mixing substrate. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 08:21 AM Thread Starter
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mixing substrate.

I will be setting up my 55 planted soon. Im trying to cut down on price. Im thinking of buying 2 bags of flourite black sand. Also the fish store sells this black-like gravel that seems very small. The black gravel is like 15 bucks for a 50lb bag, but flourite is about 23 bucks per bag

They look about the same size wise. I just want at least 3 inches and probably create a 'mountain' with the substrate.

Im wondering if it will be ok to mix the 2 and still be safe for my cory's?

Also how much do you think I will need?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 10:38 AM
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mixing substrates and sand/gravel for filler is perfectly fine...your plants wont grow as fast but theyll still grow

as far as quantity...search the site for "caculator"...Im sure theres a substrate calculator around here somewhere...
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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how about the corys, will the black stuff they sell hurt them?
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 10:35 PM
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as long as it doesnt have very sharp edges...theyll be fine...but if its pretty coarse and rounded...then theyll be fine as well
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 11:26 PM
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I mix mine. I put the plant substrate on the bottom, and gravel on top.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-04-2010, 09:52 PM Thread Starter
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why do you have to put the plant substrate on the bottom? can you mix it together so they blend with eachother?
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 01:26 AM
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Plant substrate on the bottom so the plants get held in place better. Gravel on top to hold down lightweight substrates. OK to mix, too. It usually ends up mixed, anyway.

Calculate:
length x width of tank x average depth of substrate.

48" x 12" x 2" = 1152 cubic inches.
divide to get cubic feet. .7 cubic feet.

Most rock and sand weighs pretty close to 100 lbs per cubic foot.
More organic sorts of soils weigh less.

So if you are mixing a sandy type of soil and gravel you will need roughly 70 lbs.

This would give you 2" evenly all over, or a mound about 3" deep, tapering to about 1". If you want it deeper than 1" in those areas, then get about 100 lbs. of substrate.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 01:39 AM
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i agree with diana. as long as the substrate looks the same, you should be fine using them together. BUT, i'm also pretty price conscious, and i recently redid two of my tanks' substrates.

IME, if you are hoping for a planted tank anyway, i think you should use a mix of topsoil, florabase, dolomite/potash/etc to your liking underneath the plant gravel. thats what i currently have in my 50g tank, and i'm loving it so far. talk to legomaniac on these forums, he's done a lot with different substrates and his are always really nutrient-rich and cost-effective.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 07:27 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by demosthenes View Post
i agree with diana. as long as the substrate looks the same, you should be fine using them together. BUT, i'm also pretty price conscious, and i recently redid two of my tanks' substrates.

IME, if you are hoping for a planted tank anyway, i think you should use a mix of topsoil, florabase, dolomite/potash/etc to your liking underneath the plant gravel. thats what i currently have in my 50g tank, and i'm loving it so far. talk to legomaniac on these forums, he's done a lot with different substrates and his are always really nutrient-rich and cost-effective.
Thanks to both of you and diana.

This soil thing has caught my eye. I emailed lego guy to see if he responds.

Since you used it, how is it? any drawbacks? Im still wanting to grow a grass of HC and wondering if just regular soil will hold it? Whats your recipie and how much did it cost?

if I can save alot this way, Ill definitely do it. But I want to know the goods and badds.

It should be pretty soft for my cories to?
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 03:25 PM
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Garden soil or bagged soils for garden use can be used in an aquarium, but there are several cautions.
Using a substrate that is designed for planted aquariums, and adding a little powdered fertilizer and mineral supplements is a very good way to go. Having the nutrients in the substrate, and less fertilizers in the water seems to reduce the algae a lot. Also reduces the amount of water column fertilizers you need to add.
Using a substrate without fertilizers (sand, gravel) and adding fertilizer tablets is another option, but I have found those tablets to be pretty expensive.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-09-2018, 10:20 PM
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Hi ll

I am setting up 240 litre planted tank and been told to use Amazonia aqua soil as a base substrate with jbL Sansibar on top for effect ?? any thoughts

Thanks
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