Aquarium plants

Nano nurturing

George Farmer's step-by-step guide explains why and how he set up this little tank and discovered the virtues of non-CO2 injection...

The nano aquarium hobby is showing no sign of decline and, considering the wider selection of specialist gear now available, it made sense to set up, 'just one more tank'.

In my role as an aquatic plant writer and aquascaper, I get to try out new and exciting products and plants and a few months ago I was sent some pots of a new plant, known as Staurogyne sp. and was asked by Tropica if I would grow them and report back with my results. So what better excuse did I need to set up another tank?

The aquarium

I chose a Clearseal 30 x 20 x 20cm/12 x 8 x 8”, with a maximum capacity of 12 l/3 gal. I worked with this size of aquarium last year, as some regular readers or PFK website users may remember.

These are well-built and reasonably priced, making them ideal nano aquariums for those willing to customise with such items as separately purchased lighting and filtration.

Filtration and lighting

I wanted to avoid an internal filter due to the size of the tank in its impact on aquascaping, so decided on the Eden 501 external canister. Its maximum flow rate of 300 lph is plenty for this set-up.

The filter is supplied with all the necessary media and plumbing but I decided to use some nano glassware to improve the overall aesthetics.

Lighting is by an Aquadistri 18W power compact T5 with integral tank-clamp kit. Supplied with a
full-spectrum daylight bulb and at over 1W per litre, this is an ideal light source for planted nano aquaria. I set the photoperiod for eight hours, which is plenty for planted aquariums with medium to high lighting levels. I always use a plug-in-timer to make life easier.

No heating was used as my living room is warm enough for the plants and animal species kept.

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