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any one know of a good source to buy Muriate of potash and domolite?? maybe some where that sells both? i need enough for a 75g, and several 10g tanks....

THANKS!!
 

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MrSanders,

You can buy both at a home&garden store in the fertilizer section.

Muriate of potash is an archaic name for potassium chloride or KCl, the "potash" (potassium) salt of "muriatic" acid (HCl).

Dolomite is CaMg(CO3)2. Make sure you check the bag assay & compare formula: don't buy quicklime (CaO) or hydrated lime (Ca(OH)2) by mistake as these are sometimes labeled as "dolomitic lime". Both are caustic.
 

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Does anyone have a small amount of extra MTS they would like to sell? I've been trying to find some. I need enough for a 24" x 12" 17g aquarium... not much and I'd be happy to pay a fair price!
 

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I Have had a hard time finding it locally, any online resources?
 

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Does anyone know if "Kellogg's Garden Soil" is appropriate for this process? Ingredients are: Composted forest humus, compost, composted chicken manure, worm castings, kelp meal, and bat guano. With oyster and dolomite limes (pH adjusters).
 

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muriate of potash is used in agriculture as a fertilizer--Head to the nearest farm/feed supply store. I was given a pound for free (still made the proprietor take some cash on principle) after telling him what I was using it for. This is sold in mass quantities. You certainly are unlikely to need 50-100-1000 lbs unless you want to use it on your fields as well(!)
If you want dolomite without worrying about other additives, it is sold in crushable pill form (saves having to buy large quantities) at any health food store, and I believe that I saw it in the vitamin aisle at Wallyworld. Cheap, too.

Kudos to Aaron T for publicizing this method in such detail. No matter how long you remain in this hobby, you can always find something you haven't tried, haven't kept, or haven't bred yet. Now I have a legitimate excuse for playing with mud beyond growing this season's veggies.
 

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THANKS Cryptichmind good info ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #188 ·
Does anyone know if "Kellogg's Garden Soil" is appropriate for this process? Ingredients are: Composted forest humus, compost, composted chicken manure, worm castings, kelp meal, and bat guano. With oyster and dolomite limes (pH adjusters).
No, that's what's known as a soilless mix. It's added to topsoil to enrich it for terrestrial plants. You want good old dirt without organics such as manure and forest humus and all of those other additives. DianaK. made a great post a few pages back about what type of soil is appropriate to use.
 

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Thanks a lot for that link Aaron. Just curious since its been a long while since you originally posted this method what have you noticed about your long term need for dosing? Have you ever added anything other than K to tanks set up like this? and in what time range have you noticed that you needed to start adding K, and in what amounts?
 

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Hello all,

I recently got a used, but nearly new, 29 gal biocube from a friend of mine for free, so I guess I am now going to start a planted aquarium. So that also means I am a noob to the hobby.

I am considering doing this mineralized soil approach, but I have some ideas for a slightly different approach. I guess it would be appropriate to document methodology here in order to get input from others who have been experimenting for years, assuming this is OK with Aaron?

A little info on me. My formal education includes a BS degree in soil science and hydrology, and nearly a second BS in applied plant biology. I would be happy to answer any of the more technical questions people might have with regard soil based substrates (per the topic).
 

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Hi Kiril, great minds think alike, lol since I’ve also been pondering on a way to make a mineral enriched substrate in a more simple way and with less effort than the one illustrated by Aaron, and with less plagues with nitrogen and other macros leaching from the El Natural method during the early phase of setup. I look forward to see your ideas and different approach when you start to post. Maybe you can start a journal on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #193 ·
Hello all,

I recently got a used, but nearly new, 29 gal biocube from a friend of mine for free, so I guess I am now going to start a planted aquarium. So that also means I am a noob to the hobby.

I am considering doing this mineralized soil approach, but I have some ideas for a slightly different approach. I guess it would be appropriate to document methodology here in order to get input from others who have been experimenting for years, assuming this is OK with Aaron?

A little info on me. My formal education includes a BS degree in soil science and hydrology, and nearly a second BS in applied plant biology. I would be happy to answer any of the more technical questions people might have with regard soil based substrates (per the topic).
Fine by me. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #194 ·
Thanks a lot for that link Aaron. Just curious since its been a long while since you originally posted this method what have you noticed about your long term need for dosing? Have you ever added anything other than K to tanks set up like this? and in what time range have you noticed that you needed to start adding K, and in what amounts?
K has still the only thing I've ever needed to dose. I've had tanks running about 3 years now before I've had to tear them down (not for needing to redo the substrate, but for moving reasons). I usually need to start adding K about 4-6 months after the initial setup. I dose about 1.0 ppm / week or less. It doesn't take much.
 

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Hi Kiril, great minds think alike, lol since I've also been pondering on a way to make a mineral enriched substrate in a more simple way and with less effort than the one illustrated by Aaron, and with less plagues with nitrogen and other macros leaching from the El Natural method during the early phase of setup. I look forward to see your ideas and different approach when you start to post. Maybe you can start a journal on it.
I may start a journal on the process. Basically I am looking at building a soil medium that will hopefully work with normal tap water in my area and provide a long term source of nutrients for the specific type of plants/tank environment desired. I will not be using generic top soil in order to avoid the negative impacts associated with decomposing organic matter and to eliminate the wet/dry mineralization steps. If everything works the way I envision it, the different components of the substrate can be prepped, mixed, and used almost immediately.
 

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So what kind of soil are you considering? I've thought about clay because I have used it in an outdoor pond, but I added fertilizer few times during the growing season.
 

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So what kind of soil are you considering? I've thought about clay because I have used it in an outdoor pond, but I added fertilizer few times during the growing season.
It will be primarily sand with clay and other naturally stable sources of slow release nutrients.
 

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I'm just about on my last wash cycle of my topsoil and was wondering if instead of using like craft clay. I could use the red clay from my yard an still be able to get the same results?
 

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I CANNOT RECOMMEND MINERALIZED TOPSOIL ENOUGH!

I get way thicker growth, way less algae, and more species are doing well than in my "EI" tank.

If you have an empty tank, get some right away. (mind you it takes a month to prepare) but it gives cheap easy results! Bear in mind that there is no way I can profit from endorsing this stuff.
 

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hey aaron,
great post! very useful! going to be using it soon! i would just like to ask some questions please!

at step 6 when putting the gravel over the mud wouldnt some of the gravel sink into the mud? thus causing a mixture thing?

and as for adding the clay? is there any sort of specific clay you must use or any?

thanks
 
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