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Discussion Starter #1
Once I get my new dart viv going I am not sure what substrate toget. I've got about 5'' to work with and it's a 20(h)x20(w)x32(l). I am doing the clay balls on the bottom for circulation and wanted some kind of soil mixture for the plants. Any reccomendations?
 

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Absolutely! It provides great nutrition and microhabitat, as well as perfect drainage for vivarium friendly plants!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
alright awesome. I dont want to buy stuff from josh's no offense to them but the prices are high, its the same for everywhere. if i were to go to menards or home depot and get some organic soil, peat moss would that work? and anythign else you woudl reccomend?
 

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what he said, or you can make your own. I just used, jungle bed, coco husk, cypress mulch, fire bark, sphagnam moss, and carbon charlco.
I'm with B-NICE...Either or you should be set! I make my own with peat moss mix, sphagnam moss, tree fern fiber, coco husk, and cowboy brand charcoal. Works very well and the plants love it. If you dont want to make it yourself, get a few bags of ABG mix and call it a day :)
 

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no is the simple quick answer, at least not nearly as well as all the other suggestions you have had listed on this thread.its too dense and water retentive in a moist viv. if you want to save just look up the abg thread on how to make your own. hardest thing to get is the tree fern fiber but even that isnt hard to find online.
 

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alright awesome. I dont want to buy stuff from josh's no offense to them but the prices are high, its the same for everywhere. if i were to go to menards or home depot and get some organic soil, peat moss would that work? and anythign else you woudl reccomend?
Drainage, drainage, drainage. Organic soil and peat moss will very quickly become waterlogged and kill the roots of your plants. An overly wet substrate can also cause foot rot and kill your frogs. Straight up, I don't think you are versed enough in substrate materials and the importance of good drainage to successfully design your own substrate. Besides, for all the materials it will take to do it right, you are going to spend WAY more money than just buying a bag or three of ABG mix from Josh's frogs.
You have to understand that our humid, moist, vivs are very different from a potted plant. Conventional mixes will not work.
I realize that you are trying to save money, but when your plants begin wilting and dieing from a poor substrate mix, where is the money saved? If you become yet another post with pictures of your frogs feet and legs rotting off, where is the money saved?
 

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I've got about 5'' to work with and it's a 20(h)x20(w)x32(l).
Its a 55 gallon if im not mistaken (assumming the measurements are in inches).

Pacblu, if you are going to make you're own, its easiest to find the abg ratio and try to buy the supplies in that ratio. (i.e. if its 3:2:1 spagnum, peat, charcoal ....def not right, but......then buy 3 gals spagnum, 2 peat, and 1 gal charcoal.
Its just easier and then you can just mix everything together without worriing about the measurments. Then you have extra already made for other vivs!!

Here's the dendroboard thread about the abg recipe..
http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/beginner-discussion/38881-abg-mix-recipe.html

Also, just a quick calculation, if you are going to have about 3 inches of abg on top of the hydroton, then you will want about 10 gallons of abg mix. Just a frame of reference if you are going to buy it from Joshs or make your own...

Hope it helps

-Jeremy
 

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Drainage, drainage, drainage. Organic soil and peat moss will very quickly become waterlogged and kill the roots of your plants. An overly wet substrate can also cause foot rot and kill your frogs. Straight up, I don't think you are versed enough in substrate materials and the importance of good drainage to successfully design your own substrate. Besides, for all the materials it will take to do it right, you are going to spend WAY more money than just buying a bag or three of ABG mix from Josh's frogs.
You have to understand that our humid, moist, vivs are very different from a potted plant. Conventional mixes will not work.
I realize that you are trying to save money, but when your plants begin wilting and dieing from a poor substrate mix, where is the money saved? If you become yet another post with pictures of your frogs feet and legs rotting off, where is the money saved?
agreed. Plus i think a 2" layer of ABG is plenty for majority of viv plants

like i said if you are only doing one viv is probably easier and more cost effective to just buy it premade from a retailer like Josh's plus if you can get some other supplies you need and get a total of 50 bucks or more the shipping is free. Stock up on some stuff, FF media, supplements, etc. I'd take Dougs advice, he makes his own ABG mix because he has a lot of vivs were its more cost effective for him to make his own, and just like he pointed out make sure you are following the proper recipe if you do make your own
 

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I typically use an average of 2" of substrate, topped with another 2" of leaf litter.
 

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Yea sorry for the "wrong/ not perfect" info haha
I havent set up a viv for darts myself yet, im more into reptiles.
In the thread i posted, it said that coco cior was not a part of it farther down, but i guess starting off with the right info is better :)
Always learning,

-Jeremy

P.S. What about substituting long coco fibers with the tree fern? I dont think it will bog down as much as coco cior... Just an idea, shoot me down if im wrong haha :p
 

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ditto, i feel anything more is too much
Why? I'd say 2" is fine but should be the minimum....you don't need 6" of sub, but 3" gives the plants more room to root (and gives springs more room to hide/reproduce)...not a bad thing at all.

P.S. What about substituting long coco fibers with the tree fern? I dont think it will bog down as much as coco cior... Just an idea, shoot me down if im wrong haha :p
It won't serve the same purpose. Treefern fiber (at least the good stuff) is stiff, very different from soft coco fibers. The tf fiber will help prevent compaction of the soil, the coco fibers wont. Plus the coco fibers will not last anywhere near as long as the tf fiber. Good idea though!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
wow guys great stuff ive learned. yeah i was just kinda throwing a rough idea of stuff when i said what i aws goin to use i hadnt done much research. I will use what you guys said. I feel 3'' like pimilo? i believe said was a good amount. I will look into that recipe and make a bunch. i dont mind having extra because if i ever need to do a small soil change in any certain area or somethign its good to have it on hand. and yes the dimensions were in inches. itll be 55 gallons iwht maybe 2 gallons in the back cut out for where the pumps will be hidden for the small water feature.
anything i missed?
 

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wow guys great stuff ive learned. yeah i was just kinda throwing a rough idea of stuff when i said what i aws goin to use i hadnt done much research. I will use what you guys said. I feel 3'' like pimilo? i believe said was a good amount. I will look into that recipe and make a bunch. i dont mind having extra because if i ever need to do a small soil change in any certain area or somethign its good to have it on hand. and yes the dimensions were in inches. itll be 55 gallons iwht maybe 2 gallons in the back cut out for where the pumps will be hidden for the small water feature.
anything i missed?
Actually, I said 2". Nothing wrong with 3" but my plants have all done fine with 2" and that leaves me more room for more leaf litter. Don't forget to get your leaf litter and lots of it!
 
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