Flourite on top of gravel?
Just wondering the best way to go about adding flourite to my tank. I have white gravel at the bottom of my tank for now, but I am planning on picking up some flourite.Would I be better off putting the flourite on top of my gravel or taking my gravel out and just put flourite. Also the flourite is a darker color and I heard that a darker color gravel is more calming for the fish. Please correct me if I am wrong.
From what ive herd it gose under the gravle. Its for the plants to grow in i beleave, correcet me if im wrong then your gravle on top. I prefer to use natr, looking gravle over colord. greys tans blacks whits yellows Ect. You would probly want to do half the tank then the other half in 2 or 3 weeks. That way your cycle dont get all messed up. Byron can better help with this tho. So i will let him elabrate.
Alright so I picked up the flourite last night. I don't have any plants yet should I wait? I heard this stuff is messy and makes the water cloudy for a while. Would it make sense to get the plants and put everything in at once and wait for the tank to clear up. Oh yeah btw, I am planning on taking my fish out before I do all this. I know I don't have to but I feel like it would be less traumatizing. Also, where should my air pump go? In between the flourite and the gravel? Thanks
Mollies is correct. Flourite is a good substrate for plants. But you don't have to have plants to use it. I've heard the best way to prepare the Flourite is to rinse it out ahead of time then let it dry. This substrate has a reputation for leaving a brown dust behind for a few weeks but that will settle.
If you are going to add this to an existing tank, most people recommend doing half the tank first then the other half in a couple of weeks to avoid a "cycle". Adding plants to the tank will lessen the cycle effect since the plants themselves help absorb the ammonia and nitrites.
If you are going to have plants, at a minimum, half the substrate should be Flourite but 100% I guess is better. Now having said all that, I've had plants for over 18 years and I'm still using plain gravel. I have 4 bags of Flourite ready to go but I can't get myself to tear apart the tank. As long as you use ferts and (optionally) root tabs, you can get by without specialty substrates.
Picking up on a few things from prevous posts...
Flourite is an enriched substrate specifically for planted aquaria; without plants there would be little point in spending so much money (compared to regular gravel) and releasing all those nutrients into the water column without plants to use them...but you have plants.
Flourite goes under the gravel or stands alone as the sole substrate. I would definitely remove white gravel, the two will mix and besides looking like a chess board... Either the Flourite on its own, or topped with plain regular natural or dark (black, dark grey, brown) gravel, but they will mix unless you are ultra-careful doing maintenance.
Follow the instructions on the Flourite. First obviously remove the fish and everything, drain the tank, put in the Flourite (top with gravel or not), plant the plants, then gently fill the tank. Let things settle, then put the fish back. The plants will handle the ammonia and nitrite provided you have enought of them (what we call a heavily-planted tank as opposed to a couple of little plants). There will be no cycle issue, I speak from considerable experience setting up whole tanks in one day full of fish.
byron would better suit your needs here he is typing you up something so i will let him answer. So that way there is no confusion. good luck.
Thank you for everything so far. I have not put in the flourite yet, I just would like to confirm a few more details. After I rinse this stuff off how long should I wait to put it in my tank? And would it be any better to let the flourite sit in my tank for a few weeks before putting plants in? I am reluctant to put my white gravel on top. Any suggestions on whether I should use my white gravel or no? Thanks again.
If it were me I wouldn't use the white gravel. I'd rinse the Flourite and let it completely dry. Then I'd empty the tank, add the Flourite and carefully add the water trying not to disturb the Flourite. Add the plants and fish. Here's a link to someone that's apparently done this alot:
How to Wash FLUORITE
Laterite is what I used..... same difference
I rinsed my substrate only one time..... in a 5 gallon bucket.
I layed down a layer of brown natural rock first.
then layed down the Laterite substrate, then another layer of Rock
I gently filled the tank ( using a bowl on the bottom ) so that the
substrate was not disturbed so much... YES The water will become
clowdy BROWN... for a few days.. but that will disapate
I have to warn ya..... if your using a filter with a bio wheels
those wheels will be covered with the substrate.
What I would recommend is to not use the wheels until a couple a
days after so that they are not covered with the left over substrate.
Just my 2 cents. ( FROM MY MISHAPS )
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