Porous volcanic below Flourite? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2016, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
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Porous volcanic below Flourite?

I'm preparing to set up my first planted tank for an aquascape and trying to choose the best substrate setup. I need someone to give me a reality check on what my idea is!

I'm thinking about laying a bed of porous volcanic pebbles down first and then build up the flourite over it for the plants to bed in. My thinking is that the porous pebbles will provide room for some air and plenty of surface for bacteria under the topsoil. Does that sound like a solid idea, or....? If not, or there are better layering options, please share your thoughts.

Thanks
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2016, 05:25 PM
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Hi Torched61,

I can tell you that the volcanic pebbles are lighter than the Seachem Flourite so eventually the volcanic pebbles will work their way to the surface.

I throw some (a couple of handfuls) of red volcanic pumice stones that are rich in iron on the bottom of my tank before I add my calcined clay substrate (i.e. Safe-T-Sorb #7941 / $6.49 for 40# at Tractor Supply Co) as my substrate. It works fine however the roots of the plants seek out the iron and when I pull a plant up I usually get a red pumice stone or two with it. I have to push the pumice back into the substrate or it looks like this.

You can see pieces of the red pumice just above and below the head of the Cardinal Tetra

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2016, 05:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seattle_Aquarist View Post
Hi Torched61,

I can tell you that the volcanic pebbles are lighter than the Seachem Flourite so eventually the volcanic pebbles will work their way to the surface.

I throw some (a couple of handfuls) of red volcanic pumice stones that are rich in iron on the bottom of my tank before I add my calcined clay substrate (i.e. Safe-T-Sorb #7941 / $6.49 for 40# at Tractor Supply Co) as my substrate. It works fine however the roots of the plants seek out the iron and when I pull a plant up I usually get a red pumice stone or two with it. I have to push the pumice back into the substrate or it looks like this.

You can see pieces of the red pumice just above and below the head of the Cardinal Tetra
Great feedback Seattle! So my reasoning was solid but execution leads to some problems down the road. I didn't even think about the weight issue; your right, pumice is very light (in some cases can even float). Thanks again, I'm going to explore other options.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2016, 06:59 PM
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I use small lava rocks under Flourite. Under $10 for a 40lb bag at home depot.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2016, 07:01 PM
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Depending on how you intend to use ferts, Laterite is old school but works to
give Iron to plants. Is used usually below some other type of sub material.

The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line...in the opposite direction...
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