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Rahnk
03-08-2010, 03:48 PM
I have a 90gal(48x18x24) that I am going to set up as a planted tank. I would like to get it as right as I can from scratch, So I would like some thoughts on substrate. Is Florite considered to best? I have heard about clay amendments that can be used separately or added to the substrate. Has anyone used those. Also is the use of an under garvel filter possible or not recommended. Thanks for any thoughts.

Demonfish
03-08-2010, 04:46 PM
Do you like to move your plants around? If so, skip the UG. The roots grow through and tangle in the plates. I understand the plants actually do better with UG filters because the roots have room to grow, warm water, and nutrients (fish poop). But you'd have to snip roots off whenever you mess with them. And if you want to clean under the plate (those with UGs and no plants do this every 2-12 months, when you pick up the plate, all the plants come with. So I would say possible, but PITA.

FSM
03-08-2010, 05:22 PM
Flourite doesn't provide much of anything except iron. ADA aquasoil is probably some of the best available, but it is expensive, around $35-40 per bag (9 liters) shipped, depending on quantity.

gofish
03-09-2010, 12:00 AM
I'm not sure what nutrients are in ADA Aqua Soil and I would love to get a breakdown. I've read that it has more nutrients than other substrates, but have yet to see any numbers. However, below is a comparison between Laterite, Flourite, and Eco-complete. I personally prefer a layer Flourite with an inch of pool filter sand on top. The sand helps keep nutrients in the substrate layer. I find it very import to keep un-regulated nutrients out of the water column, especially when setting up a new planted aquarium.

http://www.aquaticgardener.com/AAAA/aquaticplants/substrate/aquarium_substrate_comparison_sm.jpg

geotek
03-10-2010, 12:15 AM
I would use either a hang on back, a sponge filter, or a canister filter with a planted tank. I have several low tech planted tanks that use just a powerhead and a sponge filter with either gravel or gravel covered topsoil.
Flourite works quite well, as it holds nutrients (cation exchange capacity) but you still have to had the nutrients with either root tabs, or fish poop and trumpet snails.

Spork
03-10-2010, 09:20 AM
Canister filters are your best bet. I would look at the Rena XP filters. 2 xp3's would do a 90 planted tank well. You can run a Rex Grigg reactor on one of them and get great results. As far as trumpet snails go...you cant kill them once they are in the tank even with loaches and suck.

FSM
03-10-2010, 03:29 PM
I disagree. I had trumpet snails in my 75 when I first set it up. It's been months since I sold my clown loaches, and they haven't shown up again.

zmo63
03-10-2010, 04:00 PM
I disagree as well - I keep introducing MTS, but they never seem to establish :(

Spork
03-10-2010, 04:36 PM
Well kudos to you 2. I hate them. I even dumped steaming hot water in a tank to kill them and that didn't even do it. It may just be my luck. They were prolific in my 29 until I sold it and dumped the flourite in a bin and left it out in the cold. If I use it again I will be dumping boiling water in it if they are not dead from the cold temps.

kwseiders
03-10-2010, 04:39 PM
They're actually a tasty snack, with a taste reminiscent of wild hickory nuts!

mykidsmom
03-10-2010, 05:02 PM
I disagree as well - I keep introducing MTS, but they never seem to establish :(
Kirsten - if you really want some MTS, let me know, I'd be glad to give you a few bazillion! :P I'm pretty sure the 'trick' to having a bumper crop of the little gremlins is to over feed your tank! (plus, you might want to go easy on the loaches!) :D

mykidsmom
03-10-2010, 05:10 PM
They're actually a tasty snack, with a taste reminiscent of wild hickory nuts!
Uuum - You're kidding, right?!?

(Just checking! Euell Gibbons - and other pine bark munchers - probably would have approved!)


(Now let's see who remembers Euell Gibbons!)

ronv
03-10-2010, 05:19 PM
He did an ad on TV for Grape Nut Flakes. Right??? As I remember he lived on twigs and bark mostly. LOL.

mykidsmom
03-10-2010, 07:30 PM
He did an ad on TV for Grape Nut Flakes. Right??? As I remember he lived on twigs and bark mostly. LOL.
Yes!! We have a winner! :lol: (You must be an 'old timer' like me!! - or else you have a good search engine!!)

