cheap and simple substrate pleez... - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 02:19 AM Thread Starter
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Can someone give me a recipe for an inexpensive substrate. Something you can put up from the local garden store or what have you. A little of this and a little of that....I've seen cat litter, peat and gravel as one idea.
any others?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 02:45 AM
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Treat your substrate as you would the foundation of your home. There is no way to change substrate later without tearing everything apart and starting over. Save money other ways but get the best substrate you can.

Spend the money to start right. 100% Flourite, ECO Complete planted Aquarium substrate, Tahitian Moon Sand and onyx sand are all 20 to 25 dollars a bag. They are all worth it. They'll not cause problems later like several of the suggested materials I see mentioned.

I got the ECO- CPAS at Bob's Tropical Fish in Augusta for $19.99 a bag. It was marked $24.99 but they gave me a deal. I particuliarly like the back color. It brings out the color of both fish and plants. Personal preference. They have Flourite in both brown and red. They have onyx sand also. Didn't see any Tahitian moon sand.

I currently live in Eatonton, GA but will be move to our new house in Milledgeville next week.

Good luck to you.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 04:25 AM
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I use Flourite and it is IMO the way to go!!! It might be a little expensive but you don't need to really add anything to it and no mixing of this or that.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 08:46 AM
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I just ordered three bags of Flourite for my 37 gallon tank. I'm going to totally switch out the substrate from my current black gravel with some white mixed in (looks awesome, but unnatural with live plants) to pure Flourite (although I've heard that mixing in some Laterite is a good idea too--is this true?). Any tips for doing this substrate change, as it will be a fairly significant one? How much Flourite should I use? Thanks.

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37 gallon AGA Black Seal, Emperor 400, Ebo Jager 200 W, 100% Flourite Substrate, 2x55 Watt AH Supply PC Lighting (5300K & 6400K) @ ~3.4 WPG, High-Pressure CO2.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 11:14 AM
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I did the kitty litter thing with pea gravel over top and have been 100% saisfied withit going on 8 years now.

See the krib for more info.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 02:25 PM
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I got my flourite for $12.99 a bag, at the not-so-local LFS. (45 minutes away). Also used one box of first layer laterite.

I've heard good things about Schultz AquaSoil, and its supposed to be cheap, too. Have to find some this spring for use with pond plants.

Heard good things about kitty litter, and I also have a tank set up with soil, peat, gravel mixture. It was an experiment, works ok, but I wouldn't reccomend it, you want to move anything, dirty cloudy water is your result.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 09:59 PM
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I have used the Schultz stuff but it was called SOIL CLAY CONDITIONER. Heres what it looked like in my tank
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 10:40 PM
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When I setup my tank with Flourite i used a 50% mix of Flourite/gravel. I really don't think that you need to mix it with laterite. There is enough iron in the Flourite that you need not add anymore. But I guess it will not hurt (just the wallet lol!!)

My plants are growing fast.
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