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Thread: Planted Aquarium build lighting 2nd opinion

  1. #1
    Physalaemus's Avatar
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    Mar 2011
    SF Bay Area, USA
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    Planted Aquarium build lighting 2nd opinion

    Hey folks,

    I know at least of few of you are into planted tanks. Hopefully I can get second+ opinions on the lighting for a tank I'm rebuilding for my fiance. Her 20gallon long is a bit overgrown and over populated. Luckily, I have some supplies stored here to do a relatively easy upgrade for her. The goal is for a medium tech tank with small weekly water changes and ferts 2x a week.

    My problem is the lighting. I have a few options.

    1) keep the 1x55 watt AHS 10k Power Compact

    2) add a second 55 watt AHS 10k Power Compact

    3) switch to a duble t5 HO strip.

    I think 1) would be enough light for the plants (see below) and that 2) and 3) would need a more aggressive maintenance regime than what she's up for. What do you guys and gals think?

    Here are the specs:

    29 gallon glass tank
    Fluval 205, BIOwheel 150, Biocube mini circulating pump

    Substrate is 1/2 caribsea flora max, 1/2 pool filter sand

    Root tabs, PMDD drops, excel (for algae control), paintball pressurized co2 (2 bpm)

    Bolbitus, Amazon Sword, Dwarf Sagittaria, Rotala Indica, Red Tiger Lotus, Anubia nana, java moss, and a ... banana plant (she loves them)

    Cardinal tetras, Cory cats, one angel fish, one amazon puffer (very docile little guy, we've had him for years), siamese algae eater(s), and a rubber lip pleco.

  2. #2
    just your friendly neighborhood INTJ... amphirion's Avatar
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    Oct 2009
    SF Bay Area, US
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    Judging from your plant list, the majority of your plants are slow growers and will not necessarily benefit from getting more light. The only exception is the rotala, which demands moderate to high fact, too much light and not enough fast growing plants will give you quite a nasty algal bloom. High lighting will also speed up plant processes which will deplete natural nutrient deposits quicker which will lead to daily macro and micro nutrient dosing.
    To top it off, certain species of fish including the cardinals and angel fish do not like high lighting situations, preferring dark water or shaded conditions.
    To sum it up, keep your current light situation.
    " You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." -Inigo Montoya
    +petiolaris drosera going dormant?
    +picture thread

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