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Would you be interested if I was to make a system that can provide ideal conditions for any care intensive/condition sensitive species, or make it easy enough to save a poor Walmart VFT that someone with no prior experience could? Features could include humidity sensing, programmable photo period, temperature fluctuation, ventilation, and watering. I have a few questions that I would like others to give their input on, as well as to see if anyone would like or see potential for such a system. Should I let the user select and load in a program with presets that are optimized for certain species, or have them give specifics so I can write a program to suit their personal preferences? Is this whole thing just a stupid idea, or do you see this as something you would like to use yourself? I am open to any opinions on this. I know that many people like the challenges of building such a setup for themselves, but this same challenge often discourages people from enjoying these amazing plants. I feel that such a system, if made affordably, would open the door for many people who would not grow carnivorous plants otherwise.
What do you think?
 
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Would you be interested if I was to make a system that can provide ideal conditions for any care intensive/condition sensitive species, or make it easy enough to save a poor Walmart VFT that someone with no prior experience could? Features could include humidity sensing, programmable photo period, temperature fluctuation, ventilation, and watering. I have a few questions that I would like others to give their input on, as well as to see if anyone would like or see potential for such a system. Should I let the user select and load in a program with presets that are optimized for certain species, or have them give specifics so I can write a program to suit their personal preferences? Is this whole thing just a stupid idea, or do you see this as something you would like to use yourself? I am open to any opinions on this. I know that many people like the challenges of building such a setup for themselves, but this same challenge often discourages people from enjoying these amazing plants. I feel that such a system, if made affordably, would open the door for many people who would not grow carnivorous plants otherwise.
What do you think?

sounds interesting. Highland or lowland nepenthes species is what would interest most people I think, since they require special care.
 
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If you made this affordable, I personally would love to have it. However, are you sure you can make a terrarium that would work for heliamphora, all altitudes of nepenthes, VFT's, Darlingtonia (not that this should usually be grown in a terrarium, but I'm trying to list out all of the care-intensive species I know), cephalotus, epiphytic utricularia, picky drosera, and picky pinguicula? It might be easier if you picked a subset of these (although I assume you aren't doing species that are difficult because they have a miniscule growing season, like Drosera linearis). On the other hand, if you can make a system that will do for all of these, I would be both very impressed and eager to try it.
 
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I think that this would be very helpful for a lot of people. No more Noob questions! However, could it be done at a reasonable price point? Ahhh, there's the rub.
I think the price point would depend on three factors: size of unit/plant, conditions, and modifications for specific plants. A drosera setup for example would rely on the light to produce the heat and humidity needed; it would only need vent slots cut, a light timer, and a watering system added. a vft setup would have roughly the same type of thing, but have a changing photo period for dormancy, and less water added.
I could either make units that provide optimal conditions for the types of plants people would be most likely to pic up in stores, then work on specialized units- or do the reverse, as people on this forum would be more likely to use those. those units also would be around the same price, as most of the people that would be ordering them would have lights already, and in some cases a source for humidity. Unless it was a basic or "classic" unit, price would depend on what features the user requests
schmiggle said:
If you made this affordable, I personally would love to have it. However, are you sure you can make a terrarium that would work for heliamphora, all altitudes of nepenthes, VFT's, Darlingtonia (not that this should usually be grown in a terrarium, but I'm trying to list out all of the care-intensive species I know), cephalotus, epiphytic utricularia, picky drosera, and picky pinguicula? It might be easier if you picked a subset of these (although I assume you aren't doing species that are difficult because they have a miniscule growing season, like Drosera linearis). On the other hand, if you can make a system that will do for all of these, I would be both very impressed and eager to try it.
I agree it would be much more manageable to so a subset of each, and eventually another series of custom units for specific species. for a start, I'll do something like capensis, spatulata, or other drosera that people new to the hobby would be likely to buy. Something that I'd like to throw in- this is going to be aimed at entry level growers, and can later be modified and reprogrammed to suit more advanced species. A highland nep. unit (that would need heating and cooling as well as humidity fluctuation control) would not be in the same price range as a basic kit, but that's kind of expected. I'll work on some sketches for the intro/basic units and make some base line price estimates. I'm glad people are interested!
 
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Here is the drosera starter kit. Not counting the plant or shipping, it will be around $30 in parts. Since these plants are so easy to take care of, all they will have to do is just water them. I'm thinking of writing a care guide to go with each of these kits, and will give resources to where they can find out more about their plant, as well as guide them to forums like this and the FTC forum if they need more help. I did not feel an arduino was necessary for this, since it would do the same thing as an off the shelf timer and be much more expensive and complicated.
0NJkiTTl.jpg


For the case/enclosure, I decided to find something like what I already use for my cotton media experiment capensi; a clear plastic display case.( Kind of like this one-
https://www.amazon.com/Ultra-Figurine-Beanie-Display-7-Inch/dp/B001IJFKWA/ref=pd_sbs_21_2?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B001IJFKWA&pd_rd_r=RQ5BZBCMM1WXTGCCPP13&pd_rd_w=ZYxX0&pd_rd_wg=aiAEe&psc=1&refRID=RQ5BZBCMM1WXTGCCPP13)
I can post the complete list if anyone wants it. I've decided that there will be 3 basic starters, a typical drosera starter, flytrap starter, and a nepenthes starter. The only big difference between the drosera and flytrap starters is that the flytrap starter will use an astronomical timer for the dormancy part. I'm debating with myself if these should have humidity sensors or not. The humidity caused by evaporation should be enough, I could also adjust the size of the vents. I know that these aren't the kind of thing some of you would want, but don't worry. (They're harder to draw too! :p ) If any of you would like to give features you would like for some of the more sensitive species (ex; adjustable photo period, heating, cooling, integrated humidifier, humidity+ temp display, etc.)- that would be great!
 
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It could be interesting if there was a way for the enclosure to refill the water tray for your drosera and VFTs as well, maybe there is an exterior reservoir that is gravity fed into the dish? So you just fill up the tank and its good to go.
 
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It could be interesting if there was a way for the enclosure to refill the water tray for your drosera and VFTs as well, maybe there is an exterior reservoir that is gravity fed into the dish? So you just fill up the tank and its good to go.
Interesting. I think it could also work if you used a electric valve on a timer to limit the amount of water that gets into the dish. A modified gallon jug would work, since many people use distilled water anyways. Something like this maybe: https://www.ebay.com/itm/DC-12V-Micro-Electric-Solenoid-Valve-N-C-Normally-Closed-For-Water-Gas-Air-Valve/263150745336?rt=nc&_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIM.MBE%26ao%3D2%26asc%3D49007%26meid%3D5088c30ef40d4aab8fc5f45bf1e5f27b%26pid%3D100005%26rk%3D5%26rkt%3D6%26sd%3D282283952658&_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851
You would need something like an arduino to control it though, and also maybe something to measure when it needs to be refilled. I also found these cute little USB powered humidifiers. https://www.ebay.com/itm/Mini-USB-Water-Bottle-Caps-Humidifier-Aroma-Air-Diffuser-Mist-Maker-clean-to-you/191829551358?_trkparms=aid%3D111001%26algo%3DREC.SEED%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D41375%26meid%3D1ff06538aedf4857bb17a9181ca6ff00%26pid%3D100033%26rk%3D2%26rkt%3D2%26sd%3D112494908095&_trksid=p2045573.c100033.m2042
 
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