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Thread: How often to recirculate air in a terrarium

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    Veronis's Avatar
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    How often to recirculate air in a terrarium

    I have a home built terrarium made of a 10g aquarium flipped on its side; I added a plexi glass cover with hinges, with 0.5" x 12" slits on either side of the door for some additional ventilation. When the door is closed, humidity is around 65%. With the fan on its lowest setting (a mere 1300 RPM), all the humidity gets blown out of it in about 15-25 minutes, so it drops to about 40%.

    I'd like to set the fan on a timer so that it turns on for 30 minutes at a time, x times per day, to recirculate air; this way I can keep my humidity up.

    So, my question...how many 30-minute recirculations should I do per day?

    I don't know if too many 20-25% fluctuations of humidity (over the course of about an hour down then back up) will be bad for the plants: d caspanis, d adelae, S. purpurea, p primulflora and small tropical pitcher plant.

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    ilbasso's Avatar
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    Do you absolutely HAVE to have them in the tank? None of these need terrarium conditions to survive.

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    JMurphy97's Avatar
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    I think they do way better in a terrarium. They may not need to be but they get the same light year round and controlled conditions. I had a d. adelae do nothing but die when growing by a east window. Now that it's in a terrarium/grow chamber they are weeds.

    I'm also using a fan in mine but before the rajah thread I had it come on for only an hour a day. But now I have it coming on for a couple hours straight. The thing is my chanber is sealed so the humid air has nowhere to go. So I'm hoping the humidity stays around 60% daytime.

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    Capensis's Avatar
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    I would keep the D. capensis, D. adelae, and the Nepenthes in there. Btw, what kind is the Nepenthes?
    I would take out the S. purpurea (ssp. purpurea or venosa?) and P. primuliflora because they're warm-temperates and not tropical (I guess you can keep them in there until Winter, but it's best to let them out in season weather). But the rest are subtropical and/or tropical. They can live there year-round.
    http://www.terraforums.com/forums/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=6789&dateline=1352508752

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    ilbasso's Avatar
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    My adelaes tried to take over the house when I had them in an east window, but then they didn't like the terrarium! Just shows how what works for one fails for someone else.

    My tank is more or less "sealed", but there is an opening of probably an inch or less on the side farthest from the fan. My fan is on the same timer with the lights so it is on all day. Humidity is staying pretty constant around 75%. I try to keep the house around 50% though so that may help. It is a 40 gal and the only water along the bottom is the stuff that spills when I'm watering the plants. There's enough of that, but it isn't the several inches that you see in others' tanks and it isn't intentional so the level varies.

    Maybe sealing one of the 12" slits could help? My ventilation opening is about 12" long and that is for a 40 gal so maybe you're ventilating a bit too much? I'm only guessing here.

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    Veronis's Avatar
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    Er...do adelaes at least stay in their own pot? I read that they self propagated via their roots. They're not going to spray seeds all over my terrarium are they? I didn't think adelae's flowered.

    Quote Originally Posted by Capensis View Post
    I would keep the D. capensis, D. adelae, and the Nepenthes in there. Btw, what kind is the Nepenthes?
    I would take the S. purpurea (ssp. purpurea or venosa?) and P. primuliflora because they're warm-temperates and not tropical (I guess you can keep them in there until Winter, but it's best to let them out in season weather). But the rest are subtropical and/or tropical. They can live there year-round.
    It's a nepenthes gracilis. I'd like to get 1 or 2 more Nepenthes in there but I need to dig more to figure out what I want. What I really want is a greenhouse and 2-foot pitchers.

    I did - the purpurea (ssp. venosa) is outside now with the other Sarracenia (Dana's Delight and Sarracenia x catesbaei). It's too hot in that thing for it and I was afraid for its life.

    I removed the ping primulflora this morning too.


    Quote Originally Posted by ilbasso View Post
    Maybe sealing one of the 12" slits could help? My ventilation opening is about 12" long and that is for a 40 gal so maybe you're ventilating a bit too much? I'm only guessing here.
    I sealed both with saran wrap as a test, and the humidity stays around 80% now. Still, if I turn the fan on it blows most of the humidity out. I don'tthink I can fix it on this terrarium.I just need to set the ventilation fan on a timer and only run it a couple times a day for 30 minutes at a time.

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    ilbasso's Avatar
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    Adelaes do flower, but they don't produce seed. When my plants were happy, they'd flower at random times and I just let 'em go. You'll be fine if yours do.

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    JMurphy97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilbasso View Post
    Adelaes do flower, but they don't produce seed. When my plants were happy, they'd flower at random times and I just let 'em go. You'll be fine if yours do.
    Good to know. Mine is flowering right now and producing offshoots.

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