This site is supported by the advertisements on it, please disable your AdBlocker so we can continue to provide you with the quality content you expect.
  1. We are after as many aquarium plant images that we can get, doing so will assist us in completing the aquarium plant database.

    https://barrreport.com/threads/aquatic-plant-images-wanted.14374/
    Dismiss Notice

DSM, dry start method: New(?) method to make a nice rug of HC before you add water

Discussion in 'Articles' started by Tom Barr, Aug 24, 2007.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. orion2001

    orion2001 Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    I had a question...For my current substrate setup (Bottom layer Leonardite plus Flourite Black sand on top) what ppms of ferts should I be dosing to saturate the substrate? Is it safe to go high with the fert levels since it is anyways in the substrate and I don't have the water all the way up to the surface?

    Also once I've done the initial saturation, should I then "top up" the substrate with plain water? Are there any potential risks from dosing ferts too high?
     
  2. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
    Lifetime Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    3,011
    Likes Received:
    94
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    I suggest not heavily dosing the substrate. First, the plants have so little mass they don't need that much fertilizing. Second, it isn't like fertilizing aquarium water, where you can get rid of the excess by changing water - what you put in the substrate remains there. Third, when you flood the tank, the excess nutrients in the substrate will end up in the water, so you could have way too much in the water.
     
  3. NS2

    NS2 Junior Poster

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    I'm also trying this with hairgrass, and had the same issue as you:

    [​IMG]

    This was immediately after planting just a couple days ago. I figured it wouldn't be good for the hairgrass to leave it like that, so I pulled out each plug and did my best to tease apart the individual strands:

    [​IMG]

    It's a 55 gallon with just Black Flourite Sand, and some of the Aquariumplants.com Total substrate pellets cut in half and buried every few inches or so. 110 watt compact fluorescents for lighting. I'm using a plant mister with water from another tank to mist them about twice a day. When I get my Flourish fertilizers in the next couple of days, I plan on misting with an NPK solution every few days as well.

    This is my first planted tank ever, so I may not know squat about this stuff, but I imagine you want to expose individual strands as best you can. Otherwise I would guess that the plant would have a more difficult time taking in co2 from the air?

    I thought about taking apart the clumps, and replanting individual strands, but I'm a bit too lazy for that. It looks like there's a fair number of brown strands, so I'm worried about how well it will do. Anybody else out there tried planting dwarf hairgrass (acicularis) emmersed with success?

    Post updates if you can, Orion, and I'll do the same!

    -NS
     
  4. orion2001

    orion2001 Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Hey Vaughn, thanks for your reply. The confusion for me though is how to define heavy dose. For example, the mixture I put in to saturate the substrate was a mixture such that for 1 gallon of water (roughly what I used to saturate the substrate) it had 90ppm of Nitrates. However this same solution dosed for a 10 gallon (filled) tank would be 9ppm which is much more reasonable.

    So when you used your premixed doses for your emersed glosso tank, I'd imagine that the ppm with respect to the much lower amount of water in the tank(substrate) would still be relatively pretty high? So I guess what I'm asking is that should I be aiming for dosing the normal ppms, relative to the amount of water in the substrate, or relative to the tank capacity once it is filled?

    Btw NS2, thanks a lot for posting. I'd love to see your updates. I'll definitely keep this thread updated too. I think I'm going to go separate the hairgrass strands too. I thought that they'd automatically do that once the water dried off a little, but that isn't hapenning. I might buy another pot next Friday if they have a good new shipment of hairgrass (new shipments come in on Fridays out here). I'm trying to avoid paying high shipping costs for the plants right now. I'm going to be buying a ton of them online before submerging the tank. Till then I'd prefer buying the hairgrass locally.
     
  5. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
    Lifetime Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    3,011
    Likes Received:
    94
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    At the moment I am totally unsure about how much fertilizing is needed for emersed growth. When I look at it as you did, I am far less sure about how I did it. The best I can say is the glosso grew well. We need an "Emersed EI" method.
     
