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Old 08-18-2011, 11:56 PM   #1
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Question Starting up a new planted tank, need help

Hi Im going to start up a new tank. Ive had many fish tanks but ive never had a planted one. It seems like lighting will be my biggest decision. What I currently have is a 55gal tank with two Emperor hang on filters. My current lighting consists of two standard florecent fixtures that came with the tank. What type of lighting would be suggested. Im looking for a low light set up with some fish but that will be decided later. My substrate is just natural stone gravel. Can I stay with this or should I change the type of substrate since I want to have plants? Should I use some type of nutrients also? Any help on this tank would be great!! By the way the pictures of other members tanks are fantastic! I hope to have something that I could post too someday.

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Old 08-18-2011, 11:58 PM   #2
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Not sure about the light fixture, but low-light plants are java fern and moss, pennywort and hornwort, anacharis, anubias, and crypts.
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Old 08-19-2011, 12:07 AM   #3
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In terms of lighting ... there's a bunch of options, but a T5 fixture with 2 bulbs will provide plenty of good lighting ... just make sure the bulb temperature is 6500K - 6700K. Here's a link that I think you'll find useful in terms of light fixutre location / tank depth and light intensity .. the other is for low light plants to consider.

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/li...t5-t12-pc.html
http://www.plantgeek.net/plantguide_...=1&filter_by=2

Gravel should be fine for your purposes ... however if you feel you want to do more ... Pool Filter Sand is a nice ... inexpensive option that is just the right size to anchor plant roots without billowing into a dust cloud during water changes/ gravel vacs. What I did is just pour the PFS in the spots where I first planted ... in a matter of days, the PFS works its way through the gravel.

Aside from CO2 ... which I'll let others comment on, I use seachem flourish and seachem root tabs.

Hope this helps .... good luck!
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