Hi. So by bf and I want to start a emersed plant farm
We are currently growing HC, E. Belem, M. Minuta, & Glosso in our 12G long tank right now with very decent growth rate using Fluval Shrimp Stratum at the top layer and Eco-complete at the bottom layer with Osmocote Plus tabs.
We want to start growing HC, UG, E. Belem, M. Minuta and Glosso emersed in 1 sq.ft. individual Tupperware boxes, but it is hard for us to decide which is the most cost effective substrate to use. We found that top soil and other gardening potting soils have the potential to rot the plants, produce fungus, odors, weird insects, etc.
Its seems like ADA AS II gets used a lot for emersed, but for 5 sq.ft. of it in 2" thick layers is a lot of AS. They aren't really cheap here in San Diego.
Any suggestions to "just as good" alternatives that can be put in any tank without washing the substrate, etc.? (i.e. shrimp and fish safe substrate).