Should I add anything over my eco-complete? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-08-2006, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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Should I add anything over my eco-complete?

I've decided to go with the eco-complete substrate and was wondering if it was recomended to put anything on top of it? Does anyone have a good idea of how i should put this substrate down? Would it be a good idea to put a layer of peat or something down first? Thanks for the help! I'm new to the planted scene. lol
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-08-2006, 04:59 PM
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Hey Derek....welcome to plants and!

It seems like the more you learn the more there is to learn in this hobby. That said, substrates can be tackled from so many points of view, in so many ways. Any opinion you get on this one is merely that: opinion.

I would say the following: don't put anything ON TOP of hte eco-complete, unless you don't like the color. I personally love the black look, and I would leave it there for asthetics.

As for layers under the eco-complete...several options come to mind. I've heard of Laterite, peat, kitty litter, soil, mulm, etc. I think it's really, really helpful to use old mulm/detritus from an established tank here. It helps the substrate age faster, which will lead to a more stable tank faster. Peat....I'm really not sold on that, not sure exactly what benefits there are in that. Laterite, provides and excellent source of nutrients to the roots over time, mostly Iron I think.

But the short answer: eco-complete is just that "complete". You don't NEED to add anything!
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-08-2006, 05:00 PM
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Also, how big is the tank? Is it brand new, what kind of equipment are you planning on having?
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-08-2006, 07:45 PM Thread Starter
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Here i will try and post some specs on the tank. I will just post everything since im not sure what would help. lol
Everything is brand new

55g 48x13x20

Magnum Filters 350 Deluxe canister filter.

Acura Heater (200 watt)

Whisper Air Pumps 40

eco-complete substrate ( bought 5 bags)

Penguin Powerhead Model 660 (not sure if i will even use it)

AH supply 2x55 watt lights (figured since they reflect 140% more light then most others they should be good for now)

Most likley DIY co2 untill the tank gets going for a few month then upgrade to force c02

Do you think i need anything else, or does that seem good enough for now?
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-09-2006, 12:39 PM
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Your equipment list looks pretty good. You should utilize the powerhead to dissolve the diy/pressurized co2. There are a million designs for reactors. Try here to start, but I'd also research "DIY CO2 Reactor" on the forums too.

Also, what are you planning on using the airpumps for? They probably aren't very necessary...

Looks like all you need now is to post in the swap n' shop to get a WHOLE LOTTA PLANTS shipped to you. I'm serious, you should stuff that thing full of plants, man. As many kinds as you can get, and see what grows and what doesn't.

One thing you will probably need, pretty quickly: dechlorinator. Which city are you in? In Grand Rapids, there is a TON of chlorine in the water, I use Seachem's Prime to treat the tapwater.

Also, don't be afraid to pick up a potassium/iron fertilizer. "leaf zone" is one that I've used, and I'm sure it helps a little at least.
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