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Planted Tanks for the Budget-Conscious

Go easy on your wallet with these simple, beautiful and natural planted tank ideas.

By Diana Walstad |

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Natural planted tanks are easy and inexpensive. All you really need is soil, a little water hardness, the right amount of plants and adequate light. Natural planted tanks are perfect for the budget-conscious hobbyist who just wants to try a planted tank. You won’t need CO2 injection, fertilizers or even a filter. The biggest expenses are the light and plants.

Natural planted tanks use natural processes to produce good plant growth. For example, organic matter (when bacteria metabolize it) provides CO2 for plants. Fish waste, not chemical fertilizers, continuously provides nutrients for plants.

Ignore the Conventional Wisdom
Planted tanks differ substantially from tanks without plants. Much of the conventional wisdom that applies to fish tanks can easily sabotage planted tanks. Plants die, algae takes over and then the tank turns into a mess. Hobbyists then conclude that expensive gadgets and chemicals are required to keep a successful planted tank.

Want to read the full story? Pick up the November 2011 issue of Aquarium Fish International today.

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