their leaves like any plant last I checked so if that's making contact. If its covering every square inch of the surface of the sump like duckweed with a light on it, then you wouldn't have algae in it since it wouldnt let much light through to the glass and bottom. Seems harmless to me. But the other question is stability. How long will it release the co2 if any... half hour? 8 hours? Nobody knows.
 

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Dwarf water lettuce (or regular also) really does a good job of taking in nutrients like mentioned but is big enough to not get everywhere. The dwarf water lettuce roots get about 6-10" long and the tops in my tank gets about 1-2" in height and about 3" across. They send out surface runners which form new plants and propagate quickly if conditions are right. When they get too crowded its easy as scooping out what you want to remove with your hand.

In my experience the DWL do not like high turbulent flow, steady calm flow seems to work best, also a decent amount of room below the lid (no lid is ideal but not always doable).
 

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I’d make divider for sump area, 1st half would be a big wall of Subwassertang for water to flow through, it’s like this big green living filter pad. Last half would be Salvinia, high metabolism true floating plant. Both would be very easy to curate and manage colony size.

Subwassertang works very nice with this plastic gutter guard. Big enough mesh so has great water flow but will keep Subwassertang at its end.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Frost-King-E-O-6-in-x-20-ft-Plastic-Gutter-Guard-VX620/202518614
 
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