Order of operations - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-10-2020, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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Order of operations

First time using Aquasoil. Planning to cap it with BDBS. I know I should expect a couple weeks of very cloudy water and big water changes. With that in mind for a new tank. Do I want to plant then flood.. or should I flood it... Do the water changes with just the hardscape and then plant it? Thanks!
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-10-2020, 08:17 PM
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Expect a lot of mixing of the substrates over time, might be possible nasty ammonia spikes / longer than normal ammonia leaching because of the capping.

Why are you wanting to cap it?

I would plant then flood.... most aquascape videos I watch plant directly into fresh Aquasoil then flood.
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Last edited by Quagulator; 02-10-2020 at 08:23 PM. Reason: Typo... again
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-10-2020, 08:19 PM
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First time using Aquasoil. Planning to cap it with BDBS. I know I should expect a couple weeks of very cloudy water and big water changes. With that in mind for a new tank. Do I want to plant then flood.. or should I flood it... Do the water changes with just the hardscape and then plant it? Thanks!
Couple of things.

If your careful with the AS, your water should be clear, it doesn't have to get cloudy. Try not to break the granules and don't pour water directly on it when filing.

You put enough water in to cover the substrate by a couple of inches and then you plant. Much easier then planting a full tank. Keep up with water change schedule.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-10-2020, 08:42 PM Thread Starter
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Expect a lot of mixing of the substrates over time, might be possible nasty ammonia spikes / longer than normal ammonia leaching because of the capping.

Why are you wanting to cap it?

I would plant then flood.... most aquascape videos I watch plant directly into fresh Aquasoil then flood.
I was capping for two reasons. One to save money. I could use a 3L bag instead of a 9L bag. But more importantly from reading it seemed a sand cap on Aquasoil should be easier to hold plants in and less overall issues. You obviously feel that isn't the case?
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-10-2020, 08:53 PM
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I was capping for two reasons. One to save money. I could use a 3L bag instead of a 9L bag. But more importantly from reading it seemed a sand cap on Aquasoil should be easier to hold plants in and less overall issues. You obviously feel that isn't the case?
Yes it wold be cheaper, but less buffering life, less nutrients, overall less benefit of using the Aqausoil.

Probably about the same in terms of holding plants in place while they take root.

They will mix together, the sand working it's way to the bottom and the Aquasoil working its way to the surface.

I'm not saying it wont work, I'm just saying there might be issues in terms of ammonia leaching from the soil and mixing over time.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-10-2020, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cale42 View Post
I was capping for two reasons. One to save money. I could use a 3L bag instead of a 9L bag. But more importantly from reading it seemed a sand cap on Aquasoil should be easier to hold plants in and less overall issues. You obviously feel that isn't the case?
Yes it wold be cheaper, but less buffering life, less nutrients, overall less benefit of using the Aqausoil.

Probably about the same in terms of holding plants in place while they take root.

They will mix together, the sand working it's way to the bottom and the Aquasoil working its way to the surface.

I'm not saying it wont work, I'm just saying there might be issues in terms of ammonia leaching from the soil and mixing over time.
Even in an all Aquasoil setup I would assume there is still the potential for leaching ammonia over time? Or you think without a mix the Aquasoil is likely to give up all the ammonia quickly? The BDBS could essentially trap it?

Im planning a good number of fish.. so worth some thought.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 04:23 AM
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First time using Aquasoil. Planning to cap it with BDBS. I know I should expect a couple weeks of very cloudy water and big water changes. With that in mind for a new tank. Do I want to plant then flood.. or should I flood it... Do the water changes with just the hardscape and then plant it? Thanks!
Since you need only one 9 liter bag your tank can't be that big, so your water changes shouldn't be a big deal. I would spring for the entire ADA set up with the powersand and additives. They make a "powder" version with smaller granules you can put on top which makes planting easier. There is also the Amazonia II, or Light product that leaches less ammonia. I went that route and it worked great on this tank, this pic after 7 months. The soil definitely helped with the growth. That's the powder product on top.Click image for larger version

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 05:39 AM
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If you insist on doing the cap method, look up the original tropica soil. It is designed to be capped. I think it has been THE staple for Dutch aquarists for many years: https://www.bigalspets.com/tropica-p...substrate.html

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