Eco Complete + ADA Aquasoil? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 05:40 AM Thread Starter
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Eco Complete + ADA Aquasoil?

Hi everyone. Couple questions involving my current substrates. I have yet to set up my 55 gallon heavily planted tank. I already have 4 bags of Eco Complete and one of the big bags of ADA Amazonia. I'm trying to figure out the best way to put in fertilized substrate. I was think of putting the ADA under the Eco Complete as the fertilized soil and to lower the PH a bit. But is it going to be bad considering how heavy the eco complete is? Will it start to go to the top is what I mean. Also, I've heard Eco Complete is not very good with foreground plants. I'm getting some HC some and I want it to be very lush as well as an other foreground plants I might have. Would it be best to have some sort of other substrate on top of everything to help the plants "root in" lush-ly?

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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 08:12 AM
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Granular_convection

If the pieces have the same density the larger sized pieces rise to the top. Its called the brazil nut effect.

So unless EC is more dense than ADA AS the big pieces in the EC will be the brazil nuts in the equation.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 04:44 PM Thread Starter
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So what would be the best thing to pt under my eco complete as fertilizer substrate? ADA, Mr. Aqua, MTS....
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 05:01 PM
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eco complete IS "fertilized" substrate...
no need to mix it with anything else

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 05:08 PM Thread Starter
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really? a lot of people on here say that it's basically inert... You dont think I would need a little extra something for the plants? I have roots tabs I will be putting in too. Wow, I'm such a noob!
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 05:10 PM
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I have used eco complete exclusively and grown glosso, hc, dwarf haigrass and tons of stems with great success. After about 6 months i put in pfertz or rootmedic root tabs for good measure. don't get me wrong, aquasoil is great stuff but eco has always worked well for me.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 05:30 PM Thread Starter
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That's good to hear. I'm think I still might go with one bag or either ADA or Mr. Aqua, and 3 bags of Eco. I also really want to lower my pH a little. Do you think this would do the trick? I will be using partial RO water/ partial tap in the water changes and using pressurized CO2. Thoughts on if one bag will be ok to lower the PH a bit?
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-21-2011, 12:19 AM
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RO water will help a lot to soften your tap water. I'm not sure how much one bag of AS will lower it, but it will. also be careful as eco complete RAISES the pH for some people in the beggining...after 3 weeks and 50% water changes (which I did anyway with my EI dosing) my water went back to normal.I use an RO mix anyways though as my water is liquid rock. oh and the aquasoil and eco will mix, even if you try and layer them it inevitably will happen. I like a uniform look, but if you don't mind then its not an issue

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-21-2011, 12:41 AM
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Id mix them right off the bat that way you dont worry about the inevitable.

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-22-2011, 05:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by austinramirez View Post
eco complete IS "fertilized" substrate...
no need to mix it with anything else
Sorry, but no. Eco complete has a very small amount of trace elements, but no macro ferts. very, very little potassium, no phosphate, no nitrogen. I could grow most plants in inert sand in a well-stocked aquarium, being able to grow plants in a substrate does mean it necessarily has fertilizer.

Don't believe me? check the back of the bag.

Eco-complete also won't buffer like Amazonia will. I think after reading boringname's link (very cool btw) and my own ancedotal experience with big eco complete pieces moving up that the Amazonia should stay on the bottom. I would imagine that the Amazonia is of a lower density. You could also dust the bottom with peat, to get a similar result. (without the added fertilization though)

Also, Eco complete will work great for foreground plants, just let the more delicate plants (HC in particular) get well rooted before you add lots of shrimp or bottom feeders. The picture in my avatar is HC and downoi grown in Eco-complete.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-22-2011, 06:29 AM
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thanks for clearing that up indignation. my mistake was assuming it having nutrients = fertilized substrate

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-23-2011, 06:30 AM
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I think carib-sea likes to take liberties with their advertising, which leads to some understandable misinformation.
Eco-complete is an excellent substrate, but that has very little to do with initial mineral content and a whole lot to do with it's CEC.
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