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i have done plenty of research on substrate, and it seems the oponinions are everywhere....
Someone help!
 

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Clay isn't just for pumilio.. If done properly it can have benefits for all of the frogs.. Just recently people haven't been working the clay for structure..

Ed
 

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I use a modified ABG mix.

I mix the ABG exactly as suggested, but I add in shredded oak leaves, clay kitty litter, and saw dust from elm wood.

Under the right conditions, mycelium will grow and thrive on the elm saw dust. this is the fungal bed that mushrooms shoot up from.

While mushrooms look cool, more importantly, the mycelium promotes springtail populations to thrive.

I walk out back into the woods and collect a handful of small mushrooms, and soak them in a bucket with just enough water to cover them over night. Then I discard the mushrooms.

The water has literally thousands of spores in it now, and I use this water to water the substrate.

While the frogs are my main focus, my goal in Naturalistic vivaria is a completely self sustaining enclosure.

I am trying to find a miniature tropical fruit producing vine that will thrive in a vivarium for fruit flies to feed on. but one that will not produce in excess of what the flies can keep cleaned up. I may not find this one.
 

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ABG for your first viv, and if you wanna get a little experimental then try clay for your 2nd. Clay is a lot more time intensive to make, and although it seems great it hasn't really had the test of time that ABG has...
 

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ABG mix has hands down been my favorite. If you're keeping Pums a clay based substrate would be good (never done it but it seems great).
Guess it's time for me to learn a bit off this. What benefit does clay have for Pumilio? I'm guessing it has something to do with bromeliad drainage?

Back to topic. I always have used the ABG mix. 2 parts tree fern fiber, 1 part peat moss, 2 parts cocofiber, 1 part charcoal, and 2 parts orchid bark
 

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Guess it's time for me to learn a bit off this. What benefit does clay have for Pumilio? I'm guessing it has something to do with bromeliad drainage?

Back to topic. I always have used the ABG mix. 2 parts tree fern fiber, 1 part peat moss, 2 parts cocofiber, 1 part charcoal, and 2 parts orchid bark
Close, but not quite. There is NO cocofiber in ABG Mix. http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/parts-construction/63915-truth-about-abg-mix.html
1 part milled peat

1 part milled sphagnum moss

1 part fine charcoal (We usually at least double this)

2 parts fine tree fern fiber

2 parts fine orchid bark

The main benefits of clay are microfauna production is better and your frogs get calcium supplementation every time they eat a bug and even simply by sitting on the clay. http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/parts-construction/63732-clay-substrate-how.html
http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/general-discussion/22990-ultimate-clay-based-substrate-thread.html
 

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I'm guessing it has something to do with bromeliad drainage?
Not exactly. It's more to do with creating specific niche areas for microfauna and the possible transference of minerals from the clay to the frogs through the microfauna and physical contact. That's the super short simplified version though. Check the search bar for some exhaustive (exhausting?) threads on the subject.

*Sorry, looks like Pumilio already covered that*
 

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Ah, good call Doug. I always mixed in the coco-fiber though (all over the garage for orchid planting), and I forgot about the sphag :D.
How has it been holding up for you? I have heard that coco-fiber doesn't last as long (but I've never tried it myself). I got one of the big 2 cubic feet packs of peat from Lowes and that last's forever!
 

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How has it been holding up for you? I have heard that coco-fiber doesn't last as long (but I've never tried it myself). I got one of the big 2 cubic feet packs of peat from Lowes and that last's forever!
Another benefit to clay is that if done properly it will last for as long as you leave up the enclosure.

Clay grows moss just fine see the attached picture and in addition to the microfauna and calcium, it acts more like the substrate to which terrestrial species are adapted.

I'm not making fun of you Mitch, but a lot of the clay works that people are trying/using are made from kitty litters and are not even worked to incorporate the structure as indicated in the ultimate clay thread. Many of these are being used as a simple background method and as these are functionally/structurally different issues should be expected.

I keep an airgap in most of the tanks between the surface of the water in the false bottom and the bottom of the false bottom so my clay substrates drain well... which is another difference from most people's set ups and as a result I am able to grow epiphytes in the substrate without any rotting.
 

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i agree 100% clay is a perfect sub for moss growth.


Another benefit to clay is that if done properly it will last for as long as you leave up the enclosure.

Clay grows moss just fine see the attached picture and in addition to the microfauna and calcium, it acts more like the substrate to which terrestrial species are adapted.

I'm not making fun of you Mitch, but a lot of the clay works that people are trying/using are made from kitty litters and are not even worked to incorporate the structure as indicated in the ultimate clay thread. Many of these are being used as a simple background method and as these are functionally/structurally different issues should be expected.

I keep an airgap in most of the tanks between the surface of the water in the false bottom and the bottom of the false bottom so my clay substrates drain well... which is another difference from most people's set ups and as a result I am able to grow epiphytes in the substrate without any rotting.
 
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