Dirt vs Sand with Osmocote Plus - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-08-2020, 05:30 PM Thread Starter
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Question Dirt vs Sand with Osmocote Plus

I ran a dirted tank with co2 and high light with a black diamond blasing sand cap over the dirt. This is the dirt I used: https://www.naturescare.com/en-us/pr...water-conserve


It worked very well. However, for this dutch style aquarium I want to do, I want to go for only sand and osmocote plus pellets: https://www.amazon.com/Osmocote-Outd.../dp/B00GTDGMHC

Should this work fine? I'm turned off by going the dirt route again since I hate the mess that it makes when I uproot something.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-08-2020, 06:25 PM
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Yes, I think the sand and the root O+ pellets should work out well. There are some plants that benefit from the root fertilization and others that take it from the water column. If you do the regular EI dosing and the pellets you'll have a lush tank

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-08-2020, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
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I've always wondered about dosing and I guess now is the time to get a definite answer. If the plants don't show any deficiencies, would you still dose? I've seen people go straight to dosing after setting up a tank, and I'm wondering why they do that if there are no problems, or any yet to be seen?
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-08-2020, 06:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Now3 View Post
I've always wondered about dosing and I guess now is the time to get a definite answer. If the plants don't show any deficiencies, would you still dose? I've seen people go straight to dosing after setting up a tank, and I'm wondering why they do that if there are no problems, or any yet to be seen?
Look at it this way. If you don't feed your lawn, you get dead grass. If you don't feed your aquatic plants you get dead plants. It's a bigger problem in an aquarium because dead plants release ammonia and other toxins tha will bring on algae and potential fish problems. You want to be proactive not reactive. Your best bet to grow plants, is to fertilize and change water regularly. If your relying on fish waste/food instead of dosing your relying on your tank getting dirty. It's not rocket science believe me.


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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-08-2020, 08:53 PM
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Sand has 0 CEC value when new, takes about 6mo-1year for enough broken down detritus to embed itself in sand to raise its CEC value. NO CEC value, nothing to hold the nutrients that Osmo pellets are releasing. If you want to use osmo get some 00 gel caps and load it with 3-4 Osmo pellets and fill rest of cap with composted coco peat and couple pieces of crushed coral for Ca/Mg source.

The peat has a very high CEC value to hold nutrients that osmo is releasing. Add new ones about every 3-4mo.
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