Quick question about sand & plants - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
Kim
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Quick question about sand & plants

This may be a really stupid question, but how do you stir the sand if you have plants in the tank. Specifically if you are planning to have a "lawn" area covered in some type of grass-like plant? That is what I was planning on doing with my new 29 gal, and I just never thought of it. Do the roots keep anarobic pockets from forming?? Thanks.
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post #2 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 01:55 PM
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I was going to ask that exact question. I have the same situation in my tank (sand/plants) and now that the pants are spreading out I'm wondering the same thing.

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post #3 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 04:36 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, I was thinking maybe some snails. But, if my plan works out as I hope and I get a dense carpet over the bottom of the tank, then the snails wouldn't be able to get out.

Hmm...hope somebody knows. (Not that the sand was ultra expensive at $4, but I really think that it would look great.)
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post #4 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 04:52 PM
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I tossed around the idea of using Malaysian Trumpet snails for awhile but ended up deciding against it. My LFS has a 500G display tank and it has been overrun with those little guys. They are suppose to be nocturnal but no matter what time of the day I stop by the LFS you can see thousands of them zooming all over the tank.

I actually brought a couple home with me from the LFS to see if my loaches would be able to keep the populations in check if I did introduce them into my tank. The loaches tried but the MTS have an operculum that my loaches couldn't get past so I removed them from my tank.
That was enough for me to change my mind about using them.

I'm also going for the "carpet" effect so I have no idea how I'll get the sand stirred under those areas....

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post #5 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 05:51 PM
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Generally, it's not advisable to use sand aas a substrate when planting your tank... Coarse sand(2mm) is the lowest I would go when planting a tank, otherwise with such fine substrate, your plants won't root properly.
I just had a thought. You could use gravel on the very bottom of your tank, then you could cover the gravel with a thin(5mm) layer of sand, so it gives it the nice finish

Hope that helps

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post #6 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 05:59 PM
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I'm using sand and haven't experienced any problems with my plants rooting. They are actually doing very well. I'm using black sand so it's not super fine but it's still sand. Which is why I have the question about stirring those areas of sand. I don't want to disturb the roots but I don't want anaerobic pockets either...

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post #7 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 06:06 PM
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Yes I see your problem... Again my suggestion above would help with the whole anaerobic pockets situation, I can't think of anything else that would help you out since you want to create the carpet effect using a grassy type of plant (may I suggest Elocharis Acicularis(Dwarf Hairgrass) worked wonders on my tank).

Hope it works out for you two

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post #8 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 06:08 PM
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I was thinking I'd use a skinny skewer stick and poke it around under the "carpet" but I'm not sure how effective that would be...

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post #9 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 07:16 PM
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That might just possibly work! Just be very delicate around the plants... It's all too easy to rip out some of their roots.

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post #10 of 31 Old 10-22-2008, 07:57 PM Thread Starter
Kim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kritas View Post
I just had a thought. You could use gravel on the very bottom of your tank, then you could cover the gravel with a thin(5mm) layer of sand, so it gives it the nice finish
Hope that helps
Wouldn't the sand slip through the gravel?

Thanks for the plant suggestion . I was wondering exactly what plant I should use.
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