  6. orion2001

    orion2001 Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Haha thanks for your reply. I'll stick with what worked for you then...roughly dose what I'd dose for a 10 gallon tank into the substrate and see how things go. If the nutrients are in the substrate it shouldn't be too bad in terms of algae problems.

    If anyone else out here has grown any carpet plants emersed on non ADA soils, could you please post with what sort of fert routine you used?
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    18,693
    Likes Received:
    725
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Delta mud and HC, no dosing, the mud has it all.

    I'm doing a 38 and the 180 this way right now, just planted. things today.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  8. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
    Lifetime Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    3,011
    Likes Received:
    94
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Isn't the delta mud covered with something else, like SMS?
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    18,693
    Likes Received:
    725
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    You can later, but for the grow in period and the set up I originally came up for this method, I used plain old loamy delta mud.

    You would need to cover it later or place a thin layer of sand over it to prevent algae growing on the mud itself and to reduce it from clouding up.

    But for simply growing it, this is not an issue.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  10. chris81

    chris81 Prolific Poster

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2008
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Hi guys,

    I have attached a photo of my newlt setup tank to experiment with this emerse method for foreground plants. I used Flourite black as substrate and added some PMDD to the water i used to saturate the substrate. Am misting plants daily with Water and PMDD solution too. I have 2 flourescent tubes on for 10 hrs a day for lightnening.

    SOme observations and questions:

    Must the Hairgrass be seperated i.e individual strands or can it be kept in clumps.

    After how many days will HC start to spred or there is no defined lag phase?

    Do you think that moss will survive in such a setup.

    Any comments are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks a million

    Chris

    My aquarium.jpg
     
  11. orion2001

    orion2001 Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Great looking setup you got there Chris! I hope you have good luck with your experiment. I wish I had the answers to your question. I do think splitting the hairgrass is the way to go. I'm going to do that when I get home tonight. A google search a few days back led me to this pic:

    [​IMG]

    It makes sense that it should work the best as all the strands will be separate and won't fight each other for light. Also if you plant like this, it should spread out a lot faster.
     
  12. orion2001

    orion2001 Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Well I spent a good couple of hours separating strands of hairgrass and replanting. This is what it looks like right now:

    [​IMG]

    Compare the above with what it looked like yesterday:

    [​IMG]

    I'm a little disheartened. The hairgrass seems to be turning brownish, especially some near the base. Is there any trick to planting them? Do you have to make sure not to bury the crown?

    I could really use some advice/tips. I dosed 5ml of Seachem Nitrogen, Potassium, Phosphorous, Flourish and Excel to the substrate when I originally soaked it. Since then I've mainly been spraying with water. The tank is covered and it is almost completely airtight. The lights are 2x15 Watt CFLs which are on 12-13 hours a day.
     
  13. NS2

    NS2 Junior Poster

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    I'm commiserating with you. I believe my hairgrass is also gaining more brown strands. It seems that it is mainly affecting the strands that are clumping together. I've been spending a good deal of time trying to separate them, but it is a major hassle. Whenever I mist, they like to re-clump.

    3 days ago:
    [​IMG]

    Now:
    [​IMG]

    In hindsight, we probably should have separated the plant into much smaller sections before planting, like in the picture you found. Otherwise the strands will just stick together and start to rot. Even then, you probably still need to continually check to make sure those few strands aren't stuck together.

    Actually, if I were to do it all over again I think I wouldn't have even planted the hairgrass until the tank had water in it. I'm starting to believe that hairgrass is not a great candidate for emmersed growth unless you take the time to separate the plant into 4-5 strand clumps.

    I'm keeping a close eye on things, and if it gets progressively worse over the next couple days, I'm going to just fill the tank. The water will naturally separate all individual strands and give the grass some "breathing room". Kinda sucks because I doubt my HC has had much chance to take root, much less grow, but I'd rather do that than lose the hairgrass.
     
  14. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
    Staff Member Administrator

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    18,693
    Likes Received:
    725
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    HG and HC both take time to grow new shoots.
    2 weeks or so.

