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Thread: First real Terrarium. Advice?

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    Mr Acurite's Avatar
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    Question First real Terrarium. Advice?

    Hello Everyone!
    Today I built a terrarium, using 2 100W fluorescent bulbs, the 18" x 18" x 24" exo-terra terrarium, some aquarium gravel, aluminium foil, cardboard, and a health amount of duct tape. Here's a picture of it;
    http://postimg.org/image/3ol5rfuxd/
    From left to right;
    N. (x ventrata) x alata, D. capensis "Narrow leaf", D. capensis "Narrow leaf alba"
    got reflectors on all sides, the bulbs will be on from 8 am to 10 pm, maybe 1 1/2" of gravel on the bottom, with the "vetratata" on top of another pot, and the sundews nestled into the gravel. Day measurements are 75 degrees farenheit, and 55% humidity. Today is really it's first day in being a terrarium, so I don't know the night measurements. Anything I should add/subtract/change? Suggestions for future plants?
    "Live life by the seed of your plants!"
    Mr Acurite
    If Swiss Cheese has holes, and more holes=less cheese, and more cheese=more holes, does that mean that more cheese=less cheese?

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    I would run it for a couple days with your light cycle before putting plants in there, you may have to modify the terrarium/the plants you grow based on what the conditions are. For example when I first got my terrarium up and running the temps went over 100F and cooked a couple plants, so i had to modify it until it sits at a cozy 91F. Just to be safe I would remove the plants for a couple days and do a dry run. Also I've found that most of the South African dews do better outside of the terrarium, just my observation, others may have had different experiences.


    Good Luck,
    Travis

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    Two suggestions, one is to add a fan, even with herp tanks (the breathers) it can fog up, grow algae if not cleaned enough and the air can become abit stagnant, which many drosera and utrics hate, neps don't mind, its easy with a small CPU fan, secondly is that as you have pebbles on the bottom you can plant moss, this will increase humidity and in my opinion adds to the look, but choose your moss wisely, some mosses will become a pest, however small species are no threat to carns like small utircs.
    Your humidity is a tad low for a terrarium, mine average to 80-90% for neps and tropical drosera, and other drosera like 50-60%.
    As for substrate, I just have 4-5cm of water so I can grow aquatic utrics in it, otherwise I have seen perlite, sand and basalt work well (basalt being the best), what is your lid, is it the mesh (in which case that's why the humidity is low, good news is you wont need a fan for that), bad news is it is costing humidity, I use glass lids but other people find plastic just as good.

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    Mr Acurite's Avatar
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    One half of the lid I've used cardboard and aluminium foil to create a snug little panel-thing that seals it off pretty well, the other I've just left as mesh, because cutting out a proper hole for the lights would've been too much of a challenge. If I had to guess, the actual part of it that's mesh is only about 1/4 of the lid. Also, would something like some sphagnum be okay? just make like a sheet of it on top of the pebbles?
    If Swiss Cheese has holes, and more holes=less cheese, and more cheese=more holes, does that mean that more cheese=less cheese?

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