Poll: Mineralized top soil or organic potting mix? - The Planted Tank Forum
View Poll Results: Which substrate is best to create thriving planted tanks?
Miracle Grow Organic Choice Potting Mix 2 40.00%
mineralized top soil 3 60.00%
Other (please specify) 0 0%
Voters: 5. You may not vote on this poll

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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-28-2015, 11:59 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
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Poll: Mineralized top soil or organic potting mix?

The choice between starting my first planted tank with MTS or MGOCPM is an almost impossible decision to make for me! I'm torn and dont know what to choose. I want the best substrate possible for thriving plant growth, with minimal mess (i like moving things around sometimes) and easy to manage.

So I hope you guys can help me choose!

Which soil substrate is better: mineralization a top soil, or straight away adding an organic, rich potting mix? Which is better in terms of plant growth, manageability, and your overall experience/opinions?

I feel like MTS is a safer way to go to avoid excess nutrients and algal problems but at the same time i feel it lacks the nutrients to really make plants thrive, as top soil is just a mix of different twigs and peats and minimal dirt for basic things like filling dirt holes, instead of nourishing plants.

Correct me if I'm wrong please, and please tell me all your opinions! thanks!
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-29-2015, 12:18 AM
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If you havent read the aaron talbot thread on mts, google it. Worth it to read thru pretty much the whole thing IMHO. There's certainly not a "lack of nutrients." If done properly, you shouldn't need to worry about dosing for quite some time.

Personally, I'm not a supporter of miracle gro prodcuts in the first place. Dont like the idea of having tons of peat and wood pulp and.. poultry "litter" underneath the cap.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-29-2015, 12:44 AM
Algae Grower
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If your seriously into "moving things around sometimes", stay away from any 'soil'.
Your best choice in this case would be an Eco-Complete or Mr. Aqua substrate as these won't release the 'dirt' into your water column when pulling rooted plants up from the substrate.

In my case, I went with MGOCPM. Loose sifted for the larger twigs, and capped with Black Diamond blasting sand.
I also went 30 to 45 days in an immersed setup. Gave my foreground plants a chance to establish a healthy root system before submerging the tank.

Which ever method you choose, I wish you the best of luck.
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