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Welcome to APC :smile:

You will want to hook up your C02 so that it is in contact with the water for a period of time. So it is better to have the dispenser as low in the tank as possible. Due to the size of your tank it is better to go with 2 bottles of C02, so you alternate them. This will help keep a more steady flow of C02 in the tank.

Be careful using the HOB filters because they will give some loss of C02, due to the surface agitation. Make sure to keep the water topped off & the flow turned down. Later on you may want to invest in a canister filter.

Since you are using playsand keep a check on your water parameters. Some playsands can alter water parameters.

Platys will be fine with plants. If you see them nibbling they are most than likly going after algae.
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