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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I posted this in the General Discussion forums, but I just realized it needs to go here...

I'm putting the finishing touches on a vivarium for Pacific Chorus Frogs. They live in ponds and I see lots of grasses growing in the mud in the shallows of the pond. I'm trying to replicate their natural habitat to the best of my abilities, so I'm thinking of planting some grass in a substrate in the bottom of the water. The water is 1" and the grass will be sticking out of the water, but I was wondering what the best safe underwater substrate is for vivariums. I remember using this for a desktop fish tank a while back and my aquarium store uses it in their freshwater tanks. Is this safe for frogs? It says it has trace elements in it, so I'm not sure if that is harmful.

What underwater substrates do you use?
 

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in general, eco complete has a finer particle size than fluorite, but they are very similar products. Just fractured clay products with a high cation exchange capacity, loaded with both macro nutrients and trace minerals. They both work pretty good, but with my limited experience, i find that they both run out of available nutrients in 6-8 months with aggressive plant growth. A lot of people in the planted aquarium hobby use ADA aquasoil with great results. Its a tad more pricey though. If you are looking for the most nutrients with the least cost, you might want to try your hand at mineralizing topsoil for a bottom layer nutrient-rich substrate. I'm making some at the moment and will be overhauling my 30 gallon tank here in a little bit. You can learn how to make it here http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/library/52554-how-mineralized-soil-substrate-aaron-talbot.html

Btw, trace elements/minerals are just minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, and manganese that plants need in small quantities for normal growth. All of these products you would be able to use in a viv without adverse side affects. Good luck!

Ryan
 

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If you prefer to use a book for the source of knowledge (or one of them), pick up a copy of Ecology of the Planted Aquarium by Echinodorus Press. It isn't that expensive and a great resource on this topic.

Ed
 

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Ed is that the diana walstad book? I've been meaning to read that one. Sorry to hijack haha
 

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Ed is that the diana walstad book? I've been meaning to read that one. Sorry to hijack haha
Yep... that is the one. It is a good read.. there is a bunch of personal opinion in it but there is also a lot of good data that includes citations from real literature.

Ed
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
i forgot to ask, what plant are you going to be growing in the water? surely not just plain yard grass right? That will just melt away and mess up your water parameters. Echinodorus tenellus is a good "grass like" aquatic plant that is an easy grower and can grow emmersed. The emmersed version of the plant is a bit larger than the submerged version though. check it out here.

http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/plantfinder/details.php?id=216&category=genus&spec=Echinodorus
I decided not to use yard grass. I have some fairy moss on there, along with parrot's feather and a water hyacinth, which are all floating plants. I think everything looks good for now so I don't need any more water plants or the substrate, but I will get some blackwater extract :)
 

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alright sounds good. just an fyi though, water hyacinth is a very high light plant. I've tried growing it indoors over high output lighting, and it has never done that well. Parrots feather (and all myriophyllum species) also benefit from high light levels. what fixture do you have over the tank? Good luck with em!

Ryan
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
alright sounds good. just an fyi though, water hyacinth is a very high light plant. I've tried growing it indoors over high output lighting, and it has never done that well. Parrots feather (and all myriophyllum species) also benefit from high light levels. what fixture do you have over the tank? Good luck with em!

Ryan
They're under a 25w xenon light. Not top of the line, but it works.
 
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