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Old 04-03-2015, 05:34 PM   #1
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New Dirted 10 Gallon

I am starting a new dirted 10 gallon using Miracle Gro Organic Potting Mix capped with some old gravel. The dirt runs 1" to about 1.5" front to back. It is capped with gravel and I scavenged some Downoi, Staurogyne Repens, and a couple of other unknown low-light plants from a bigger tank. Not sure about the lighting yet but I am thinking about a Finnex planted+. I do not plan on using CO2; however, I have plenty of Metricide 14. The filter is an old Tetra 10i that works well. I am thinking of going without a heater with 6 White Cloud minnows: or with a heater stocked with 6 Neons. I have even thought of Female Bettas to mate with one of the 4 males that I have. I will try to post pictures, but I'll have to say that this tank is going to be very basic.Click image for larger version

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Old 04-03-2015, 06:47 PM   #2
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Did you have to rinse the soil at all or did you just put it in?

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Old 04-03-2015, 06:53 PM   #3
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I just put it in, added some gravel, SLOWLY filled the water to the top of the gravel, and then set in the plants. After the plants were put in, I put in more gravel and I let the tank set for a day using a CFL fixture for light. Today, I S-L-O-W-L-Y filled the tank up using airline tubing, put the Tetra 10i filter in and it looks great. I am going to let the Downoi and the Staurogyne Repens cover the bottom. I think it will look good once the plants fill in!
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Old 04-04-2015, 02:03 AM   #4
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How did planting go for you? MGO has tons of wood chips, I mineralized mine about 5 times to get rid of all the floaters, I can't imagine that digging into it if you haven't done that would be a lot of fun. I've also been told that it can cause a high ammonia spike if unmineralized, so might be something to keep an eye on.
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Old 04-04-2015, 05:35 AM   #5
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New Dirted 10 Gallon

Ok, I'll keep a watch on it. Right now the tank is cycling without fish. I have 6 other tanks to contend with so I am in no hurry.
I tamped the soil down a tad, so I did not have many floaters. I did have a few and I promptly removed them. The Staurogyne Repens should carpet nicely...we'll see.

I just had a burning desire for a Walstad tank. As many tanks that I have, I need to seek help.



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Old 04-04-2015, 09:09 AM   #6
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Another member did this a while.back, had issues with the wood chips forming gas pockets which exploded and made a huge mess:\

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Old 04-04-2015, 09:22 AM   #7
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Another member did this a while.back, had issues with the wood chips forming gas pockets which exploded and made a huge mess:\

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Poke it regularly with chopsticks. Burping substrate bad.


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Old 04-04-2015, 06:48 PM   #8
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How often should I "poke" the substrate with chopsticks? Today the tannins are leaching out!

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Old 04-05-2015, 10:11 PM   #9
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How often should I "poke" the substrate with chopsticks? Today the tannins are leaching out!

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I had to look this up...

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The only thing now Tiger is you need to take something like a BBQ fork and poke around the substrate a couple times a day to release gas buildup. Usually the first 4ish weeks you need to do that. It's just gas pockets that form due to the organics in the soil breaking down.




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Old 04-05-2015, 10:13 PM   #10
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OK. I poked it today and noticed bubbles rising from the substrate. I guess I will do this every day. Good thing I have not added fish.


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Old 05-04-2015, 07:30 PM   #11
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Okay, Brookster you were correct about the dirt. I poked the substrate, changed water, but it turned into a stinky, smelly, foul, stagnated, rotted mess.

So, I went looking for EcoComplete but Petco was out. I then went to PetSmart and bought some Flourite. I washed the living daylights out of it and it didn't turn out too bad. Then I stole some Downoi, a sword, a Crypt, and a couple of unidentifiable plants from my other tanks. Here it is after day 1:

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Old 05-04-2015, 08:38 PM   #12
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Womp wompp.. what if I told you that java fern will die planted in the substrate flourite has proven to be a solid substrate system in my very very limited experience.. God speed sir!

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Old 05-04-2015, 08:39 PM   #13
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New Dirted 10 Gallon

Is that dark green plant Java fern?

EDIT: Java Fern removed from substrate. Now to find a small piece of driftwood. Any idea what the grassy plant is?

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Old 05-04-2015, 09:46 PM   #14
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Is that dark green plant Java fern?

EDIT: Java Fern removed from substrate. Now to find a small piece of driftwood. Any idea what the grassy plant is?

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You can tie the Java fern to a rock.
The grassy plant looks like dwarf sag.


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Old 05-04-2015, 09:50 PM   #15
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Dwarf Sag. Ok. I bought a package from Aquarium plants dot com about four years ago and never really knew what I had. Thanks.


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