Substrate...for Plants

  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #21

ShamFish97

Valued Member
Messages
229
Reaction score
88
Points
38
Experience
2 years
-Mak- said:
Besides the fact that it's just inert sand, it should be safe and easy to use
Do you know of anyone having luck with grass in the sand? I would love to put some guppy grass in, but I'm worried it wouldn't do too well
 

Homeslice

Well Known Member
Messages
746
Reaction score
121
Points
78
ShamFish97 said:
Do you know of anyone having luck with grass in the sand? I would love to put some guppy grass in, but I'm worried it wouldn't do too well

I think you will need to use root tabs in the sand for them to do well long term - my understanding is that sand itself has very, very little nutrients, and it has a low CEC ratio so its ability to soak up nutrients you put into the water column and offer them up to plant roots is very little as well.
 

Julabean

New Member
Messages
38
Reaction score
19
Points
8
Experience
1 year
ShamFish97 said:
Thank you so much for the info, I bookmarked your post. I may order the 20$ bags from carib sea, they are cheap and about half the price that my LFS was charging for it... understandable, but I need a lot of it for my tank! D:
Are you planning to use it in your 55 gallon tank? Carib Sea recommends 1 pound per each gallon of water and a thickness of 2-3 inches on the bottom. I am buying 3 bags to do my new 40 gallon with, which will give me 2-2 1/2" of the substrate.

I'm not surprised that Amazon is a lot cheaper than what is at your LFS. Also, Amazon provides free 2-day shipping for prime members, of which I am. My membership pays for itself each year on what I save on shipping alone. Otherwise, I'm not sure what the shipping cost is, but I can almost guarantee it will cost less than your LFS. Good luck and please keep me updated.
Eco Complete front.jpg
 

Attachments

  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #24

ShamFish97

Valued Member
Messages
229
Reaction score
88
Points
38
Experience
2 years
Julabean said:
Are you planning to use it in your 55 gallon tank? Carib Sea recommends 1 pound per each gallon of water and a thickness of 2-3 inches on the bottom. I am buying 3 bags to do my new 40 gallon with, which will give me 2-2 1/2" of the substrate.

I'm not surprised that Amazon is a lot cheaper than what is at your LFS. Also, Amazon provides free 2-day shipping for prime members, of which I am. My membership pays for itself each year on what I save on shipping alone. Otherwise, I'm not sure what the shipping cost is, but I can almost guarantee it will cost less than your LFS. Good luck and please keep me updated.
I'm using BDBS for my 75g, and once I move my fish over I'll most likely be using eco carib in my 55g.

Here's a video of the process for cleaning and preparing Black Diamond Blasting Sand, will update when I start adding water.


I put root tabs in every few inches apart covering the whole tank, didn't get that in the video for some reason.
 

ap4lmtree

Well Known Member
Messages
839
Reaction score
121
Points
78
Experience
2 years
I am reading up on liquid ferts. I read in your first post that you used excel. I dont think you should use excel. A good sum of people have nightmare stories of using that while their fish were in the tank. I am trying to remember, but I think i used liquid ferts before, including nilocg trhiveS, and I think i threw all my liquid products away because I was so worried about what it could do to my fish. I especially don't like seachem company chemicals. Aside from their good product, prime, i think their ferts might use some kind of lab antiseptic derivative -- 1,5-pentanedial or glutaraldehyde. I regret throwing nilcog thriveS away because I can't remember why i included that when i threw liquid chems away. Now, i would like to use it, but I dont want to spend 23 bucks for a new bottle right now.

However, at the time i threw my chemicals away, i wanted to value my fish more than added chemicals doing anything to my fish. Likewise, I stopped using my homemade co2 bubbler.

In the end, i think i went more natural for my fish rather than use chemicals. But I do use osmocote, and I used to use seachem flourish root tabs, which is also good. I also used to have different substrates. Some of them cloud the water and some don't, so you have to be delicate with some. In addition, some might be too rough for fish. However, many you have to replace after a while.

You can also get some plants like java fern or anubias that don't need substrate. I bought a mother anubias plant off ebay, and it divided to three plants. I will likely buy another one soon. However, mother plants on ebay are good bargains.

i dont have a good planted tank like before, so i am not one to give good advice.
 

-Mak-

Fishlore VIP
Messages
4,666
Reaction score
3,101
Points
298
Experience
3 years
ap4lmtree said:
I am reading up on liquid ferts. I read in your first post that you used excel. I dont think you should use excel. A good sum of people have nightmare stories of using that while their fish were in the tank. I am trying to remember, but I think i used liquid ferts before, including nilocg trhiveS, and I think i threw all my liquid products away because I was so worried about what it could do to my fish. I especially don't like seachem company chemicals. Aside from their good product, prime, i think their ferts might use some kind of lab antiseptic derivative -- 1,5-pentanedial or glutaraldehyde. I regret throwing nilcog thriveS away because I can't remember why i included that when i threw liquid chems away. Now, i would like to use it, but I dont want to spend 23 bucks for a new bottle right now.

