Originally Posted by rsskylight04
Im terrible with technology and I need help from my daughter to get pictures from my camara to the internet but I'll try to get some up soon. Not much to look at right now anyway though. Plants don't come till next week. What I did was just pack the potting soil into the tank then wet it so no air pockets would develop. When it was soaked to my satisfaction, I topped it with dry sand that I had rinsed then set near the fireplace to dry. Then I put flat stones on top of the sand so I could add more water without blowing to sand up. I decided to top it with gravel only after I noticed how sensative the sand was to water currents; I added the filter and as soon as the flow started I noticed the sand starting to drift. The gravel is very sparse no more than 1-2 pebbles deep- just enough to hold the sand in place. This is totaly new to me, I've never done soil before so I can't wait to see how the plants will respond. I've often wondered how plants survive with just gravel. If the plants do well and water tests are acceptable then I will think about fish. If this tank exceeds my expectations, I might change all my tanks over . Oh, except the cichlid tank. Theydont take kindly to plants anyway and they like to dig. Id probaly end up with mud everywhere.
I plant that plants before the final filling of the tank. Sticking the plants in the substrate will stir things up and create a mess. When you plants come in I would drain the tank down to the top of the substrate then plant and refill with the same water poured over a dish.
Best tank ever.
I think you found one reason I don't use mechanical filters.