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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My tank is a work in progress at the moment and I am still adding in new plants as well. I just wanted to know if what I'm doing would fall under the el natural spec.
Substrate:
1 1/2 in play sand
light layer of commercial top soil (approx 1/4 to 1/2 in deep)
1 1/2 in pool filter sand

No CO2

No Ferts

I'll have to work up a list of plants...currently my lighting is low but I'm upgrading to a 48" orbit as soon as ups delivers it. Oh yeah and tank size is 65 gal. I've had the tank set up like this for about a week now and all of my water parameters seem ok.
Nitrate .25
Nitrite 0
Ammonia 0
pH 7.2

Anything I'm missing?

Thanks,
Ashley
 

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I just wanted to know if what I'm doing would fall under the el natural spec. Ashley
Hard to say from your initial description. That's a lot of sand and very little soil. The deep sand cover (1.5 inches) could keep oxygen from getting to the soil layer and make it too anaerobic. I'd remove some of the sand or make sure you have MTS snails or burrowing fish.

Other factors are: how many fish, burrowing snails like MTS, lighting intensity, lighting daylength, floating/emergent plants, water hardness, etc. I believe that a 65 gal tank is a tall tank, so overhead lighting intensity is critical if you don't have window lighting.

Hopefully, you've thought about these issues. I must say that I am pleased by your emphasis on plants rather than what kind of filter media. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
When I first set up the new substrate I immediately put in 3 MTS along with two larger snails (not sure what kind they are but they are nice to look at :)) As for the fish...I have 4 angelfish, 1 gourami, 1 rainbow shark (he loves to play in the top layer of the substrate), a few platys, a pleco, and 6 tetras. I'm still waiting on UPS to deliver my new light source (48" orbit) and yes the tank is a tall tank. Oh and I have found some "baby" snails this past weekend. At least I know the snails seem to be happy. I'll try to post the plant list and some pictures today or tomorrow.
Thanks!
 
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