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Old 09-01-2012, 10:38 AM   #1 
Bettanewbie60
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Considering NPT for 10g..need help

Hey everyone! I just bought my first 10g tank, and I need some advice. I was going to divide it for my 3 guys that are in 1g bowls atm, but decided that I am only going to divide for 2, (I need to tell hubby I want anther 10g lol). Anyway, I am strongly considering trying my first NPT...can anyone give me starter tips? What kind of plants are best for a newbie? Best lighting? Substrate? First steps, planting, water changes, filtering etc. I have been reading and reading since yesterday...mostly OFL's stuff of course! What are the advantages of NPT versus a regular set up? Are there going to be less water changes in the long run? Thanks for all advice and suggestions!
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Old 09-01-2012, 11:42 AM   #2 
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The water changes, and the stability would be the big advantages.

For plants you want easy going stems. Lots of hygrophilia, cabomba is nice, there are others, OFL had a list of stemmed plants. Don't forget some floating plants. Water lettuce, duckweed, savlinia (I think that's the name), or frogbit.

Java fern and anubis are simple low light plants.

For any planted tank you need good lights. For a 10G you should be good with a single strip fluorescent light, either T8 or T5 (these refer to the diameter of the bulb). The most important thing is the K (or kelvin rating). You want 6500k for planted tanks.
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Old 09-01-2012, 11:52 AM   #3 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silverfang View Post
The water changes, and the stability would be the big advantages.

For plants you want easy going stems. Lots of hygrophilia, cabomba is nice, there are others, OFL had a list of stemmed plants. Don't forget some floating plants. Water lettuce, duckweed, savlinia (I think that's the name), or frogbit.

Java fern and anubis are simple low light plants.

For any planted tank you need good lights. For a 10G you should be good with a single strip fluorescent light, either T8 or T5 (these refer to the diameter of the bulb). The most important thing is the K (or kelvin rating). You want 6500k for planted tanks.
Thanks for the great start Silverfang! I am taking copious amounts of notes lol...I am really wanting to try this...I was anxious to just get the 10g up and running to get my guys out their 1gs, but, I would rather have an amazing tank ready for them. Much appreciated!
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Old 09-01-2012, 03:11 PM   #4 
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for plants the lighting is the most important factor. If you want to go low tech, you don't need to worry about CO2. I've never used it.

Just for your pleasure, my own NPT. I've used plain black earth topped with play sand. (cheap and very nice).

http://i485.photobucket.com/albums/r...g?t=1345401577
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Old 09-01-2012, 03:19 PM   #5 
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Originally Posted by Silverfang View Post
for plants the lighting is the most important factor. If you want to go low tech, you don't need to worry about CO2. I've never used it.

Just for your pleasure, my own NPT. I've used plain black earth topped with play sand. (cheap and very nice).

http://i485.photobucket.com/albums/r...g?t=1345401577
Wow, I really love how the NPTs look...thanks for sharing. I'm getting more excited by the minute!
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Old 09-02-2012, 01:38 AM   #6 
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If you want an example, my sorority is in my signature. It has pictures from Day 1 to a couple weeks ago, should update lol...

Stems, lots and lots of stems lol. At first you want a lot of stems, then you can starte to replace them. You want about 75% of the tank planted with rooting plants. Don't get amazon swords they get huge.. Ill make you a small list of good easy plants. Wisteria, ludwigia, anacharis, cabomba, rotala, crypts, dwarf sag, any hygrophila, anubias java fern or mosses on driftwood or rocks,bacopa. For floating plants, hornwort, frogbit, water lettuce duckweed, guppy/najas grass, water sprite, and salvinia.

Just stick with the T8 strip light for low light. It is easier as you don't need to dose any ferts until a while after.

At first you want to do lots and lots of water changes. The dirt is giving off tons of nutrients and this is where algae is most common. The first week will be everyday-every other day with big water changes. Floating plants will also help with nutrients. The second week you can do half less and so on. Some dirt will leach ammonia, so keep fish out until 3-4 then test the water, if there is ammonia it is a waiting game.

Before putting any dirt in put the divider in, this will make it much easier on you.
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Old 09-02-2012, 02:18 AM   #7 
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by kfryman View Post
If you want an example, my sorority is in my signature. It has pictures from Day 1 to a couple weeks ago, should update lol...

Stems, lots and lots of stems lol. At first you want a lot of stems, then you can starte to replace them. You want about 75% of the tank planted with rooting plants. Don't get amazon swords they get huge.. Ill make you a small list of good easy plants. Wisteria, ludwigia, anacharis, cabomba, rotala, crypts, dwarf sag, any hygrophila, anubias java fern or mosses on driftwood or rocks,bacopa. For floating plants, hornwort, frogbit, water lettuce duckweed, guppy/najas grass, water sprite, and salvinia.

Just stick with the T8 strip light for low light. It is easier as you don't need to dose any ferts until a while after.

At first you want to do lots and lots of water changes. The dirt is giving off tons of nutrients and this is where algae is most common. The first week will be everyday-every other day with big water changes. Floating plants will also help with nutrients. The second week you can do half less and so on. Some dirt will leach ammonia, so keep fish out until 3-4 then test the water, if there is ammonia it is a waiting game.

Before putting any dirt in put the divider in, this will make it much easier on you.
Thank you so much... I pick up my dirt and top layer sub tomorrow...then when hubby gets home we are making the divider...I'm so psyched! I'm not sure, but I think he is getting into doing this tank with me. This is gonna be sweet! I'm really grateful for your help!
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Old 09-02-2012, 10:36 AM   #8 
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Make sure it is organic and no manure, so check those ingredients!
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Old 09-02-2012, 10:43 AM   #9 
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Make sure it is organic and no manure, so check those ingredients!
Thanks, I will! I have been reading a lot about the Walstad method, and really like her approach to NPTs! I'm thinking of redoing a corner of my living room just for this tank...I have two windows in one corner, though I am a little worried about too much light causing algae problems. Gosh, I'm such a nerd..I think I actually like the process of learning about these set ups as much as I'm going to enjoy doing them!
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Old 09-02-2012, 01:39 PM   #10 
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They are really good for lowtech tank setups and low light. If you ever have to take out plants you will see how crazy their roots are. I had a sword that was maybe 14 inches, just leaves, and the roots were at least the same length if not more. The mess was horrible though. So much dirt came up lol.

Water wisteria is one of my favorites though, it is really nice and bushy. Perfect for babies and shrimp. Also ludwigia and rotala do really good in a dirt substrate. They do need to have more light though. Crypts are good because of their massive root systems. I would just look up plants and see what you like the best.
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