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Old 04-23-2011, 04:16 AM   #1
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Exclamation Planted tanks HELP!

I decided to give away my two common goldfish since I wont be able to properly care for them, and plan on starting a community tank thats planted...
Ive never done a planted tank, and am SO confused about what people are talking about for lighting... basically Im at step one...
I just took off the cover of the light, and I'll tell you what it says
Aqua-Glo 42''/104.70cm 40w
I willl want plants that are probably low to medium light. unless theres a way I can get high lighting from a tube type bulb, without having to buy a whole new lighting system... Can I buy a special kind of light at the hardware store thats good enough to work for plant growth on my 50 gal...

Ill ask more questions once I get this one answered first lol thanks!
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Old 04-23-2011, 09:45 AM   #2
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It looks like that bulb is giving you about 1W/gal which is on the low end of the continuum for plants. It appears to be an 18,000K (color temperature) bulb but I generally see recommendations for bulbs of 6,700K fir planted tanks.
In my BioCUBE 14, which is supposed to be 14 gal but is really only 9.3 gal, I run one 24W 10,000K and one 24W 6,700K and have good plant growth and only occasional algae problems. I couldn't tell you how much light my plants need, or even the names of half of them.
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Old 04-23-2011, 09:47 AM   #3
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That 40w bulb should be ok if you only plant the lowest-light plants.

I kind of got myself into this that way- started w/Java Ferns & Java Moss, and am now slowly upgrading for what I consider "more variety/interesting" plants. First upgrade was lighting. Got a double T5 fixture).
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:30 PM   #4
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but could I buy a better bulb that size for my tank, so it could have at least medium light plants?
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldfishNewbie
but could I buy a better bulb that size for my tank, so it could have at least medium light plants?
You are constrained by the length of your hood and the type of connectors it has
You can probably change the quality (color temperature) of the light by buying a different bulb but, since wattage is based on the length of the tube, I don't think you will be able to increase it's quantity without making electrical modifications like putting in hardware for an additional tube
If you have good quality light you might try increasing the photoperiod a little, but that usually results in algal blooms
Fertilizers and CO2 will help your plants, particularly if they are planted in aquarium gravel
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Old 04-23-2011, 07:09 PM   #6
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the tank is 4 feet long, its just the bulb thing is so much shorter.. dang
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Old 04-24-2011, 05:10 PM   #7
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or how many watts would I need for medium lighting?
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