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Thread: I gotta do it again

  1. #25

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    Another thing to remember is you can use aquariums to keep these guys in. Craigslist does have used ones that can be cheap, if you look long enough. A standard 4 ft. tank would be 55 gallons (48" X 12" X 18") or 75 gallons (48" X 18" X 18"). If you're lucky you'll find a whole 55 gallon setup for under $150 (tank, lights, glass top, double stand, and probably some fishy stuff). Prices do vary, so if there's a fish club near you you can troll there.

    Check Minnesota Fish Keepers Forum, as they do have WI members. If you're close to the Twin Cities I can tell you at least one store that sells used tanks at a cheap price, only problem is she's in the Champlin/Anoka area, so it's a bit of a drive from WI.

  2. #26
    Kung Fu Fighting! NeciFiX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RSS View Post
    If you are planning on moving into 2 racks at some point just start out with 2 lights and if you find out that is not enough, you can always use those 2 in the other rack when you design it or just add 2 more lights. Just when you pick these 2 lights make sure you could add 1-2 more lights if you needed too. My plan was always to add another 1-2 lights when I got some more money but I just don't need the extra light so why spend the money?

    Yes you can use the aquatic fixtures, but the hydroponics ones are generally less pricey. The bulbs are no were near as pricey either, they don't need to travel through water so they can be of much less quality and your plants could care less. Water really destroys light the further it travels through it, so they make these over priced bulbs to correct for it. The hydroponics places have the normal "plant/daylight" bulbs.

    I do have a few of the Current USA T5HO fixtures, they have worked great, I went to another fixtures I found that was a single strip with its own reflector. That way I can place each light were I want it for the best coverage.

    Questions are good! Not asking them when have you end up with something that just doesn't work right.

    Growing a N. bicalcarata indoor would be a challange, those things get big. I'm bonsai'd things before, but never tried to bonsai a Nep
    Haha, yeah, I was kidding about the bicalcarata, but, not about the story that went along with it!

    So, those $35 bulbs are overpriced, you're saying, and I could get them much cheaper? That's a relief. I'd start with two lights and add a third eventually and maybe a fourth. Would they all fit on the top rack or would I put them on all the racks?

    I know I can use an aquarium but that would require more than just a stand, right? And I'd be mostly limited to lowlanders in an aquarium, but, I may get one for this purpose some day, I think a medium sized rack with good light, decent humidity [in the basement] and acceptable temps would be fine for now, with 2-3 T5 lights to start out with.

    What are some better T5 lights, then? Effective yet cheaper plant ones?

    Thank you!
    - NeciFiX

  3. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeciFiX View Post
    Haha, yeah, I was kidding about the bicalcarata, but, not about the story that went along with it!

    So, those $35 bulbs are overpriced, you're saying, and I could get them much cheaper? That's a relief. I'd start with two lights and add a third eventually and maybe a fourth. Would they all fit on the top rack or would I put them on all the racks?

    I know I can use an aquarium but that would require more than just a stand, right? And I'd be mostly limited to lowlanders in an aquarium, but, I may get one for this purpose some day, I think a medium sized rack with good light, decent humidity [in the basement] and acceptable temps would be fine for now, with 2-3 T5 lights to start out with.

    What are some better T5 lights, then? Effective yet cheaper plant ones?

    Thank you!
    Well the $35 is not overpriced, just overpriced for what we would be using them for. They do there job we just don't need "that" kinda of bulb. We need a much less specialized one, ie cheaper .

    I've seem people actually put lights on the sides of there grow racks, I have not tried this myself but I might someday, if I never needed more light. Right now I have more light than I need. You could really put them anywhere they would physically fit, I've seem some really odd vivariums.

    I have a reptile tank (an cheaper version of an aquarium, they won't hold water to the top without breaking) with some plexi-glass for the top with some lights just sitting on the top. It has no stand and the plants don't seem to mind, the wife however......You can adjust things in an aquarium much better than in a growrack, if you want more or less humidity/heat you just need more/less venting/fans/water/whatnot. Again check out the Exo-terra's before you make a choice, you owe it to yourself . They are pricey but nice, you will be looking at this thing ALOT.

    I've only used a few fixtures so I'm no expert, I've had good and bad results with all my fixtures. I've yet to have a problem with any of the Current USA ones, but I've read some negatives. The ones I'm using now are Sun Blaze T5 strip lights. I've received a few that were damaged in shipping, but once I got good ones they have worked great.

  4. #28
    Kung Fu Fighting! NeciFiX's Avatar
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    I might stick with a rack because these terrariums, although more controlled, seem to be a bit more expensive and can hold less plants.
    - NeciFiX

  5. #29
    Kung Fu Fighting! NeciFiX's Avatar
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    Sorry to double post, but, it has been a few days and I have a few updates on my situation.

