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Thread: Set up questions for vfts

  1. #1

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    Wow, I can't believe how many people are into this. I'm a new guy so please be gentle. I looking for a setup for 7 to 10 VFTs. I am very interested in four varities including several Red Dragons. I will be starting with bulbs. What would be the best setup for these plants? I want easy maintenance and control. I'm also looking for the best color and size. Perhaps potted plants in a 10 gallon tank with artificial lighting. Any suggestions? Light bulbs, covers, watering, humidity controls, fans, and etc. I live in Nebraska and I have the AC on 70 all summer. Thanks for any help.

  2. #2

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    First, Welcome to the Exotic Garden/********** forums [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img]
    You may find much of the information you need in the section regarding Greenhouses, Terrariums, and Bog Gardens. If you browse a bit you'll also be able to find answers on Lighting.
    There's also a Search feature and that should be helpful too.
    All of us were beginners at one time and we welcome everyone to our happy group!
    The opinions expressed here are not necessarily those of the management. And the management will be happy to hear that!

  3. #3
    Moderator Schmoderator Fluorescent fluorite, England PlantAKiss's Avatar
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    Hi Nightbreed!

    Welcome to the forums! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img] Yes, you are right...Surprise!--There are thousands of CP growers all around the world. And many of them come here to share knowledge and pics and...just have fun. I think you will find your new plants a great hobby but be forewarned...its addicting. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img]

    There are different ways of growing VFTs and everyone has their preference. They don't NEED to be grown in a tank/terrarium but can be if you like that set up. You must bear in mind their dormancy requirements which means chilly temps from about Thanksgiving to November when they will go into a rest period. They must have this dormancy to live. Some people keep their plants outside during the winter and some use the refridgerator. Being in Nebraska, you probably wouldn't need the fridge. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img]

    I didn't have much success with VFTs in a tank so I keep all mine potted and outdoors where they live a pretty natural and happy life. If you want a terrarium you either leave them potted or put into a substrate (although potted makes it easier to care for sick plants or handle dormancy). If you keep them in a tank, they need air circulation or they can mold. That doesn't mean any fancy set up with fans. Just leave the tank open enough to get some fresh air in. VFTs don't have high humidity requirements so that is not a worry.

    I do have tanks for other plants and for those I use a plain ol' shop light fixture (or 2 depending on the size of tank) from a hardward store with one cool white fluorescent and one Gro-Lux (some use Sun Sticks). Those work just fine.

    Keep your VFTs wet with PURE water ONLY (rain, distilled or reverse osmosis) by setting them in a tray or saucer of water. Don't let them dry out. A typical soil mix is 50/50 sphagnum peat/sand...but you can add perlite and other additives. Most people have their favorite mix. The key is...nutrient poor and NO fertilizer!

    Your VFTs won't require a lot of fancy stuff...just the basics...good light (full sun is good as long as its not TOO hot), good water, fresh air, peaty soil. Eventually everyone finds their groove for how they like to grow their VFTs.

    Never hesitate to ask a question...that's what we are here for. Everybody started out a newbie. I hope you enjoy your new plants. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img] If you keep them outside they will pig out on bugs.

    Good luck!

    Suzanne
    "Fox terriers are born with about four times as much original sin in them as other dogs." - Jerome K. Jerome

  4. #4

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    Welcome to the addiction. Generally speaking, lots of water, lots of light and no cover work. And just enough water to stay moist, indirect light in a sealed terrarium works. However, the latter is trickyer to get the hang of. My one large sugestion is getting Green Dragons insted of Red Dragons. Red Dragons like their soil a bit less boggy then other varients and tend to die in the same pots as them.
    There is no item greater in value than life, for without life value would cease to exist.
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  5. #5

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    I am very interested in getting some different kinds. Like some Royal Reds, Southwest Giant, and Slacks Giant. Does anyone have any of these? I sure really like the Royal Reds. Are these very difficult to get? Also is it hard to get bulbs started and how fast will they grow? How long does it take for a plant to reach adult size?

  6. #6
    It's been one of dem days BigCarnivourKid's Avatar
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    Hi nightbreed,

    Welcome to the forums! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/alien.gif[/img]

    Red Dragons are nice plants. I got mine last year, as well as some Green Dragons. The Red Dragons weren't as vigorous and large as the Green Dragons, but I like the coloring. I grow them both the same. I'm waiting to see if the Red Dragons do some catching up this year. Last year they produced a lot of offshoots and didn't grow very fast or large. The Green Dragons also produced offshoots, but not as many as the Red, however, they grew a little faster and larger. I am hoping that the dormancy last winter will settle them down to a more normal growth this summer. Time will tell. In fairness to Red Dragons, I will mention that there are people who posted not too long ago that their Red Dragons out-performed their other VFTs. I can't remember the thread name though [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/confused.gif[/img] .
    ---Steve Allinger---

    How come chicken fingers are bigger than buffalo wings?

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  7. #7

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    Arrow

    Yah, how you grow plants will really determin which ones do best. My Red Dragon is actually out growing my typicals, but I grow it in it's own pot so it has optimal RD conditions.

    As to varients, I wouldn't focus on the two giant forms you mentioned. They are sort of "almost distinctive" plants. They are very Typical like and not that cool. However, Royal Reds are cool tall skinny plants, but are a little tricky to get. If you want some good varients to look for, here is a list of the more distinctive types that actaully can occationally be found for sale:

    Green Dragon (best of the reds)
    Royal and Regal Reds (Nice plants, hard to get, go with GD)
    Bigmouth/Red Purple (Very pritty color and good size, hard to get, but not imposable)
    Creeping Death (becoming more avalible, looks like an ill plant when healthy)
    Denta/Dentate/Dentate Traps (Easy to get, good color, hardy, good plant)
    Red Pirrahna(sp?) (All red Denta like plant)
    Typical (Go to a garden place and dig through the typicals, your bound to find a freak in the bunch. I have 3 atypical typicals myself, lol&#33[img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif[/img]
    There is no item greater in value than life, for without life value would cease to exist.
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