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View Poll Results: How deep is your substrate
1 to 3 inches 12 48.00%
3 to 5 inches 11 44.00%
5 plus inches 2 8.00%
Voters: 25. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-27-2005, 09:37 PM   #1
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Substrate depth in your tank, and why.

Ok, this is so we can each of us discuss the depth of the substrate and why we put it at that depth, ie pros and cons of it. Not really what we use, just how much of it we put in the tanks, Since i went off topic in a previous post and almost started a debate there, i figured we could do so here. for me, i have various depths in my tanks, the deepest being 6 inches. I do this because in the tanks i have had with less substrate i always end up with one or two swords being root crowded. also because i aquascaped the bottom of this one with a slope from each end of the tank towards the center, with the 6 inches being on each end down to a depth of about 4 inches in the center. the whole tank is heavily planted, so it looks like of like a mini valley in the tank. wish i had a digi cam to put a pic of it up, maybe one day if i ever stop spending money on fish tanks.
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Old 11-27-2005, 10:21 PM   #2
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All my tanks are 2-3 inches deep. My biggest root feeders are crypts and they are doing fine with that depth, and from what I have read its the depth advanced crypt growers use. I have considered removing an inch of substrate from my tanks with mostly stem plants, simply because it takes too much space.

What you are doing with terracing and sloping is cool, would love to see a pic.
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Old 11-27-2005, 10:32 PM   #3
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2 - 3" maximum sand,
no reason, fish like stirring it up. don't grow plants, but put some in once a month for them to feed off.
no area bigger then 1/2 foot square is level, lots of mounds and valleys around the limestone rocks.
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Old 11-27-2005, 10:35 PM   #4
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I have about 3 inches of gravel. I have never had a problem keeping plants rooted and my swords are thriving, you would not believe the roots they grow.
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Old 11-27-2005, 10:37 PM   #5
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oh i would believe the roots, as all of my tanks have clear bottoms and i can look underneath and see a mass of roots all over the tank. I recently had to move, so that involved moving all my tanks, up rooting most of the plants and then replanting them. I got one sword plant out, and it pulled the majority of the rest of the plants out of the tank because of the root spread. So now i am trying a deeper substrate, might improve plant growth.
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Old 11-28-2005, 12:45 AM   #6
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I try to aim at 3 to 3.5 in. of sand or gravel.I read that too deep(4+) is bad because anaerobic spots stop root growth and damage the roots too(becuase of the gases that are realeased).And I believe that 3-3.5 isn't that deep,exept with sand but if I ever use sand the maximum I would use only 1 in. of it.
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Old 11-28-2005, 07:48 AM   #7
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I always had about 3-5" of gravel. The Malaysian Trumpet Snails take care that there are no anaerobic spots. That way I have higher gravel for my plants, the snails poop out fertilizer etc. Never had a problem, I just think it's better for the plants.

And since I've always had a high tank with wood rail around the bottom it doesn't look weird and the plants get a little higher toward the light.
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Old 11-28-2005, 11:14 AM   #8
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I voted 3-5 inches, mainly because 3" is really the shallowest a planted tank should get in my opinion.

I don't see any need to exceed 4", unless you're making some terraces or other interesting mounds in your tank.
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Old 11-28-2005, 11:50 AM   #9
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I have an upward slope from front to back, about 2.5 inches in the front, and 4 in the back. Gives the tank more of a sense of depth, better view of plants in back, and still deep enough in the front for root space.
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Old 11-28-2005, 03:16 PM   #10
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i have about 3" in my tank, gravel over eco-complete. i didn't want to go much deeper since my tank is 17" tall, and i wated as much swimming space as possible. just deep enough for plants.
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