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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm planning on setting up a 29 gallon planted tank. I have about 25 lbs. of a clay-like substrate. Looks similar to fluorite but is gray. I bought it in bulk from a LFS, said it was good for planted. I recently stumbled upon some ADA Amazonia substrate. I'd like to use the ADA aw well. My question is should I mix a small bag of ADA in with the fluorite-looking stuff, or should I put the ADA on the top layer? Thanks
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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Welcome to TPT!

I'm going to guess that you've got either Onyx Sand or perhaps even SoilMaster Select.

I'd personally just mix them up and go. I suspect that the ADA will end up at the top over time, but you're bound to have some mixing, so I'd start off that way to begin with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the welcome. And the quick reply! I don't think the bulk gravel I bought has any nutrient value. I know the Amazonia does. Should I mix, or place one on top of the other for the best nutrient effectiveness? The substrate I got is a no-name brand. Just bulk. Looks like crushed slate. Similar to gray fluorite, but with no mineral value.
 

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Thanks for the welcome. And the quick reply! I don't think the bulk gravel I bought has any nutrient value. I know the Amazonia does. Should I mix, or place one on top of the other for the best nutrient effectiveness? The substrate I got is a no-name brand. Just bulk. Looks like crushed slate. Similar to gray fluorite, but with no mineral value.
Depending on the types of plants that you put into the tank, you would want to use the ADA AS alone as the bottom layer and cap with a little bit of the gravel you have. The gravel will help anchor the plants until the roots get firmly established. If the plants are ones that like to put out heavy roots, they will benefit from a nutrient dense substrate lika Aquasoil that lets them do this. Some even use Tom Barr's Dry method and use the ADA AS to grow certain plants emersed before flooding with water and submersing them. This has the advantage of allowing plants to get quickly established, avoid huge algae issues, and minimize cycling issues. It can be done using Cryptocornes, java ferns, anubias, hair grass, and glosso(to set up a lush carpet). I will be setting up either a 3 gallon or 5 gallon tank using this Dry Emersed Method with Anubias and a crypt.

FWIW and in case you already may not know, Aquasoil is notorius for ammonia spikes and you will need to do a series of water changes over several weeks or even a month or longer until the water parameters stabilize. I would not put fish in right away if I were you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
All mixed answers! Lol. Well my plan is a thin, thin layer of peat on the bottom.

Do i even need to add a layer of ADA or is peat/ gravel enough?

Would plants benefit better from ADA on bottom(above peat) or on the top layer?

Or should I just use laterite some where i there?

Thanks guys. You've been very helpful so far.
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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The more ADA you use, the better- this is one of the best substrates currently on the market. Most people don't mix it with anything unless they simply don't have enough or don't want to pay for enough ADA for the substrate depth they want.
 

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ADA is nice but very pricey.
So is a Toyota Corolla or Honda Civic but you get what you pay for :)

It grows plants 100% better than other substrates. I know because I have seen it with my own eyes, with all other things being equal. About the only possible exception may be Red Sea Flora Base or Mineralized Topsoil Substrate from what others have said. But I cannot speak to how those compare as I have never tried them. All I know is that after trying ADA Aquasoil and seeing the difference in plant growth I am hooked.
 

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So is a Toyota Corolla or Honda Civic but you get what you pay for :)

It grows plants 100% better than other substrates. I know because I have seen it with my own eyes, with all other things being equal. About the only possible exception may be Red Sea Flora Base or Mineralized Topsoil Substrate from what others have said. But I cannot speak to how those compare as I have never tried them. All I know is that after trying ADA Aquasoil and seeing the difference in plant growth I am hooked.
A 3 year old thread coming back to life...I agree with this.

After using Red Flourite for many years then I got Eco Complete, I can see the difference when I use ADA - Aquasoil Series. I would say this is the best substrate I have ever use!
 
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