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Old 12-21-2014, 06:48 PM   #1
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Help with a dirted planted tank please!

Hello all!
I've had live plants before and have a basic knowledge of some plants and how to care for them, not so much on lighting requirements and all. I recently got a new 20 gallon, and I thought it would be a good time to try a dirted tank. I have my soil, Miracle Grow Organic and my sand to top it off with. From the last time I had a planted tank, I went a cheaper/DIY route with lighting, and got clip on desk lamps and CFL's that were strong enough to help the plants grow and had good success with the lights themselves. The 20 gallon Marineland kit I got came with LED lights, but I don't know if these lights will be sufficient enough (I'm thinking probably not), so I do have the CFL's I used last time if the LED's aren't sufficient for plant growth. What plants would you guys recommend I go with for my 20 gallon? My last go around with a planted tank (which was a 55 gallon), I had an amazon sword that went nuts and got huge. I loved how it looked, but I'm worried it will totally take over a 20 gallon at some point. All suggestions are greatly appreciated! Thanks!

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Old 12-22-2014, 10:48 AM   #2
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Is it a 20 long, or a normal 20? It depends what you want to grow too.. just want to make sure it's the right spectrum of light. Also, if you're going dirt, I suggest you soak it first for a week. Don't use more than an inch of dirt either. Id suggest 3/4 inch with clay and root tabs on the bottom, with a nice layer of sand, or even better, small gravel. 1.5- 2 inches. Careful with dirt, always watch your phosphates.

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Old 12-22-2014, 11:53 AM   #3
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Your Tank

Hello cah...

A 20 gallon is pretty short, so should be good for some easy plants like Anubias nana and nangi, some Sinapore moss, Hornwort and Anacharis.
I keep a 20 G long with some Rosey Danios and some of the above plants. I like a two bulb set up, just a shop light from the local hardware store. Nothing special, no fertilizers other than those the fish produce. Lighting won't be more than $20.00.

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Old 12-23-2014, 03:37 AM   #4
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Crypts are the kings of lowlight tanks

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Old 12-23-2014, 03:03 PM   #5
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If your going dirt go with heavy root feeders because even in medium light the do awesome. If u want a carpeting plant look for pygmy chain swords. I have some and they are awesome!

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Old 12-23-2014, 04:17 PM   #6
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I wouldn't use that soil as it has too much organic material in it. get some of the cheapest topsoil you can find and mineralize it.
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dirt, plant, planted, planted tank, tan, tank

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