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Which soil? JI 1,2 or 3?

Discussion in 'Substrates' started by Soilwork, 17 Feb 2017.

  1. Soilwork

    Soilwork Member

    Messages:
    346
    I'm thinking of changing my substrate and have decided to use soil but please help me decide which one.

    It has to be commercial. Which is better suited to an aquarium John innes 1,2 or 3 or non? My fish will have to go back in as soon as I've refilled so I plant on using lots of floating plants to help with the initial ammonia/nitrate production (fully functional canister) I'll be doing lots of water changes and surface agitation until the soil stabilises.

    Please advise as I plan to do this tomorrow.

    Thanks.
     
  2. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Messages:
    5,983
    Hi all,
    I wouldn't use JI composts, but if you don't have an option JI No.1, is the best bet if the fish are going straight back in.

    JI seed compost would be lower in nutrients again.

    The number doesn't make any difference to the composition of the compost, <"just the amount of nutrients">, with three times as much fertiliser in JI No.3 compared to JI No.1.

    cheers Darrel
     
  3. Soilwork

    Soilwork Member

    Messages:
    346
    Thanks. Will I need to add any Dolomite for magnesium? Any extra clay? I have red pottery clay and crushed coral.

    Which floating plant would you recommend. I also have shrimp. If this is not advisable please say so.

    My other option is tropica soil. But I can't find much information on what it contains. My main issue is magnesium as my tap is very low I want to to come from the roots so dosing mgso4 is not as critical.

    Cheers for your help.
     
  4. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Messages:
    5,983
    Hi all,
    If you get dolomitic limestone you want it to be a nice pink colour, and even then it is only about 12% Mg. If you use dolomite you don't need a separate calcium source (it is CaMg(CO3)2).
    I would be tempted to mix that 50:50 with what ever soil you use.
    Probably Amazon Frogbit or Salvinia "natans".

    cheers Darrel
     
  5. Soilwork

    Soilwork Member

    Messages:
    346
  6. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Messages:
    5,983
    Hi all,
    I'm not sure that will contain any magnesium, I think that is probably a trade name for a limestone that is at least partially metamorphosed into marble.

    If you calcine the rock dolomite you get "dolomitic limestone", which has both calcium and magnesium. I've bought quite a bit of it over the years and it is always a pink dust (like the Italian Dolomite mountains).

    cheers Darrel
     

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