"Dirted" Tank - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 28 Old 01-24-2012, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
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"Dirted" Tank

Anyone running a dirted tank? If so, how do you like it? Pros/Cons? Any problems etc?? I'm thinking about it, that's all at this point.

Steve
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post #2 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 12:43 PM
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Can't remember if I've welcomed you to the forum previously, but a second welcome won't hurt, so...welcome.

I assume you are meaning a dirt substrate planted tank? I'll wait for confirmation before launching into it.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #3 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 05:06 PM Thread Starter
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Yes Byron, to both, the warm welcome and to the dirted substrate. The idea is to add about an inch of "organic" miracle grow potting soil, NOT the other fertilized kind, and add an inch or so of gravel on top. I've looked into it extensively (dustinsfishtank etc) but am looking for others who may have any experience with it.

Steve
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post #4 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 07:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PonyMan View Post
Yes Byron, to both, the warm welcome and to the dirted substrate. The idea is to add about an inch of "organic" miracle grow potting soil, NOT the other fertilized kind, and add an inch or so of gravel on top. I've looked into it extensively (dustinsfishtank etc) but am looking for others who may have any experience with it.

Steve
Steve I have Miracle grow organic choice potting mix in my tanks. Its about 1 1/2" and has about the same thickness of sand covering it.
What exactly are you wanting to know? I am still learning about soil substrates but will answer any questions I can.
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post #5 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 07:32 PM Thread Starter
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Perfect Boredomb bc one of my concerns was using a sand substrate over the dirt instead of gravel! How does it do? Is it hard to clean etc? Do the plants grow well through the sand substrate? Can you explain cleaning process? Is it basically the same as just having a gravel bedded tank?

Steve
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post #6 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 07:41 PM
I have two dirted tanks using just dirt I dug up from outside. One has a gravel cap and the other has a sand cap. Sand one did amazingly well for about 8 months till I moved, then it had some weird issues I'm still not sure what. It seems to be improving itself lately. I also have a fish back in it doing well again. Gravel capped one I have been having issues growing stargrass in and I am not sure why since I grow this plant in all my other tanks. I like the sand cap much better then the gravel cap. You don't clean either so I am kinda loss on your question there.

.... I'm probably drunk.

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post #7 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 09:05 PM Thread Starter
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you don't have to clean the bottom of fish and food waste in a sanded over dirted tank??
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post #8 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 11:09 PM
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you don't have to clean the bottom of fish and food waste in a sanded over dirted tank??
In a planted tank, the answer to that question most of the time is no. The reason is becasue the fish waste and food decompose and give off CO2. The plants then use the boken down organics as fertilizers. As long as you don't over feed and your tank isn't to over stocked, then all of the organics will work themselves down into the substrate and get used by the plants.

Advice for anyone new to the hobby: Do your research!! Before you do anything to your aquarium, take some time to research it. It has made a huge difference for me

S.A. Flooded Jungle (20 gallon)
A heavily planted tank. Inhabitants include: 7 Lemon Tetra, 1 Whiptail Catfish, and MTS.
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post #9 of 28 Old 01-25-2012, 11:28 PM
They may give off some CO2, but I doubt much. Most fish food gets broken down into simple components, ammonia, phosophates, and other things like that.

You can brush a syphon over the top of the sand to pick up stuff if you want, but I normally don't even do this except like once a month.

.... I'm probably drunk.

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post #10 of 28 Old 01-26-2012, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
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OK, thanks guys. I'm considering it still but don't know for sure just yet.
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