Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Kstropi 09-01-2013 04:24 PM

Putting Together a Planted Aquarium
I've only recently joined this site and this is my first post, so I suppose a hello to all of you is in order. Hello!

Now, I have a 30 gallon tank and I'd like to plant it, heavily. I hope to remove the external filter I have running now and possibly replace it with some form of sponge filter (I need to do more research on those). Currently I have 4 adult guppies and a dozen fry in the tank, along with two (as the store I bought them from called them) Anubias nana plants, whether that is the correct name or not I don't know.
Basically, I'd like to know what plants are advisable and which ones I should stay away from. [My water is just a little on the hard and basic side by the way]
Additionally, I'd like to know what fish would be good to add to the aquarium, as the guppies spend the majority of the year outside for mosquito control and I'm thinking of demoting them to my twenty gallon. I was also hoping to add in some ghost shrimp, but they aren't mandatory.
Oh, I'd also like to use little to no fertilizer if I can get away with it.
In addition, if there are similar threads to this one that I have missed a link would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks for any and all help!

Boredomb 09-01-2013 06:41 PM

Plants require something like 17 different nutrients and have to get them somewhere or they will die. There are some that can mange with what lil can be in the water and fish food/waste breaking down like your Anubias. These plants are very slow growers. There are others as well but really do best with some form of fertilizers. There are other means to getting fertilizers into the tank other then dosing on a weekly bases but these methods also come with risks. The safest way is to dose once a week with a well rounded fertilizer like Seachems Flourish Comprehensive or Brightwell aquatics florinmulti. Either of those are good to use. You could get away with dosing once a week with the right plants and being okay. Any fast growing plants you may have to step up to twice a week.

As for what plants this going to depend on your lighting you have now. Do you know the type of bulb(s) you have?

As for fish stocking I am not the best there and will let someone else step in there and help ya.

Btw Welcome to Tropical Fish keeping!

Kstropi 09-01-2013 08:19 PM


Originally Posted by Boredomb (Post 2929337)
Do you know the type of bulb(s) you have?

My current bulb is: "Sun Glo", single bulb 24 inches long, 20 W (it was produced in 1998 by the way). I plan to replace it with a full spectrum bulb, though I'm not sure on the wattage I need. I've read 1 watt per gallon, but if that's true or not I don't know.

Boredomb 09-01-2013 08:29 PM

This bulb is a T8 right? The only way to up the wattage is to buy a new figure. Personally depending on the plants you want I would just get a new bulb and grow low light plants. The 1 watt per gallon "rule" doesn't really apply to anything but high light plants and even then I think it is outdated thinking. Plus growing low light plants will also allow for a lower dosing or less dosing fertilizer.

Kstropi 09-01-2013 08:44 PM

As far as I know, yes it is a T8. I probably will go to a new bulb, I think the current one has paid for itself through the years. What kind of wattage would low light plants generally require? And what plants would you suggest for a low light situation?

marshallsea 09-01-2013 10:08 PM

Bulbs lose their plant growing abilities after 1 year. You need a bulb rated at 6500k. I have a 17 watt fixture on a 20g tall and it works fine.

Boredomb 09-02-2013 07:27 AM

Something I missed last night as I was half a sleep and was typing. What type of 30 gallon is this? This will matter as some are deeper then others which will effect what kinda plants will grow under your bulb.

Kstropi 09-02-2013 12:08 PM

It is a flat-back hexagon, 36" long x 20" tall
Posted via Mobile Device

avraptorhal 09-02-2013 01:55 PM


I'm afraid I can't help you. I'm going to the same debate myself.

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