PDA

View Full Version : trying to start a planted aquarium - help



karbomb
01-14-2008, 04:07 AM
i have a 10 gallon tank with a few anubias (they are planted in driftwood and doing well), i am planning on getting more plants. (the 10 gallon setup off of http://store.aquaticplantdepot.com/comtanset.html )
i only have gravel as a substrate, my tank is almost three years old and i am wondering if the gravel is sufficient as a substrate. it is verifying is size from 1/8in to 1/4 inch pebbles.
as a student i don't have enough money to buy tanks of co2 and i was wondering if a product like Flurish excel: ( http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=4656&Ne=40000&R=9688&Nao=9&N=2004+113221 )
would be a sufficient alternative, or if i even really need co2.
my main concern is the lighting, i have 2 25w aqua life bulbs in my tank on a timer (11 hours of light a day) but the tank seems very dim, i have read up on lighting and some websites say to supply a second light source like sun glo or life glo. i only have room for 2 lights in my tank (about 3 inches long) so if anyone knows how i could set up a second light source please let me know.
any tips or help would be great.
thanks a lot.

digital3
01-14-2008, 05:15 AM
Using normal gravel should be fine as long as you don't have any crushed shells or corals in your gravel. But if you really want to get some good gravel you should try getting a bag of Eco-Complete. That stuff is great!

2-25watt bulbs for your 10 gallon should be fine as well (in fact very fine). However, you may want to look at the sun glo or life glo lights. I believe those fall within the 5000 - 10000k range which is ideal for plant setups. Also, running the lights for 11 hours daily may be a bit much. You might want to cut that down by at least an hour and no less than 8 or else you might run into algae problems.

I've never used it, but I have heard good things about Flourish Excel, especially for small tanks.

digital3
01-14-2008, 05:17 AM
One more thing... You may want to research all of those plants and their lighting requirements here...

http://www.plantgeek.net/plantguide_cat.php?category=1

karbomb
01-14-2008, 05:38 AM
thanks a bunch i will look into it.
ii did a little bit of research on a different site and most of them are low-medium light, will my lighting be ok? why does it look so dim?

Adrian
02-14-2008, 12:39 AM
If I remember correctly, most ten gallon tank hoods come with incandescent bulbs. They are great for growing algae, but not that good for much else, as they do not support the kelvin needed for most tropical plants. Trying to find a good flourensent bulb would be better for your tank, and would support more light, better kelvin, and make it look brighter. Remember, photo-synthesis usually occurs in the blue and red spectrums. We think it as dim, however, it is actually beneficial to plants. We see the yellow spectrum of light, which we measure as brighter. A 10000 kelvin bulb covers all the spectrum you need, but don't get actinic bulbs, which are used mostly for reef aquariums. Co2 can easily be made from a 2 liter soda bottle, washed out really well. Drill a small hole in the cap, to fit an air hose thru, needs to be a really tight fit, like one drill bit size smaller than the tube and use a pliers to pull it thru. That makes a seal that will help the rest of your project. Add 2 cups of sugar, a pinch of baking soda, and some (ACTIVE) yeast from the grocery store. Using warm water, not hot, fill the bottle to just above the label on the soda bottle. Shake well, and then screw the top on. Place the other end of the tube as low down in the tank as possible, attached to a fine airstone. Within a few hours, presto...diy co2 reactor. Works great and lasts for about 2 weeks. Sugar and yeast is a lot cheaper then co2 tanks.

Need more help, just hollar...


Sincerely,

Adrian:c7:

digital3
02-14-2008, 06:02 AM
If I remember correctly, most ten gallon tank hoods come with incandescent bulbs. They are great for growing algae, but not that good for much else, as they do not support the kelvin needed for most tropical plants. Trying to find a good flourensent bulb would be better for your tank, and would support more light, better kelvin, and make it look brighter...

Note: This is somewhat of an older thread. I think karbomb has resolved his lighting issue since then. Also karbomb noted that he had 2 25w Aqua Life bulbs. Aqua Life bulbs are flourescent bulbs. And they fall within the 5000-10000k range which is acceptable for plant growth...

:c7: