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Thread: Substrate for planted FBT terrarium

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    Junior Member Russ3407's Avatar
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    Default Substrate for planted FBT terrarium

    Hey y'all,

    I'm planning on building a 1/3 water 2/3 land, false bottom planted terrarium for firebelly toads. I was planning on using eco earth coco fiber as my substrate, but I've been told that this is not a very good substrate for growing live plants. So, I decided to use ABG mix, which is great for plants and is often used in dart frog terrariums. However, I've read that this type of substrate is an impactation risk for FBTs.

    Can someone recommend a substrate that would be suitable for growing live plants, but would not pose an impactation risk to FBTs?
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    Default Re: Substrate for planted FBT terrarium

    Little impaction risk, probably no more than what they'd experience in the wild. Adding leaf litter on top will make it less risk tho if you like. Fire-bellied toads should have half or more water though, they're more aquatic than terrestrial

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    Default Re: Substrate for planted FBT terrarium

    ditto what Jason said. Another strategy with live plants is to use a light potting soil mixture just in the area of the plant itself. You can even keep it in a container you bury with whatever other substrate you prefer. That makes it a little easier to deal with plants that aren't doing well or lets you change the other substrate without bothering the plants too much. But the container does need to have drainage holes just like any other potted plant.

    With you false bottom constrution you might look at some aquaponics/hydroponics methods and adapt those. As long as you are not growing garden vegetables for food <<grin>> you don't need the nutrient solutions. The frogs will supply enough ammonia.

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