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RainbowhLizzie 12-13-2013 11:57 PM

Miracle Gro Organic Potting Mix~ HELP!
I have no idea how to go about washing this stuff! I thought it would be as easy as sand but all the dirt floated!
Someone guide me in your ways! :lol:

rsskylight04 12-14-2013 03:40 AM

Hi, I was advised to forget about washing or screening it and just cap with sand. I pressed the soil into the tank and got it wet, so there are no air pockets. Then spread sand half inch deep over the soil. I added a very sparse top layer of gravel, but you don't need that. So far so good. Plants are growing well already and fish seem happy.

Good luck.

beaslbob 12-14-2013 08:53 AM


Originally Posted by RainbowhLizzie (Post 3585426)
I have no idea how to go about washing this stuff! I thought it would be as easy as sand but all the dirt floated!
Someone guide me in your ways! :lol:

agree with capping with sand. click on the link in my signature.

I used potting soil and had initial cloudy water and algae problems which required killing the lights for it to all die off.

By using the 1'x1'x3' sphagnum canadian peat moss cubes ($11 or so) with no nutrients added those problem were eliminated.

my .02

beaslbob 12-14-2013 08:54 AM

And if you can't cap with sand just let it set a couple of days with no circulation. It will eventually sink to the bottom.


aquabruce 12-14-2013 08:57 AM

I agree, washing it isn't necessary. A light screening to get out any bigger wood chunks and debris is fine. Some people soak it for a few days in buckets so some of the lighter stuff will float out beforehand.
Cap it with sand or whatever you're going to use for a top layer, then slowly fill with water.
Some people don't cap it but it makes a bigger mess when you try to move or uproot plants.

RainbowhLizzie 12-14-2013 09:57 AM

I have play sand all washed and ready to go to use as a cap. And does that mean I can add fish right away with the cap?

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rsskylight04 12-14-2013 06:33 PM

I would wait at least 7-10 days to see if your gonna have a bloom of swing in water quality

Chesh 12-15-2013 12:26 AM

If you want to, you can get rid of the floaty stuff by leaving it sit in a bucket overnight, and scooping out the bits and chunks that remain floating the next morning. You might have to do this a couple of times, as Aquabruce said, and you will lose a lot of soil, for sure - but nothing but the softest mud left behind. You could also go the extra mile-and-a-half and mineralize it - but that's a whole 'nother thing. . . lol.

You should be fine with just tossing it in, capping it with sand, and carefully filling the tank, as the others said, but if you really wanted to get rid of the floaters - it can be done with a bit of extra patience!

Good luck! Dirt is so lovely in a tank! ^__^

rexpepper651 12-15-2013 01:36 AM

yes screen it. mine had alot of wood. i just filled the tank with it bout 2 inches. capped it with sand filled with water till about half inch above sand and planted the tank. keep the lights off for about a week an test the water daily with daily water changes for about aweek. i had tea water for about a month or so but now crystal clear and plants especially the crypts are loving it! good luck hope to see youre tank!

RainbowhLizzie 12-15-2013 09:55 PM

I accidently got rubber mulch into the dirt! Is this fine or should I take the time to pull each little piece out?

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