Lifespan of dirt as substrate - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-12-2019, 05:58 PM Thread Starter
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Lifespan of dirt as substrate

Folks, for both my 29 and 72 gallon, I added dirt last summer and capped it with gravel. When I bought the potting soil from home depot, I saw that on the package, it said, "will feed your plants up to 3 months."

So now that it has been about 6-7 months, I am trying to figure out, how long is the soil good for as far as nutrient values go? In another word, do nutrients deplete over time? If they do, then around when? And what do I do then? Add root tabs?


I am planning to redo both my tanks. So I want to learn and then be prepared then.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-15-2019, 01:09 AM
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i'd just use root tabs but if you're gonna re do the tank you might as well put in new soil. me personally i hate dirted tanks. its too much of a clean up if the capped breaks. i went with flourite black/plain gravel but i use root tabs too.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-15-2019, 02:25 AM
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Originally Posted by shaonrahman View Post
Folks, for both my 29 and 72 gallon, I added dirt last summer and capped it with gravel. When I bought the potting soil from home depot, I saw that on the package, it said, "will feed your plants up to 3 months."

So now that it has been about 6-7 months, I am trying to figure out, how long is the soil good for as far as nutrient values go? In another word, do nutrients deplete over time? If they do, then around when? And what do I do then? Add root tabs?
Knowing nothing about your tank it's hard to say.
I use miracle-gro all purpose capped with BDBS, and on year number two.
High PAR, high CO2, RODI water and dose heavily with ferts.
Roots still seek for the soil and I will continue to use similar soils.

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Originally Posted by bicboihulk View Post
me personally i hate dirted tanks. its too much of a clean up if the capped breaks.
Properly screened soil with any floating particulates removed will not pollute the water column.
A tight cap such as BDBS instead of gravel keeps the soil from leaching as much.
Care and patience is still needed when uprooting plants.


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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-15-2019, 04:12 AM
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my problem with dirted tank was that for some reason the hob filter i used made indents in the cap. the flow kept pushing it down creating a dome. it wasn't a big filter too. it made such a mess i would never attempt it again. thats just my own experience with it. plus even worst was i can't used buckets for water change which is was i was accustomed to. i think personally, life is a lot easier to get a good substrate like ada/flourite or even just gravel with root tabs. when i did it i went the cheapest route, miracle grow and playsand, not so cheap for me now since it didnt work. i had more then enough for a 2" cap.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-15-2019, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by shaonrahman View Post
Folks, for both my 29 and 72 gallon, I added dirt last summer and capped it with gravel. When I bought the potting soil from home depot, I saw that on the package, it said, "will feed your plants up to 3 months."

So now that it has been about 6-7 months, I am trying to figure out, how long is the soil good for as far as nutrient values go? In another word, do nutrients deplete over time? If they do, then around when? And what do I do then? Add root tabs?


I am planning to redo both my tanks. So I want to learn and then be prepared then.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bicboihulk View Post
i'd just use root tabs but if you're gonna re do the tank you might as well put in new soil. me personally i hate dirted tanks. its too much of a clean up if the capped breaks. i went with flourite black/plain gravel but i use root tabs too.

Yes, when I redo my tanks, I am planning to use fresh batch of dirt. I am just trying to figure out, how long should I wait before I need to use root tab AFTER I am done with new batch.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maryland Guppy View Post
Knowing nothing about your tank it's hard to say.
I use miracle-gro all purpose capped with BDBS, and on year number two.
High PAR, high CO2, RODI water and dose heavily with ferts.
Roots still seek for the soil and I will continue to use similar soils.



Properly screened soil with any floating particulates removed will not pollute the water column.
A tight cap such as BDBS instead of gravel keeps the soil from leaching as much.
Care and patience is still needed when uprooting plants.

I got me a new bag of Miracle Gro, and also a bag of BDBS that I will use to redo my tanks. But I am guessing how long should I wait in the future to start thinking that my dirt has been capped out as far as nutrients go. I am using liquid ferts, and no CO2, although I do have plan to use CO2 in the future.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bicboihulk View Post
my problem with dirted tank was that for some reason the hob filter i used made indents in the cap. the flow kept pushing it down creating a dome. it wasn't a big filter too. it made such a mess i would never attempt it again. thats just my own experience with it. plus even worst was i can't used buckets for water change which is was i was accustomed to. i think personally, life is a lot easier to get a good substrate like ada/flourite or even just gravel with root tabs. when i did it i went the cheapest route, miracle grow and playsand, not so cheap for me now since it didnt work. i had more then enough for a 2" cap.
Sorry to hear that man.
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