I just acquired a used 55 gal tank. It's going to be placed near a
room divider, and it will be viewed from two sides.
Question 1 (on filters): I've only ever used hang-on-the- back
filters, and I know there is probably something better and less
obvious for a two sided tank. Am I finally in the realm of canister
filters? What should I be researching and looking for?
Question 2 (lighting): I want to plant this tank. Not heavily, and
with easy, beginner plants. I bought a 2-tube fluorescent fixture
with an aluminum reflector. It will give me about 2 watts per
gallon. Local fish store guy said that should be OK, especially
since I'll get a little indirect light from the room's patio door and
window. Does this lighting fixture sound like it will work for my
plant plans? Local guy also said "grow-light" type plant fluorescent
tubes from the local hardware store are just as
good as pricey
aquarium bulbs. Is this true? (I'm trying to keep to the budget!)
Question 3 (substrate): Previous owner gave me a good sized box of
unused gravel, about 30 pounds! I have a tank right now with 4
plants in it that will be moved to the new tank. The plants are in
gravel and I'm using a gumdrop-sized fertilizer tab. I like the look
of the gravel, but will I give the plants a better substrate if I
toss some Eco-Complete or something else at the bottom before I put
in gravel? I know someone will have a good web site to direct me to
for substrate questions. I want "easy" with "minimum fuss" and
expense, but still give the plants a good chance. (Yeah, I know the
Eco complete can be expensive, but I might want to consider it for
its hassle-free possibilities. )
I really appreciate your help!
Lisa in Wisconsin.
P.S. In case my fish selection will affect the substrate: I plan on
moving the contents of my current community tank over to the new tank
when ready - 2 leopard danios, 4 gold barbs, 2 rosy barbs, and 2