Any benefits using clay, potash and dolomite under black diamond w/o dirt? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 12:07 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Ohio
Posts: 65
Any benefits using clay, potash and dolomite under black diamond w/o dirt?

Is there any benefit using clay, potash, and dolomite under black diamond sand without dirt? My friend and I are both changing substrates to black diamond sand. I am going the mineralized top soil route and sprinkling potash and dolomite on bottom and adding clay to the soil and cap with BD. And she was going to just use root tabs and the BD. Just thought I would share the love of my extra stuff if it was beneficial to her tank. Thanks.

Last edited by osbora; 08-18-2015 at 02:25 PM. Reason: clarifying
osbora is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 05:10 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Oregon
Posts: 606
Great question. I would be interested in knowing if someone did this too.

Is your friend doing the Osmocote+ capsules, loose, or some other commercial root tab?
grizzly_a is offline  
post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 01:35 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Ohio
Posts: 65
She ordered osmocote plus.
osbora is offline  
 
post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Ohio
Posts: 65
Would it hurt it to add? Any opinions?
osbora is offline  
post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 02:40 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Raymond S.'s Avatar
 
PTrader: (6/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Hot Springs Ar. 71901
Posts: 5,935
These are three minerals which add to the nutrients in the soil. But without the soil
you still get the nutrients those minerals provide. Reasonably sure Potash...well look at this...
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Potash
I don't know if other nutrients come from it but iron is found in clay.
There is a thread on how to make Mineralized Top Soil if you search for it.
Reading it may help to insure the correct amount of those is used.

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line...in the opposite direction...
Raymond S. is offline  
post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 02:40 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (6/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: US
Posts: 2,863
From what I understand, clay is just a iron source, potash is just potassium, and dolomite is calcium and magnesium that would raise/boost GH/KH (you might not need a booster if the levels are fine already). From the prices I have seen for those in capsule form, I would say they aren't worth it and I think Osmocote+ is a much better (complete nutrient wise) and more cost effective (especially over marketed aquarium root tabs).

But to answer your main question, yes the ferts placed in the inert substrate, both with or without dirt, are still beneficial to the plants.

I have heard of some people using the Osmocote+ in loose form above the substrate (I suppose the ferts would release into the water column to feed the plants, not sure if the ferts still leach down to the roots when placed above the substrate), but haven't read enough on it to comment on it's safety (rate of fert release above substrate might be too fast) and effectiveness.
WaterLife is offline  
post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-18-2015, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Ohio
Posts: 65
Thanks for the reply! May just try this in one of my small tanks, if my friend doesn't.
osbora is offline  
post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-19-2015, 04:48 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Oregon
Posts: 606
I laid down O+ loose granules on the bare glass and then put the coal slag (black diamond) on top of it to about 3" in the back. It leached ammonia like crazy and took forever to cycle. I put more O+ than was recommended. I started a 20L recently and did the same thing with the O+ but used FloraMax and only did about an inch or so. Same ammonia leaching and taking forever to cycle. (It's still not cycled)

But I know I overdosed O+ in both cases. I can't help watching those little granules bouncing on the bottom of the tank.
grizzly_a is offline  
post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-19-2015, 05:01 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
schnebbles's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Indian Lake, Ohio
Posts: 1,026
I used the osmocote. I don't think I used too much and I made sure they were all poked down. I better keep an eye on the ammonia levels.

I hurt one of my otos and he died I feel bad. He got caught on the net and my net was super fine.

I re-used all but 15 gallons of my tank water so I should be good as long as no problem with the osmocote.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
schnebbles is offline  
post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-19-2015, 05:59 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (6/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: US
Posts: 2,863
Yeah I have heard some people report raised ammonia levels from Osmocote, but I believe those are from using too much or maybe the granules making it's way up above the substrate and probably releasing the ferts much much faster resulting in the elevated ammonia levels.
However there are tons of reports of success. My strong advice would be to just start off using a little (under-dosing even) and then add more based on how your plants are doing (if they look a little deficient, then add some). Better safe than sorry. You can always add them in pretty easily, but not so easy to take out. I use the 00 capsule form of O+ and push them in 1.5" or so into the substrate. Pushing them deeper might be safer if you are worried, but I haven't had any problems, then again I don't use very much of it at the moment.
I would suspect all root tabs would cause this ammonia problems if overdosed, I believe there is just more chance of it happening with O+ since it contains higher levels of/more nutrients vs other root tabs.

Also keep in mind Osmocote release faster or slower depending on the temperature.
60*F lasts 1-3 months before the nutrients are depleted and need replacing
70*F lasts 3-4 months
80*F lasts 2-3 months
90*F lasts 1-2 months
Keep in mind though those are based on dry applications (land gardening), not sure if the rate of release is affected much in aquatic use.

There is this thread on Osmocote and it affecting ammonia levels (short story, I think O+ can elevate ammonia levels if overdosed, so just don't overdose and apply it properly)
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=122085


Burr also has this interesting thread on if root tabs with water column dosing makes a significant difference vs just water column dosing. Take a look if interested.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=876457

But yeah, I say give Osmocote+ a try, it's cheaper than what you are using and better as it does have a lot more nutrients you plants want that you aren't fully getting with the clay, potash and dolomite. Not sure if you still need a GH booster though for your water params.
WaterLife is offline  
post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-19-2015, 01:07 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
schnebbles's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Indian Lake, Ohio
Posts: 1,026
I also read those threads. I tried to use about what burr had used. I'll be checking Ammonia daily tho just to be safe.

Sent from my SM-N910V using Tapatalk


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

Tags
black diamond, clay, dirt, root tabs

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