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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 24" long tank.. 15 gallons. Right now there is just a hornwort that's growing really fast.
But I'm ordering plants online today and need to find out something more suitable.
I currently have a 15 watt aquarium light.
I also have a 26 watt desk lamp that I light through the side of the tank for extra light.
That puts me at 2.7WPG. I have one plant on my list that is recommended at 3WPG, the rest are low-high/medium light, just in case.
Is it okay that the light shines through the glass or should I have it going directly to the water?

I have been looking at this, but it is only 20 Watts, not that great of an improvement. It's all I can find online for 24".

http://www.homedepot.ca/product/24-in-t12-single-side-strip-light/972621

My list includes:
Fissidens zippelianus (3WPG plant)
5 nano marimo
1 large marimo
2 star moss (5x5cm each)
2 Anubias barteri Gold
1 Aponogeton Natans
 

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With plants its more about the color temp of the light....or kelvin...you want 5000-7000k with 6500k being ideal

I buy/use the Daylight 6500k-watts vary based on length of tube
I get them in the lighting dept not the aquarium dept

Watts-when you start getting into the higher wpg you may get into some algae problems unless you inject CO2....without CO2 injected you want to stay at/under 2-2.5 wpg.....sometimes we have to pick plants based on what we can provide them and while some plants may list higher wpg or even CO2-sometimes they will still grow without it, however, the growth habit may be different....reds may not stay red, carpet plants may grow upright...etc...

Regardless of watts-if you don't have the correct color temp or what the plant can see to use for photosynthesis you are wasting you time...

The light strip in the link should work fine over the tank with the correct color temp bulb for the plants....

I have never tried lighting my plants from the side-only from the top, however, with some of my NPT's that also use natural sunlight as part of their lighting...it goes through the side and the plant do just fine....
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Alright, I took off the 3WPG plant from my order and got a java moss piece instead.

So I just did more research on this.. I always thought kelvin and watts were in direct relation, but I guess they aren't. I checked my aquarium lamp I have now and it gives off a blue/purple white colour. I'm no expert but by eye it must be at least 6000k.. I got it used but it says it is for aquariums, the glass is not tinted at all (I know some lights do this to make it blue, not sure if that even works). This still leaves me at 1WPG which is low light plants, but for the anubias, apongeton, a crypt, java moss, christmas moss, and marimo, it should be fine right? I know christmas moss has a better shape in higher light, but I am fine with it having a different shape.

When the time comes that I need a new light I will upgrade to 6500K bulbs. Will the box say this info or if I ask a worker will they know what I am talking about?
 

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Also, with florescent bulb you want to change them every 12 months-the intensity is lost over time...we can still see the light but the plants can't to use it for photosynthesis.....

I buy the GE brand "Daylight" 6500k at the walmart lighting dept-I also get them at Home depot and Lowes...much cheaper without the word Aquarium written on it....lol....
 
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