peat moss ?? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-30-2012, 02:41 PM Thread Starter
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peat moss ??

hi all

Can i use peat moss with dirt or top soil in the Substrate

so is it good for the plants ?

and if not good to use so why ?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-03-2012, 11:21 AM Thread Starter
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it may be a stupid question but i am so confused about it
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-06-2012, 09:57 AM
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I have used a soil with 90% sphagnum peat without any real problem. It absorbs some fertilizers from the water, makes the water softer and releases tannins for a while. But the soil i used had some fertilizers and limestone/dolomite added to it.

Peat moss have a high CEC so it can store a lot of fertilizers. I think the CEC for peat moss is something like 100 – 180 meq/100g
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 01:09 AM
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Use it, it works well to lower pH. Also, it's kind of light and fluffy so it prevents your substrate level from dropping too fast. but DO cap it.

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 10:12 AM
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"Can i use peat moss with dirt or top soil in the Substrate"

yes and yes.....also by itself 1.5" with a gravel or fired clay substrate like saf t sorb
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2012, 04:25 AM
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I'm wondering how to use peat moss in my established tank? I saw somewhere to replace the carbon filter with peat moss? Should I do that?
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2012, 04:50 AM
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I am also thnking of using peat moss in my substrate (I am thinking of capping it with that black "moon sand") because I heard it was good for plants and that my betta would love what it does to the water.

Should it be rinsed at all? Is it the regular peat moss I get for my plants?
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2012, 04:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WAR T0RN1226 View Post
I'm wondering how to use peat moss in my established tank? I saw somewhere to replace the carbon filter with peat moss? Should I do that?
you don't need carbon in your filter in a planted tank (or any tank if the parameters are good), but you should be able to add the peat moss in without taking anything out, unless there's not room. just stuff it in there.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2012, 05:20 AM
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gel caps in the substrate would also work if you have the finely ground stuff.

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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-02-2012, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
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so its good to mix peat moss with the MTS top soil ?
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-02-2012, 05:01 PM
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I have used peat moss in several ways in aquariums.

1) Pure peat moss substrate for carnivorous plants
~It is so light weight that any water movement sends it flying through the tank. It settles, but settles on top of leaves and everything else. As a confined riparium it works really well, but just loose, well, I will not do that again.

2) Mixed with the charcoal colored Soil Master Select
~Similar to above comment: The peat moss tends to fly all over when the substrate is disturbed. The materials are similar in weight, so they stay blended. (I do not think sand or gravel will stay on top as a cap)

3) In the filter: I use a nylon stocking, cut to fit. For example, in small filters a Knee-Hi can be cut into 3 bags. Rubber band one end, zip tie the other. When the rubber band disintegrates it is time to replace the peat. I use about half a knee hi in larger filters. The bag is not too full, the larger bag is easier to stretch into position so it fills the basket of something like the Rena Filstar series. If a filter will hold 2 bags that is OK, too. I used to keep track of how often to swap them out.

In all these uses:
Peat moss varies, so what it may do...
Some peat will exchange a lot of the minerals in the water, sort of like a sodium exchange water softener, so the Ca and Mg levels in the tank may go down. In my case this is not happening very much or at all.
Peat moss releases tannic and other organic acids to the water. This will lower the pH. This is especially true when it is used in a tank with a softening substrate. (Soil Master Select removes the KH from the water, so the pH will certainly drop).
The tannins will stain the water. The amount and color will vary. In my case the water is tinted just a little bit toward gold. Not harsh yellow, not orange or red. Just a little, and it does not last long. I have very clear water in my carnivorous plant riparium. I just moved it, but reused the same substrate.

I also use peat moss to prepare the water for some tanks. I put a knee hi stocking full in a garbage can (20 gallons to 44 gallons, I have 3 water prep cans). If the peat is new the water is prepped in a few hours or overnight. I keep reusing the same peat, and get about half a dozen uses out of it. But it takes longer to prep the water.
I have set up a pump to circulate the water, and the outlet (a vinyl tube) is aimed to pass through the stocking full of peat.

No, do not rinse the peat moss before use, but do wet it.
I put it in the bag (cut off stocking) and squeeze it several times in some water.
Peat moss does not seem to want to get wet. Hot water helps. Do not use surfactants for wetting aquarium peat moss.

I use Canadian Sphagnum Peat Moss purchased in the garden department. Read the label to be sure there are no fertilizers or surfactants. This is a fine, fluffy material, and little bits may escape and drift about in the tank. Not for long, they do settle out.

Peat moss is also available in pellets, packaged by some of the aquarium filter manufacturers (I know Fluval/Hagen has some). These pellets stay cleaner than the garden style of peat moss. They are pretty expensive, though, compared to a bale of the garden variety peat moss.
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-02-2012, 08:46 PM
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So if I understand this right I can use ScottsŪ Premium Topsoil to make mts?
Scotts topsoil has peat moss add to it.
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-03-2012, 04:35 AM
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I do not know if there is really any soil in that. From what I see at Scott web site it is soil conditioner, a blend of organic matter. Including peat moss, but what are the other ingredients?
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-03-2012, 06:53 AM
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Another option is using powdered pottery clay and mixing it with peat 80%clay to 20% peat been testing it in a bucket outside and although I don't have flow in it I'm growing a l aromatica stem in it and the water is not filled with floating peat the trick was to pour the ingredients in a bucket and slowly introduce water while mixing the peat into the clay, eventually you have a nice clump of peat filled clay and you're ready to put it into the tank or container you'd like, I'm not using it currently with a cap but if you want to I'm sure there are other ways and you wont need powdered clay. However the clay if you source it right will be full of iron. Btw I tested this because I'm looking for a black water sediment like substrate and this is as close as I've found that won really need a cap.


Use peat no matter what you go with as it promotes a healthy substrate


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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 07:31 PM
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Has anyone mixed peat moss with eco complete? Im in the process of setting up at 40gal tru view tank. Currently have 40lbs of eco mixed with peat moss. Im going going to add on more 20lb bag to top off peat/eco mix which is still rather fluffy tomorrow.
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