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Thread: Building a brand new terrarium

  1. #1
    Carnivorous plant enthusiast vraev's Avatar
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    Hi guys,

    Finally after all that planning and searching. I have made the move. As posted on the other forum, I first had an ikea greenhouse. but now, after purchasing some CP's from Keehns carnivores, I returned the 20$ mini greenhouse and bought these. The materials are in hand, and I am RIghT NOW...as I write planning on starting the build. I hope you guys can pop in fast and help me.

    here are my materials:

    1) a tank from Pj's pet store : 14$ CDN incl tax
    I want to start small and cheap...so here is a small aquarium.







    2) Here are my substrate materials:
    peat moss : 4 $ CDN
    perlite: 4 $ CDN






    3) Here are the inhabitants:

    i) My 2 week old walmart VFT ..now seeming to fluorish properly





    in the background is an airplant : 2$

    4) the new comers are here:

    from Keehns carnivores in BC, presenting: 1 B52 VFT, 2 typical vft, 1 drosera capensis sundew

    very good packaging










    ooooo....I am sooo excited.

    missing in pics is a crate of aquafina pepsi de-mineralized water which I plan on using TILL snow time when I can collect snow for natural water.

    Now this is what I plan on following as instructions::

    http://www.the-venus-flytrap.com/how...terrarium.html

    Please tell me if those are good instuctions.

    I plan on first putting a 1 inch perlite layer. Then mixing 60/40 peat moss and perlite.

    then I would water it with a full or half 500 ml aquafina water.

    then I would make way in the mixture to pot the plants.

    Is this ok? can i do it this way?

    Please reply asap....I am waiitng for your opinions experienced CP growers. I am very very excited....I just want to start off makign it right now ...also becos I am worried that something will happen to the new plants. however, they seem to have enough moisture and are well packaged. Yet..they look floppy and need to be potted asap.

    please help.

    cheers,

    vraev

  2. #2
    chloroplast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Now this is what I plan on following as instructions::
    http://www.the-venus-flytrap.com/how...terrarium.html
    Please tell me if those are good instuctions.
    The instructions tell you how to make a "classic" terrarium, where the CPs are planted together in a soil that's on the bottom of the tank. THE INSTRUCTIONS SEEM OK, but I've never made a classic terrarium so I can't say if there's a "better" method.

    Some issues you might consider before making a classic terrarium:

    1. VFTs need cold dormancy. Will you remove them from the soil to give dormancy? Will you put the whole tank outside?

    2. One day, you may want to get a tropical CP that doesn't need dormancy. You'll have to remove some plants from the terrarium and keep others in it depending on time of year.

    3. One day, you may want to get a CP that has different watering or soil needs. You may not be able to use the classic terrarium for them.

    4. One day, a disease may affect the terrarium. Since all the plants are planted in the same soil, the disease has a better chance of affecting all the plants in the tank.

    A terrarium where all the plants are kept separately in pots avoids many of these issues. Some people think that keeping plants separated in pots doesn't look "as nice" as a classic terrarium, but with a little time/patience and the right technique, it can look very nice.

    FYI....You should also know that VFTs do not require very high humidity, which is a reason why some people put them in terrariums. VFTs will do well in 35-50% humidity which, if you wish, can be increased simply by sitting them in a saucer of water.


    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]then I would water it with a full or half 500 ml aquafina water.
    You eventually plan on converting to snow water which is good. Aquafina water will be OK as a temporary measure, but realize that like most other bottled water, it probably contains minerals/ions (NaCl, Ca, Mg, etc.), but probably less so than your tap water. You might want to consider using "distilled water" instead--it's usually cheaper and has less minerals than typical bottled water.

    Good luck!
    Secretary, New England Carnivorous Plant Society (NECPS) http://www.necps.org/
    Member, International Carnivorous Plant Society (ICPS)
    Member, North American Sarracenia Conservancy (NASC)
    Member, The Carnivorous Plant Society (CPS)

  3. #3
    Carnivorous plant enthusiast vraev's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info. I do plan on taking out the VFT's during dormancy. heck...the entire reason I am doing this is for VFT's. I am very fascinated by them. during winter...I will use my refridgirator.

