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Thread: Vivarium Construction Progress/Log

  1. #17
    sarracenia lover dionae's Avatar
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    Looks very nice.

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    swords's Avatar
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    I'm loving it!

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    Wants a Hamata Soopaman's Avatar
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    Thanks!

    Added the Live sphagnum along the waterline and in the pots today.

    Also, swords, do you have any problem with your living clay drying out along the top? Mine has been slowly drying around the edges, and I have been misting to keep it moist, but I am afraid it is going to dry and crack away from the glass. Any suggestions or ideas on what to do about it?

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    swords's Avatar
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    Does your clay run all the way to the floor of the tank (not just the soil level)? This helps the clay soak up enough water to stay well hydrated. I realized in my own designs that any clay not conneceted to the main mass will dry up even with misting, It must be a continuous mass.

    But no, I don't have drying problems unless I quit watering intentionally. When I start them up I plant it heavily from the beginning with 1" clumps of moss and plant cuttings scattered about the background and I gently soak it every day with a garden sprayer until the moss & plants root and spread. I use one of those 1 gallon pump action types used for fertilizers or pesticides (make sure it's new and never been used for those) you can adjust the nozzle from a solid stream to a gentle mist and just squeeze the trigger and flip a switch to keep it on to get a good soaking "rain". This device is the best for soaking everyday, the hand mister needs a lot of pumping to achieve the same level of wetness.

  5. #21
    Wants a Hamata Soopaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by swords View Post
    Does your clay run all the way to the floor of the tank (not just the soil level)? This helps the clay soak up enough water to stay well hydrated. I realized in my own designs that any clay not conneceted to the main mass will dry up even with misting, It must be a continuous mass.

    But no, I don't have drying problems unless I quit watering intentionally. When I start them up I plant it heavily from the beginning with 1" clumps of moss and plant cuttings scattered about the background and I gently soak it every day with a garden sprayer until the moss & plants root and spread. I use one of those 1 gallon pump action types used for fertilizers or pesticides (make sure it's new and never been used for those) you can adjust the nozzle from a solid stream to a gentle mist and just squeeze the trigger and flip a switch to keep it on to get a good soaking "rain". This device is the best for soaking everyday, the hand mister needs a lot of pumping to achieve the same level of wetness.
    Yes, one section of the clay does, the back wall. The right upper side wall, does not, unfortunately, as the waterfeature separates it from an direct contact with the portion below it. I guess that is why I am having problems with that section. I will say though, that I wouldn't want to have the clay connecting with the waterline without a heavy bit of substrate in front of it, as the clay I made seems to just fall apart when put in large amounts of water. I suppose there is some sort of happy medium to be met with it though.

    I am going to order a ficus and this nice coppery pink Monochaetum sp. Ecuador for putting on the wall. I have some more of the clay left and I will try to cut away some of the dry stuff on the back right and replace it with fresh wet stuff when these plants come in. Oh well, probably should have thought on some of these things before hand, but it is my first big project, I'll be a lot better prepared when I do another.

    And I'll have to get one of those sprayers, sounds like just what I need to help keep this from drying out and becoming a disaster

  6. #22

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    Great vivarium concept, could use some more green though. Why not use good quality artificial moss to cover the walls? They're too barren IMO. I was originally aiming for something like this, a terrarium with a fountain, but I ended up with a paludarium instead.

  7. #23
    Wants a Hamata Soopaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by emre View Post
    Great vivarium concept, could use some more green though. Why not use good quality artificial moss to cover the walls? They're too barren IMO. I was originally aiming for something like this, a terrarium with a fountain, but I ended up with a paludarium instead.
    It's going to grow in, but it might take 6 months or so. I've got some moss that I have taken from my other planted tank and put in small amounts on the walls. Additionally, I've got some vining plants shipping in this week that will be planted to go up the walls and help cover up that "barren" look.

    Oh, and swords. I redid the lid and replaced the original screen in the top with plastic sheeting, which holds in the humidity greatly. I have had no problems with the walls drying out, so I'm not worried about it anymore. They should stay consistently moist from now on

  8. #24
    swords's Avatar
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    Oh yeah, the screen top on those kits is bad news and has to be covered. I don't know why they sell vivariums with an all screen top on them - all the humidity just goes up and out.

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