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Old 03-19-2016, 05:06 PM   #1
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Question about planted tank and sunlight

I currently have a cichlid tank, which is set up near a window.
Because it is near the window, the tank has some nice lush green algae growing in it. Actually looks nice.

Does that mean if i was able to re do tank as a planted tank, the natural sunlight would benefit and help plants too?

Im very tempted to turn this tank into a planted tank if this would help plants. The green algae looks so nice and healthy.

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Old 03-19-2016, 06:17 PM   #2
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That algae would grow on the plants to.. sunlight is ideal but next to impossible to translate into successful/healthy plant growth.

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Old 03-19-2016, 06:23 PM   #3
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So this sunlight would do nothing to help on a planted tank?

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Old 03-19-2016, 06:43 PM   #4
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Brookster is right, I have a planted tank but have to leave one curtain pulled across until lunchtime when the sun has moved round. Not only does the sun cause excessive algae on the front glass but it promotes algae growth on the plants which reduces the light that reaches the plants and they don't flourish as you would expect. To have a healthy, algae free, planted tank you need to balance light intensity and duration with temperature, carbon source and ferts. There's no magic formula as all tanks differ but I think that natural sunlight is not the answer.
Someone will now prove me wrong 😀.


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Old 03-19-2016, 07:49 PM   #5
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Lol - I agree though. I've found sunlight causes more algae on whichever side of the tank is getting it. I find more success in removing it from the equation. I think there are people that get it to work which I find really impressive as it stumps me.
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Old 03-22-2016, 11:37 AM   #6
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Sunlight can absolutely benefit a planted tank. Nature has been growing plants that way far longer than we have in this hobby using fake sunlight. You just need to be able to control it in case the direct light is too much (in the same way you would if the light over your tank were stronger than you needed). If you have a way to shade it it could work but will take some trial and error to dial it in.
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Old 03-22-2016, 08:53 PM   #7
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I tried this with my planted 55g community tank. It doesn't work. You end up with too much light, and not enough co2 and/or ferts. If you want to use the sunlight, you need to balance all 3, otherwise the algae will outcompete the plants.
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Old 03-22-2016, 11:50 PM   #8
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I get a lot of indirect light shining into my planted tank from a pair of southwest facing windows and, depending on how the shades are set, some direct sun. Tank has ample amounts of ferts and CO2. Stem plants used to bend while chasing the light. I do notice more green spot algae on the tank wall on closest to the windows but that's about it.


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