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Very shallow tank (6.5 cm [2.56 inches]) – how much aquasoil?

jimmywaleseswhale

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Planning to do a desktop paludarium in a very shallow tank (20x20x6.5cm). Not completely sure what I'm going to plant into the aquatic part but probably some Java moss and some Alternantheria Reineckii "Mini". My first time using aquasoil (Tetra Active Aquarium Substrate).

Ideally i'd like to fit in a layer of water to make the plants half-submerged and hopefully get some carpeting plants. What's the thinest layer of aquasoil I can get away with that will still enable some healthy root growth?

Thanks!
 

Courtneybst

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5 Sep 2016
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Planning to do a desktop paludarium in a very shallow tank (20x20x6.5cm). Not completely sure what I'm going to plant into the aquatic part but probably some Java moss and some Alternantheria Reineckii "Mini". My first time using aquasoil (Tetra Active Aquarium Substrate).

Ideally i'd like to fit in a layer of water to make the plants half-submerged and hopefully get some carpeting plants. What's the thinest layer of aquasoil I can get away with that will still enable some healthy root growth?

Thanks!
Hey Jimmy, I have a scape of similar dimensions (30x20x5), but I'm growing the plants for their emersed growth. Realistically you're gonna need at least an inch of soil, at which point that only leaves an inch of water. Very few plants are going to remain under an inch tall and so you'll be getting emersed growth instead.

But I guess you already said you want them half submerged so that's great! I'd say an inch minimum.
 

jimmywaleseswhale

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Hey Jimmy, I have a scape of similar dimensions (30x20x5), but I'm growing the plants for their emersed growth. Realistically you're gonna need at least an inch of soil, at which point that only leaves an inch of water. Very few plants are going to remain under an inch tall and so you'll be getting emersed growth instead.

But I guess you already said you want them half submerged so that's great! I'd say an inch minimum.
Do you have any pictures of yours? How much soil did you use. Thanks!
 

Courtneybst

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Do you have any pictures of yours? How much soil did you use. Thanks!
If I remember correctly I used about 1-2 litres of Tropica Soil Powder, 5cm deep.
D8439A0C-D5FB-415A-9808-C16AAB9FAEB4.jpeg
 

jimmywaleseswhale

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If I remember correctly I used about 1-2 litres of Tropica Soil Powder, 5cm deep.
Stunning, I'd be really happy if I got 50% there. So looks like you have a thinner layer in the foreground and use more in the background? What is the big "platform" made of? Looks like some of plants are planted into it but how do they get water in the roots? A lot of misting? Sorry, I'm really quite new to this.

My first "tank" is a DOOA Terra Base which I chose because I can leave it for a week without much hassle. Slightly worried that my plants won't be doing well in an open enclosure without daily misting.
 

Courtneybst

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Messages
1,072
Location
London
Stunning, I'd be really happy if I got 50% there. So looks like you have a thinner layer in the foreground and use more in the background? What is the big "platform" made of? Looks like some of plants are planted into it but how do they get water in the roots? A lot of misting? Sorry, I'm really quite new to this.

My first "tank" is a DOOA Terra Base which I chose because I can leave it for a week without much hassle. Slightly worried that my plants won't be doing well in an open enclosure without daily misting.
I used black lava rock to create a 'terrace' if you like. Just glued onto a U shape and pushed up against the back panel. I then stuffed the gaps with filter floss and filled it to the top with Tropica Soil. The foreground is a thin layer of fine cosmetic gravel.

The water will be able to seep through the gaps and the rocks to saturate the soil and ensure the plants are kept moist. You may need to do some misting in the initial days/weeks but after the plants have established themselves you won't need to, unless your house is particularly Sahara-like!
 
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