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Made my first stupid mistake. The Tahitian moon sand I bought last night was only a 5 lbs bag. A quarter of what I need, so I've had to order even more. Hopefully that will be my last screw up.
That sucks but atleast you are not having to wait to setup the tank till the sand comes in. Well am assuming you are still waiting on the other stuff still. LoL
I add no clue that Tahitian moon sparkled that's funny. Does it sparkle are alot? Is it like glitter? lol
Have you ever used any other Black sand other then this?
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LoL yeah I would say 5lbs is cheaper then 20lbs.
I used Black diamond once but not sure I would use it again. It was cheap and looked good!
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Right or wrong I made up my mind that blasting sand just wouldn't be "softbelly" safe.
That's why I probably won't use it again. At the time I had it I didn't have any substrate fish. Though I read where ppl said its fine for Cory's and other fish on another site. After going through it and cleaning it. Yeah not convinced it was safe at all and OMG talk about taking FOREVER to clean!! Yeah it took about 3x as long to clean then play sand did. It also stained my buckets! :shock: I finally got it all cleaned and looking good before I put it in my tank. I used it as a cap over my MGOPC tank once. It didn't leave any residue or anything in my tank like it did in my buckets when I was cleaning it. So i guess I got it all cleaned but I don't think I will go through that again. I will just stick with Playsand until I can find a cheap Black sand to use next time.
 

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Haha! I think we're fairly similar - I'd have trouble feeding snakes, too - feeding LOACHES, on the other hand. Well. . . that squirmy pile of cute just brings me to my knees every time!

Maybe your lil' bag is SO small/empty because. . . *snicker* it's only meant to clarify a 5 pound bag! *GUFFAW* I think its worked out well in a way, tho. Even if you have to wait patiently for the rest to arrive, you at least got a chance to be SURE you wanted it - and apparently PLENTY of time to cancel the order - before the bigger bag(s) arrive :)

So tell me how you've got your substrate set up, ALL about it. . . I'd love to hear your experiences in dirt tanks, as I'm *considering* setting one up at some point. . . you said you use the Miracle-Gro organic potting mix - is it just that with sand on top? I want details :)

Why am I the only one commenting on this thread? It's gonna be an awesome tank. I guess I'm just a dork - I LOVE watching other people's tanks grow!
LoL Because Jes you like to talk. :lol: Everyone just sits back and listens and waits for the finish product and then comments.
Jes this is the soil

There are different ways of preparing it to use in the tank and how he is going to do it or how he has done it maybe different. I have used it by simply pulling out the big objects and then dumping it into a tank and wetting it a lil before putting a cap of sand over it.
Oh and I agree with ya Jes this is going to be an awesome tank when he is done with it. I may not be talking as much as you but I have been following it and will continue till he is done with the thread.
 

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Haha! No offense intended, darlin'! Sorry I'm sooooo chatty ;)

Not meaning to hijack the thread, but did you/do you like the soil better than sand? Or just the same to you?

I promise. I'll be quiet(er). . . try, anyway. I get too excited :D
LoL I wasn't telling ya that you need to be quiet/quieter. Talk all you want!! I was simply answer your question about you being the only one committing.

I had good growth out of my soil tanks especially from my crypts at the time. I guess its all want you like or want.
 

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I wished you didn't have to cap the soil as that would totally look cool!!
After my Devil Cat knocked over my basket of emersed plants into my tank all the soil went to the bottom and stayed. It looked cool, messy but cool. It was also a PITA to clean up. I wonder how long it would you have to soak the soil to get it to stay down??? Also if you manage to get it to this point could you actually run it this way?? Would it there be any problems in doing so?? I know some of the particles would get stirred up and but they would settle sooner or later i would imagine.

Anyways LoL neither of y'all annoy me asking questions! Am glad to help or atleast try to help the best I can. Though I learn more from ya then I think y'all realize.

Blackwaterguy have you every used Oil Dri?? Isn't that a clay based absorbent?? Thinking I have seen someone here that uses that and pics of it or it could be another place.
 

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Are the floating bits the real problem or is it a case of too many nutrients being available? I kind of think it's the latter. I mean in MTS all the floating bits are removed, but it's still capped. I had just assumed it was because it would play havoc with water chemistry if it wasn't.
No the floating bits are not the problem other then just looks. Would the nutrients really be a problem since the plants will use them and you would be water changes. I figured it would be other things playing havoc in the water column like ammonia and nitrates ??? I really don't know but I just think it would be a cool look!
 

