NH Frag Swap

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So im going to start a freshwater tank in the next few weeks and dont know what kind of substrate to use. I will have live plants but not for a least 2 months. Don't know if i should go dirt gravel mix or how to go at this. Ill have a 20 long with 80 watts T5 8k and 10 k. Or should i go 6.5k and 10 or 8k. Fresh water will be my new challenge so any input will help tons. Looking to have plecos and cats. With tetra family. Maybe small SA cichlids. I have some rocks and drift wood so a mixed theme. 
I would use regular play sand. planted tanks are like reef tanks
bigger substrate like gravel traps bigger pieces of leftover food/plant matter. your better off having the filter do that for you
unless you run an under gravel system, then I would say use stone or a gravel mix. even if you hook the under gravel filter up having it under the sand creates a plenum
or you could use a rock substrate and use the under gravel system backwords and inject co2 directly to the plant roots. this is how I had my planted discus tank years ago 
also if you want some floating plants I have a few from my dads pond we made this year, I still have to figure out what I will do with them for the winter. I know we have some  water hyacinths but I forget what the other types we have are