My first impressions - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 02:04 PM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up My first impressions

I have been perusing the forum here for about a week now and must say I am impressed with the level of professionalism there is to helping and sharing knowledge. That's important for several reasons.
  1. While I am new to this forum, I am not new to the hobby, (although I have been away from it for several years).
  2. Thanks to my brother I am about to re-enter the hobby as he has graciously donated equipment to get me going again (more on this in a bit).
  3. There has been great advances in the hobbie since I was actively keeping fish, in fact if memory serves me correctly, when I stopped keeping aquairums I think the idea of adding C02 was in it's infancy.
  4. I decided to do a lot of research before jumping in and setting up shop and that is where this forum has come in handy.
For now I have one question dealing with substrate. Has anyone done a side-by-side comparison of the most popular brands? It would be interesting to see how each stacks up. I'm sure the final decision on one particular brand is a matter of personal preference. Still it would be interesting to see such a comparison.

The donated equipment;
1 35g plexi-glass tank
1 Eheim 2213 canister filter
20lbs of gravel
Driftwood
Heater
and
Plenty of enthusiasm to help me get back into the hobby.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 02:53 PM
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this link was posted by someone else on this forum, cant remember who, but it is a nice comparison, might not be exactly what you are looking for but take aa look anyway...

http://www.cichlid-forum.com/article...ates_chart.php


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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 03:06 PM
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Welcome to TPT, DonV! We're glad to have ya!

There have been a number of discussions on this in this forum, as well as here is another thread of mine from another forum with tons of links/resources from my own personal substrate research: http://www.tropicalresources.net/for...p?f=90&t=23188





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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 04:02 PM Thread Starter
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Great information, I appreciate the help. BTW, what was your final choice of substrate?
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 05:02 PM
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From all the research that I have done since entering the hobby, the consensus based on those sharing their experience is that nothing even remotely compares to ADA Aquasoil II. So far I have only grown plants in Schultz Aquatic Soil, Fluorite, and ADA Aquasoi II. IME and what I have observed first hand, ADA Aquasoil II beats the others hands down. I hate to say this, but it is pretty much like a night and day difference. I would not even consider going back to fluorite or schultz aquatic soil and would gladly pay more for the ADA Aquasoil II for no other reason than how much better the plants seem to do in it, with all other things being equal.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Does ADA Aquasoil II come in black?
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 05:23 PM
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Its a super dark brown, almost black IMO. And I'm another ADAASII supporter. Its good stuff.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonV View Post
Great information, I appreciate the help. BTW, what was your final choice of substrate?
I ended up with Fluorite. Decent nutrient content (especially iron, which swordplants need plenty of) plus won't affect the water parameters like most other plant substrates will. I also really like the look of the new Fluorite black. I have a 90gal tank to fill and ADA AquaSoil is WAYYYY out of my budget! Even the Fluorite I'm cutting with a 50lb bag of Colorquartz.





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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-08-2008, 06:27 PM
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FWIW, when I first into this hobby, Wood's tank immediately caught my attention. It was one of the most beautifully scaped 10 gallon tanks that I had ever seen and more importantly, he had cherry shrimp and oto cats that were doing excellent. The cherry shrimp were breeding like crazy. Otocats and cherry shrimp tend to be particularly sensitive to water quality and will usually be the first to die when your tank is not healthy and you have water quality issues. For me, having a healthy tank means having good vibrant plant growth, and equally healthy fauna existing side by side. The other thing that caught my eye was the fact that he was not using any fancy lighting(2 20 watt compact fluorescent 6500 k daylight walmart bulbs screwed into his 10 gallon canopy), no fancy pressurized c02. He was using a Hagen c02 system and you can put together a DIY c02 2 litre system that will perform as well or better for less.

Wood was using the original Aquasoil and despite potential issues related to it causing water hardness issues and prolonged ammonia spikes, he was able to create a masterpiece both in terms of plant growth and fish/shrimp health. He was also dosing ferts. His greatest expense was likely the Aquasoil, but IMHO well worth it when you consider his results.

Anyway, this is a link to his tank and you can judge for yourself. I have attempted to replicate his results using the exact same equipment and ferts, but different substrates(schultz aquatic soil and fluorite) and never even came close to what he accomplished. As soon as I tried the same setup with Aquasoil, I ended up with comparable results, which for me is evidence enought that the key, although not only factor accounting for his success, was the use of ADA Aquasoil substrate above all else.

http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...n-planted.html
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-10-2008, 01:07 AM
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Welcome to the forum DonV and thankyou for the kind words ! This forum is loaded with friendly , helpful people that I think you will enjoy.

Good luck with your new "old" venture... you will find that planted tanks are nuttin' like our tanks of yesteryear !
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-10-2008, 02:15 AM
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Welcome to the forum, and back to the hobby!

I use Eco-Complete in my 20h, ADA Amazonia II Aqua Soil in my 1, and my 3 gallon hex has a mixture of the two. Out of all three tanks, the one with the mixture has grown the best. My glossostigma carpet is EVERYWHERE now, and I can't control my rotala wallichi growth!

Alone, both tanks do well with plant growth, but when mixed I've had fantastic results.

My .02 cents!
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