Poot
03-10-2010, 11:24 PM
They're actually a tasty snack, with a taste reminiscent of wild hickory nuts!
You really have to be careful about eating snails. (http://www.spike.com/video/brain-worms/3118180) :o

mykidsmom
03-11-2010, 01:12 AM
You really have to be careful about eating snails. (http://www.spike.com/video/brain-worms/3118180) :o
Okay - Interesting video, Poot! Brain worms, huh? That presumes those two characters actually had brains to begin with! :P

Who eats escargot raw anyway! (Now, sauteed with lots of garlic and butter and copious amounts of a nice cabernet - that's a different story!)

Chris Noto
03-12-2010, 04:52 PM
Flourite doesn't provide much of anything except iron.
FSM, your statement is only true in that Fluorite does not provide soluble plant nutrient elements. It does provide a reasonably attractive substrate, of a good grain size and weight for growing aquatic plants. Fluorite, and other similar products, is relatively stable over time. It also provides a high level of cation exchange capacity, which is very useful for growing aquatic plants. It is amazing to remove a plant that has been rooted in Fluorite, and see the grains that come up, attached to the roots by the tiny root hairs.

Personally, for both "dry" and aquatic gardening, I prefer a substrate that leaves it to me to tailor the nutrient mix.

Rahnk
03-13-2010, 11:50 AM
OK, I think Flourite is good enough for me. So now, is there a place locally to get it at a reasonably good price or is there a good on-line source?

Chris Noto
03-13-2010, 06:21 PM
is there a place locally to get it at a reasonably good price
I haven't been shopping for substrate for some time, so I can't help with current prices. From what I remember from a brief stint at a LFS in the area, expect prices around $25 per bag.


or is there a good on-line source?
The best price, in this (http://www.google.com/products/catalog?q=Flourite&um=1&ie=UTF-8&cid=7715174855540182747&ei=KxycS6b_AYP-8AbSqd2ADg&sa=X&oi=product_catalog_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CBMQ8wIwAw#ps-sellers) search, with shipping, is $25.13, something like what you will pay locally. The cost of shipping kills the deal.

Poot
03-13-2010, 08:46 PM
I bought a bag of flourite black (not the sand) at creation reef off 92 (I think that's considered acworth?) for $20.

The price was mislabeled, so I thought it was $17, but rang up to be something around $25. I told them I'd buy it for $20 and they said okay.

If you're getting more than one bag, they'd probably sell it to you for $20 per. (I just got one)

caricell
03-13-2010, 11:11 PM
Petsmart has flourite for $19.99 a bag as their regular price. *Most* of their stores havea couple of bags in stock at any particular time. It's usually on an aisle end-cap, not down the aisles themselves. I don't think you'll find it cheaper anywhere else.

'other' larry

Poot
03-13-2010, 11:55 PM
Petsmart has flourite for $19.99 a bag as their regular price. *Most* of their stores havea couple of bags in stock at any particular time. It's usually on an aisle end-cap, not down the aisles themselves. I don't think you'll find it cheaper anywhere else.

'other' larry
Yeah, but I've never seen anything but the regular flourite at PS. The dark and black look better IMO. (Also, they don't sell flourite sand)


(But if you're just looking for regular, then PS is the way to go, they usually only have 2-3 bags in stock IME)

hsd
03-13-2010, 11:57 PM
Probably take 5 to get about 2 inches worth. I would just call around and see if anyone is willing to work out a price if you get several bags.

ChloroPhil
03-20-2010, 11:44 AM
Flourite doesn't provide much of anything except iron.
FSM, your statement is only true in that Fluorite does not provide soluble plant nutrient elements. It does provide a reasonably attractive substrate, of a good grain size and weight for growing aquatic plants. Fluorite, and other similar products, is relatively stable over time. It also provides a high level of cation exchange capacity, which is very useful for growing aquatic plants. It is amazing to remove a plant that has been rooted in Fluorite, and see the grains that come up, attached to the roots by the tiny root hairs.

Personally, for both "dry" and aquatic gardening, I prefer a substrate that leaves it to me to tailor the nutrient mix.
I agree with Chris.


Aquasoil is awesome, as are the Azoo products Green Leaf Aquariums sells. I've done a little testing of ADA AS and have found it to be 20-30% organics (20% after 1 year) and the rest a nice fine grain clay. It too has a high CEC due to the clay content. Based on comparison with natural sediments you can't get any closer than the "real deal" than ADA or Azoo. FYI, the same folks who make the Azoo substrates also make the ADA lines.

Cheers,
Phil