A little understanding goes a long way
This is a fancy way of saying: get to know your plant (at least in these 6 ways). If you have a tank without CO2 injection, the most useful distinction is between fast growers (such as Vallisneria spiralis 'Tape Grass') and slow growers (such as Anubias barteri 'nana'). If you have a lively fish population, it is better to pair them with fast growers, who can handle the higher waste levels and the inevitable biting-of-holes-in-leaves much better. A big fish population + slow growers is so much harder to keep algae free.
If you have CO2 injection, then one primary distinction is between hardwater vs softwater plants. Many aquarists feel invincible with CO2 injection, and fail to realise the impact on this fundamental parameter. Read more about water parameters here and how to keep softwater plants
. The other distinction is between 'party plants' that can take crowding, and 'socially distant' ones that only do well with lots of space. Explore different plant needs here
The right tools make all the difference
2Hr Tanks are powered by a few critical systems (and very few fancy add-on gadgets).
We spend disproportionately (vis a vis common practice) on good-sized canister filters, such as these. Good flow and circulation is one of the hidden forces that keep algae at bay, and is well worth the extra dollars.
We almost always use aquasoil, rather than inert (or enriched pseudo-soil substrates).
For aquarists growing colorful plants with CO2 injection, a good regulator is paramount, and so is the right light spectrum- stronger reds and blues.
Sensible nutrition and regular exercise
This is an acronym for the all-important weekly maintenance ritual (30 minutes for most tanks).
P stands for PRUNE (removal of old leaves, and cutting healthy shoots before they grow too tall or big).
A stands for ADD FERT- a cornerstone of sustainable, healthy growth which in turns keeps algae at bay.
C stands for CHANGE WATER, at least 30%, the 2Hr Way (which involves systematically siphoning surface detritus, not just draining and refilling water) and finally,
T is a reminder to TAKE NOTE of new leaves, shading, overcrowding- key signs of plant health and needs.