Adding Substrate/soil To Established Aquarium Question

Discussion in 'Aquarium Plants' started by Roha, Apr 13, 2019.

  1. RohaNew MemberMember


    I am kinda new to this site and was wondering if someone could help clear something up for me.

    I have a 260L tank that has been set up for about 1.5 years now. I had a smaller aquarium when I got this one and my first priority was getting my fish into the new tank since I was also moving. At the time I didn’t think much about the type of substrate I should put in it and just used the small black gravel I had in my other tank.

    Over time I have bought quite a few plants. Some of them thrive while others don’t. I have been wondering if there is anyway to add some type of soil/substrate that will help the plants grow without having to empty my entire tank and reestablish it.

    I would be very thankful for any suggestions or tips.

    Attached Files:

  2. Zigi ZigWell Known MemberMember

    What type soil you looking to add soil for aquarium or organic garden soil?

  3. RohaNew MemberMember

    I want to use something that is made for aquariums.

    At our local stores I see different types of products. Some are more like soil and others are granulated and about the size of my present substrate.

  4. RohaNew MemberMember

    On one of my attached files I have some different types of carpet like plants that have spread around a bit. Would love for these to spread even more.

  5. Zigi ZigWell Known MemberMember

    You can add the soil you like, but you will have to remove everything inside tank, Your tank and plants looks great just add some root tabs to existing soil every 2 months to feed your rooted or stem plants and add CO2
  6. Zigi ZigWell Known MemberMember

    How old is your tank
  7. RohaNew MemberMember

    It’s about 1.5 years old now. I recently did a bit of redesigning in regards to the driftwood. And took out some smaller pieces.

    Would love to put in some type of thin branches on the left side and hopefully the lotus plant there will stretch up to the surface.
  8. RohaNew MemberMember

    Hmmm, that’s what I was afraid of.

    Do you know how long it would take before I could add things back?

    I have been using root tabs for a month or so. But they are so expensive here. :-/

    I was reading about this process where you could blend soil into water and then freeze it. Have you heard of this before?
  9. jmaldoWell Known MemberMember

    :emoji_thumbsup:@Roha Impressive!
    Not much help with the substrate. Have had similar issues with plants. I never tried a carpeting plant.(except guppy grass,if that counts). As mentioned by @Zigi Zig root tabs will help any plant with roots. I was just going to suggest a Red Tiger Lotus.

    Have plenty of "Underwater" gardeners here to help.
    Good Luck!
    Oh,by the way. "Welcome" to the Forum.
  10. RohaNew MemberMember

    Beautiful tank! I had a red tiger lotus before. It just shrank and shrank until it was gone. It was before I had gotten the root tabs. Really wish the lps had had a red one instead of the green one I have now.
  11. Zigi ZigWell Known MemberMember

    As most carpet plants prefer soft substrate you could try long grass those guys are very good to hold in substrate I just grow mine out of seeds I never had good experience get them from LPS
  12. RohaNew MemberMember

    Oh wow, that is so cool that you grow your own!

    Maybe I should just suck it up and rework the whole tank with soil... but it just seems like so much work and I am scared that I wouldn't be able to get the tank nice again.
  13. Hempy13New MemberMember

    I wouldn't re-do the tank if I was you. You could try and find some organic top soil, compost or earthworm castings, use a collinder or a sieve with decent sized holes (3-5mm) to filter out the larger pieces (you just want the soil dust, no stones or wood) with the soil dust in a bucket, add a little cold water to make it really thick. Then freeze the not so watery soil in an ice cube tray and insert the ice cube under the area where the roots will be. Really easy and mess free. The best thing is since you'll be adding a cube at a time you shouldn't have any algae problems caused by excess nutrients. Go slow and add one a week or even a month, then add another if you think you need it. Hope I helped, and good luck!
  14. Zigi ZigWell Known MemberMember

    Is not much work I have done tanks from 40 to in one day and added fish next day.
    I have recently did took everything out clean it took me 5 hours I don't have any carpet plants in this one but lots water lilies I have used 3 types of organic soils that do not contains Ammonia..
    Tank is now 25.days old No root tabs or fertilizer just high lights +Co2