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I have a 125 gallon tank that is currently filled with just sand and water (I moved the fish to another tank). So I have a tank I wish to have live plants in.


What would be the best option to convert the tank? Remove the sand and water and start over?



Thanks,


Lou
 

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Unless you have specific goals/plants in mind there's no reason you can't use the sand you have. Some plants may need additional fertilization at the root level,so that's really the biggest limitation of using the sand because it is inert. Most plants will pull what they need from the water column, but some like to feed from their roots. I haven't tried every plant available by any means, but I've been growing in sand for a while now and not had any real issues. I prefer the black sand so I don't have to worry about discoloration over time from accumulations of "sediment" if I don't aggressively clean it and I also prefer the aesthetic of the dark substrate.
 

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^^this. I used black diamond sand with pretty good effectiveness in a 29 gallon low tech. I did add root tabs, but the amazon sword plant that thrived in there had a MASSIVE root system. Quartz/silica sand that you can find at major pet supply stores seems to compact a bit too much for my taste, but if you gravel vac the top layer, it shouldn't be too big of an issue.
 
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