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EpicSpec 01-17-2013 10:47 PM

Separating sand from Eco complete
I just got a 55 gallon fish tank. I would like to turn it into a community planted tank and it would be my first planted tank I would like to have sand ( probably pool filter sand)as the top lay for my loaches and Cory cats. For the bottom layer I would like Eco complete or fluorite. I was wondering if I could separate the layers with a mesh of some kind so they do not mix. Is this possible?

amberoze 01-17-2013 11:51 PM

It would take something with extra fine pore size. Like pantyhose or similar. And I wouldn't just later it, I would actually use the largest pairs of pantyhose I could find and fill them up, tie them off and layer them on the glass. Then pour pfs on top. You'll probably end up with plant roots puncturing the barrier though, no matter how you split the layers.

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EpicSpec 01-17-2013 11:57 PM

I just want something to stop the Eco earth or fluorite to appear on the top of the substrate and won't let it mix with the sand when iMovie plants and objects

steven p 01-18-2013 12:16 AM

You could lay a flat layer of filter floss all the way across the bottom.

lochaber 01-18-2013 05:14 AM

I've had cory cats and kuhli loaches on flourite before, and it didn't seem to be a problem. Also, lots of people on here keep cories on blasting grit, which is likely more abrasive/sharper then flourite.

I'm not sure there is a good reason to do this, unless you just like the look of pool filter sand. Plus, if you are using PFS as a cap, you may as well use something like dirt, or oildri or safetsorb underneath, all of which would be far cheaper then flourite/ecocomplete and may even work better (nutrients from dirt, better CEC for oildri/safetsorb).

As to separating the layers, I'd go with something similar to what steven p said. maybe get some cheap polyester batting at a craft store or something.

Or a coconut coir type basket/pot liner - sometimes you can find those pretty thin, it would allow roots to penetrate, and it would break down over time (on the scale of years), so it shouldn't really restrict plants or anything.

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