    As of now, the humidity situation is unresolved, though, it may not be that big of a deal. From what I've yielded, many Drosera are fine with only medium levels of humidity [35-55%], and others can be hardened off rather well [not all, but, many]. Nepenthes are less forgiving, but, there are varieties [that are easier] that can be hardened off and do fine as well. Nepenthes ventricosa and Nepenthes truncata are my choices for this reason. I had a ventricosa, a young plant, growing in a windowsill. It didn't pitcher for awhile but eventually it did. It had the nice temp drop during the winter, but, in the summer it had no temp drop and it did fine. The truncata form I am looking at will be a highlander, but, truncata can be treated as an intermediate as I've heard, which means it will probably be fine without a large temp drop.

    Ideally, I CAN make my basement a bit colder at night, not freezing, but, I will be able to, at least for awhile. My situation, obviously, a spacey rack and good lighting, would be best with Drosera and other plants that aren't so humidity sensitive, which there are many CPs [although most are in rather humid environments, many of them can be easily hardened off and do absolutely fine and grow well]. I will continue doing research in order to figure this out, any other ideas would be great in the meantime though.

    What are your opinions on my two Nepenthes picks?

    I have discovered a huge sun-window on the brightest facing portion of my house, with the same properties as my "magic windowsill" that housed my Cephalotus for nearly two years completely fine. The only problem is, yet again, the evil temperature and humidity. If my mom wasn't so afraid of mold, this would be easy.

    Perhaps the basement isn't the best pick. The heater is also down there. Maybe a closet would be better? The temperature of the closet, since unheated, naturally varies on, yes, the warmth of my house, but, also the outside temperature. It's warmer during the day [relatively speaking] and warmer in my house, and at night both would be cooler. It would not be freezing, but, it would be cooler.

    I think I'm going to spend tomorrow compiling a list of pros and cons of many locations in my house, and then choose the best one. I think a closet would have less of a chance to develop mold as well, and if I bought a rather advanced [albeit expensive] humidifier, set at 75% or so, it wouldn't be too high so that mold would thrive but the plants would. I could not do this in the basement, since mold is a problem down there as-is, and the basement is a large open area.

    My only problem with MY closet is there is a lot of crap in there, and there are shelves in the back [if only the shelves were big, I could just slide a tray under them and use them instead of having to buy a rack!] and it's not a very large closet.

    Well, enough rambling. I'm going to solve this, I can do it. I have enlisted the help of my Horticulture teacher at my school. Although he probably doesn't know a lot about carnivorous plants in general, he does know about grow racks, lighting and all that, and gave me some ideas to raise the humidity/temp.
    - NeciFiX

  6. #30

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    I don't know how handy you are but here is an option, I always thought these looked really nice. Any of the enclosures will for the most part remove the mold concerns, but there is the cost as a trade off.

    http://www.carnivorousplants.org/how...xTerrarium.php

  7. #31
    Kung Fu Fighting! NeciFiX's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, I am not very handy. J do have many family members hat are and would do this for me. But, I realized something: I had counted my room out for the possible location in the beginning due to humidity concerns. But, I realized these concerns could be easily fixed! I had mold growing in my windows when I had a (very bad, I might add) warm mist humidifier. This was due to leaving the humidifier on and my room became extremely hot and hit 100% humidity. At a stable 65-80% the windows would not really have a chance to mold very well. The only problem with my room
    is this: the temp. I am like a Nepenthes, I love it could and humid as I sleep. During the winter, I can put a fan in my window at night for a short time to chill my room a bit, and then during the day keep my windows shut so it is warm. In the fall, the Air conditioner should still be in the window since we still do have some hot days. In the summer, I can leave the AC to a comfortable daily mid-70s then drop it down to mid to low 60s at night. I usually do this anyway when I sleep. In the Spring it will be cool enough outside to just use that.

    So, here's my problem. While I can maintain temp/humidity year round, it seems thy may conflict! If the AC was on during the summer, only medium humidity air would be coming in from the outside and the humidifier might need to be jacked up to maintain proper humidity. Same with the winter. I think it would probably be fine, sure, I might have to turn up the humidifier a little to counteract the air coming in, but, fresh oxygen should be good for the plants, as well as the air circulation, which would help with the mold problem.

    What are your thoughts on this small temp/humidity conflict? Will it work out and isn't that big of an issue or might it be a dealbreaker?

    Thank you in advance! I've appreciated all the help.
    - NeciFiX

  8. #32
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    Sorry for double post yet again, I just need to keep updating this.

    If I were to go to Lowe's to buy these lights, what would I be looking for? Adnedarn said "cool whites", but, I kind of want more higher quality lights than just standard shop lights, I mean, I've tried using just plain fluorescent lights before for CPs... DID NOT work well at all. Having said that, after doing my research on T5's, they're incredibly bright and very expensive, so, I might just go with T8's.

    Please help me with the lighting issue now! I'm kind of freaking out.
    - NeciFiX

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