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pool filter sand = out of luck???

In my failure to locate any 2-3mm gravel (not for the
LFS price of $2.50/5lb) I have moved down (not to
offend anyone using this setup) to my next choice
which seems to be sand.  The sand that I have located
so far (is silica sand) and is about 1-2mm (#16) but I
would prefer larger which I have been led to believe
can be achieved by pool filter sand???  I would like
to get peoples experinces/views/recommendations
regarding the pool filter sand.  

can it be found at the local hardware store (eg. Home

what brands have people had success with/are happy
with? (please be specific)

doesn't it tend to compact and not allow mulm to go
through?  will it cause rotting roots?  This
compaction issue is one of my MAIN concerns!

This sand is also silica sand? and so would it still
contribute to an algae bloom?

is there a # system to be concerned with? or pretty
much standard?

any other recommendation/advice/info is greately

Los Angeles
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