Options with sand - The Planted Tank Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-24-2019, 12:40 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Herndon, Virginia
Posts: 79
Options with sand

Hey all,
So, I am planning to setup a new tank. It will probably be 15-20 gallons. Or it could be bigger, havent setup my mind yet. For this post, I think the size doesnt matter. But please do correct me if I am wrong. First, I will add what I am planning to do. And then take a look at the questions that I need help with. And finally, please do feel free to add anything that I may have left out, or something I should look out for, or must do. lol

Get dirt from homedepot/lowes, miracle grow potted soil or something similar to that. Put them through strainer to filter out all the big chunks. About one inch of it. Then add anything else that I may need; such as Mexican Clay. And then, cap it with Pool Sand. Needless to say, I will need to wash the sand throughly.

At the moment, I have the same setup, but with gravel. So, since I never used it before, I want to learn all I can so that it can be least stressful for my fish and plants. I have been doing some research and learned a whole lot deal for sand. That being said, here are the questions that I need help with.

1. Having both sand and dirt, how do I handle gas pockets? I saw people rake it with their fingers, but their tanks are plain sand and most of the time, no plants. But because I do have plants, and dirt, what are my options?

2. I want to add organic Miracle Grow potted soil. Is there any brand that would work better than the others? Or add convenience to it?

3. Then I want to add AMACO Mexican Self-Hardening Clay in disk shape (in the dirt) to provide Iron.
- Does that sound good for Iron?
- What else do I need to add there? Any names/brands would be really helpful.

4. I was also looking at getting Activ-Flora Floracor for Aquarium, 16-Pound, Red. Would that sub for everything including iron?

Again, please do advice anything that you think I am missing.
shaonrahman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-26-2019, 04:51 AM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Pennsylvania, USA
Posts: 11
Hi,

I myself plan to do the same for a dirt tank: miracle gro organic choice potting "mix" (instead of the "soil" you plan to use) + clay + some sand cap. I am still a newbie to the planted tanks and am looking around to learn things. I am still in the planning stage. So take my suggestion with a pinch of salt .

There is one more thing you could do to enrich the potting soil as mentioned here and many other places. As I understand, the mineralization process is to breakdown organic compounds in the soil to inorganic compounds and jumpstart the bio-cycle in the tank. This also allows you to grow plants without fertilizers for a relatively long time. You can find another way of using clay as well as a list of few other materials in that weblink.

I have a slightly parallel discussion going on here which may be of interest to you. Few others have suggested using lava rock and dry fertilizers in that discussion. I am yet to research these options though.

From what I have read so far, any organic soil will work well in a planted tank. Just make sure that it is truly organic by reading the ingredients as well as nutrients information on the packet. I saw some YouTube videos mentioning about watching out for % of N-P-K information on the packet while selecting a particular soil brand. You local Kmart may also carry miracle gro organic options in case Home Depot/Lowes do not have them in stock.

Cheers!
subchan is offline  
post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-26-2019, 01:26 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PlantedRich's Avatar
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 11,850
I am not a big fan of dirt as it is DIRTY so look at my thoughts as being more the warning advice while others may be more forward thinking?
I use dirt in limited amounts and areas as I do find it easier to add ferts than deal with dirt. One biggie is that is tends to be lots of trouble to get dirt without debris that comes loose to float around, so choose carefully onb that point. Once you have a handful of something like the little white beads, they can be nearly a forever job to chase down and they do get released as you will almost certainly be moving and changing a few plants at times.
Also be aware that the sand does get moved and sifted into the dirt over time. Perhaps not a big thing but be aware?
Pool filter sand is good stuff and often required little to no rinsing as it is very carefully controlled and washed to be used in filters. Very clean compared to dirt?
Good luck on the new tank and certainly do not let what I like/don't like control what you do.
Enjoy your tank as it is your tank. Ignore my complaints!

Last edited by PlantedRich; 01-26-2019 at 01:28 PM. Reason: add
PlantedRich is offline  
 
post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-26-2019, 01:56 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Maryland Guppy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Arnold
Posts: 3,206
Quote:
Originally Posted by shaonrahman View Post
Hey all,

Get dirt from homedepot/lowes, miracle grow potted soil or something similar to that. Put them through strainer to filter out all the big chunks. About one inch of it. Then add anything else that I may need; such as Mexican Clay. And then, cap it with Pool Sand. Needless to say, I will need to wash the sand throughly.

Again, please do advice anything that you think I am missing.
After the material has been sifted of all large particles soak it in small portions and remove anything that floats with a fine net.

You will at some time uproot a plant and release a little dirt from the roots.
This way soil materials do not float around they stay right where the plant was uprooted allowing for a quick vacuum of the area.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Growing is not that difficult.
Maryland Guppy is online now  
post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-27-2019, 12:23 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Herndon, Virginia
Posts: 79
Thank you everyone for all the ideas/tips.
shaonrahman is offline  
Reply

Tags
dirt

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Sand sand sand jmh474 Substrate 2 01-12-2015 05:47 PM
Sand Substrate in California the4ork Substrate 2 12-31-2014 06:25 PM
Will sand work for me? A.2013 Substrate 3 07-05-2013 02:51 PM
Going from flourite to sand, couple questions BonesCJ Substrate 13 03-11-2011 01:29 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome