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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-08-2012, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
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Eco Complete or Fluval

I have used flourite before but it is a little rough. The other options I have at my LFS are eco complete and fluval. Does anyone have any experience with these that they would like to share with a newbie. I would plant all low light/maintenance plants in tanks ranging from 3-10 gallons. Any help would be appreciated!
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-08-2012, 03:03 AM
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I use Eco-complete, so I'm partial to that brand. Completely serves my needs, from low-tech to high-tech. Great substrate. However, it's sold in 20lb bags to my knowledge. That would be too much and too expensive for a 3 gallon.

Never used fluval, so I can't judge.

Happy hunting!

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-08-2012, 03:04 AM
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Where in Texas are you?

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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-08-2012, 02:38 PM
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If Flourite is too rough for you, Eco-Complete will be super-rough. It's essentially tiny shards of lava rock. Inert but liquid in the bag has been known to cause parameter issues for sensitive critters.

Fluval Shrimp Stratum and Fluval Plant Stratum (same thing, Plant version is larger than the Shrimp version) are softer, round and made of dirt. Can lower pH of your water for six months to a year.

Neither contain nutrients for plants, so you'll have to add your own root tabs or ferts.


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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-08-2012, 05:20 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by somewhatshocked View Post
If Flourite is too rough for you, Eco-Complete will be super-rough. It's essentially tiny shards of lava rock. Inert but liquid in the bag has been known to cause parameter issues for sensitive critters.

Fluval Shrimp Stratum and Fluval Plant Stratum (same thing, Plant version is larger than the Shrimp version) are softer, round and made of dirt. Can lower pH of your water for six months to a year.

Neither contain nutrients for plants, so you'll have to add your own root tabs or ferts.
Shucks. I guess I don't mind the roughness. Eventually I wanted to add bottom feeders but heard the Flourite could be damaging. I don't really need bottom feeders though lol. Of those three (flourite, eco, fluval) which do you personally recommend? With the addition of ferts and root tabs of course. ( would you mind recommending me a good fert please? )

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Where in Texas are you?
I am in Houston, more specifically Cypress, TX
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-10-2012, 12:16 PM
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Even something as rough as Eco-Complete would be fine for bottom feeders. Lots of people keep Cories with EC and have no issues at all. Flourite should also be fine. Water quality is very important, though.

Fertilizers depend upon your plant needs and your budget. Osmocote Plus gelcaps work, Flourish root tabs work, other brands work. Dry fertilizers for dosing the water column.

When it comes to substrate? I personally don't recommend any of them. Though, they'll all work. A better bet would be to order a higher end substrate like ADA Aquasoil or Azoo Plant Grower Bed. Since you have small tanks, it will be easy to get a good bang for your buck.

If you have several tanks? I'd get something cheap like Safe T Sorb (search the forum for tanks that use it to see how it looks and works). It's a lot like Flourite but 40 pounds (that's a lot of it) costs about $5.


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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-10-2012, 12:53 PM
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If you're in Houston why don't you go check out our sponsor ADG? If you run aquasoil you get a fair amount of nutrients already in the soil. Cost is comparable to ecocomplete and it also comes in smaller bags.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-10-2012, 04:11 PM Thread Starter
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I have searched for ADA but have not been able to find it. If you could provide me with a website where its sold I would definitely order it! I really don't have a budget luckily lol. If its a good product I usually spend money and buy it. I don't like messing with products that don't work. Since i'll be going on Christmas break this week after finals I have the whole month to work on my planted tanks and hopefully gain some experience and knowledge. I"m very excited!

@xmas..I haven't heard of ADG. Do they sell supplies?

Thank you all for helping me!
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-10-2012, 04:51 PM
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http://www.adgshop.com/

Give Frank a call, he's real nice and knowledgeable. He's also a member here on tpt.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-11-2012, 12:36 AM Thread Starter
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http://www.adgshop.com/

Give Frank a call, he's real nice and knowledgeable. He's also a member here on tpt.
Wow, I will definitely do that! Thank you!!!
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