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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am planning on upgrading from a 90 litre aquarium with T8 lighting to the Juwel Vision 180 aquarium that has a High light T5 lighting system that uses the T8 bulbs lengths. The depth of aquarium is about 50 cm.

The new light unit holds 2 x 35w T5HO flourescent bulbs with reflectors on both bulbs.

I want to be able to grow plants and keep them looking healthy. So I need advice on lighting.

I have a choice of 3 bulbs made for the light unit. They are:

Day 9000K 35w
Nature 4100K 35w
Colour 6800k 35w

Which bulb would be best for plants? I have read that plants use the Red spectrum. Which bulb would be best. Should I combine two different bulbs?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have found a bulb with a kelvin rating of 3000k would this better for plant growth. It is a bulb specially designed for plant growth with anti UV to stop algae growth. It is the Dennerle Trocal T5 Longlife Special Plant bulb
 

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I agree that too low in the K range might be too yellow or too warm looking, but it would still grow plants fine. I have a combo of 18000k and 6700k of T5HO on my big tank and 6700k and 10000k on my smaller tank. Don't fall for that garbage about "specially designed for plant growth with anti UV to stop algae growth", that bulb will grow plants no better than any other bulb you just might pay more for the BS....
 

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low kelvins will grow plants, but poorly and over time the plants will suffer or die. Now I have more experience in indoor grow rooms that utilize artificial light to grow plants but i have applied that know how to my tank and it's doing wonderfully. I have worked in greenhouse's, have experience in several growrooms, and have a small section of the family's basement sectioned off for growing plants and a small hydroponic system. You will surely need light between 5000k and 9000k range for the plants to grow healthy and full of color. Any less and your plants will suffer any higher would be more for a marine or reef tank and is not nessicary for a FW aquarium.

From my experience, for good plant growth to take place, lights between 5500k and 8000k work best. It is best to aim for a bulb in between these two temps. Now 8000k to 9000k will also help plants but in most pants it will induce flowering and in turn will minimalize growth. In the grow rooms, we use high preasure sodium bulbs (or MH bulbs of a higher temp. sometimes) to induce flowering becouse in has a higher color temp. closer to 9000k.

In an aquarium using HPS or a bulb that contains a high color temp will urge the plants to shoot to the surface so they may flower resulting in less full, tall, and stalky plants. Combined with a shortened photoperiod, and a cooling of air (or water) temp is sure to induce flowering.

fyi: MOST OF MY EXPERIENCE IS IN NON AQUATIC PLANTS! But i believe that these general rules apply to aquatic plants as well as non aquatic.
I have debated posting a thread describing what i have learn from personal experience with non aquatic plants.

anyway hope i could help.
 
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