Hello, all! :D
Excited to say I just bought some Eco-Complete from Petco.com today! Hurray! It was suggested to me by a number of much-savvier-with-plants-than-myself friends :)
Eco Complete Planted Black Aquarium Substrate - Aquarium Rocks and Fish Tank Rock from PETCO.com
I'm excited for it. I've read and read about it and have found it with good reviews.
I do have a few questions, though.
~From what I can tell, this stuff comes wet- with black water? Do I leave that in the tank, or can I let that dribble out elsewhere? I plan to seed the tank and am not particularly interested in the "bacteria" from the water.
~Also, do I rinse this product? I know you have to rinse and rinse Flourite until you scream, but havent seen to with Eco Complete.
~Should I put a layer of gravel under the Eco Complete? I've heard it compacts over time. Can someone explain why, how to fix it, and what the gravel will do to help?
~Finally, do I still dose liquid ferts while I have this as my substrate? Im going to not use my root tabs (yes?), but do I need to stop the liquid ferts?
I'm using this in my planted 5 gallons. I'm assuming I need about 5-6lbs each tank, so I have 10 left over. I think I'll give it to the boyfriend for his tanks. If he doesnt want it, though-- how can I store the substrate?
This is one of the 5 gallons. Its more mature now- this was a bit ago. I also have water sprite out the wazzoo, but its in the other 5g. Pardon the lack of wood and rocks- hardscaping is expensive, lol!
(Oh, and excuse the onion plant that's floating...He keeps uprooting it! Grr!)
Thanks for the help in advance :)
- The black water is probably part of the fertilizer and should be left in the tank. Read the directions carefully to be sure. I've seen many different fertilizers come wet with instructions to not remove the fluids.
- Again, probably not, but to be sure, read the instructions carefully.
- Yes, over time the Eco complete will probably compact which is normal and shouldn't be a problem so long as you get all your planting done when you first get the soil in.
- Liquid fertilization becomes kinda optional, I still use my flourish excel to ward off unwanted algae, but the soil will contain most of the needed nutrients and minerals.
Not sure how to store it especially since it comes wet :p A well sealed large ziplock?
Oh yes- that bag will be read over and over for sure! I'd imagine it shouldnt be rinsed, but I cant be sure. Hopefully it wont cloud too much. Every filter I own, do your work to clear it, lol!
Maybe I'll go the ziplock route. I still have to ask if he wants it. I have a feeling he actually may not- he's funny like that. :roll: Goodness knows we wouldnt be able to see his black betta with all that black substrate! Hah!
If it does cloud, get a Seachem Purigen filter insert, works like a charm. It absorbs ammonia, Nitrite, and Nitrates and polishes the water to an unbelievably clear degree. I had problems with my soil dirtying the water, so I added a pouch of this stuff and my water looks drinkable. Purigen inserts contain resin granules that can be recharged by soaking the entire insert in bleach for 24hrs and then soaking in water dosed with neutral regulator for another 4hrs to remove the bleach. Great Stuff!
Aquarium Chemical Filter Media: Seachem Purigen
The 100mL packet should be overkill for a 5 gal
I would not but anything under the eco-complete. Once you mix substrates together it is near impossible to undo. If you are worried about it compacting over time you can always get some plants with heavy root systems. Also you can get some malaysian trumipet snails and they will aerate you substrate and you won't have that issue.
I still find that I need to use flourish comprehensive (liquid fert) with my plants. So it will depend on your plants you have in the tank. I wouldn't worry about the root tabs at the start. If the plants are doing fine with the eco and you add liquid ferts that should be good.
You are right about 5-6 pounds per tank. I have been told and use the same method. 1-2 pounds of substrate per gallon. I have wondered about how to store the extra also. I would image you could put it in a tote with a lid and keep it wet would work but I don't really know.
Thanks, everyone :)
I'll have to go find some snails. Do common pond snails burrow like trumpet snails would? Ive actually never before had issue with trumpet snails.
I wonder where I can get MTS? I know I can prod around on aquabid and whatnot, but I dont want to pay that much! Gah!
Do you think it would be critical to get them? Or could I prod the soil now and again with the same affect?
Regarding the MTS, it's not a "gotta have it now or else" issue. I have a 55g with ecocomplete. I just added some MTS about 2 months ago. The tank was set up in January. You can always decide to add/not add the MTS at a later date. They help, but won't make-or-break the tank's success.
I could send you some MTS (just pay shipping), but I have a problem with some "oops" snails in my tank that came in with a recent plant, even after a potassium permanganate dip. They are really tiny, but definitely not MTS! I'd hate to accidentally send you some with the MTS.
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