New 20g tall tank help and opinions


New Member
Apr 3, 2019
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I will be redoing my 20g tank to a high tech planted tank. I want to add CO2, plant substrate and all that fun stuff. I will list everything below and I want to hear any criticism and need a little help.

Tank: 20g tall
I think it might be a bit overkill for a 20g but I chose it because of the spray bar and I didn't want to see the HOB filter intake.
Any suggestions on what light I should use? I found this one because of the high watts it has.
Substrate I wasn't too sure on what to use. I read that I should have a separate substrate beneath this one with high levels of iron, etc. What should I use for the levels and change the substrate? Also, do I need to top it off with something like sand for the plants I chose? Should I also add root tabs beneath any of the plants with your selected choice of substrate?
Ferts: For ferts I went with a simple bottle of seachem flourish. Is there a different bottle(s) you recommend? Along with root tabs (if necessary?)
This took me a long time to find one I can use, and in my price range as well. I was thinking about the DIY kit with plastic bottles but didn't think it would last very long, and I needed a timer. I also didn't feel too comfortable with the plastic bottles holding up, especially it next to my bed. I chose this kit for the solenoid valve and because It will be a bit harder to blow up lol. (I also picked out a CO2 drop checker)
Dwarf Hairgrass
Isoetes Japonica
Ludwigia Natans Super Red
Myriophyllum Aquaticum (Parrots Feather)
Bucephalandra Black Pearl
Lagenandra Meeboldii 'Red'
Rotala Rotundifolia Red
Ludwigia Repens
Echinodorus Ozelot
I found all these plants on BucePlant


Dec 22, 2019
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I would start of slow if you are just getting into plants, try some easy plants and if you have success add more.

Retired Viking

Fish Connoisseur
Nov 22, 2019
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north woods
I started with easy plants like hornwort, water sprite, moss ball, moneywort, java fern, and java moss. They all can be planted in sand or gravel except moss balls of course. Or left to float like hornwort and water sprite if you want. Java moss and java fern need to attach to rocks or wood.They all take what they need from the water and the waste from the fish. I did a silent cycle on my 55 gallon and was very happy with the results. I am now doing it again with a 30 gallon. I have now expanded to Argentine swords, narrow leaf anachris, jungle val and African water ferns and more I was new to live plants after years of plastic. You may want to start out with easy plants and work from there if you have not done a planted tank before. It does look like you did plenty of research.


May 5, 2004
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Go and read all the articles on the Barr report, substrate aarticles, lighting articles, dry and liquid fert articles and especially CO2 articles as co2 while improve plant growth can also be tricky and lead to lots of problems. Read about water chemistry GH KH PH and TDS and about NPK levels and micro nutrients. It can be alot of info but will save you time and money in the end to collect as much practical info as you vann before learning from your mistakes and successes


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