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How many watts per gallon would be good for a 20 long planted tank?I want to keep anaracis and i want them to thrive-In my tank i have 2 wpg and my anarcis is limp.What kind of light is the best, color inhancing or 6,500?I was thinking a duel bulb flourecent strip one color enhncing one 65000k that would only bring it up to 60 watts/3wpg-is that enuff-Watt do u use?
 

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Do you mean Anacharis? If so, 2 wpg should be sufficient. If you go with 3wpg, then you will need to add CO2 and probably additional ferts. Is it turning lite green?
 

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crazy eddi-(If you go with 3wpg, then you will need to add CO2 and probably additional ferts)
:?
Thats weird i would have figured more light would meen that the plants would deppend less on other sorces of energy?


And no the plants are not light green they are dark green with spots of dead on them

The reason i know there not doing good is because the one in the front that gets direct sunlight is a nice color and its roots are sprouting very nicely-while the ones in th back have not sprouted roots yet acualy the roots look pretty dead.
 

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Nope hes right its all a balance you see, if you throw in more light than co2 the plants wont be able to utilise the extra energy but the algae will and then you get a bloom. Personally i think you should use CO2 in any planted set up if you are serious about plants that is. I have 2.5 watts per gallon in mine.
 

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The thing is i want plants but i also want a good amount of fish and i know i cant add co2 with a heavily stocked tank(cause the fish would have no air)
 

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You go with a low tech tank, which has no CO2 and low lights. Make sure you get low light plants as well.

The thing is, you can still have CO2 with a stocked tank, you just have to balance out the correct amount of CO2. When you see fish gasping at the surface, then you know you have too much CO2. Also, make sure you turn of the CO2 at night, since plants only require CO2 during photosynthesis. At night, plants require O2.
 

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Eddie is giving you some great advice.My girl recently broke her planted tank down but our setup consisted of a 20g tank, 130w 10K power compacts, a complete Co2 setup, clay substrate, substrate ribbon heater, an Eheim canister but the return was worked so it was about 6" under the surface so as not to ripple the water. Andrew and Eddie are both steering you correct by saying that as your lighting goes up so do the demands of the plants. Basically if you provide more light than can be used then other organisms can grow. Let's say that a tank is a 100% process. 33% is light, 33% is nutrition (fertilizers and such), and the last 33% is carbon dioxide. If you add a light strong enough to equal 50% of the equation your plants will spurt in growth but quickly run out of fertilizer or CO2. It takes all 3 to produce.

3wpg is considered low tech. 5w and up is considered high tech. Each can produce great results. Head to your lfs and look for some back issues of TFH magazine. About 2 months ago was an article about high and low tech tanks and the results. There has been an author there for a long time talking about plants. She is def a low tech supporter. Within the last year readers have gotten hooked on the Amano tank contributions to the magazine and have kind of quit paying attention to her. She retaliated bby writing a huge article about low tech tanks. It's a good article. I can find the exact copy if you want it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ya i will deffenetly go low tech cause i belive freshwater tanks are all about the interesting fish within them,If i wanted to have interesting things other than fish thats what saltwater is for :D So mike says a can still do 3 watts per gallon and keep it low tech-Is that rite?
 

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Well we are a diverse bunch if you want help with plants others here are very good at that, if you want help with just fish then some members here are excellent at medication advice etc......
It all depends on experience and setup- ultimately the decision is yours as it is your tank not ours!- only you know what you want to achieve.

Oh and i am so glad someone understood what i wrote- i knew it made sense in my head lol!!
 

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Ya i know its my decition so i will use the double bulb fixture and run 3 wpg and if it is too much i will just take one of the bulbs out
 

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Then use the light called "Flora-Glo". I don't know how many watts it is. Leave the tank lights on a minimum of 8 hours a day.
 

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Actually, trreherd, you provided your own answer in one of your posts. When stating that the anacharis that is receiving direct sunlight is doing well. The problem isn't wpg related, as anacharis can thrive in 1wpg, (I've done this), it's more a spectrum of lighting that is lacking for the plants not receiving direct sunlight. Fertilizers may also help, but the primary problem you are describing is the lack of spectrum. If you focus on bulbs designed for plants, covering full spectrum, up to 8000K per bulb, you should be just fine without having to do the work of running CO2.
I raise anacharis in my goldfish tank, and it grows faster than they can eat it, which is quite a bit. I use NutriGrow (from Coralife) and FloraSun (by ZooMed) for bulbs on that tank, no fertilizers, no CO2, nothing special other than the full spectrum bulbs.
The lights are on a timer set to run 10 hrs/day, but I would not exceed 12 hrs in a day. Plants also need dark to be healthy. When the lights are on they soak up carbon dioxide and give off oxygen. When the lights are off, the process reverses, and they need both phases in order to thrive and stay healthy.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I think i have the rite spectrum?I use the coralife 6,500 k bulb ment for plants.But deffenitly i will try ferts on my next tank i meen i posted this thread about a week or two ago and my plants looked like they were gunna die but now i guess they are looking alright
 

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see thats good, trial and error try 3 bubls and turn them off as you see fit.
You need to look at the depth of your tank, the deeper the water the more dilution of power occurs, so in theory the closer the plant is to the surface the more light it recieves from source, so ultimately watts per gallon in a shallow tank would not be a good rule to follow.
I would recomment you use co2, you can easily tell a co2 tank from a non co2 tank, i am not saying that non co2 tanks are poor, i am saying that you stated you wanted healthy plants, and to do that you have to choose your plants carefully, or provide wht they want. I would recommend you look at a good plant dealer website like tropica view the catalogue and read wht the requirements are.
also if you cannot provide a mixed layer of soil and gravel substrate atleast crush iron fert tabs into the gravel to produce a steady food source for newly planted specimens.
good luck keep us posted on your tanks success.
 

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Sounds like it could be a nitrate or pottasium deficiency. If you have enough anacharis it will eat the nitrates very quickly and it can suffer. You cuold also try to take off the older growth and see if that helps.

As for lighting, take a look at THIS site for some better calculations. Anything over medium light really should have a Carbon source even if it is just dosing Excel every day. Not neccesarily for plant growth although it will help but to keep algae at bay.

CO2 is also considered a much more important contributor to growth than lighting. Medium light with CO2 will grow plants better than high light without it.
 
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