However, at the time i threw my chemicals away, i wanted to value my fish more than added chemicals doing anything to my fish. Likewise, I stopped using my homemade co2 bubbler.

In the end, i think i went more natural for my fish rather than use chemicals. But I do use osmocote, and I used to use seachem flourish root tabs, which is also good. I also used to have different substrates. Some of them cloud the water and some don't, so you have to be delicate with some. In addition, some might be too rough for fish. However, many you have to replace after a while.

You can also get some plants like java fern or anubias that don't need substrate. I bought a mother anubias plant off ebay, and it divided to three plants. I will likely buy another one soon. However, mother plants on ebay are good bargains.

i dont have a good planted tank like before, so i am not one to give good advice.
Only excel has a “bad” chemical, glutaraldehyde. All other ferts are simply nutrient salts dissolved in water... the nutrients occur in nature and a couple are even edible. All of Seachem’s products are safe, otherwise they wouldn’t really be in business.
 

Chanyi

Valued Member
Messages
241
Reaction score
171
Points
53
Experience
More than 10 years
Eco-Complete = Hard to plant delicate plants into, low CEC, no nutrients, completely inert, very good at trapping detritus making it an algae magnet, too expensive, no benefit over regular pea gravel.

Flourite = Hard to plant delicate plants into, low CEC, no nutrients, completely inert, too expensive, no benefit over regular pea gravel.

Stratum = No nutrients (non that they claim anyway), decent CEC, but it breaks down over a year or so into complete mud and creates a huge mess. Plants grow well in it though...

Plain sand = Clean, easy to plant anything into, easy to vacuum, looks nice, well priced. I recommend this approach. Fertilize the water column, use root tabs too if you want (not needed) and watch plants grow.

Spend your money not on substrate (unless you are going with ADA aquasoil - see below) but rather spend it on quality fertilizers, lighting or CO2.

ADA AquaSoil - Nutrient rich, good CEC, easy to plant into, lasts a few years before breaking down. But, note that it buffers the water's kH, dropping pH meaning water changes with tap water will cause pH swings. It also releases tons of ammonia for a month or so, and requires a fairly strict water change schedule to start off with it. Good for plants though.
 

smee82

Fishlore VIP
Messages
5,661
Reaction score
2,018
Points
498
Experience
More than 10 years
Chanyi said:
Eco-Complete = Hard to plant delicate plants into, low CEC, no nutrients, completely inert, very good at trapping detritus making it an algae magnet, too expensive, no benefit over regular pea gravel.

Flourite = Hard to plant delicate plants into, low CEC, no nutrients, completely inert, too expensive, no benefit over regular pea gravel.

Stratum = No nutrients (non that they claim anyway), decent CEC, but it breaks down over a year or so into complete mud and creates a huge mess. Plants grow well in it though...

Plain sand = Clean, easy to plant anything into, easy to vacuum, looks nice, well priced. I recommend this approach. Fertilize the water column, use root tabs too if you want (not needed) and watch plants grow.

Spend your money not on substrate (unless you are going with ADA aquasoil - see below) but rather spend it on quality fertilizers, lighting or CO2.

ADA AquaSoil - Nutrient rich, good CEC, easy to plant into, lasts a few years before breaking down. But, note that it buffers the water's kH, dropping pH meaning water changes with tap water will cause pH swings. It also releases tons of ammonia for a month or so, and requires a fairly strict water change schedule to start off with it. Good for plants though.

Quick question but do you know how long ada buffers the kh and lowers the ph for.
 

Chanyi

Valued Member
Messages
241
Reaction score
171
Points
53
Experience
More than 10 years
smee82 said:
Quick question but do you know how long ada buffers the kh and lowers the ph for.
Depends on:

Water change water - pH and kH values.

Fertilizer dosing - anything with carbonates / bicarbonates will speed up the exhaustion period of the Aquasoil.

Water change amount %.

Water change frequency.

Tank size / water volume.

Aquasoil volume used.

There is no direct answer.
 

ap4lmtree

Well Known Member
Messages
839
Reaction score
121
Points
78
Experience
2 years
-Mak- said:
Only excel has a “bad” chemical, glutaraldehyde. All other ferts are simply nutrient salts dissolved in water... the nutrients occur in nature and a couple are even edible. All of Seachem’s products are safe, otherwise they wouldn’t really be in business.
Flourish comprehensive has has it too, if you go to their website, below ingredients, it has a safety information that lists it. All seachem products are not safe. Besides those two liquid ferts, their seachem matrix bio media raises water hardness significantly, yet it doesn't state so. So, unless your fish dont mind significant water hardness, then it isn't safe aquariums. My regular ceramic media does not change water hardness. Or if you want to go with other products, we could talk about prime. Prime stinks like rotten eggs. Fish have a smell sense, so it is likely they smell it for a while. It likely causes temporary discomfort.
 
Toggle Sidebar

Aquarium Calculator

Follow FishLore!





Top Bottom