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If it is purely silica sand grains, then there is nothing in it for plant nutrition. Silica is more or less inert, depending on who you ask. If you look at many of the current aquscapes, the designers use 'white' or bright silica sand in the foreground where plants will not grow. The area where plants will grow is generally a substrate which includes nutrition for plant roots to take up. The various options in the US (apart from making your own substrate) are products like Flora Base and Flourite. You can add laterite, peat, pumice, charcoal etc. Do a search on this board for substrates and you will come up with some interesting articles.

Or check the articles on substrate here.

Andrew Cribb
 
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