Miracle Grow Organic Topsoil - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2012, 05:00 AM Thread Starter
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Miracle Grow Organic Topsoil

Hey all

I have been reading various stories going each which way so i'll just ask. If I plan on setting up a new dirt tank with just plants for the first 1-3 months, should I mineralize my Miracle grow topsoil or just toss it on in?

Most supporters of not mineralizing say that the organic breakdown of the organic soil is very good for the plants, as long as there are no fish in the water to take the hit from the breakdown.

Others say it's simply better to go straight topsoil and mineralize the crap out of it right off the bat.

What say YOU? Thanks!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2012, 06:23 AM
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Your question is pretty subjective. It's more about what you're looking to do than it is about what's "best."

If you're doing a high-tech system, and are willing to invest the time, it's hard to argue with MTS.

However, straight dirt has the advantage of being easier (at least in the short term), and seems to work for a lot of people.

Personally, I was unable to find a topsoil that would mineralize properly, so I opted for a hybrid method of boiled, sifted organic miracle grow mixed with 10% clay.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2012, 02:26 PM
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I have tossed the topsoil in without mineralizing it. It can work, no guarantees that it will work for you. It depends on the plants, the lights, your CO2 system, and your water source. I have great water, moderate lights, a pressurized CO2 system, and a love of plants that root heavily (i.e. few stems). So do what you will, keep a journal, and let us know how it goes.


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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2012, 11:06 PM
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For MTS, I was under the impression that you should use the cheapest topsoil you can find because you are trying to avoid soils with organics. Also you might want to check the label to see if it has manure, because I believe that is something you want to avoid in either case.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-31-2012, 03:07 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks all, a journal definitely seems almost a necessity. No different than the gym, stock trading, or anything else where you can quantify results.

I'll check out a journal and will be tracking numerous variables in the water via Excel.

I went and bought 10 bags of $1.50 topsoil, mineralizing all of it.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-31-2012, 04:03 AM
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I have MTS and maybe the most organic heavy "successful" dirt tank on the sure (see my Toxic Ten link).

Both work. I think MTS is more work building it and an organic dirt like MGOTS requires a bit more work after it's in the tank.

Really, just what you want to deal with as far as better choice. I prefer to use my own recipe.
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