Best black cap for dirt tank?
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:53 PM   #1
wetrelief
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Best black cap for dirt tank?


I am planning on doing a dirt tank (a walstad tank). I want a black cap, but really want something natural looking. I saw all the tanks on here with black diamond and they look good, does it make for a good cap? The black gravel at my LFS is just way to big, they would look like boulders.

I am wondering what everyone like to use and could recommend?
Pics wouldnt hurt either
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:08 PM   #2
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i used a cheap black sand that i found majorly discounted at a lfs, and it still looked pretty natural...at least more than black gravel or eco complete.
if you are capping dirt, I think sand would probably be your best option. anything larger might let some of the mud seep out....and trust me it gets messy quick.

though keep in mind; if you like to shuffle plants around a lot, a sand/dirt substrate may not be your best bet
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:31 PM   #3
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I use black diamond in my tanks and I love it.
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
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I use black diamond in my tanks and I love it.
me too.
and it's cheap, 50 lbs for 8 bucks!
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:16 PM   #5
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If you are the kind of person who likes to move things around a lot, just put foam/dirt/sand in 2"-3" deep x 3"-4" wide clay pots that have had your sand glued to the outsides so they look the same as your sand in the pots. They will blend in well. Plant faster growing/hardier plants in the regular (same colored as sand also) gravel (no dirt) around the outside of the pots to help with blending them into your landscape.

I use the lower flat pots 2"high x 4"wide round, and layer 1/4" foam(keeps dirt in pots) into bottom of each pot soaked with general liquid ferts, put in dirt, plant, and cover dirt with sand. Then when I need to move them I just pick the whole thing up and it never harms the plant at all, they just keep growing in other tanks when moved.

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Old 10-03-2012, 08:11 PM   #6
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Thats why i love buying potted plants.. I forgot i had some and went to pull out a plant that had branched off of a mother pot.. and pulled the whole thing out by mistake :Z lol. Im talking about the small plastic pots that are like 2"x2" or whatever.
Works GREAT especially for stems that keep floading out of the soil (ended up buying a few on ebay for that reason :O

To answer your question, your best bet is black sand. as previously stated anything bigger might let the dirt go through.
Problem will be that when you move stuff around you can still kick it up. Perhaps putting down black garvel and sand on top will work better, idk.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:44 PM   #7
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I do not know anything about black diamond. Do you only use that as a substrate? Does it last as long as a dirt tank? I will look into this. thanks.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:08 PM   #8
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Black gravel is the best in my opinion, you can probably find some online, pea sized is perfect
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:25 PM   #9
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I do not know anything about black diamond. Do you only use that as a substrate? Does it last as long as a dirt tank? I will look into this. thanks.
You can use just black diamond in your tank. However it is completely inert and you will need to use root tabs. Dirt tanks will have more nutrients in the substrate for a longer period of time than those with just sand and root tabs.
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Old 10-03-2012, 11:38 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone.
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