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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Changing out my substrate in my 180 gallon planted tank, it has been in there for 10 years! Research to the point that I have just confused my self! So I ended up just chosing ADA Amazonia Soil for the first layer, then a layer of Eco-Plus, followed by a sand cap. I have never used soil base before, always just the Eco-Complete and sand. ADA puts down this Bactora stuff and a Super Clear product. Could I use Osmocote Plus in place of the ADA stuff? Are these ADA products or Osmocote even necessary?
 

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Osmocote is a fertilizer, the ADA additives are for helping establishing beneficial bacteria in the substrate and maintaining clearer water. The two are nowhere near similar in function or purpose. Neither are necessary for your substrate goals.

The aquasoil will be supplying the nutrients. Osmocote supplies nutrients for inert substrates (sand only, eco-complete, flourite, etc.)

The ADA additives, although they may work as claimed, are completely unnecessary. Bacteria will still establish just fine in the substrate and I've never had a problem with having crystal clear water and ive never used superclear. It's all just part of ada's substrate system. Nothing wrong with using Bacter100 and superclear, but it's an unnecessary expense, IMO.

I think you would be more than fine to just use the ADA aquasoil, eco-complete (should store nutrients from aquasoil and ferts very well and provide a great holdfast for roots) and the sand cap. Moving plants around and uprooting rootballs may prove to be a little messy and bulky though due to the aquasoil and eco-complete.
 

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Anytime! That's my luck too, buy all the things I need then a week later it's 10-20% off. Now it's time for all the memorial day sales...hopefully I can convince the wife into starting to piece together our 18" cube reef. We have a 12" cube fowlr that houses 2 false perc clowns and it's time to upgrade.

Also, it would be neat to document your substrate change and start a journal for your new setup on here, if possible. I bet most of us, including myself, have never seen a planted substrate over a few years old let alone a decade and the journey would be fun to follow. (plus we all love pictures, lol)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well I already disposed of the old substrate so any pics of that are not possible. Trust me, you really didn't want to see it anyway. Muck comes to mind. I moved it to the wife's flower beds so we will see ho that goes this summer.
 
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