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Old 03-03-2006, 08:55 PM   #1
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Sand vs. Gravel & other questions

Hi. I have an old tank that Im reusing. Im giving it good cleaning and wanting to start fresh, Im down to decisions. Im going to do my shopping tomorrow and I want to know what's best to get.

I want to go all 'natural' with my tank. live plants and such, no plastic decor. I dont want those colored gravels.

my question is, what is best: Sand or natural gravel? (Whatever that gravel is called, Im sure you guys know what I mean).

this is going in a 20 gal tank.

since Im starting fresh, should I wait before adding live plants or that can go in right away?

and does anyone have pics of natural looking tanks? perferably 20 gal so I can get some ideas?
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:07 PM   #2
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Seriously, if you want to go "all natural" with your tank, I would recommend Caribsea's Eco-Complete Planted Tank substrate. It is a dull flat black and does not look, in any way, unnatural. It is the best all-around planted tank substrate you can find. It is a bit pricier than most other substrates, but will make keeping plants so much easier than anything else you can find. My .02 cents worth
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:19 PM   #3
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Im doing research online, and that's one of the recommended substrate. I'll look into that.

some sites also says its best to plant plants right away so it can get full use of the light before any algea gets to it, its that smart? My tank will not be cycled yet
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10 gal nano reef
• 2 percula clowns
• 1 Yellow Tailed Blue Damsel
• 2 types of Mushrooms
• Assorted Polyps
• 3 Red Legged Hermit Crabs
• Assorted Snails (lost count)

• 8 Betta's (CT's and HM's)
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:31 PM   #4
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well this guy used as all natural as you can get pretty much and is good foir ur plant needs with not much cost
http://www.hallman.org/plant/gravel.html
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:45 PM   #5
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thats a useful site, thanks nutrous.

Im reading a few threads here, and I am utterally confused about CO2. I noticed on a few threads, people have tanks to produce this.

like I said, Im doing a 20 gal set up.. how essential is CO2?

Is there an idiot's step-by-step guide to planting? I'd like to go step by steps instead of learning things idividually and making mistakes. I want to do this right.
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10 gal nano reef
• 2 percula clowns
• 1 Yellow Tailed Blue Damsel
• 2 types of Mushrooms
• Assorted Polyps
• 3 Red Legged Hermit Crabs
• Assorted Snails (lost count)

• 8 Betta's (CT's and HM's)
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:48 PM   #6
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co2 isnt very essential unless u go with high ligthing and that for you would be on or over 40 watts and then at that rate algae would grow alot and then co2 cuts down the algae grotwh but it is also very good at inducing plant growth and with high light and co2 your plants will be growing fast
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:51 PM   #7
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ok, right now, I have the basic hood light, and Im reading that certain few plants are ok with that. Eventually when I get the extra cash, I'll get a better lighting. right now, Im strapped for cash.

since I have the basic hood light, maybe a higher watt bulb or one of those UV bulbs will suit?

over 40 watts you'd recommend CO2 dosage?
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10 gal nano reef
• 2 percula clowns
• 1 Yellow Tailed Blue Damsel
• 2 types of Mushrooms
• Assorted Polyps
• 3 Red Legged Hermit Crabs
• Assorted Snails (lost count)

• 8 Betta's (CT's and HM's)
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:57 PM   #8
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well i belive so becuaise then algae grows rapidly so then co2 will stop that but co2 is always beneficial even for low lighjt tanks and here
http://www.plantgeek.net/plantguide_...er_by=2&page=2
you can sort by lighting
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Old 03-03-2006, 11:00 PM   #9
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I should start a diary and post it here like a few others has done, a way for everyone to help me step by step, to make sure I have the right equipment and such. I am nervous about this, lol. all this confusion is making me want to go to a child's play plastic decor again, lol.

ok, that brings me to my next question:

ammonia is bad for fish, yet good for plants. When I get this set up working, should I advoid ammonia rocks and such? just let the ammonia come and welcome it, or eliminate it?
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10 gal nano reef
• 2 percula clowns
• 1 Yellow Tailed Blue Damsel
• 2 types of Mushrooms
• Assorted Polyps
• 3 Red Legged Hermit Crabs
• Assorted Snails (lost count)

• 8 Betta's (CT's and HM's)
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