I am having problems getting plants to grow nice - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 18 Old 10-12-2013, 07:49 AM Thread Starter
Thank you for your suggestions.
Many of my problems stem from my personal financial problems.

I was going to the Dollar Store and getting these LED lights to use as supplement lighting, but the Chinese supplier started making those with 7 rather that 9 and then made them so cheap I can't use them anymore.

I have the CO2 going, the Java Plant is coming in from Malaysia.

I have about 12 Sword Plants left, but like what was said, I think I need to come up with about 75 watts to get Sword Plants to survive? At least I have a new job and can start fixing things!
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post #12 of 18 Old 10-15-2013, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
One of the posters said 2 CFL @ 13 Watts each, which as I translate that is around 75-80 Watts of the older type. That is a good suggestion!

My CO2 2 Liter set-up that I started 4 days ago is really already kicking the Swordplants into high gear. It is an amazing difference! I better get a water test kit to make sure my PH is good.

I bought root tabs from Ebay and they are on their way, and the Java should be here shortly.

Now, if I increase the lighting I think I am set!
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post #13 of 18 Old 10-15-2013, 03:39 PM
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13 watts is a little dim for a 30 gallon ^_^ especially if it's the taller type. I use a 26 watt right ontop of my 1 gallon and the floaters still cut out most of the light :)

ps: wattage is calculated in terms of fluorescent lighting not the old incandescent bulbs, so two 13 watt bulbs for 30 gallons makes it less than 1watt/gallon :(

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Last edited by ao; 10-15-2013 at 03:41 PM.
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post #14 of 18 Old 10-15-2013, 07:57 PM Thread Starter
A more modern terminology is "Lumens" for lighting.

The older fish books I have that were into planting says that one can get by if they use CO2 and fertilizer for a 20-30 gallon tank is 60 Watt incandescent, which roughly converts to 800 Lumen or 13-15 CFL, or Compact Florescent Lighting. Marineland actually is selling an LED lighting for a 20 gallon tank that gives off only 300 Lumen, which isn't enough to grow any plants.

The person who is stating two 13 watt CFL is actually saying 120 watts of incandescent, or 4 watts per gallon due to the 30 gallon High. My present system is 9 CFL, 40 watts, or around 425 Lumen, which is not good enough, but better than that Marineland hood for a 20, (which fits a 30 gallon high).

Theoretically, two a 9 CFL would be 80 watts and may be barely good enough with CO2 and fertilizer.

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post #15 of 18 Old 10-15-2013, 08:18 PM
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The watt per gallon is certainly outdated :3 but is easy to calculate and is a fairly decent and fast calculation for tanks that are not too big or too small~
(I'm still sure it's the fluorescent light wattage because 3w/gallon is considered somewhat high light, ie. algae causing high light with an absolute need for CO2 to create balance~)

I've yet to use lumens as a method of calculation :D I've been using PAR which measures the amount of useable light available ~ As PAR meters can be a little costly, I've been borrowing my friend's. I still need to borrow one to measure the values of my LED light and see whether it is providing the right spectrum :P

Have to read up on lumens more ^_^ I see it used for indoor gardening all the time~


Oh no, just read the part about the Java fern. I've been lucky to get Anubias from asia once or twice when I was unexperienced and naive. But after i read about all the stories of unsuspecting hobbyists who had their packages destroyed and a warning letter delivered in place of the plant...Never again :O

how much java fern did you buy? I can't imagine them trying to sneak too much in through the postal service. There are some great online plants sellers who do plant packs for a good price :) It might be worth while to look into those

Every time I see your user name I'm reminded of Elatine Triandra, one of my favorite plant names ^_^ it's just so elegant and pretty!

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Last edited by ao; 10-15-2013 at 08:35 PM.
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post #16 of 18 Old 10-15-2013, 11:44 PM Thread Starter

Department of Agriculture

Dept of Agriculture 1.jpg

Package inspected by Homeland Security

Homeland Security 1.jpg

It was a $3.95, including shipping, Ebay from Malaysia!

What happend to the Government Shutdown? Get those guys off my back!
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post #17 of 18 Old 10-16-2013, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
What I am seeing on some Websites is the following conversion from Incandescent Light to Lumens:

40 Watt = 450 Lumens
60 Watt = 800 Lumens
75 Watt = >1100 Lumens

From Incandescent to CFL Florescent

60 Watt = 13 Watt CFL
75 Watt = 19 Watt CFL

That Marineland LED Light for the 20 Gallon Tank that has 300 Lumens is only equal to an 18 Watt Incandescent. That is too low!

Even the 9 Watt CFL on my 30 Gallon Tall is around 40 Watt Incadescent or 425 Lumens. In my older Fish Books, "Exotic Aquarium Fishes," they recommended 75 Watt Incdescent which should be 19 Watt CFL or around 1,100 Lumens.

The idea of two at 13 Watt CFL would be 120 Watts or 3 Watts per Gallon of Incadescent Light, the old book is saying 2 1/2 Watts per Gallon of Incadescent Light.

It is pretty confusing! Then you get into all that Light Spectrum Stuff...what a mess.

Last edited by easeltine; 10-16-2013 at 12:04 AM.
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post #18 of 18 Old 10-16-2013, 12:33 AM
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Haha! I'm confused too! I just hop right onto the brightest light I can find for my tank XD that way I can worry less about plants not growing :)

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