6 best aquarium primers

Review of the best according to the editors. About the selection criteria. The the material is subjective, is not advertising and is not serves as a guide to the purchase. Before purchase is needed consultation with a specialist.

Soil is needed in the aquarium not only for beauty: like the floor in house, he performs a lot of more important functions. It is in the ground live bacteria that neutralize waste products the inhabitants of the aquarium. Soil is a source of nutrients for aquarium plants and serves as a substrate for their attachment. Some fish actively interact with the soil – rummage in it, build minks. In addition, soil affects water quality in aquarium, therefore, its choice should be treated as much as possible responsibly.

What to look for when choosing soil for an aquarium

First of all, determine which fish you put in the aquarium and will there be living plants, since soil characteristics should meet the needs of the inhabitants of your aquarium.

  1. Fraction. Small fish and plants with a weak root as a rule, fine-grained soil is laid by the system, however, it hard enough to clean. Medium-grained is suitable for fish, which spend a lot of time near the bottom, are buried in a substrate or rummaging in it. Coarse soil is usually chosen for sufficient large fish and plants with a highly developed root system; his the minus is that food particles can get stuck inside the substrate, decompose and pollute water.
  2. The form. Particles of soil should not have sharp corners or chips, otherwise the fish, which often dig at the bottom, can get hurt.
  3. Porosity. Soil from natural porous materials improves water circulation, stores nutrients and promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria, which is especially important for living plants.
  4. Effect on water. Materials in the soil may change the hardness and pH of water in different ways – this is especially true natural substrates. Most aquarium inhabitants have certain requirements for these parameters, and they need be sure to consider when choosing soil.
  5. The color of the substrate does not affect its quality, however, remember that light and especially white soil over time most likely to darken. Yellow and red sand usually contains iron oxides harmful to some fish. Poor dyes washed out of the ground and change the shade of water.
  6. Nutrition is important for aquarium plants, as it is from the soil that they receive the substances necessary for life. If a the substrate is not nutritious in itself, you can use special substrates or tablets with fertilizers.

Rating of the best primers for the aquarium

Nomination a place Name of product price
The best primers for an aquarium with a lot of plants 1 Power Sand Special M (ADA) 4 480 rub.
2 Deposit DeponitMix (Dennerle) 1 520 rub.
3 Jbl manado 1 950 rub.
Best soil mixes for standard aquariums 1 UDeco “White gravel”, natural, 3-5 mm, 2 l 296 rub
2 Soil for the Barbus Mix aquarium 56 rub
3 Soil for the aquarium “Eco-soil”, marble chips 139 rub

The best primers for an aquarium with a lot of plants

Living plants saturate the aquarium with oxygen through photosynthesis and participate in its purification, serve as top dressing, shelter and place spawning for fish. Several plants can be easily entered into standard aquarium, but if there are a lot of them, they require special conditions of detention. Our experts have selected the best options. soil for herbal aquariums.

Power Sand Special M (ADA)

Rating: 4.9

Power Sand Special M (ADA)

Power Sand Special includes standard nutritional a Power Sand substrate based on porous volcanic stone, and also Bacter 100 and Clear Super additives for fast and effective colonization of the bottom with bacteria already present in the the ground. Power Sand Special at times higher than in ordinary substrates. Porous granules provide good circulation of water in the deep layers of the bottom, and their shape and size allow you to keep this effect for almost unlimited time. Granule size is selected accordingly aquarium parameters: at a depth of 40-60 cm, granules are used size M, less than 40 cm – S, more than 60 cm – L.

Power Sand Special is a substrate that provides active nutrition of the root system of plants. Over it is necessary lay another layer of the main substrate. Feature of this soil is that in the first days after starting up the aquarium in water the content of nitrogen compounds will be increased, therefore, populate in he can’t fish right away.


  • Designed specifically for growing plants;

  • quickly populates the soil with bacteria;

  • constantly provides water circulation in the substrate;

  • maximum concentration of nutrients;


  • high price;

  • Before settling fish, you need to wait for the stabilization of the water composition;

  • Do not use a bottom filter with this primer;

  • should be coated with a normal substrate;

Deposit DeponitMix (Dennerle)

Rating: 4.8

Deposit DeponitMix (Dennerle)

This nutrient mixture was the result of many years studies of the natural habitat of plants. Basis creating optimal climate in the soil, quartz sand is used – beloved by many aquarists, the substrate does not affect water quality and capable of neutralizing harmful substances formed in it connections. Natural clay, soil and peat are the source nutrients and minerals, accumulate them and give in according to the needs of plants. Nutrient Concentrate iron in the form of a chelate gives plants a rich green color. Special porous granules promote water filtration and actively colonized by bacteria. The mixture does not contain phosphates and nitrates, which activate the growth of algae.


  • selected natural ingredients;

  • suitable for any vegetation;

  • harmless to all inhabitants of the aquarium;

  • prevents the appearance of algae;

  • creates optimal conditions for plant nutrition and growth;

  • contains all the necessary nutrients and minerals;


  • it is applied only in combination with ordinary soil;

  • you must immediately plant the substrate in large quantities fast-growing flora, otherwise the abundance of nutrients will cause active reproduction of algae;

  • with some probability the soil may sour;

Jbl manado

Rating: 4.7

JBL Manado

JLB Manado’s light porous soil is not nutritious on its own. itself, but included in the rating due to its buffer functions: it absorbs excess fertilizer in water and stores them, and in case of deficiency releases back. This approach constantly provides aquarium flora with essential substances but inhibits overgrowth of algae. Soil particles are quite small – 0.5-2 mm, rounded, have no sharp edges, do not injure the antennae of the bottom fish. Soil is neutral in relation to water and does not emit toxic substances. The porous structure of grains promotes reproduction bacteria, water purification and the rapid growth of the root system.

The raw materials for Manado are clay, as a result it is very light. To create a relief with such soil does not work, because it is all time “flows” along the bottom. Plants not rooted enough deep, may float, especially when burrowing in the aquarium fish.


  • absolutely safe for fish;

  • the best price-quality ratio in the ranking;

  • controls the growth of algae;

  • does not pollute water and contributes to its filtration;

  • serves as a nutrient buffer;


  • used with a nutrient pad or fertilizer;

  • easily moves along the bottom, does not hold the terrain;

  • Before use, thoroughly rinse, otherwise the soil “dusts” in an aquarium;

Best soil mixes for standard aquariums

A standard aquarium means versatility, harmonious a combination of different types of fish and possibly a small amount of live plants. When choosing the soil for such an aquarium, you should pay special attention to its harmlessness, fraction, the presence of dye, but in general, you can focus on your own preferences and beauty. Our experts have chosen several inexpensive, but high-quality options for a regular aquarium, not demanding on parameters water.

UDeco “White gravel”, natural, 3-5 mm, 2 l

Rating: 4.9


Natural river gravel from the Russian manufacturer UDeco attracts with its natural origin, excluding dyes and any harmful substances. The pleasant white color of the soil does not change with time. Particle size – from 3 to 5 mm, they do not have sharp angles and will be convenient for most types of fish. In such soil not too demanding plants are easily rooted, behind it just enough to look after. In addition, according to customer reviews, soil is slightly susceptible to siltation. Of the side effects of natural raw materials – a very small increase in water hardness, which will be a plus for cichlids and minus for soft-water fish.


  • harmless to fish;

  • steady white color;

  • natural, does not contain dyes;


  • slightly increases the hardness of water;

Soil for the Barbus Mix aquarium

Rating: 4.8

Barbus Mix

The soil of the domestic manufacturer Barbus is different a variety of colors and fractions – you can choose color or black and white “Mix” with a particle size of 2-5 mm or 5-10 mm, focusing on the parameters of your aquarium. Soil material serves marble chips, not affecting the pH, but capable of a little increase water hardness. All pebbles in the package are smooth, without sharp faces. The manufacturer positions this substrate as ideal. for cichlids, and customers praise it for its nice appearance and good value for money.


  • low price;

  • Looks beautiful in an aquarium;

  • natural materials;


  • not suitable for soft-water fish; with time

  • it loses its color;

Soil for the aquarium “Eco-soil”, marble chips

Rating: 4.7

Eco-soil marble chips

The substrates “Eco-soil”, as the name implies, represent a fish-friendly product of natural origin. The manufacturer offers a choice of different fractions and colors, but their combines quality – the edges of the stones are smooth, the dye does not peel off and Does not tint water. The main function of this soil is aesthetic, in the aquarium, it looks very beautiful. Like all substrates from natural marble, “ECOgrunt” has the ability to increase rigidity water, but at the same time has a neutral pH. A nice addition to soil properties will serve as its democratic price.


  • steady color, does not paint water;

  • good value for money;

  • a large number of options;


  • sharp stones are rare;

  • increases water hardness;

Attention! This rating is subjective, not advertising and does not serve as a guide to the purchase. Before the purchase consultation with a specialist is necessary.

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