    Patience.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  15. orion2001

    orion2001 Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Thanks Tom, I'll keep my fingers crossed and wait patiently :). Btw, do you know what I should expect with my Java fern? From the pics you can already see that one of the leaves is curling up and drying out. Will these leaves fall off..and then will I have new emergent growth? Or is it just not doing well with the emersed growth technique?
     
  16. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
    Lifetime Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    3,011
    Likes Received:
    94
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Orion, I suggest increasing your light by using 20 watt CFL bulbs instead of 15 watt bulbs. GE makes both wattages, and the 20 size isn't that much bigger in diameter. Even with 40 watts of CFL bulbs I don't think that is even close to being "high light" intensity.
     
  17. orion2001

    orion2001 Guru Class Expert

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Hey Vaughn, I'll try to get hold of a pair of 20Watt lights for my setup. I don't know if it will fit in the hood though. Btw, I've been meaning to ask you, did you swap out your pair of 20's for your pair of 15's in your current emersed glosso setup once you submerged it?

    Hey NS2. good luck! I'd definitely recommend getting a tweezer and planting little plantlets. I think it should help a lot.
     
  18. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
    Lifetime Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2005
    Messages:
    3,011
    Likes Received:
    94
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    I still have the 20 watt bulbs installed, which may be part of the problem that started some GDA in the tank. The GDA is only in areas most lit up by the lights - a spot in the middle and at each end.
     
  19. NS2

    NS2 Junior Poster

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Tom,

    My concern is that the hairgrass is not doing as well as it would have had I planted it originally in a submerged state. If I submersed the hairgrass immediately after planting, and If all my paramaters were in order with regard to co2, lighting, ferts, substrate, etc., I just wonder if the hairgrass would not be browning like it is now.

    This is my first planted tank, so I will defer to the judgement of others. I have no issue waiting at least several weeks before filling the tank, as that was the original plan. However, I would hate to watch the hairgrass die back if it could be doing better submerged. The HC is doing great, and if it weren't for the hairgrass browning, I would be content letting the tank sit emmersed for some time.

    Even if filling the tank now meant more maintenance fighting against alage, dealing with water parameters, etc., I would prefer to do that if it meant the hairgrass would be healthier.

    Dusko had some nice hairgrass in his tank that started emmersed, but I'm not certain that he added the hairgrass before or after he filled the tank.

    Thanks Tom, the site is a great resource.
     
  20. chris81

    chris81 Prolific Poster

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2008
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    0
    Local Time:
    4:30 AM
    Hi GUys!

    Thanks for nice comments orion! I have been doing some reading on hairgrass and i found out that all leading aquarium plant suppliers grow hairgrass and hemianthus in the emergent way! The browning of leaves i presume may be due to shock when seperating plantles from big mamma plant :p ( Some root stock may get damaged during seperation phase thus parts of the plant die!

    I am observing 2 different things with regards to growing rate with respect to trimming and way of planting:

    1. I have planted the HC in 2 different ways. The first method as sugested by Tom was to plant individual strands and bury part of the plant deep in the substrate. The second method was to plant the HC with 1cm of wool still attached as sugested by the tropica manual! ( So far a can say that the plants planted as tom suggested are faring better as a bunch with the wool method has some of the leaves which are browning... but that can be due to shock too i presume!! so will await further obsevations.

    2. I have decided also to test whether trimming the hairgrass increases rate of growth! So i have trimmed half of the hairgrass to 3 cm away from roots and i have left the other half as it was.. Observations so far... No browning observed in the trimmed half of the hairgrass while some browning of leaves is present in the untrimmed half...

    I ll post more observations as time goes by!

    Thanks a lot for your time and patience!

    Chris!

    Guys i guess only time will tell whether each of our aquariums will succeed! We can always keep each other company and help each other out as best we can!!! Plus we have the resources and fascilities offered by this site... (Tom and Gurus! Ur gr8!)
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice