Benefit of using soil

LarsB

New Member
Joined
21 Apr 2019
Messages
16
Location
Earth
Other than being porous, rich in nutrients and lowering the pH?

I'm picking up a new tank tomorrow and I'm debating between using soil or regular fine gravel. The way I see it is, I can lower the pH myself by using peat and I'll be adding ferts anyway. The only thing I wouldn't benefit from using gravel is that it's not as porous as soil.

Please tell me if I'm wrong, I'm still quite new to the whole high tech aquascaping. I wouldn't mind skipping on soil at all if possible, because gravel is just so much cheaper
 

LarsB

New Member
Joined
21 Apr 2019
Messages
16
Location
Earth
Peat in the filter is unlikely to lower the pH very much, if at all https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads...tank-a-how-to-guide.18943/page-10#post-502577

You could use aquatic compost capped with gravel https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/the-soil-substrate-or-dirted-planted-tank-a-how-to-guide.18943/ it's dirt cheap ;)
Thanks! Sounds better than using soil.
Do you perhaps know anything about using organic compost? Just came across an online store that sells organic compost. Not that I'm worried about the price of aquatic compost, but the organic stuff has sphagnum moss peat in the 'ingredients' list. I also feel more comfortable using organic compost instead of aquatic for some reason.

Edit: complete ingredient list of the organic compost, might make it easier:
  • Organic manure compost
  • Bark compost
  • Coconut fibre
  • Volcanic rock meal (?? No idea if that's the right translation)
  • Something about vegetal/vegetable seaweed matter (again, no idea how to translate this one)
  • Sphagnum moss peat
 
Last edited:

Konsa

Member
Joined
20 Nov 2010
Messages
777
Location
Lostock Hall
Hi
I have inert sand gravel and sand in my tanks and it grows plants well but nothing compared to aquasoil.
If U will have the urge to move plants soil (dirt)base can be a bit messy.
U can sprinkle some osmocote on bottom too with good results if U opt for gravel.
I have used different soils in my tanks including from my garden.All perfomed well no need to be aquatic.
U can always try the cheaper option first if it doesnt work U will have some experience gained and lessons learned when U splash cash on aquasoil for the rescape
Regards Konsa
 

Tim Harrison

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
5 Nov 2011
Messages
7,790
Location
UK
Thanks! Sounds better than using soil.
Do you perhaps know anything about using organic compost? Just came across an online store that sells organic compost. Not that I'm worried about the price of aquatic compost, but the organic stuff has sphagnum moss peat in the 'ingredients' list. I also feel more comfortable using organic compost instead of aquatic for some reason.

Edit: complete ingredient list of the organic compost, might make it easier:
  • Organic manure compost
  • Bark compost
  • Coconut fibre
  • Volcanic rock meal (?? No idea if that's the right translation)
  • Something about vegetal/vegetable seaweed matter (again, no idea how to translate this one)
  • Sphagnum moss peat
I don't have any experience with that particular blend, so I can't say for sure, but it perhaps has too much organic matter in it. I don't like the look of the organic manure compost, it may be okay if it's well rotted but I wouldn't risk it personally; it has the potential to give off urea and cause a huge ammonia spike.
The advantage of using propriety compost like Westlands aquatic compost, John Innes No. 3, etc is that they have been tried and tested and are safe to use in an aquarium.

If U will have the urge to move plants soil (dirt)base can be a bit messy.
You can use a gravel tidy made out of greenhouse shading mesh. It goes between the soil and the capping material and will stop any disturbance if you decide to move the plants.

Yes, I'll be using pressurized co2.
Take a look at @plutonow's aquarium below, he uses a soil substrate and CO2...it's a powerful combination...

p5238218-jpg.jpg
 

Zeus.

Member
Joined
1 Oct 2016
Messages
3,222
Location
Yorkshire,UK
Like Tim posts says it can be done with a soil substrate, the Aquasoil is just easier tried and tested. Ready to use straight out of the bag
 

LarsB

New Member
Joined
21 Apr 2019
Messages
16
Location
Earth
Thanks a lot ;)
I'm still not willing to pay that much for soil, so I'll go with the aquatic compost.
 

MDP91

Member
Joined
6 Jul 2017
Messages
42
Location
Bedfordshire
I setup a very low tech Nano about 6 months ago as a bit of an experiment. I used Wickes own brand Top Soil (in a blue sack) capped with some leftover Tropica soil and it's grown plants amazingly well!
 
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
Sarpijk Using sand for the first time. Substrates 1
W Tropica Soil Powder Substrates 4
Majsa Soil and sand Substrates 3
M Organic Soil Substrates 1
Sirkavu Tropica Aquarium Soil top up Substrates 5
FakeBedLinen Above water soil Substrates 0

Similar threads

Top