Ideal substrate for large scale emersed growth? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 05:00 AM Thread Starter
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Ideal substrate for large scale emersed growth?

What is a good cheap substrate to grow hc, ug, glosso emersed in? This is more of an experimental project so I won't be spending too much on the setup. I also want to try out a large emersed setup to grow out plants before putting them into my aquarium.

Each Setup(s):
x1 two bulb flourescent shop light suspended right above plants
x1 light timer
x1 40+ gallon bin from Homedepot with a large footprint
Substrate (to be decided)

Aquasoil is ideal because of its nutrient content. It is however too expensive for large scale applications.

1.) Eco-complete and Flourite (though expensive) are inert so emersed growth will not get nutrients of either the roots or the water column. Would some osmocote work with this.

+:
Great grain sizes for root systems
Appearance

-:
Expensive
No accessible nutrients for plants
Needs fertilizers (root tabs or a spray of fertilizers)

2.) How about potting soil? The only issue I see would be mold and fungus. I heard some plants like UG need nutrient poor substrates, otherwise, it'll burn the plant. Any experience with this? I wouldn't like the smell of it in indoors though.

+:
Nutrient rich
Cheap

-:
Requires baking (to kill organisms and parasites)
Appearance
Texture when wet
Smell
Fungus/mold/insect control

3: Sand is inert so same as Eco-complete and Flourite. Maybe just buy some osmocote for it?

+:
Cheap
Plants root easily

-:
Appearance
Requires fertilizers
Texture

Perhaps a mixture of Sand and Potting soil? I'd prefer a clean setup that looks nice that my parents won't go crazy over. Is there something with the texture and color of Eco-complete but cheaper? Cheap alternatives for substrate fertilizer besides osmocote?

I can't wait to set this up. It will be a great learning experience for me.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 05:30 AM
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Is this for just growing out plants or is it supposed to look pleasing? If it is just to basically farm plants for other uses, I would go with sand or soil. Or, you can cap sand with soil if you think it will smell better/look better and then you have a cheap solution.

-Matt

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 05:40 AM Thread Starter
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Mostly to grow out plants. Appearance however is a bonus .

So pool filter sand with some osmocote and I am good to go?
I still have some other questions to be answered though on the first post to be answered before I decide though. Has anyone had problems with sand and carpeting plants?
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry, but where would I put a journal of this?

+Bump also
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