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Discussion in 'The Aqua Lounge' started by keithgh, Nov 25, 2012.
Jan 29th 2011
Sorry trouble posting reason for deletion
See if I can get right this time
Jan 29th 2011
OK I know another Journal, but I think this first one here for a Terrarium.
Question what to do with a good well cared for 45lt Bay window tank, which has in my opinion a fantastic Asian painted base.
I realised I would not get very much if I sold it.
What to do?
Power outlets a huge problem practically fully loaded as it is.
That means another tank is out 110% and no discussion entered into.
I was thinking of a Terrarium type but which way to go I did not want any water in it at all.
One thought was a dry river bed type?
General type Terrarium but that's not too plain (I once had a 4ft x 2ft x18ins Terrarium)
the backing and the two sides (not the Bay Windows) will be the artificial rock wall type as for Aquariums.
I know where I can get twiggy Grape Vine at a good price; this will glued to the backing as if growing on a cliff face.
The focal point will be the golden vine Driftwood.
On the substrate there will be several pieces of very old rough DW to give me at least two levels.
Plants lower level will be mainly small low "Carnivorous type"
The rock wall and the twiggy bits will all have "Air growing plants"
OK what about lighting??
I can get a twin T5 2ft unit from a Hydroponic shop no problems at all.
Things are moving very slowly with this tank possibly a lot slower than I wanted.
I went to a LFS pet store to buy some air line tube and walked out with this just over $20.
I found this backing at a small LFS/pet shop only $13 too hard to resist.
It is not exactly what I was looking for as what I was wanting extremely expensive and possibly Internet buying only (sight unseen).
What I intend to now is brush an adhesive over the board and sprinkle a fine layer of a 1-3 mm mixed natural river stone substrate.
I contacted Selleys (adhesive manufacturer) and he recommended the "Exterior PVA Aqua here" would do the job perfectly
There are two basic ways I can have,
1 Fixed straight on to the glass
2 Fix it so that it has a slight slope (drawing full size)
The reason for the slope would be there will be several "Tillandsia" living air plants glued to the backing and will occasionally require a misting to freshen them up and use a liquid Fert
This is Spanish moss it will also be draped over the backing and parts of the Driftwood.
The Terrarium is moving along slowly but a steady progress is being made.
The foam pieces are silicone on using Selly's Liquid nails mirror & Glass, as recommended by then.
It is a tapered cut from 0mm-25mm, this will give the back wall a more natural look plus a better drainage when I mist spray the Living Air Plants “Tillandsia”
This is only a temporary holding to see how it looked.
The corners were a bit difficult I had to shape the side pieces so that there were no gaps; it was a simple file and glass paper job until it fitted.
The 100mm gap around the base of the foam is for a special substrate for the ‘Living Stone Plants”
I used an exterior PVA to stick some fine substrate on as a test it looked OK but not what I wanted.
I went to several landscape gardeners and picked up a few kg of different colours and sizes of gravel. At the moment it is outside drying out after a good washing.
I also collected a few small rocks to scatter under the cliff faces.
All I had to do was to brush Selly's Exterior PVA over the Styrene Foam mould and just cover it all over. WRONG I had to go back and add more PVA and gravel to fill in the gaps.
I also had to do the ends of the two side pieces.
There has been a massive hold up due to several health issues, I still have to make the tubular frame work for the light (which I have)
Nov 25th 2012
Today I went to a local commercial Carnivorous plant grower.
I took the Terrarium with me plus a plan drawing.
It took about 1hour to work out what went where as there must have been 1000s of plants to choose from.
Once we (excellent helper) worked out what would be the most suitable (established size, shape and colour) I honed in on the softer reds to give an over similar appearance.
I thought that piece of Gold Vine (driftwood) would be a whisker too big, in an instant without thinking I turned it on its end and perfect exactly what I wanted.
As I had the Terrarium with me it was very easy to plan it all out some worked and others totally unsuitable (too tall, too big, or too red).
1 Sarracenia leucophylla XX Courtii F. Northern ‘red’
3 Drosera (taller different varieties)
6 Dionea (small low variety)
3 Dionea (taller and darker variety)
When it was finished (photo)I heard a few comments on how we had set it up.
When it came to the cost I was very pleasantly surprised compared to the prices I had seen at a few garden suppliers.
I will be setting up a Under Gravel Filter system so that when I water the plants (via a tube) it will be under the peat moss
Next few days I will be setting up the light frame, and then start the planting.
Today I cut the UGF to size using a very fine hacksaw blade.
I also coated the UGF riser with Aquarium Silicone and coated it with the fine gravel.
In the next few days/weeks I will have it all up and running.
Expect to see a few changes in the Driftwood Location and plant location, and it will look a lot better.
Even though its not an Aquascape I have still maintained all the basic rules. I hope you enjoy this Terrarium set up as much as I have done getting this far.
All your comments will be appreciated thank you.
Do you get "the garden" magazine by the RHS in Aus? This months has a really good article on how to keep fly traps. If you can't I'll try and get my hands on it so I can scan it and send it to you.
All has the makings of a nice little project. You going to be using the riccia rock wall trick on this?
Re last photo all that backing is siliconed in place and I can assure its not coming off even if I tried it would all break up.
The wife (mad gardener) thinks she has seen that Mag at the news agents trouble if like many UK Mags 2-3 months delay do you know what month please as they will get it in for us no problems at all.
I will keep updating this as it proceeds, once I get the lighting set up it will only take a few days to finish it.
Having done a few Aquascapes plus what I have seen and learnt here this is a breeze compared to a FW tank.
All it requires is keeping it moist via the UGF riser, a good T5 light , a timer for the light and, very weak fert once a week.
If you can't get it just let me know and I'll see what I can do, it's a good read.
http://www.brianstropicals.com/pages/Caring-for-frogs.html is what I meant by the riccia trick. I did think you might be creating a drip wall on the pebble dash stuff but I dunno I can't see where the outlet is if there is one at all.
All looks like a nice project though, I can imagine zero waterchanges being a nice thing.
The Granddaughter's vertical tree frog tank has a water fall back of tank pumped from the small water are at the front of the tank.
I could only do that if I had a larger tank and a (pond) some where in the Aquascape.
Other than the light is all KIS and that way it will be a lot easier to look after.
I have all the plants (still in post) outside at the moment sitting in a very wet potting mix.
Tomorrow expecting 38c and that means inside all day or in a shady area and a far cooler spot.
Oof. I think I'd die in that heat! I did think one day I'd emigrate but that really is a bit too toasty for me.
I think I'm gonna have to set me up a terrarium. Another thing on the to do list.
Terrariums are a lot easier to set up and maintain also certainly cheaper to run plus plenty of colour.
Plants are like plants every where some cheap and others a bank breakers.
Parts of Aust have been 40c in the last week or two.
Its 37 at our front door now and only 25 inside no AC just good insulation and trees shading the roof.
Aust is a huge place and the temp can vary a lot even in one State on any given day.
Hi Keith just found this old thread is that the tank and DW that you posted on W-K journal but what happend to terrarium looked FANTASTIC love the DW and plants. best of all the fly traps love them little plants don't see them a lot now cheers roy
I had a massive set back I could not get the frame and light set up finished.
I had the plants under cover then we had a massive heat wave and I lost every plant.
I still have not set the light frame up and its a no hurry again plants not available until Sept this year and this time I think I will have to rely on ordering all plants on line from the supplier I originally bought them.
I have the labels and photos I hope I can get as close as I can.
HIKeith, you said in thread that it was hot do not know how you put up with it. To hot for me mate sad about plants still as you said no hurry looking forward to see it when you do startcheers roy
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