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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I really don't want to go with the caculations method. But on average how much substrate should a planted tank have? I don't want to go to deep becuase it intends to contain more waste.

I am thinking about adding 1 1/2" of shultz aquatic soild.
 

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Maybe the waste is a good thing? :)

I would say at least 3-4 inches. If you wanted to use amano as an example his tanks seem to always have deep substrates. Sometimes it looks like 10 inches or more at the back of the tank. A deeper substrate helps to create stratifying layers of aerobic and anaerobic bacteria. Anaerobic bacterial growth can be good for plants because it creates a reducing environment deep in the substrate. Whereas more aerobic bacteria grow in the upper layers. I personally use 4-8", and have never had sulphur bubbles from the bottom even using a mix of peat and onyx sand.

If you do decide to do 1.5" you could use the sloping method for a deeper substrate in the back.
 

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I like to have between 2"-3", however it also depends on the type plants you will be keeping.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I want the whole bottom floor to be leveled so no sloping will occur. How ever I am doing a grass type amano look, with all hair grass on the bottom.
 

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Oh, I get them at walmart. It's about $7 for a 20lb bag, very useful it really works too. But it sucks when you first get it becuase it takes for ever to rinse, but I think it's worth it.
 

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With Hairgrass you can get away with less depth, they have tiny roots. However make sure to have enough depth to hold the grass down until it takes hold.
 

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speaking of which.. in another thread people were saying it takes one bag of eco-complete to do a ten. Without a substantial bottom layer, just a wee bit of peat, I think it takes more like 1.5 or so bags. I slope it, with max depth about 3 to 3.5 in the back.
 
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