just sand as a substrate - does it work - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 05:10 PM Thread Starter
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just sand as a substrate - does it work

is anyone using just sand pool filter for substrate? is it possible to do a lush aquarium with just sand as the substrate (with co2 of course). what should i fortify it with?? would like to here from successful aqua gardeners who are using sand only and what they add to it, if anything

thx, john
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 05:15 PM
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you can grow plants in sand just fine. Fertilize the water column with your choice of methods (I'd recommend the EI system for this setup) and the plants will uptake the nutriends accordingly. If you like swords, crypts, and other heavy root feeders you might add some sort of root tabs under those plants specifically, but you don't HAVE to have ADA AS, or MTS, or ECO complete, etc, those things just make it easier to dial in a consistent level of ferts.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 05:35 PM
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I grow a full assortment of echinodorus sp (swords, from E Teneuls to Amazons) using Play sand and a mix of a few of my products: RootMedic Green Start and RootMedic Complete.

Just Green Start would be adequate for 6 months or more on a new tank.

That being said, Sand works great in Low Tech tanks using at minimum some form of Substrate Nutrients. There are lots of different options on what you can use. Plants take different nutrients from different parts of the plant. Some nutrients are readily absorbed by stems and leaves, while some are better absorbed in the substrate.

If you are going low tech, take a look at Tom Barr's Non-CO2 EI methods, or EI LIght as he calls it, I think.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 05:49 PM
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i have great success with sand in 2 of my tanks(46gal bow &60gal),both are low light tanks
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