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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 60-gallon aquarium (4' x 1' x 2') and I would love to see it beautifully planted. I have plants in it already [Amazon Swords, Kyoto Grass, Anubis, Vals] but they aren't growing very well. I invested in some Leaf Zone liquid aquarium plant fertilizer but I want to know about lighting. The aquarium came with two flourescent [sp?] bulbs in the hood and they don't have their wattage printed anywhere on them. I read online somwhere that I should have 2w per gallon and so I'd need 120w total in my tank. My problem is that my tank hood only has space for two 18" bulbs. In that case I'd need two 60w, right? I looked today and couldn't find anything greater than 15w that would fit my hood.

Please, will I have to invest in a new hood? They're expensive and I really don't know if I can afford it. I am hoping that with the new fertilizer my plants will perk up and start to grow better but if they don't I don't know what I'll do. :(
 

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IGT:

I read your post several times and I believe that only three questions are contained therein

One
Will additional fertilization in the absence of appropriate lighting help my plants?

No. You will only get algae.


Two and Three
Do I have adequate lighting and if not what do I do?

Without knowledge of your lighting type and wattage these questions cannot be answered.

Can you provide a link to the manufacturer of your hood and the model of your hood and lighting?

TR
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have the paper that came with my aquarium about my hood. It says the manufacturer is Perfecto Manufacturing, Inc from Noblesville, Indiana. My hood is a 48" RFH-F [fits 48" x 13" Perfecto Tanks]. I read and reread the paper and nowhere on it does it say anything about lights provided with the hood, but the woman at the store stated very bluntly that the lights are in the hood when the store recieves them. I may very well have enough lighting, I just don't know. I checked the store for bulbs and I can assume by what I found that my two 18" bulbs aren't any stronger than 15w each. So... 30w for my 60-gallon tank. That's bad, right? I don't think anyone even makes 18" flourescents stronger than that! -sigh-
 

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Ok 48" tank, 2 15" flourescent bulbs. Pretty standard basic aquarium lighting paired with a pretty deep tank. The plants that will do well with this light are all classified as "low-light" and even with low-light plants, you may have trouble with the height. Keep floating plants or tie plants to tall driftwood and place them closer to the light. Put all the plants directly under the light, none in the front of the tank. Natural sunlight can help, leave your drapes open. There are some double bulb lights with skinnier bulbs that will almost fit on the normal lid, but they are also expensive. If you replace the lid with glass, you can add another pair of the same lights (you can often get them used from people upgrading their lighting) and double the amount of light.

One less expensive thing I've seen done is to buy a inexpensive "shop light" from a home-improvement store with 2 4 ft bulbs and either hang it over the open tank or build it into a homemade canopy. Without a lid, you have to constantly fill the tank to battle evaportion, but a layer of floating plants will keep a lot of fish from jumping out. 2 4" T8 bulbs are 64W or about 1 wpg, still low-light but better than what you have.

I put up some shop lights in the aisle between my tanks in the basement so I could see, and my plants started doing better, but I still only have low-light plants.

Sometimes you can find inexpensive incandescent strip lights to fit your hood and replace the incandescent bulbs with stronger compact flourescents. Again, not as good as the three bulb $300 lights, but still an improvement over stock. Because you can't increase the wattage on a flourescent tube, but you can put a stronger CF in the same screw-in socket. If you can get 2 20W bulbs to fit in a each 2 socket, 18" fixture thats 80W compared to the 30W you started with. Again still low-light, but better.

The anubias and vals are supposed to be low-light, but not the others on your list. I understand swords can live in low-light, but won't grow. Consider switching to java-fern, java-moss etc.

This is about the extent of my plant knowledge, if it needs more light I don't try it.
 

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IGT: you owe me than an hour of pain and suffering in research and googling but I finally found this this.

One site referenced Marineland. I investigated the Marineland Site but unless you have filtration fabricated into the hood the hood is probably not manufactured by Marineland.

As the Ebay site indicates fluorescent you probably have have one 54W lamp in your fixture.

Hence you probably have approximately 1WPG but do not sweat it unless you you want to get exotic in your plants.

em quoted several plants which you can easily grow. Please go get a bottle of Flourish when convenient and dose at like 1/2 the recommended dosage.

Please note that if you like Plecos I can recommend BristleNoses and you can place some rocks with holes and caves in your tank.

The annubias can tied to the rocks.

TR
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
IGT: you owe me than an hour of pain and suffering in research and googling but I finally found this this.

One site referenced Marineland. I investigated the Marineland Site but unless you have filtration fabricated into the hood the hood is probably not manufactured by Marineland.

As the Ebay site indicates fluorescent you probably have have one 54W lamp in your fixture.

Hence you probably have approximately 1WPG but do not sweat it unless you you want to get exotic in your plants.

em quoted several plants which you can easily grow. Please go get a bottle of Flourish when convenient and dose at like 1/2 the recommended dosage.

Please note that if you like Plecos I can recommend BristleNoses and you can place some rocks with holes and caves in your tank.

The annubias can tied to the rocks.

TR
Thank you so much!

I already have the Flourish substrate and am going to try and use the liquid fertilizer I bought called Leaf Zone.

I looked everywhere around and nobody sells bristle nose plecos here. I don't like to ship fish due to the stress so I settled on getting a chinese algae eater. He seems to be doing fine in my tank. I know when he reaches maturity he'll become territorial but I have a lot of hiding places in my large tank so it should be fine.

Again, thank you!
 

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IGT: I am not trying to be argumentative here but only trying to help with understanding of what you have to benefit when you add more plants, lighting, etc (h...l everyone does it! who enjoys planted tanks).


I already have the Flourish substrate
Flourish is basically a micronutrient liquid fertilizer.

I believe your substrate to be Flourite.

and am going to try and use the liquid fertilizer I bought called Leaf Zone.
I have reviewed the manufacturer's site for Leaf Zone as well as several retailers and the MSDS.

I believe that Leaf Zone contains only potassium (in the form of K2SO4) and iron (in the form of C10H12FeN2NaO8). Please note that potassium is typically considered to be a macronutrient and that iron is typically considered to be a micronutrient.

If minor dosing of this product works for you that is great!

Flourish is principally micronutrients and when I was into low light dosing with Flourish at like half the recommended rate was wonderful.

TR
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yeah, I have Flourite substrate. The names are similar. >.<
 
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