Black substrate: multilayer or not? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-01-2015, 10:21 PM Thread Starter
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Black substrate: multilayer or not?

I have a tank with black sand substrate. When I first set it up a few years ago, I put down a layer of laterite first and then covered it with a thick layer of black sand from PetCo. It looked fine at first, but as the years passed by and I had to trim, uproot and replant the plants, the substrate layers got mixed. Now I have significant amount of red pieces of laterite on the surface of my sand - not the look I was originally aiming for.

So, what would be a better approach for a more "stable" black substrate. I see the following opportunities here:

1. Don't use any enriched substrate layers at all. Just use pure black sand and add fertilizer sticks/tablets from time to time to fertilize the substrate as needed.

2. Use black-colored enriched substrate (e.g. Eco-Complete) and cover it with inert black sand. The lower layer will surface eventually, but won't be as noticeable.

3. Just use black-colored enriched substrate alone, not capping it with sand.

Which approaches are viable? Any other suggestions perhaps?
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-02-2015, 12:47 AM
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There is a plant fertilizer called something like Job's sticks that is for house plants that
a couple pf people on here use for tanks by cutting them in 1/2" pieces and pushing them in the sub. Perhaps someone who knows about them will chime in...
Plants do not "have to have" ferts in the sub so just Eco or just black sand etc will work.
BTW my Eco/w the Laterite under it is not that bad, but does have a few beads of the Laterite on top.

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight the opposite direction...
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-08-2015, 06:55 PM
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I was wondering the same thing with using Black Diamond blasting media.
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