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Here a thought about Mineralized top soil.... could you leave it capless?? The whole reason of mineralizing it in the first place is for it hold on to the nutrients longer and release them slower right or am I thinking about that wrong??

Jes you can move the plants around after you plant them in a soil tank. You just SLOWLY pull the rooted plants up. You have to patient and watch the base of the plant make sure not to pull to fast or hard or else you will have one hellofa mess in your tank!! I moved my plants but not often just know it can be done and till you learn how you will probably have a mess in doing soo. LoL
 

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What's the difference in mud and dirt?? I guess I should say how do they prepare the "mud" different then dirt??
Oh sorry Blackwaterguy we have kinda highjacked your thread talking about dirt.

Rosette swords were what I moved the most. I can't remember what else I moved now but there were more.
 

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The root systems on the rosette swords at the time weren't huge. They were still big but not to bad. Now when I went to put them back in the tank I would always cut the roots down so I didn't have to mash them back into the soil as bad.

When I broke down the tank I had an Amazon sword in there that had a HUGE root system like 3/4 of the. tank. When I pulled it out it took half the dirt around out with it.
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Haha I think its nearly impossible to kill these guys. Though I do find that they are more incline to come out when there is no threat. They are all over my my tank now but when they Apple snails were in the tank I never saw them. Though don't know fish you are keeping in that tank but am guessing nothing big enough to be threating to MTS.
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Blackwater is this the tank you dose KNO3, K2SO4, Plantex + B? I don't see that killing snails. You add anything else ooh the GH booster. Barrs?? That doesn't look like anything that would kill snails either.
Truth be known I don't feed my snails either. There is usually always food in the tank for them. You use anything else in this tank? There's gotta be something going on there. If I can keep these things alive surely anyone can.
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OMG the sand still hasn't shipped!?!?!?? o_O
WTH did ya order from so I know to never from them!?!?!

That's awesome that the crypts shipped already though!
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The c. pontederiifolia that I got a couple of weeks ago hasn't melted at all! I have read that pontederiifolia seems to not melt as easily as other cryptocoryne species (Not sure how true that is though?). Either way they make nice plants. I actually split mine up and have one in my 10 and 29 gallon.
Anyways, family always comes first and we can wait till you get matters taken care of for pics!
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After what my pontederiifolia has gone through and not melted I don't think its possible for it to. I planted this plant under a HOB filter and every day it would get sucked up till I moved it a lil and put a sponge on the intake and the thing still never melted. So I think yours will be fine!
 

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BWG it looks good though yeah it would look better with a background. The plant on the left is that Pygmy chain sword?? Its looks super tall? Is that a 10 gallon??
Ohh that reminds me I need to dose my fertz!!
 

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LoL you've done something I have never managed to do. That's putting a background on an empty tank!

Ohh another way to keep the dirt and sand from mixing and having an inform look is using egg crates.
You cut the egg crates to the width and lenght of the tank. Then line the tank with it. Add sand infront of it and on top of it. In the middle you add the dirt and the sand top. The egg crate keeps the sand and dirt from shifting.
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BWG man whats up with you table/stand or whatever it is!!! Your tank leans to the left!!
Your tank is looking good though. What do the rocks you have look like? Leaves would give it a nice look too!! It definitely needs more plants!!
 

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Lol yeah its pretty noticeable!
I would be worry about it putting stress on the seams on the right side of the tank where the water is higher. Though is this where you had a tank before and didn't have a problem right?

Those same types of rocks would fit good in the tank LoL am sitting here staring at you full tank shot thinking you could maybe put the rocks on the right side and along the back some. Maybe make it look the driftwood got stuck in the rocks. Not sure I would place them under the driftwood though. Does that makes sense to ya at all? That's something I would try for but then again I have a hard enough time setting up my tanks.
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So the crypts that you ordered and didn't get are they going to replace them? Or is that the replacement you were talking about?

There definitely enough plants there to get excited about! Are all those plants going into the 20L??

3" Java fern 'windelov' that's pretty big umm that's going into the 20L too?? Not sure where to put that one?? Dont those get pretty tall?? I would probably add that to one of the rocks as a background plant .. So where is going to depend on where you place the rocks. Of coarse this just my opinion.
 
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