For starters, setting up a planted tank can be very challenging. Anyone can build a simple 10-gallon aquarium using gravel and inexpensive decorations; however, the same cannot be said for planted tanks. There are many requirements specific to plant tanks, some of which can be tricky.
That being said, planted tanks are amazing if they are designed correctly. Seeing an aquarium full of lush green plants is an enjoyable experience. It’s almost like you have a piece of the Amazon River inside your living room. Here we will describe how to set up a planted tank. We will discuss the essential steps and equipment.
What You Should Know
If you don't provide enough light and nutrition to your plants they will die, and your planted tank won't look as beautiful as you'd like.
In addition to building protein, amino acids, and DNA, this macronutrient also helps carry nutrients throughout the body. Lack of nitrogen can result in not growing fast.
It is a nutrient that helps plants produce fruit and seeds by breaking down carbohydrates.
In certain amounts, this nutrient is needed to prevent stress. Having too high calcium levels can interfere with phosphorus levels and cause a variety of health problems.
Energy is stored and carried to the body using this nutrient. An important nutrient for plants is phosphorus – deficiencies can lead to not slow growth.
Among its many functions, this nutrient is essential to photosynthesis and helps in the synthesis of chlorophyll. Plants with iron deficiency can suffer from leaf redness, stress, and eventually die.
Leaf formation depends on this nutrient, which is an enzyme activator. There are risks to excessive zinc consumption, while deficiencies lead to "little leaf syndrome."
The nutrient also acts as an enzyme activator. Excess copper can hinder root growth.
Chlorine, boron, magnesium, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen are other essential nutrients for the health and maintenance of any planted tank.
- LED Lighting
Every aquarium should have a light source. Proper lighting and spectrum are essential components of a successful freshwater planted aquarium . Today, LEDs are the best freshwater planted lights because of their high functionality and flexibility.
Many people have difficulty choosing a substrate. Experts recommend ADA Aqua Soil (if you want something high in nutrition) or Eco-Complete (no nutrition, but very high quality).
Tanks must be equipped with a heater.
- Filtration System  Your set up will dictate the type of filter you need. For tanks larger than 40 gallons, a canister filter is likely to be the best option. For smaller installations, a hang-on-back unit is usually appropriate.
- Additional Carbon Dioxide
CO 2 (Carbon Dioxide) is an important component of plant life, as you are probably aware of. CO 2 supplements can increase plant growth because they are part of photosynthesis.
Choosing Your Substrate
Plant substrates are not only beneficial to rooting your plants, but also provide them with the nutrition they need to grow. The following are some of the most popular substrates for planted tanks:
One of the highest quality substrates available for planted tanks is this substrate. This product provides over 25 essential nutrients for your plants, as well as live beneficial bacteria to help start the nitrogen cycle in your aquarium. It is available in many different colors and contains all the nutrients your plants need to grow.
- Aqua Soil
Natural-looking substrates like this are popular in planted tanks because of their appearance. You can choose to use aqua ground as the only substrate in your tank, or you can combine it with sand to achieve biological filtration. This substrate is available in a variety of colors and will provide long -term nutrition for the plants.
In order to provide your plants with nutrition, you will need to use some type of fertilizer if you plan to use gravel as a substrate in your planted tank. It’s best to use small gravel for planted tanks because they allow root growth – in this type of substrate, you can use root tabs to easily fertilize individual plants.
Setting up the Tank
While you have the freedom to tidy up your planted tank however you wish, there are definitely easy ways to set it up correctly and incorrectly.
- You must install the aquarium cabinet or stand in the desired location; make sure it is not placed near crowded doors and windows or heating vents, or aircon units.
- Make sure your aquarium is level when you put it in the cabinet or stand – if the bearing is not stable, your tank may run out when it is filled with water.
- Be sure to thoroughly rinse your selected substrate until the water clears – refer to the package instructions as some substrates may no longer need to be rinsed.
- You should line the bottom of your aquarium with a thick layer of substrate – at least several inches should be enough to accommodate the roots of most aquarium plants.
- The water in your aquarium must be dechlorinated, and then your aquarium filtration system and aquarium heater must be installed and turned on.
- Use an aquarium water test kit to determine the pH level of your aquarium.
- You should install your lighting system and make sure it provides enough light for your plants-a replanted tank uire between 3 and 5 watts of light per gallon.
- Place your aquarium plants on the substrate and bury the roots deep to ensure their stability and nutrition.
- Place taller plants in the back and sides of your aquarium, while shorter ones are placed in the front – this will create a natural look and allow your fish to swim freely in the middle.
- Add additional decorative elements such as rocks and driftwood to your tank to enhance its appearance.
- Allow your aquarium to run for two to three weeks so that the nitrogen cycle is established – your plants will help with this process.
- Test the water again for ammonia levels. If null, your aquarium is ready for fish.
- Slow down your fish in the aquarium to avoid shocking them with water chemistry or temperature changes.
Planted tank is complete. One final point. Having introduced the fish to the aquarium, all you have to do is keep it. By regularly testing the water chemistry of your tank, you can monitor ammonia levels, which are essential for the healthy growth of your live plants and beneficial bacteria. You must successfully maintain your planted tank with proper nutrition and lighting.