1. Cichlidnut Fishlore VIP Member

    I'm interested in natural planted tanks. Do I have to have some kind of soil in one? I'd like any info and experiences you guys are willing to share with me ;D thanks!
  2. jerilovesfrogs Fishlore VIP Member

    yes youll want soil. I like organic choice garden soil by miracle grow. in one tank I used topsoil as an experiment, but that gave off a ton of tannins.

    you'll want top plant the tank pretty well to start. dont put two plants in, and wait for them to spread.

    what size tank is this? for 15g and under, you could get away without any kind of water movement. I have a12g , with no filtet, no power head...nothing. the plants and fish have done very well since jan.

    lighting is up to you. sunlight is beneficial too. those clamp lights work well....and use cool cfls.

  3. Dino Fishlore VIP Member

    Most of my planted tanks are top soil covered by a layer of pool filter sand.
    I also use yard dirt ( red clay here) for crypts.
  4. Cichlidnut Fishlore VIP Member

    5 gallon tank, I've got a 15 watt CFL on it. It's super heavily planted but I don't have any type of soil. I didn't know if soil made that much of a difference.
  5. jerilovesfrogs Fishlore VIP Member

    well, i have some tanks that have either eco complete, or fluval stratum...and i treat them like npts...but it has to have soil to be considered one...what do you have in it?
  6. Cichlidnut Fishlore VIP Member

  7. jerilovesfrogs Fishlore VIP Member

    well the soil provides the plants with everything they need...which helps them grow well...and they then will filter out toxins. if it is heavily planted...i wouldn't do any gravel vac'ing. the waste will feed plants as well. but waste may not be enough, depending on what plants you have. do you know what they are?
  8. Cichlidnut Fishlore VIP Member

  9. jerilovesfrogs Fishlore VIP Member

    well ...the only thing that feeds fromthe substrate is the anacharis. and I don't know if thats enough for the waste to feed on...

  10. Cichlidnut Fishlore VIP Member

    Ok, you've pretty much answered everything I need to know, thanks! will plants absorb ammonia?
  11. I keep fish Well Known Member Member

    I dont use soil just sand and nutrafin gro ad my plants grow fine i guess its personal choice
  12. Cichlidnut Fishlore VIP Member

    NPT is a little different. I'm trying to do this without having add much of anything else.
  13. Dino Fishlore VIP Member

    As the owner of 20 running tanks, simpler is always better.