a 15 pound bag of flourite only runs about 22 bucks.
Online it is, but then there is shipping, additional freight charges, and taxes. In the end it's about 50 bucks. It's the same price in the store. The guy who runs the store is crrrrrazy
How do you feel about mineralized topsoil?
This would do four things for you - 1) it's cheap 2) supplies nutrients (which neither Flourite nor Excel really do) 3) gives you the depth you are looking for and 4) looks good capped with Flourite.
Plus, making your own substrate could lead to great feelings of accomplishment.
I was thinking of using some topsoil, but I hear it has some things in it that are unhealthy to shrimp, which I would like very much to have. I suppose it would be okay if I kept it capped? But I wouldn't be able to keep my hands out of the tank, constantly rearranging things. I'll keep it in mind, and it will probably be the route I take. Thanks for your suggestion. (Feeling of accomplishment would be great
You could also look for OilDri (check the automotive section at WalMart). It's a fired clay with similar properties to Flourite, though IMO the colors aren't as nice (I'm personally obsessed with black LOL) and it is light so can be a challenge to get plants to stay down at first. (I'd give plants a while to get established before adding any catfish, for example.)
I'll check it out for sure, thanks!
On that kind of budget, skip flourite altogether. How about mineralized soil capped with Turface, OilDri, Colorquartz, or Pool sand?
I'll think about it after I check out those products. I'm brand new to this, so I didn't know my options, but pool sand seems kinda gross to me. Really looking for that professional black look.
We'll see how it goes when I get my tank cycling and start a journal.