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first timer: 60 gallon Planted tank

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  • first timer: 60 gallon Planted tank

    I'm going in for a planted tank for the first time and so i'll just give a lil background info of wot have i done till now and need to know wot shud i do after this...

    Tank Info:
    dimensions: 4*2*1 ft...60 gallons, 2 ft height.

    Lighting: 3*40 watt osram w fluoro tubes meant for plants

    Substrate: in all 4-5 inches, 2-3 inches laterite soil as my lower layer, 2 inches top layer gravel, size 1-5 mm.

    Filteration: 1100 litres/hr sponge filter (having double cartridge)

    Shortlisted Plant List:

    amazon sword
    vallisneria tortifolia
    Bacopa Caroliniana
    Cryptocoryne Ciliata
    Pygmy Chain Sword
    Egeria densa
    Blyxa japonica Dwarf Blyxa
    Hygrophila Difformis
    Rotala Rotundfolia
    Giant ambulia
    Sagittaria Subulata
    Myriophyllum aquaticum(parrotfeather/mil foil)
    Cardamine Lyrata

    Now i've bout 13 species, shortlisted and i dunno how many plants shud i actually plant in a 576 sq inch area. I wanna go for a fully planted tank.
    As of now my strategy is to get about 10 stems atleast of each of these and then plant them in small bunches. Jus dunno if they'll be too many or too few...

    Also i'm planning to go for a DIY CO2 setup instead of pressurized CO2. Is this an option which can be used for a 60 gallon tank? I asked this question to some other guys n they said "something's better than nothing"...if dat principle is to be followed how many yeast bottles is advisable? I was planning to go for 2.

    Also regarding the diffusing part...i recently came across limewood airstone n thought i cud giveit a go...i know DIY Co2 wont generate that much of a pressure so came up with this idea...(shown in the pic)...plz comment on that too...

    Thanx and Regards
    Attached Files

  • #2

    I think that you are off to a good start. I'd like to see pictures of your tank as it grows and matures.

    One comment: I don't use and CO2, but from what I've read I think that it is important to keep the CO2 level more or less constant. I don't know if what you are planning will do that.

    Your tank would also do well without CO2 augmentation, I think.

    Good luck!



    • #3
      With DIY CO2 the best setup has the most bottles. That way you stagger the changing of the bottles so you keep the CO2 level as steady as you can. So, I suggest using 2 2L bottles, each with 1/4 tsp of yeast, 2 cups of sugar and 2L of water. Start the bottles about a week apart and change one bottle every week. While you have 2 watts per gallon, it isn't with compact fluorescent bulbs and good reflectors, so going without any CO2 would probably work too.


      • #4
        Hi, see the article about DIY internal Venturi CO2 reactor, make that or somethign similar with whatever you can find in your area.
        You will need to look around some, but the end result will be well worth it.

        I'd suggest 3 2 liter bottles. Change 1-2 of them weekly.
        Using the CO2 reactor design, this will provide ideal levels of CO2 to the tank.

        Tom Barr


        • #5
          Thanx for all those replies. Barr, as u mentioned i tried going thru this article, (
          Seemed to struggle with the concept at first but later realised wot i had missed in the diagram.
          I'll try n explain wot i've understood n if i'm wrong newhere u'll have to correct me
          Firstly i'll need a powerhead thats good enough to work bout 10 hrs a day, and connect water inflow pipe(in this case co2) to the reactor from the top, also take another pipe and connect the outflow of water fromthe powerhead n connect even that to the reactor form the top. Leave a burp hole below the level of both the venturi loop that if theres collection of gas it wud escape. On second thoughts would it be a good idea to use the same powerhead of my sponge filter, i'm just scared bout it getting burnt out by too much use, cuz my last one (smaller than present one) got screwed when i tried running it for bout 15-18 hrs..
          Also i wont be getting a viewtainer as its not a concept still seen in india, so i'll be using a 500-600 ml soda bottle instead after removing the curved top half, knowing the volume of the buildup of Co2 might help me arrange for the size of the remaining part and the distance between the burp hole n the inlet n outlet holes for co2.

          Wot i'm still struggling to understand is the relationship of O2 and CO2 dat u mentioned in that thread...Do u mean that dissolved co2 will be let out of the reactor eventually while the tank still sustains the o2 levels? (something close to dat?? )

          Finally, as of now my objective is to order the plants i listed so i cud get the delivery by next i need to know how many plants shud i actually get for my tank. Just browsing thru the forum i came across this principle that i really liked which said "Give the plants space!! Lay out the plants at the start with anticipation for where they WILL BE, not where they are."
          I think i had somewhat instinctively thought bout it before n thats y i wanna know how many is too many for my tank?

          I'll try n keep it short next time
          Thanx again n regards



          • #6
            Sorry to come across as an impatient person,
            I'm actually looking to order the plants as soon as possible so that i cud get delivery from them by next week.
            Can nebody please temme how much plant load shud my 60 gallon take?
            Hoping to get a reply soon



            • #7
              As many as will fit
              You generally pack the tank as full as possible.

              Tom Barr


              • #8
                I was wondering if i can do something with creeping plants like "Lysimachia nummularia" to make my background wallpaper covered over a period of time...Ne ideas as to how can i make this plant (or some other species if this is not applicable) to creep and fill up my top end of background?


                • #9
                  If the back wall of the tank is covered with cork or with a stone assembly, mosses will grow to cover the back, as will anubias nana petite or Java fern Windelov. All of those grow slowly, and my experience when I tried this was that I was growing algae better than plants. Possibly you couldd grow Lysimachia nummularia on a cork background too, but I haven't tried that. That plant does grow rapidly and clings to almost everything.


                  • #10
                    Thanx for that feed...
                    I was actually planning to use wires covered with plastic/rubber (usually meant for hanging out clothes to dry) at the background to help these plants coil around these wires. My background is actually a very ugly looking one n so basically wanted to cover it. Just wanted to know if it can be grown coiling around these wires to see if it fits into my scheme of things.... I realise that i could be better at scaping if i could decide how i want my plants to grow but that might be too difficult for me being a first timer!
                    If this plant can coil around a wire or something it'll be worth a try otherwise it might just grow straight out of water not serving the purpose i want it to do n waste my precious planting space!

                    Thanx and regards


                    • #11
                      Hey there!
                      Just wanted to update my status! I've ordered the plants and i'm expecting the delivery by this thursday or friday. Pretty darn excited bout it now!!

                      By the time i get the plants i wanted to build my own Co2 i was reading alot on the subject.

                      After various comments on the venturi reactori came up with these observations which other ppl have experienced:
                      1. Burp hole usually doesnt serve any purpose as Co2 escapes from the powerhead itself when the powerhead is shut.

                      2. Some amount of Co2 escapes from the container due to the force of the Co2 diffused water from the powerhead to the container.

                      Also, i do not plan to use the powerhead for more than 10-11hrs a day (equivalent to the photo-period i provide)

                      So i've come up with a slight modification to the design and i hope i recieve a few comments/changes to make sure i do it right the first time itself!!

                      Also regarding the Co2 generator setup, i've come up with a representational diagram and need to know if i need to add any other component to it to make sure its safe! I'll be using a 200ml mineral water bottle for a bubble counter/gas seperator in the generator setup.

                      (this is the link for my modified diffuser)

                      (here is the link for my Co2 generator setup)