DSM for HC

Tom Barr

Member
DSM= dry start method

Tobi is aware of this method but I'd thought I'd add it to his site to better illustrate the method to more viewers/aquarist. It is really easy to do and saves a lot of water changes, algae issues and labor.

You grow the HC(or any other foreground plant) with the aquarium only filled right below the plant leaves. the roots are submersed in water, but the leaves are exposed to the air above.
This is very much like growing a terrarium.

I use ADA' s aqua soil amzonia, but you can use mineralized soil or earth worm castings etc mixed with sand if you chose. You need a full nutrient sediment no matter what for this method to allow the HC to grow in prior to filling the aquarium.

Plain sand will obviously no work and not grow anything.

The only draw back is that the tank is not filled for the first 1-2 months, but most of the time, few aquarist add fish or are waiting for the aquarium to cycle. So this is not any issue typically.








Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Tom Barr

Member
This method produced the lowest incidence of algae for a new aquarium I've done at this scale.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Tobias Coring

Administrator
Teammitglied
Hi Tom,

thanks for your nice report on the DSM. With HC it really works very well :).
 

Hardy

Active Member
Thanks a lot, Tom.
Observing the start of your project was already fascinating and the result is even more impressive than I could have figured.
 

Tom Barr

Member
Well, after the 4th week, I have 60 Cardinals, 70 amano shrimp, 40 Otto cats, 36 N. espei pencil fish and few L number plecos. The HC continues to dramatically grow without any issues.

Based on this case example, this method provides a simple easy no labor method to produce any number of low growing foreground rock or wood aquascapes without any real work.

No algae
No water changes
No replanting
No cycling the aquarium
No dosing
No fiddling with CO2
No having to buy a lot of plant material initially
No transition from emergent to submersed states(some plants will, but with good CO2, this is greatly minimized)
No extra electrical cost running other equipment during the dry phase.



Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Tom Barr

Member
GreenReef":1o77mldc schrieb:
Tom Barr":1o77mldc schrieb:
This method produced the lowest incidence of algae for a new aquarium I've done at this scale.

Regards,
Tom Barr
Hi Tom,
...DSM is a realy great idea but a little bit unsportsmanlike :p

Haha!
Yes, but once you fill the aquarium up, then you can have all the fun there you desire!

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Tom Barr

Member
Update and a method I use to maintain the mat of HC:



The edge immediately after trimming, nice and clean, no roots.
Time: 3-4 minutes.





Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Hannes85

Member
Hi Tom,

i've also tried your DSM with Eleocharis Parvula, but after a few days i had a mildow infested tank...
I was afraid to loose the plants, so i filled it up afer a week.
What was wrong? I used AS Amazonia II, and 2x15 Watt (dennerle fluorescent lamps).
The 63L tank was covered and the water stands as high as the AS...

anyone an idea??

LG
 

Tom Barr

Member
Mark1":31s69hpv schrieb:
Hi Tom,

Looks good, but what have you done ;)?

Regards Mark.

If you see the front edge of the HC, it's now been trimmed away.
I used a plastic paint scraper and cut HC "sod" pieces(actually long strips). Then pull these strips up and sold them.

This keeps the front edge looking well cared for and prevents the HC from building up and pressing against the glass. The same method can be used for hairgrass or any other plant species that becomes dense.

After the new growth fills in some, you can trim the other sides, or "mow" the middle section.
Mowing tends to take a bit more time as you have to be a bit more careful, buit with large scissors, works pretty well.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Tom Barr

Member
Hannes85":1ryv1s00 schrieb:
Hi Tom,

i've also tried your DSM with Eleocharis Parvula, but after a few days i had a mildow infested tank...
I was afraid to loose the plants, so i filled it up afer a week.
What was wrong? I used AS Amazonia II, and 2x15 Watt (dennerle fluorescent lamps).
The 63L tank was covered and the water stands as high as the AS...

anyone an idea??

LG

You had too much moisture perhaps, you can allow the AS to dry out a little etc, then refill later.
I've not had any fungi or mildew issues unless it was too moist, like with Crypts in the past, every so often.

Same thing here.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 
Hi Tom,
I have three questions.
Firstly, how do you handle a hillside situation where its not possible to keep every plants root under the waterline?
Secondly, do you cover the tank?
Thirdly, how much light is used for how long?

Cheers Mate

Axel
 

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