parker679 wrote:No experience with growing ultics but I do have aquarium experience. If you're mainly growing plants you won't need that much filtration. I would go with a sponge filter like this and you should be fine. These work with air pumps and create little surface water disturbance.
I agree entirely. If you are going to go for a filter but don't want one with any form of flow or large amounts of suction a sponge filter is the best thing you can do. I use sponge filters with my bettas (whose long fins can be likened to plants getting battered by filter flows). Sponge filters have the added advantage of being able to attach an air stone to them, this can reduce the possibility of the water going stagnant and provide additional oxygenation.
There are two kinds of sponge filters: stand alones and stick-on-the-side. Stand alone filters can be easier to hide but can also be rather large whereas stick-on-the-side sponge filters don't take up valuable floor space. I prefer stick-on-the-side ones myself. Both offer great filtration and have an outflow that produces a small stream of bubbles.
If you buy a sponge filter you'll need an air pump and some air line. I'd also suggest a non-return valve (which prevents water going back into the air pump thus shortening its lifespan) as well as purchasing a couple of extra adjustment valves; most air pumps come with their own but it's good to have spares in case yours gets lost or breaks. Adjustment valves allow you to tune how much air is being fed to the sponge filter.
If the utricularia you are housing is a floating species you may find it gravitates a little towards the sponge filter but it won't get sucked in. It may attach itself to the sponge cartridge (speaking from experience, I have riccia in my aquarium that likes hanging onto my sponge filter cartridges) but this shouldn't cause a problem.
Generally though a filter isn't needed unless you are going to add some form of livestock to the aquarium. The purpose of filters is to remove small particles of debris from the water column but they also offer room to house beneficial bacteria that breaks down fish waste (ammonia); this "BB" reduces the amount of water changes needed in tanks larger than five gallons (in a "standard" set up, not accounting for live plants and specialized stocking) and takes several weeks to establish.
Anyway... I would love to see your setup when it's done! I've wanted an aquatic utricularia tank myself but haven't gotten around to it - I'm also running out of room. Good luck!