DSM - Dry Start Method

JATIN

Junior Poster
Jan 6, 2012
22
0
1
Greetings!

I would like to confirm the following sequence before using DSM method (Tom Barr):

Is this correct?
1. Add potting soil (or ADA Aquatic soil, etc.) to a new empty tank.
2. Saturate soil with water (not flood).
3. Add sand/gravel layer on top (1.5 inch??)
4. Put plant roots through the gravel into the soil underneath.

I may have dropped a few steps, but I am concerned about the sequence of #2-4 above. Also, please comment if any of the steps above are incorrect or not required.

Thanks!
Jatin
 
C

csmith

Guest
That's correct, except you don't need to cap ADA Aqua Soil. You "plant" the plants if you want, but I moreso just place them on the substrate and give them a little "push" down. I don't really plant them. My HC took off just fine being placed on the soil, and my Stauro is growing fine. I don't recall the thread, but I believe it was pat w or maybe Wet that was writing about stem plants multiplying when you lie them down..something about regrowing vertically from each node.

Ensure you do not keep the top of the subtrate soaked. It's humidity you're looking for, not moisture. Saran wrap the top and that's that. Mist the tank as you feel is needed.
 

JATIN

Junior Poster
Jan 6, 2012
22
0
1
Thanks C. Smith

Quoting you here:
>> My HC took off just fine being placed on the soil

So did you place the HC on soil or gravel?
If soil, then how did you add gravel later on before flooding?

Thanks!
Jatin
 

Gerryd

Plant Guru Team
Lifetime Member
Sep 23, 2007
5,623
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South Florida
JATIN;78260 said:
So did you place the HC on soil or gravel? If soil, then how did you add gravel later on before flooding?Thanks!
Jatin

Hi Jatin,

The HC can either be planted gently in the substrate, or allowed to find it's own roots to the substrate.

Better if you can break the plant into several smaller sections so that when it starts to spread, the sections will connect and fill in.

The idea is NOT to add any additional substrate with the DSM. The plant growth will help cycle the NH4 and the tank will be ready for fish upon flooding. If the area is planted, why would you want to add more substrate? Sorry I don't understand this question, I guess :)

Adding it to non planted areas is fine, but then that substrate will NOT be cycled as the rest.

Hope this makes sense...
 

JATIN

Junior Poster
Jan 6, 2012
22
0
1
Thanks Gerry!

My concern is that post flooding, what is it that keeps the soil from mixing with water and making it muddy?
 
C

csmith

Guest
That is going to happen a little anyway, but the plants rooting into the soil does deter it a bit. After you fill with water do a few water changes, wait a few days and the problem is gone.