The gravel and aquatic plants arrived yesterday for the new aquarium. I boiled and rinsed the new gravel and added it. I then soaked the plants in a solution of tap water and Sodium hypochlorite for a few mins before placing them in a small sterile tank with tap water and conditioner to remove the chlorine. I did this because I did not want to introduce snails or their spawn to my new tank and know from experience that you almost always get a few hitch hikers when adding fresh plants. I left them soaking overnight in the conditioned tap water and today I began planting my aquarium.
I bought 100 live tropical aquatic plants. Pruning, removing dead leaves and planting is taking some time but the results will be well worth it. I have ensured everything I am adding to the new tank is sterile, by boiling for twenty minutes or soaking in solution. Hopefully I have done enough to ensure a snail free environment.
This is the beginning of setting up my aquarium, it will not be cycled properly for some time yet. I always begin by trying to establish aquatic plants in the environment. Some plants may not survive and I must admit I have been more brutal with what I used to soak them this time but the snail away product I used in the past did not seem very effective. Time will tell if this method will be. I do not want to add any fish until I have completely eradicated the snails from my other aquariums as it is very easy to unwittingly net snail spawn at the same time.