    In the meanwhile...I do understand the risks...but..I guess I rather start of with the classic than making the complicated partitions one. I WILL plant the already accustomed walmart plant WITH ITS POT. its the new ones that I will directly put in the moss.

    BTW>..right now...I left the moss in a bucket of water. I am going to leave it for an hr till I come back from the shower...then I mix it with washed perlite and put it in the tank. A

    Is this right?

  4. #4
    Cardiac Nurse JB_OrchidGuy's Avatar
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    I wouldn't water with aquaphina. Its fortified with mnerals for better taste. Distilled or RO or even rainwater. I personaly would not use anyting but Distilled RO or rain, because since this is a sealed terrerium and no way to drain it. Any minerals that get into the soil will ALWAYS be in the soil. Minerals never evaporate and everytime you use non-pure water it jst adds to the minerals eventualy getting up to dangerous levels. Without having a way to flush or drain the tank then its best not to get the minerals in there to begin with. Trust me I killed some VFT that way already.
    JB
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    Growlist Updated 05/08/13

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    Stay chooned in for more! Clint's Avatar
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    dun dun dun..... make a flase bottom that way you can siphon off excess water AND periodically flush the media to ensure freshness.

  6. #6
    Cardiac Nurse JB_OrchidGuy's Avatar
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    Ahhhh good idear there Clint. Now why didn;t I think of that?? Dang it. LOL
    JB
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    chloroplast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Thanks for the info. I do plan on taking out the VFT's during dormancy. heck...the entire reason I am doing this is for VFT's. I am very fascinated by them. during winter...I will use my refridgirator.

    In the meanwhile...I do understand the risks...but..I guess I rather start of with the classic than making the complicated partitions one. I WILL plant the already accustomed walmart plant WITH ITS POT. its the new ones that I will directly put in the moss.
    No problem. Good luck with the terrarium. I'm sure it'll turn out fine.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]I left the moss in a bucket of water. I am going to leave it for an hr till I come back from the shower...then I mix it with washed perlite and put it in the tank. A

    Is this right?
    That's fine, you can wash the peat and perlite before using or you can mix them dry. There are supporters for both methods. The idea behind washing the substrates first is to flush unwanted particles out of the mix in order to reduce the total "ppm (parts per million)" of these substances. Myself, I don't wash my peat/perlite before using them.

    Good luck.
    Secretary, New England Carnivorous Plant Society (NECPS) http://www.necps.org/
    Member, International Carnivorous Plant Society (ICPS)
    Member, North American Sarracenia Conservancy (NASC)
    Member, The Carnivorous Plant Society (CPS)

  8. #8
    Carnivorous plant enthusiast vraev's Avatar
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    Question

    FINALLY here is the final revision and NEW terrarium of mine.

    The old one I made apparently had schultz moss which contained fetilizer. I was away since 11 AM today morning....took buses, returned a 4 $ moss....then came back got the smallest bale of peat moss possible for less than 4 $. (I know...but I want little...not a big bale). Now the time is 5 PM after finishing everything.

    Finally.....this time I took some drainage considerations and already it seems to be working well. Thanks to a member on the forum here seedjar or someone who advised me about it.

    so here are pics:

    OLD TERRARIUM....near a south facing window + a 13 watt white light bulb




    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    NEW revisions:

    Once again...removed everything in the aquarium. cleaned it with tap water. Then used FRESH perlite.

    I took a risk with teh new plants this time. All highlighted in blue. They came packaged with some wet LFS. This time...I put them in a shallow pot with fresh rain water....removed all the LFS carefully....didn;t see big bulbs AT ALL...all I saw was black root fibers. I carefully then put it in the mixture and drew the mixture from the sides without pressing the plant. I did this for all the plants. SO I guess I'll know if it was a mistake in a few months

    But I think confidently this time its done right. . The moss bale had just too much crap ie., sticks in it. But nothing else.

    Is it just me or spaghnum moss just looks like compost out of the bale.

    anyways...I didn't waste the LFS. I cut some up in between my hands and put it around the empty spaces. I buried some...I left some intact.

    so here are pics.









    BTW...the corner plant is still in its walmart plant. I'll repot it after this winters dormancy.




    Hopefully this time..its good.

    cheers,

    vraev

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