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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
this is my first attempt at a planted tank, feel free to post suggestions.
substrate is red fluorite
manzanita driftwood from Aprils Aquarium
plants are HC cuba, amazon sword and java fern
stocked with L 144 plecos and blue pearl shrimp

because of lighting issues mentioned below im wondering what other options there are for lights, can you get ones that just clip on the back and have flexible cord with a beam like light i can point down at the tank? and get rid of the canopy altogether?

originally i got this tank from snow to be a growout tank for african cichlid fry but i got some l 144 plecos from pat and after a day in the cichlid tank i noticed one of them had a bite out of the back of his tailfin so i moved them all into this 10g. i didnt want it to be bare for them so once i got my paycheck i went and picked up some driftwood and plants.
i put 2 upgraded lifeglo 15w cft's in the canopy, which then fell in the water, resulting in one going pop when turning it on the next morning (no shattered glass thank goodness,) so the original one is back on the right side. i figured the java fern needs less light than the other 2.

m hoping cichlid fry will still grow in this tank despite the low hardness since theyre such hardy fish, a friend of mine has yellow labs, some aceii i gave to him, and frontosa in a tank with absolutely no additives not even water conditioner just plain tapwater and theyve been like that for a year.
if mine dont like it i guess i'll have to battle with the gf for yet another tank, we'll see how it goes.

here are the pics: tank has lots of algae on the glass and i dont wanna rob the plecos of their food :)

only 1 pleco is visible, hes in the second picture under the heater directly under the blue sponge on the filter intake.
the granite is strapped to the driftwood because it wont sink yet :p i put 3 screwholes in the top of the wood to try and speed things up.
 

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Do you have an air pump going? Cuz i see an air line tubing~ Cuz I'm sure your plants wouldn't like that! =) But good job~ Might wanna just add a little bit more gravel though~

But definitely sounds like you're enjoying planting now =)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
yes there is an air line going, my wife kept pestering me saying she didnt think the plecos could breathe lol.
is it rly bad for the plants? would using a sponge filter in there be bad too because i was thinking of switching to that...
 

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Air lines are not bad for plants.. If you were using pressurized CO2 it would off gas it quickly making it useless but as your not the Airation is not a problem. In fact if you are going to use an air driven sponge filter that will be enough agitation to keep the water oxygenated.
 

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Any type of surface agitation will cause more oxygen, if you only have two fish in there, there's already not enough CO2 for the plants to grow. This will limit the plant to grow or just slow them down! If you have 2 compact flourescent running 15w each for a 10 gallon that's 30w of CFL in a 10gallon tank which adds up to 3w/gallon! That's a high light tank already! =) I'm sure there's ALOT of experts that can correct me or not! But with insufficient CO2, I would say you're gonig to see a good algae bloom with that much light~

Anyways, if you only have 2 fish in there, don't even worry about the air pump, turn it on over night when lights are out, that's because the plants absorb O2 over night without lights, so therefore you want the air pump to suppy them the oxygen! And when the lights are on, turn off the air pump, as the plants will be good enough for giving them oxygen!

=) Hope this helps~ And if i'm wrong, experts... go on~
 

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Yup, excel works as CO2! =) Careful how you dose, dun overdose~ And you'll definitely see a good difference in 2 weeks! =)
 
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