Teach me about lighting. - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 11 Old 01-25-2011, 09:36 PM Thread Starter
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Teach me about lighting.

Hi all.

I'm looking to "upgrade" my tank a little. I've got a 29g tall community tank. I've grown tired of the plastic plants and would like to add some real plants. My tank as been established for about 2 years now and running solid. My problem is that I just dont understand the lighting needs for real plants as well as the substrate needed to pull it off. I'd like to start small and not do a Co2 setup at first and low light plants.

Right now I have a ZooMed TropicSun 5500k light. Is this enough light for minimal plant growth? What would be a good "starter" plant to work with?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 11 Old 01-25-2011, 09:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jd8521 View Post
Hi all.

I'm looking to "upgrade" my tank a little. I've got a 29g tall community tank. I've grown tired of the plastic plants and would like to add some real plants. My tank as been established for about 2 years now and running solid. My problem is that I just dont understand the lighting needs for real plants as well as the substrate needed to pull it off. I'd like to start small and not do a Co2 setup at first and low light plants.

Right now I have a ZooMed TropicSun 5500k light. Is this enough light for minimal plant growth? What would be a good "starter" plant to work with?

Thanks!

I love java ferns, i have some in both my tanks, i have them pictured on the aquarium tabs by my name. I love the ferns attached to driftwood. The leaves get long and really fill out and the fern grows to cover the driftwood.
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post #3 of 11 Old 01-26-2011, 10:00 AM
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This is great

http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/a...um-part-34862/

There's another three stickies at the top of the Aquarium Plants section of the forum on everything you need to know about planted aquariums.

5500k light is not ideal. As you'll see in the sticky, around 6500k is best

Good starter plants include water sprite (hygrophila difformis), amazon pennywort, java fern, anubias
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post #4 of 11 Old 01-26-2011, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! I stopped by my lps today. I was in a rush and didnt have time to chat with anyone there. They had a 50/50 10k light and another 8k or 8500k light in stock. Wasnt sure what would be the best.

My next concern is algae control with a more powerful light...any more tips and suggesstions?
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post #5 of 11 Old 01-26-2011, 10:34 PM
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i ran 2 24 watt bulbs on my29 tall setup, one 67k and one 10k. It was for sure TOO much light. I was happy with the spectrum of light my tank received, just not the wattage. If i could go back and do it again, i'd probably cut the wattage in half. I'd run 2x15 watt 67k, and 10k bulbs if i had it to do over with my 29 gallon.
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post #6 of 11 Old 01-27-2011, 12:28 AM
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Run to the hardware store and pick up a 6500-6700k bulb, they are close to natural daylight which plants need, I'm not sure why a 10000k bulb would be needed unless you are just looking for that blue hue aim for about 1 watt per gallon with the t-8 - t12 bulbs and adjust from there.
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post #7 of 11 Old 01-27-2011, 06:30 PM Thread Starter
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LFS had the 8k bulb for $10, since it was so close to the office I picked it up. Will test tonight.
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post #8 of 11 Old 01-28-2011, 04:45 PM Thread Starter
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LFS had the 8k bulb for $10, since it was so close to the office I picked it up. Will test tonight.
this is the bulb i got, Aqueon Full-Spectrum Daylight T8 Fluorescent Lamp | Products,

has a slight red hue to it. may take it back and see what the local hardware store might have.
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post #9 of 11 Old 01-28-2011, 06:12 PM
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i ran 2 24 watt bulbs on my29 tall setup, one 67k and one 10k. It was for sure TOO much light. I was happy with the spectrum of light my tank received, just not the wattage. If i could go back and do it again, i'd probably cut the wattage in half. I'd run 2x15 watt 67k, and 10k bulbs if i had it to do over with my 29 gallon.
The 48 watts would of been great light, defiantly not too much IMO.

.... I'm probably drunk.

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post #10 of 11 Old 02-06-2011, 02:55 PM
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You want some red/ orange glow for your plants as this is the light they need for photosynthesis. Go to your Ace Hardware and pick up a GE aquarium bulb it was 10 bucks, 6500k it's perfect. Or another store Ge, Sylvania, and other major brands make these bulbs and are 8- 10 bucks.

Pat

ON IOWA! GO HAWKS!
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