Aquarium planted tank substrate ! - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 01-28-2019, 06:35 PM Thread Starter
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Hi I have a 30 gallon tank which I have guppies , neons and cory catfish. In this tank I also have a potting soil tank capped with sand because at the time I didn’t want to pay a lot of money on special nutraint rich substrates so I made this , I got amazon sword , jungle val ,dwarf hair grass and dwarf sag. But I keep having problems with the soil coming through the sand cap. Instead of buying more sand for a cap i want to fully re scape my tank and then put good substrate down with no problems I looked at eco complete and seachem flourite for the substrate but the prices are so expensive ?! And I would need 2 bags which brings me around 50 so is there a cheaper way to have a easy nutraint rich substrate for growing plants ?
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post #2 of 7 Old 01-28-2019, 10:57 PM
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I'm new to the hobby so this is no way professional advice but more so my own experience...

Personally I don't bother burying my plants in the gravel but use thread to secure them to bits of driftwood. Once the roots attach themselves to the wood, I remove the thread.

My reasoning is you can always re-arrange the tank without having to uproot the plants or simply push plant & driftwood aside when vacuuming the gravel.

Also by exposing the roots in the water they'll readily soak up liquid plant fertiliser rather than having to rely on a nutrient rich substrate.

Alternatively stick to gravel can afford & buy plant food sticks you can push into the gravel around the root clusters.
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post #3 of 7 Old 01-29-2019, 08:39 AM
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Either would be fine. What I did in my planted tank is just use the substrate where the plants are. You could even pot them with the substrate if you want.
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post #4 of 7 Old 02-05-2019, 05:48 PM
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I use a 1" peat moss with 1" plan sand and 1" pro choice select ( baked clay red gravel) substrate. Seems to work fine in my system(s).


my .02

maintain Fw and marine system with a strong emphasis on balanced, stabilized system that as much as possible are self substaning.

have maintained FW systems for up to 9 years with descendants from original fish and marine aquariums for up to 8 years.

With no water changes, untreated tap water, inexpensive lighting by first starting the tank with live plants (FW) or macro algae( marine)

see: https://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/a...-build-295530/
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post #5 of 7 Old 02-08-2019, 05:29 AM
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Potting soil is really all you need. If it’s coming through the sand I recommend adding more sand. After about a year or so a lot of nutrients in the soil will be depleted, but you can buy root tabs which will replenish those nutrients. After a few years with fish it should be mostly self sufficient. This video gives a pretty good how to https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CyJDgMFcaBQ#menu
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post #6 of 7 Old 02-08-2019, 08:29 AM
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Aquarium
I've always been given mixed advice when it came to using "potting soil".

Watching a lot of you-tube vids, people have used store-bought bags of potting mix to using soil from their gardens....

The 1st time I tried, potting mix (from the garden) with at least an inch of gravel on top, the water went cloudy.
No matter how many water changes I did, I couldn't get the tank clear at all & I gave up the project after 3 weeks.

Then the mixed advice from various fish shops...the concern of the fertilisers vs fish or pointless using soil especially once the nutrients "ran out".

In the end I'm just relying on plant pellet food that dissolves in the water.
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post #7 of 7 Old 02-08-2019, 05:48 PM
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FWIW when I used potting soil with nutrients, I got cloudy water also. Had to kill the lights and it cleared up over several days. After that the water remained clear.


my .02

maintain Fw and marine system with a strong emphasis on balanced, stabilized system that as much as possible are self substaning.

have maintained FW systems for up to 9 years with descendants from original fish and marine aquariums for up to 8 years.

With no water changes, untreated tap water, inexpensive lighting by first starting the tank with live plants (FW) or macro algae( marine)

see: https://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/a...-build-295530/
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