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Okay Substrate For Plants

Discussion in 'Aquarium Plants' started by Rtessy, Apr 19, 2019.

  1. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

    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.
  2. FahnFishlore VIPMember

    How about something like this?


  3. david1978Fishlore LegendMember

  4. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

    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.

  5. FahnFishlore VIPMember

    What about play sand?
  6. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

    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.
  7. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

    Oh and low pH is fine, this is for wild bettas
  8. FahnFishlore VIPMember

    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.
  9. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

    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
  10. FahnFishlore VIPMember

    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.

  11. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

  12. PheonixKingZWell Known MemberMember

    Wwwwowoowww!! That crazy expensive!! Here is a website I found..... 
  13. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

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

    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.
  15. PheonixKingZWell Known MemberMember

    I agree with @Fahn

    Hey, I’m a follower, not a leader!!:)
  16. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

    Aww man.
    What about the fluorite black sand stuff
  17. FahnFishlore VIPMember

    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.
  18. RtessyFishlore VIPMember

    Drat. Okay, thanks all! I'll have to revisit in the morning, sorry!
  19. Vishaquatics (Koiman)Well Known MemberMember

    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
  20. Annie59Well Known MemberMember

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