Substrate Requirements/Suitable Products

zozo

Member
Joined
16 Apr 2015
Messages
7,473
Location
Netherlands
that it's possible to grow plants on glass marbles. OK, not literally!
:p
1.0x0.jpg


@zozo recommend this and I will try for a deeper substrate for deeper rooted plants (crypts etc)
I used it quite a lot in the garden, then i came to the idea to use it a small outdoor garden aquarium with also a few tropical plants, back in 2017. Used it as a base layer sloped up only at the left and right side corners, Nothing in the middle. Then capped it with river sand and capped that again with gravel.

This is the result in the first year.
https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/mission-bathtub-2017.49096/page-9#post-496953

It still is setup today with the very same soil and each year 2018 and 2019 it grew plants like mad and never fertilized it.
https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/mission-bathtub-2019.56746/page-2#post-568163

I'm pretty sure Crypts will love it. :)
 

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,460
Location
Bracknell

Hi @zozo

Wonderful! :clap::lol: I guess this is hydroponics. What species of plants do you have there? I assume that plants destined for aquarium use (such as those from Tropica) are grown hydroponically. If that's the case, why bother with soil in an aquarium?

JPC
 

zozo

Member
Joined
16 Apr 2015
Messages
7,473
Location
Netherlands
Hi @zozo

Wonderful! :clap::lol: I guess this is hydroponics. What species of plants do you have there? I assume that plants destined for aquarium use (such as those from Tropica) are grown hydroponically. If that's the case, why bother with soil in an aquarium?

JPC
They are not mine its a googled picture. :). I'm not sure about the plants in it, the first looks like coconut or something the other 2 could be Syngonium. But most plants are not fussy about the substrate they grow in, Anthurium is also a well know houseplant to grow in a bowl of water only. And think of hydroculture plants in office buildings, growing on an inert backed clay pebble.
http://www.hydro-culture.net/plants.html

Look at the plant pot from what you buy in the lfs, all grow on Rockwool or Agar Agar if invitro. It simply says all it needs should be in the water it contains.

Why bother with soil in an aquarium?. Aesthetics, easier to give shape, better anchoring to keep the plants in place etc. etc.
Depending on what the soil contains you either need or don't need to fertilize the water column. It's all about what you prefer. :thumbup:

In the end, even an inert substrate will mineralize with all kinds of organics with the debri sinking into it and compost to useful nutrients. Fish poop, plants shed leaves that will disolve etc. In the beginning with an inert substrate you have to make sure you add enough fertilization. But this can change over time. For example i have an aquarium 5 years old now, it started out inert. But now after all these years i fertilize it much less that the first year. :)
 
Last edited:

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,460
Location
Bracknell
Hi @zozo

Many thanks. Everything you say resonates with me. What appeals to me about the inert substrate approach is that it reduces the number of variables involved in growing (aquatic) plants.

JPC
 

Onoma1

Member
Joined
12 Aug 2018
Messages
442
Location
Rochdale
Hi @Onoma1

What depth of substrate are you aiming for? Is there an optimum total depth?

JPC

I am still thinking about this. I have been following the discussion here and on https://www.planetcatfish.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=41038&start=80 @dw1305 's arguments make a lot of sense to me. I have one 9kg bag of aqua soil from Aquarium Gardens (the cap), a soil retainer and 40k of Velda. I was thinking of 8 or 9 cm in places and deeper behind rocks. I haven't got a design yet....so am considering my approach!!
 
Joined
17 Aug 2018
Messages
1,098
Location
-
I would recommend @jaypeecee that you consider some root tabs for known root feeding plants if you choose to use any in addition to water column fertilisation. Of course you could avoid such plants also (mainly rosette type) if you choose to do so. I am planning to do something similar myself to create a low maintenance tank
 
Joined
17 Aug 2018
Messages
1,098
Location
-
I have considered MTS before but decided against them for fear of them breeding like rabbits. But, the idea of having MTS makes a lot of sense. How do you keep them under control?
I never answered your question!... Not over feeding is said to be the key, I also have cories, shrimp etc which reduce any detritus in the tank. As they bury into the substrate for the daylight hours it is rare you see them anyway.
 

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,460
Location
Bracknell
I would recommend @jaypeecee that you consider some root tabs for known root feeding plants if you choose to use any in addition to water column fertilisation.

Hi Matt

From what I've read here on UKAPS and elsewhere, it seems that the term 'root feeder' is incorrect. I am under the impression that all submerged aquatic plants prefer to take in nutrients through their leaves. Roots anchor the plants in place and, in their natural habitat, prevent them from being 'washed away'. Perhaps nutrients in the water column diffuse/permeate into the substrate anyway? To what extent, I haven't a clue!

JPC
 

jaypeecee

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2015
Messages
1,460
Location
Bracknell
I never answered your question!... Not over feeding is said to be the key, I also have cories, shrimp etc which reduce any detritus in the tank. As they bury into the substrate for the daylight hours it is rare you see them anyway.

Hi Matt,

Thanks for the feedback. Please take a look at this article:

http://www.tfhmagazine.com/details/articles/taming-the-tenacious-trumpet-snail.htm

What stands out for me in this article is the bit about increased bioload. My hunch at the moment is that MTS are a no-no.

JPC
 

Similar threads

Top