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BEST PLANTED Aquarium Substrate EVER!!!

This is a discussion on BEST PLANTED Aquarium Substrate EVER!!! within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> Good to know. I've heard nothing but praise for it and am now going with it for my next planted aquarium! I've only tied ...

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BEST PLANTED Aquarium Substrate EVER!!!
Old 05-02-2011, 06:04 AM   #11
 
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Good to know. I've heard nothing but praise for it and am now going with it for my next planted aquarium! I've only tied anubias to wood and rock so far. I shall try them in eco-complete! (without burying the rhimzone)
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Old 05-02-2011, 09:35 AM   #12
 
good luck
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Old 05-02-2011, 03:51 PM   #13
 
Nothing makes your ph the way you want it forever... aquairum water natually gets more acidic as time goes on, which is why ater changes are done, but if ADA is altering your water parameters, that chemical effect will be taken out with water changes as well so eventually you will need to buy new ADA AS and replace your substrate.

Personally, I am a huge fan of fluorite, which is basically the same thing as eco-complete. Was great for the 3+ years I had it before switching to soil. Ive gotten better growth our of fluorite than with soil :-/ Maybe ill switch back one day...
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Old 05-02-2011, 05:27 PM   #14
 
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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
Not sure if you mean were used to use Flourish tabs or you still are, but with Eco-Complete you will not need them. The enriched nutrient substrate will suffice for quite a while. The Excal, is that Excel carbon supplement? I don't recommend using this, I can explain further if asked.

Flourish liquid is or may still be useful though, especially for non-substrate rooted plants. It somewhat depends upon what is in your water (minerals, with hard or medium hard water) and the fish load since nutrients also occur in fish foods and from organics.

The black spots on the JF could be lack of nitrogen, but also light; JF prefers semi-shade, not in direct light from overhead particularly if it is bright. Floating plants lessen it. Nymphaea lotus is a lovely plant, it is in our plant profiles too, just click on the shaded name; the "rubra" is the red form, there is also a green, same species as mentioned therein.

Byron.
No no Byron, haha I was talking about a post by Excal. Haha :D Not Excel. Never heard of Excel before. I wont be putting Flourish tabs in eco complete right now.. I was putting it in my old substrate. :D As for the JF, I have low lighting.. But Im gonna try and get some kind of floating plant to keep over my Anubias and Java Fern when I transfer them to my 75g with High lighting.
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Old 05-02-2011, 06:33 PM   #15
 
I wanted the soil becuase it changed the pH and opened up options for fish... also flour was more over here.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:13 AM   #16
 
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Alright, I just wanted to let everyone know.. Eco-Complete does live up to what it says it does.. The bacteria that comes with the substrate is amazing! They clearly state on the package that the bacteria included breakdown the fish waste and change it into food.. which I would assume they are talking about breaking down Nitrites and Ammonia into Nitrates. Not only is this substrate filled with many minerals but is also great for setting up a new tank, and getting it established! I had high levels of Ammonia in my tank, and when I put this in.. my ammonia levels went down to ZERO in about two weeks.. if not less. HOWEVER, the one thing that concerns me is the possibility of very high levels of Nitrates, leading to a Algae Bloom... This can be avoided with water changes or introducing a fast growing plant that will absorb Nitrates, like Duckweed. Am I right?
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Old 05-03-2011, 09:16 AM   #17
 
why not just test for nitrates? Usually kits that test for ammonia and nitrites also test for nitrates. Fast growing plants will help bring down the nitrates but I would suggest a floating stem plant over duckweed. That stuff tends to be very difficult to remove later on.
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Old 05-03-2011, 11:11 AM   #18
 
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Originally Posted by Eshnon View Post
Alright, I just wanted to let everyone know.. Eco-Complete does live up to what it says it does.. The bacteria that comes with the substrate is amazing! They clearly state on the package that the bacteria included breakdown the fish waste and change it into food.. which I would assume they are talking about breaking down Nitrites and Ammonia into Nitrates. Not only is this substrate filled with many minerals but is also great for setting up a new tank, and getting it established! I had high levels of Ammonia in my tank, and when I put this in.. my ammonia levels went down to ZERO in about two weeks.. if not less. HOWEVER, the one thing that concerns me is the possibility of very high levels of Nitrates, leading to a Algae Bloom... This can be avoided with water changes or introducing a fast growing plant that will absorb Nitrates, like Duckweed. Am I right?
Just to clarify for you, the bacteria that break down organics (food, waste, plant material, etc) are different bacteria from the nitrifying bacteria that use ammonia to produce nitrite and then nitrite to nitrate. The manufacturer's info reads:
Eco-complete contains live heterotrophic bacteria to rapidly convert fish waste into natural food for your aquatic plants. It establishes a natural biological balance, which makes cycling a new aquarium faster and safer.
The heterotrophic bacteria are those living in the substrate that break down organics into nutrients in conjunction with plant roots and water flow through the substrate. The "cycling" bit would suggest nitrifying bacteria.

To the issue of ammonia/nitrite/nitrate. With live plants, ammonia (whatever the source) will be mainly taken up by the plants and changed to ammonium to be assimilated as their source of nitrogen. Some nitrifying bacteria will also be present to use some of the ammonia and change that to nitrite, then nitrate. But live plants usually mean this latter bacteria process will be minimal, unless the tank is very lightly planted or the fish load is beyond what the plants can handle. So your ammonia level decreasing is likely due to the plants. The nitrite should be zero throughout if things are balanced. And nitrate will be very low again depending upon the balance. So there should be no reason to worry over nitrates or ways to handle them, that is what the live plants are there to do.

Fast-growing plants do benefit especially in new tanks because they assimilate more nutrients, including ammonia/ammonium. Stem plants are good, floating plants even better for this. Floating plants have the added benefit of assimilating CO2 from the air rather than the water, and this is faster because the assimilation of CO2 in water is 4 times slower than in air for plants, and there is obviously more CO2 in the air to start with. Plus the closeness to the light means no shortage of sufficient light for all this. Floating plants also release considerably more oxygen into the aquarium than substrate plants, since aquatic plants release oxygen through their roots, and floating plant roots are obviously in the water, not the substrate.

Water changes are still advisable for other reasons, and weekly changes should be the norm. The volume depends upon the biological balance in the individual aquarium. I would say usually 30% to start with.

Byron.
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Old 05-03-2011, 11:51 AM   #19
 
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Thank you!

What a beautiful post Byron! Thank you! I am still new, but can't get enough of learning about this new hobby! And you just fed my brain with plenty of food, thank you!
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