How much gravel? - The Planted Tank Forum

 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
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How much gravel?

I have always read that 1 lb of gravel per gallon of tank was recommended, however recently I read two lbs per gallon ... how much gravel do I really need to have a successful planted tank?

40 gallon - Misc fish
15 gallon - Axolotl
5 gallon - Betta and ADF
20 long - Hatchling turtles and corydoras.

Soon to change I am sure
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 08:23 PM
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Are you planning on using just gravel? I am about to remove all my gravel because it is just not working for me, the roots on my plants just don't get what they need. As far as how much, I don't know my math skills are not the best.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 08:54 PM
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Depends on the tank (footprint not gallons), design (flat, sloped, lots of hardscape taking up space, etc) and what you're planning to grow/approx desired depth.

Some substrates give you cubic inches per bag, those are easy. Multiply width x length of your tank x average desired depth and you've got your cubic inches needed. Divide total needed by amt per bag and you've got your bag count.

When the product only supplies weight, not cubic, and it's available in a nearby store--I head over with a ruler and smooth said bag out on the floor and take it's actual measurements: width x length x actual height.

Example: 20x40 tank with average depth of 4"= 3,200 cubic inches. If each bag is 300 cubic inches then 3200/300=10.6 bags. If you've got major piece of hardscape that might offset the total--say, a whomping huge rock that'll be set directly on the tank bottom--measure its base, multiply by your depth and subtract that estimated cubic from your total.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 09:03 PM
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I use approximately 3.5-4" deep substrate in my tanks, all of which have plants.

Flourite Black Sand (had to order online) or CaribSea Super Naturals Tahitian Moon Sand (bought at PetSmart) are my favorites, and my betta's tank uses Eco-complete (also bought online).
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 10:34 PM
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http://www.plantedtank.net/substratecalculator.html

I wish there was a more obvious link to this on the menu bar, I ran across it independently googling some other stuff.

I think it's pretty handy for making quick estimates.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 10:38 PM Thread Starter
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i just want simple plants java moss hornwort etc ... and yes only gravel. how many inches would you recommend for a 10 gallon standard tank?

40 gallon - Misc fish
15 gallon - Axolotl
5 gallon - Betta and ADF
20 long - Hatchling turtles and corydoras.

Soon to change I am sure
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 10:52 PM
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i would say enough to plant.plants is good enough. maybe around 2" would be good. to high of substrate doesnt make the tank look as nice. so i prefer lower level of substrates.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-23-2013, 12:08 AM Thread Starter
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i agree i only like deeper gravel in BIG tanks

40 gallon - Misc fish
15 gallon - Axolotl
5 gallon - Betta and ADF
20 long - Hatchling turtles and corydoras.

Soon to change I am sure
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