Help me with my inner turmoil over substrate - The Planted Tank Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 01:57 AM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
Shavemacman's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Chandler AZ
Posts: 192
Help me with my inner turmoil over substrate

Ok ok... I have been festering over substrate choices for some time now. I was set on pool filter sand or play sand, but have decided I don't like the light color. My plan is low tech, no CO2, with Excel.

You know what would be great? A sticky post that lists the current substrate options, pros/cons, and personal experience. There seem to be so many options that I can't keep track of them all.

Here is what I am looking for:
1. Not messy. I want to be able to rescape without turning the water column brown.
2. Healthy plants (of course)
3. Medium to dark color
4. Cheap... I really don't want to pay the price of flourite/Eco

A few questions.
1. I can get Schultz Aquatic Soil locally, but I have heard it doesn't hold plants down well and is no more helpful to plants than sand. What are your thoughts on SAS?

2. Turface. Is this stuff as messy as flourite? I might be able to find some locally. I don't mind hunting for it if it saves me 75 bucks!

3. Is flourite black as messy as the brown stuff? How about the flourite black sand? If all else fails I might have to spring for flourite or Eco.

Thanks everyone.
Shavemacman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 04:28 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
bsmith's Avatar
 
PTrader: (278/99%)
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: St.Louis, MO
Posts: 9,060
Do yourself a favor. Buck up for the Aqua Soil and get some sleep.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
bsmith is offline  
post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 11:59 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
dthb4438's Avatar
 
PTrader: (71/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Southern Maryland
Posts: 1,089
X 2 for the AquaSoil. I love the dark color, the plants love the high nutrients and I use no C02 or ferts (yet). Low tech, shrimp are very visible.
dthb4438 is offline  
 
post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 12:13 PM
Fear the Swamp!
 
cah925's Avatar
 
PTrader: (176/100%)
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Riverview, FL
Posts: 2,512
I've used sand, Turface, Flourite, Eco and Aquasoil. My favorite by far is the Aquasoil. You can easily get away with no ferts other than Excel and still have great looking plants.
cah925 is offline  
post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 02:01 PM
Fresh Fish Freak
 
lauraleellbp's Avatar
 
PTrader: (70/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Tampa, Florida
Posts: 24,403
Flourite black is not as messy as the red/original. Still needs to be washed well first, and I also recommend drying it before putting it in the tank.

If you're wanting to go really low budget and have a dark substrate you should look into the mineralized soil method as well.





To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
- Next meeting Monday, Oct 13, 2014 @ 7:15pm- See ya there!

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
lauraleellbp is offline  
post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 04:41 PM
Many plants...little time
 
Coltonorr's Avatar
 
PTrader: (66/100%)
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 1,634
I have Schultz AS and I haven't had to dose anything yet...plants are all growing fine...some stems I just can't keep up with...
but I'd definitely skip the sand...unless you use root tabs and dose ferts alot its hard to grow much


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Coltonorr is offline  
post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 07:55 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
Shavemacman's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Chandler AZ
Posts: 192
Aquasoil?! I thought that was the messiest of them all. I have read reports of muddy water for weeks, and that it breaks down into mud quickly and anything that disturbs it will muddy the water.
Shavemacman is offline  
post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-20-2008, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
Shavemacman's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Chandler AZ
Posts: 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by lauraleellbp View Post
Flourite black is not as messy as the red/original. Still needs to be washed well first, and I also recommend drying it before putting it in the tank.

If you're wanting to go really low budget and have a dark substrate you should look into the mineralized soil method as well.

Flourite black is an option I am considering... even though it is spendy.
I don't care much for soil substrates. My first planted tank used soil and the results were ok, but I could not rescape the plants because of the mess the soil made.
Shavemacman is offline  
post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-21-2008, 03:06 AM
Fresh Fish Freak
 
lauraleellbp's Avatar
 
PTrader: (70/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Tampa, Florida
Posts: 24,403
Schultz Aquatic Soil is very different from ADA AquaSoil. Schultz AS is a calcined clay product much like Flourite, but much much cheaper (about $8 per bag) and is colored similarly to the regular Flourite.

ADA AS is one of the most expensive if you live on the East Coast, costs pretty much the same as Flourite and Eco if you live on the West Coast.





To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
- Next meeting Monday, Oct 13, 2014 @ 7:15pm- See ya there!

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
lauraleellbp is offline  
post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-21-2008, 10:59 AM
rmc
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
rmc's Avatar
 
PTrader: (60/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: St Louis Area
Posts: 569
I'm using my own mix of SM, minerals, and an aggregate that comes out of Wisconsin. The color is dark enough for my liking, it's dense enough to easily hold plants down, light enough for great root development, and I can pull blyxa out with the roots intact. I get some clouding when rescaping but it usually clears up in a few hours.
rmc is offline  
post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-21-2008, 06:29 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
Shavemacman's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Chandler AZ
Posts: 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by lauraleellbp View Post
Schultz Aquatic Soil is very different from ADA AquaSoil. Schultz AS is a calcined clay product much like Flourite, but much much cheaper (about $8 per bag) and is colored similarly to the regular Flourite.

ADA AS is one of the most expensive if you live on the East Coast, costs pretty much the same as Flourite and Eco if you live on the West Coast.

I found Schultz bags locally for $5 a bag! Thats why I wonder if it is worth using, its a great deal. I am looking into aquasoil now... a lot of people swear it is all they will ever use from now on, but there are also reports of cloudiness and messes. I want to have corydoras and a pleco and wonder if they would constantly be making the water cloudy by digging around in the aquasoil.
Shavemacman is offline  
post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-21-2008, 06:53 PM
Fear the Swamp!
 
cah925's Avatar
 
PTrader: (176/100%)
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Riverview, FL
Posts: 2,512
My water was crystal clear before adding my loaches. Once they went in, the tank was constantly cloudy. Now that they're out again, the water is clear. This was and still is the only drawback I've noticed with AS. I suppose a layer of black sand or gravel on top of AS would solve it for now.

As far as cloudiness from me digging around, I would say it's no worse than any other gravel I've used. It usually clears within a few hours.
cah925 is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome