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Upgrade or replace T5s on 10g?

2059 Views 11 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  lifeaquatic

I'm posting here for the first time for some advice on lighting my betta lifespace 35.

The tank is ~ 37cm x 28cm x 37cm in a 'deep' configuration. It comes with a waterproof light enclosure sitting directly on the water surface with 2 8w T5 lights (1 gro-lux, one factory fitted "white") and a mirror-finish reflector.

From what I've read this gives me 'low light' at very best...I have some Cryptocoryne Wendtii 'green', Staurogyne repens and Pogostemon helferi. The plants are growing (very slowly) in ADA Amazonian aquasoil with CO2 via a Flora-gro Co2 nano 50 ( KH and GH are essentially zero, pH is around 6.2 and I dose daily with micronutrients, iron and NPK.

I'm trying to decide whether to:

1) simply squeeze another t5 in
2) make up a T5 size LED array to slot in between the current tubes
3) replace the tubes with a DIY LED or perhaps this or an ecoxotic stunner strip? (if I can find a supplier/shipper to the UK)

Any thoughts greatly appreciated.
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Perhaps the plants are rooting and will start growing better in a bit.

Is it the new Crypt leaves that are brown around the edges? Old leaves generally do poorly in a new tank and don't live long.

My S. repens has been in this tank for maybe 6 months. Was uprooted and replanted a month ago and just this past week perked up again.

Zero KH and GH is not a good thing. Plants need the calcium and magnesium in GH. The carbonate in KH helps with the CO2 I think.

My tank water tested at more than 40 whatever the unit is nitrate. I stopped dosing nitrate and the plants are showing color. They are not lacking nitrate, it is just low enough the plants show color is all.
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