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Soil for real plants

This is a discussion on Soil for real plants within the Vivarium, Terrarium & Enclosure Discussion forums, part of the General Topics category; Whats is everyone using to grow plants in their setups? i've see a few things listed as 100% organic, but ...

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    () croaker is offline
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    Default Soil for real plants

    Whats is everyone using to grow plants in their setups? i've see a few things listed as 100% organic, but im not sure if i should us them or find something else.

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    () Kurt is offline
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    My plants are growing in sphagnum. I have two bromeliads, an oak-leaf ficus, an anubias (which has finally rooted itself), and a bunch of ferns that popped up out of no where. All are thriving and growing.

    You can also use ground coconut husk bedding. Whatever medium you choose, make sure you have drainage. This can be done with either a false bottom or using a layer of LECA. In both types of drainage, its a good idea to have a PVC pipe running down to the bottom of the tank so you can siphon off excess water. One end of the pipe should be capped to prevent frogs and/or insects from crawling down it and dying. At the other end cut some notches or slots to allow for better water flow when siphoning.
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    John Clare
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    I only grow plants in my tropical terraria. I have a drainage layer of about 3 cm (just over 1 inch) of LECA at the bottom, with fibre glass window screen mesh over that, then a layer of about 1-1.5 cm (about half an inch) of coconut husk (the big chunky stuff) that has been soaked in water and then squeezed to leave it wet but not dripping. On top of this I put about 3-4 cm of Atlanta Botanical Garden (ABG) mix (recipe by Ron Gagliardo). This is covered by leaf litter - my preference is dried "Live Oak" leaves (Live Oak is a species of tree in the US - doesn't look like Quercicus Oak), and some dried magnolia leaves.

    The recipe for ABG mix is:

    2 parts fine fir bark
    2 parts fine tree fern fibre
    2 parts milled sphagnum moss
    1 part fine charcoal
    1 part peat moss

    Aside from the mix being good for tropical plants, the layers I use seem to be springtail heaven!
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    John Clare
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    Here's a photo of tanks set-up as I've just described. These are 10 US gallon verticals with thumbnail dart frogs - I use exactly the same arrangement for horizontal tanks, though sometimes I usually make the LECA layer deeper so I can make a small pond in the corner.

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    Judy S
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    Your post was a while ago, but nevertheless I'm hoping for some info about your 10 G verts. Did you convert them?? What is the overlapping piece of either glass or acrylic at the top? I don't see any hinges for the doors...can you provide some more information...they look terrific...thanks Judy S

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    Robin
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    Quote Originally Posted by John View Post
    Aside from the mix being good for tropical plants, the layers I use seem to be springtail heaven!
    John where do I get the springtails to add to the soil? Wiki says they naturally occur in the moist natural dirt outside, but would there be a chance of my bringing in a parasite too?

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    John Clare
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    Check our sponsors - I think the both sell springtails.
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    Robin
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    Awesome thanks

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    Tom
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    Default Re: Soil for real plants

    John where could you purchase those materials for the ABG mix?

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