New planted Tank


Junior Poster
Feb 3, 2009
I have a 20 gallon cube acrylic tank with the current setup
ADA soil amazonia II
5 lb CO2 tank w/ regulator, atomizer
6700K 96 watt coralife light fixture

I occasionally use nutrafin "plant gro"
GH Booster

I'm thinking about getting a Hydor Koralia Controllable PumpPowerhead. And I'm still debating on getting a new filter because I've read that you won't need a filter later on when the plants are thriving. What else is recommended to maintain a planted tank?

Here's a pic of whats in it right now



Prolific Poster
Lifetime Member
Feb 27, 2007
Silver Springs, Florida
Note: This is all constructive advice.

1) Take the plants out of the pots and separate them as much as possible from the rock wool. It is better to be slow and methodical and save as many of the roots as possible. You can use a Tupperware bin filled with treated water for this. Plant them how you'd like, but in a patch together.

2) Buy many, many, many more aquatic plants, or find more from a friend. The plant load is very low right now and looks like you could head towards a nasty algae outbreak.

3) Ask yourself: "Is the tank aesthetically pleasing right now?" Yes? No? If no, re-scape the tank. I recommend a graded field since you can then focus on an area being a background. People and you look at it as a picture or painting to the underwater world: they will be looking for a foreground, background, and something in between that gives a sense of depth.

4) You've done great on the equipment sofar. Have you ever been to a spring fed river? The plants closest to the outflow of the spring are nearly algae-free. The mechanical action of the water flow helps keep them from colonizing on the plant surface.

ed.- Tom's newer post suggests another idea behind algae colonizing plants. However, good flow will help with getting nutrients and CO2 to the plants. Springs often come from anoxic conditions in a high carbonate geology, his article provides a logical reason for the plants' vigor.

That elodea is a weed, which might save you in the end. Get some carpeting plants. is a good source.