how many pounds of diamond black do I need?

beachroadbum

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Dec 13, 2008
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Hey Now all,

How many pounds of diamond black do I need to cover my 46 bowfront? It's 36x15.
I will be going for the non co2 method and I think a 1/2 inch of db is suggested. I will be putting 2 inches of ada soil on top.

Thanks!
 

VaughnH

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I suggest you use a lot less than that unless you really enjoy yellow water. I put about that much depth in a ten gallon tank, and hated the effect on the water. Unless I am mistaken, this stuff is intended to be just a very thin layer at the bottom.
 

Mooner

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Agreed, hope you like yellow water if using DB. Two years + and my water is still yellow and only stays clear about three weeks after a WC on a non-carbon tank. I would suggest NOT using this anymore and I have good results without. Definitely not with ADA AS, just mulm and a light dusting of peat under.
 

beachroadbum

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Dec 13, 2008
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Thanks for the replies Vaughn and Mooner,

Ok so I am basing my non co2 tank off of the article that Tom posted. He said to use diamond black...so the plants have a carbon source at their roots....so peat is a carbon source too?
I have been rethinking using ada soil. It's just so expensive...might just go with onyx sand.

Thanks again guys!
 

Tom Barr

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I agree as well, and certainly no need with ADA AS.That's great for non CO2 alone, add some mulm also. BTW, you can usethe Dry start method for a non CO2 tank also. Then all the roots and plants are well established, starts up well.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

beachroadbum

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Dec 13, 2008
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Hi Tom,

Ok so if I go the ada route I will be fine using that alone along with some mulm and peat? If I do onyx sand will I need to use the diamond black?
Also I am going to do a search now but if you could explain the dry method to me that would be great. I havent heard of that before.

Thanks!
 

VaughnH

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In the simplest terms, a dry start method is where you plant the substrate without water in the tank, add just enough water to not have standing water above the substrate, then grow the plants emersed that way. Once they grow to cover the substrate, or nearly so, you fill the tank with water and the plants convert to submersed growth. Since there is no above "ground" water during the start no algae can grow, and planting is much, much easier with not having to worry about the plants floating up out of the substrate.
 

beachroadbum

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Dec 13, 2008
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Wow thanks Vaughn,

And I just found the long thread talking about this as well. This is incredible! Ok so I will use the glass lid. Do I have to spray the plants each day with water also? How many inches of ada soil should I have? My tank is a 46 bowfront....36x15.

Thank you all for being so generous of your time and helping me through this. I really appreciate it.

best,
Jared
 

VaughnH

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The objective with the dry start method is to keep a high humidity, 100%, in the tank, which is easy if the tank is loosely covered with glass or plastic. You need some gaps in the cover to allow CO2 to enter from the air, but that doesn't take much. When I tried this I didn't spray the plants at all, and they grew fine.
 

beachroadbum

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Dec 13, 2008
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Thanks again Vaughn,

I am pumped and can't wait to do this. The dry method seems so easy! Ok so I looked at amano's site and with shipping included it's just too expensive. Can I still do the dry method using onyx sand? Also since I am using onyx sand I should use the peat or a very fine layer of diamond black with it right?

Thanks!
 

VaughnH

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You can do the dry start method with any substrate. The plants will need nutrients as they start growing, so I suggest adding a bit of EI fertilizing to the water you use for the initial setup. Or, if you plan to keep the dry start going for a few weeks you can safely use terrestrial fertilizer in the substrate. Before you will be "flooding" the tank the ammonia and urea in that fertilizer will have changed to nitrates. Just don't overdo it. I added too much the first time I tried this and it was very hard on the little plants.

A very thin layer of peat or diamond black will be good under the onyx sand.