Sand - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 26 Old 03-13-2009, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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Sand

What type of sand should i use for a live plant tank? Just regular play sand or is it worth spending more money on Eco-COmplete?

Will Eco-Complete keep its additives? Or will they fade out in time?

Will fertilizers do the same thing?

Thanks, Matt
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post #2 of 26 Old 03-13-2009, 08:54 AM
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I've used sand, gravel and eco-complete. I find that while eco-complete is a lot more expensive it's definitely worth the extra money.

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post #3 of 26 Old 03-14-2009, 03:18 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amphitrite View Post
I've used sand, gravel and eco-complete. I find that while eco-complete is a lot more expensive it's definitely worth the extra money.
That's kind of what i suspected. How much can one expect to spend on eco-complete? I have a 10gal that it will go in, as well as a 55.
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post #4 of 26 Old 03-14-2009, 04:26 PM
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Hi Matt, you're in America? If so, somebody else is better off advising you of the price since I'm in the UK. I do know that it was a lot more expensive over here than sand though.

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post #5 of 26 Old 03-14-2009, 06:01 PM
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play sand can be purchased from a hardware store for about $5 for 50lbs. it must be pre-rinsed very well prior to using though or else you create a mess.
you can also get natural colored gravel from a hardware store, pre-rinse and suppliment with root tabs. its a few bucks for a large bag.
ive paid $25-30 for a 12lb bag of red sea flora base but that was at an overpriced fish store. online is prob. your best bet as you'd need a few bags.
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post #6 of 26 Old 03-15-2009, 01:59 AM
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Hello Matt,

Eco-complete can be bought at Drs Foster and Smith website for $19.99 for a 20# bag plus $11 shipping for up to $100 worth. You will need 4 bags for a 55 gallon and one bag for a 10 gallon. Though it is best and looks best to use 100% eco-complete you can mix it or layer it underneath another gravel to save money. Eco complete is a trace fertilizer and is very slow release and it will last for years. It does not however supply all of the nutrients and so you will still need to add fertliizer regulalry. hope that answers some of your questions.
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post #7 of 26 Old 04-02-2009, 07:46 PM Thread Starter
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So, what are the downsides to using just the play sand? I've heard lots of people using the play sand and would't think it can be that bad. Just debating back and forth between play sand and eco complete. I want to use eco complete, but it holds off setting up tanks til i can afford it. I can afford play sand now which is drawing me in since it means i can set up the tanks now. I'm not sure what to do.
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post #8 of 26 Old 04-03-2009, 05:35 AM
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I've had my first established aquarium for a couple months now and I use sand. I really like it. I'm in the midst of learning how it does with growing plants. There are plenty of fertilizers available to aid growing in sand. I have two, so far, from Seachem -- Flourish Excel and some tabs.

The only thing I don't like about sand so far is that whenever I [need to] clean it with the siphon sand always gets sucked up. But I have a cache of clean sand to replace so it's not a big deal.

3 Platies, 1 molly mut, 1 Siamese algae eater, 2 Neolamprologus Facicula cichlids
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post #9 of 26 Old 04-03-2009, 01:24 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for the response, please let me know how the plants work out. Are you using just play sand?

I guess what i'm really trying to ask everyone is - Is Eco-complete really that much better than regular play sand with other supplements like root tabs and whatever else you might need?
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post #10 of 26 Old 04-04-2009, 10:50 PM
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Yes, regular play sand from the Home Depot. Rinse it well!! I didn't at first because the bag said it was cleaned. I let it set for 24 hours and it never settled. I took 30-40 minutes to start over and rinse. It all settled in about an hour after that.
My chameleon plants (that grew like weeds) recently got ravaged by my loaches. But the cryptoconrye (is that how it's spelled?) is fairly slowly growing. The chain sword plants haven't been in long enough to tell, though.

3 Platies, 1 molly mut, 1 Siamese algae eater, 2 Neolamprologus Facicula cichlids
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