Okay Substrate For Plants

Rtessy

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Sorry for the 40000 questions I asked today, trying to get everything together.
I need to redo the substrate on my betta imbellis tank, may eventually make it high tech, but not for a year or so.
I need a substrate that will work for a water lily, Amazon sword, vals, banana plant, etc etc root feeders.
What is the best to use that is also around $20? Are there any light colored ones? I'd prefer a lighter colored one, but I'm not sure.
Currently planning on EI dosing, pH is low, 6-6.6, sometimes lower, no kH.
 
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Rtessy

Rtessy

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Fahn said:
How about something like this?
Thanks, but I'd need 3-4, and that's a tad out of my price range, lol

david1978 said:
Pool filter sand.
That's what I currently have, but I am having a lot of issues with it for some reason.
 

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Rtessy said:
Thanks, but I'd need 3-4, and that's a tad out of my price range, lol


That's what I currently have, but I am having a lot of issues with it for some reason.
What about play sand?
 
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Rtessy

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Fahn said:
What about play sand?
I'm just trying to move away from sand overall, I'd rather do something more plant based, sand is just too much maintenance for me right now.
 
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Rtessy

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Oh and low pH is fine, this is for wild bettas
 

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Rtessy said:
I'm just trying to move away from sand overall, I'd rather do something more plant based, sand is just too much maintenance for me right now.
Most of your plant substrates are going to be considerably more expensive, particularly aquasoils. They're worth the money IMO, how deep are you wanting your substrate layer?

PS - Aquasoils keep your pH acidic.
 
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Rtessy

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Fahn said:
Most of your plant substrates are going to be considerably more expensive, particularly aquasoils. They're worth the money IMO, how deep are you wanting your substrate layer?

PS - Aquasoils keep your pH acidic.
I'm not really sure, sorry! Not super deep, most of my plants do okay with shallower root systems (I think), so maybe an inch, inch and a half? Hoping to get away with that, lol
 

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Rtessy said:
I'm not really sure, sorry! Not super deep, most of my plants do okay with shallower root systems (I think), so maybe an inch, inch and a half? Hoping to get away with that, lol
Aquasoil calculator, in case you considered this an option. It will tell you how many liters you need to get a specific depth based on your tank's dimensions.

 
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Rtessy

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Well, hey, that listed eco complete as first, so I guess it can't be all bad!
 

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Rtessy said:
I see caribsea eco complete is about a dollar per pound, is that any good?

Also
:O
-snip-
:O
Told you it can be expensive lol!

The problem with EcoComplete is that it's basically just crushed lava rock with no nutrients, save small amounts of trace elements. Plants will grow in it but you'll need to provide root tabs and water column ferts. Also, due to it's porosity, it is a trap for waste and mulm. We used it in several planted tanks at work and I hated it.
 
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Rtessy

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Fahn said:
Told you it can be expensive lol!

The problem with EcoComplete is that it's basically just crushed lava rock with no nutrients, save small amounts of trace elements. Plants will grow in it but you'll need to provide root tabs and water column ferts. Also, due to it's porosity, it is a trap for waste and mulm. We used it in several planted tanks at work and I hated it.
Aww man.
What about the fluorite black sand stuff
 

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Rtessy said:
Aww man.
What about the fluorite black sand stuff
Just really fine fracted black clay, it produces a TON of dust, even after a thorough rinsing. No nutrients in it, treat it just like regular sand.
 
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Rtessy

Rtessy

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Fahn said:
Just really fine fracted black clay, it produces a TON of dust, even after a thorough rinsing. No nutrients in it, treat it just like regular sand.
Drat. Okay, thanks all! I'll have to revisit in the morning, sorry!
 

Vishaquatics

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Eco complete is overpriced garbage. It has no nutrients in it and it is very difficult to plant carpetting plants in it.

I’d highly recommend picking up pool or play sand from Home Depot ($5 for 50lb) and some organic top soil (not potting soil). Do a 1” later of soil capped with 2.5” or 3” of sand. It’s literally the best substrate ever since it allows for such good roots and it’s highly nutritious as well. Sand makes things 1000x easier to plant any plant in. The thicker the sand cap, the lesser the mess. I make my sand caps extremely thick now as to prevent soil from flying everywhere when I move stuff around
 

Annie59

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I've grown all those in just plain old aquarium gravel.
 

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