Feather and sheet moss

iliketerrariumsJanuary 27, 2006

I was wondering if someone could tell me if sheet and feather moss will grow on a bed of small aquarium gravel? I was planning on putting a six inch layer of small aquarium gravel on the bottom of my tank and place both types of moss on top of that, there will be water ciculating through the lower three inches of gravel and pumped up to a water fall and drip wall where it will go back through the gravel and start the whole process again, I also plan to place a couple of sundews and such in the feather moss, does any one know if this might be do-able?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
drew_or(Z8 Hillsboro)

I seem to find that moss grows on most things if your water is good enough and you water it well. If the water is three inches below the moss, you may not get enough wicking from the gravel to sustain the moss only that way. I would expect to have to water the moss daily or so depending on humidity levels in the tank (at least until it establishes). You may try sphagnum and keep it "mowed".

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 4:08AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Except for sphagnum, I've always thought it necessary to give moss a soil-type mixture. I do know that Patrick at Saurian Enterprises (dart frog shop) is a big fan of the gravel-only method, so you might want to shoot him an e-mail. The link to his info can be found in the kingsnake classifieds.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 1:32AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
drew_or(Z8 Hillsboro)

Most of the moss I use comes off of tree branches. I haven't really tried the stuff you find on bad draining soil, I always figure I'd kill it with the good drainage my orchids need!


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 2:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

have you thought of bark chips or long fibered shagnum??
I find various types of moss show up on their own with this material. it does break down but both have a biostatic effect and it's almost impossible to overwater.
I'm using broken bricks to grow Selaginellas.( I know not really a moss) lol

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 7:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I emailed Patrick at Saurian Enterprises (thanx cdfortin)and will wait for his response, if he doesnt respond I will go ahead and try with the info you guys supplied, I will add five inches of gravel and four inches of RO water( thanx drew or) that will be drawn out of the tank, filtered by a canister filter, then returned from the filter to the water falls and drip wall, thanx garyfla, but Im trying to stay away from any "soil type" substrate as that seems to be where my problems always start =) Ill keep you guys up to date on my progress.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 3:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
drew_or(Z8 Hillsboro)

Good call on the filter too, I hadn't thought of that but I should have! Have fun with your project! I am jealous of you, I want to set my 29 gallon tank up as a nice terrarium but am moving soon so pretty much everything is on hold. I hate holding patterns.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 1:23AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Patrick gave me an email back and stated that it is almost impossible to grow moss on gravel due mostly to the moist humid conditions of tropical tanks, but I will not give up! "I must....grow....moss!" (in the voice of Capt Kirk!) drew or, when you get yourself settled in set up your tank and send in some pics, I have some pics in the gallery, check em out, its a 29 gallon going on a "piggy back" ride! LOL!

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 10:49AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
deadhamster(Z5 MI)

I grew moss in mine. Or rather, it grew it self. I snagged a small patch of moss from the woods and put it on a rock. Maybe 6 months later, it was growing on a log a few feet away. The moss you put in will probably never really attach itself, but it will toss off some spores that will latch on and grow where they can. Mine grows on this constantly moist limb of cypress.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 12:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I removed all the plants from the bottom of the tank and removed all the fouled soil,I will be adding the gravel tommorrow,I decided to try and grow moss on med sized river rocks,If moss can grow on rocks out doors I dont see why,if given the same conditions,it shouldnt grow in my tank,I will gather the moss covered rocks myself and place them on top of the gravel,my ferns are still growing strong along with the "papa gayo" and the one brom.I found a beautiful 10" pot over flowing with babytears,I will add a nice bunch next to the water fall,I will be adding the venting system also, it will be built into the canopy and will circulate the air in the tank,I will have more or less a "sealed" system,the only time I will have to remove the canopy will be once a week,as I plan on removing my critters for good =( I will be strictly plants now as I believe that I am not yet ready to handle critters,I hope to work my way up to keeping PDFs but will do so ONLY when I know that I can provide that PERFECT little slice of the rain forest for them, might take a year....might take twenty, only time will tell! =)

    Bookmark   February 2, 2006 at 1:58AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The entire floor of my terrarium is covered in a layer of living moss. The substrate is straight coconut coir and the moss I used started to grow naturally in my Bulbophyllum orchid pots. I removed the moss from the orchids pots and planted little plugs of moss into the terrarium. You could always use sphagnum moss over a drainage layer as a substrate. The sphagnum will eventually grow if given enough light and if only pure water is used. If the sphagnum does not grow itself other mosses will begin to grow on it or you can add others that you find and see what you can get to grow.

Moss in nature is part of a cycle and does not show up until the conditions are suitable. I don't think you will have success growing moss on rocks alone without a lot of trouble.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2006 at 9:41AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

When you say "straight coconut coir" I know you mean with no other soils added but, do you mean right on the glass bottom of the tank? or right on the pvc grid of a false bottom? on gravel? Please reply! =)

    Bookmark   February 3, 2006 at 11:20AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have two inches of Hydrotron pellets below the coir substrate. There is no water feature or drain involved but I have never run into problems with excess water. The coir stays evenly moist so I very rarely add water to the substrate layer. You could use a false bottom as long as you lay down some fiberglass window screen to stop the substrate from falling into the water.

The tank is a 24.5" high x 18" deep hexagon. The 3 back walls are covered in cork bark and tree fern using the Great stuff foam method. I mist the epiphyte walls daily but I cannot grow any serious moisture loving plants as epiphytes without adding sphagnum moss to help trap more moisture. I have an epiphytic fern, Bulbopyllum and Pleurothallid orchids, and Tillandsias mounted on the walls.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2006 at 8:28AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
drew_or(Z8 Hillsboro)

I saw it mentioned that sphagnum needs lots of light, but I find most of it here in the Pacific Northwest in low light areas. Usually S. facing, with a hillside to the N. that reflects full light most of the day, but never direct sun. I think that purity of water is key for mosses. I have found that 1/4 strength evenly balanced fertilizers in rain water have little to no impact on the different variety of mosses. (I grow orchids, so I try to keep the moss happy but if it's moss or an orchid you know what wins. You should see what happens to the moss on my noble Dendrobiums when the winter dry spell comes on!)
Let me know if this is enough information for you,

    Bookmark   February 7, 2006 at 7:47PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Starting a Terrascape 5ft now.
I have just commenced a 5ft Terrascape, its been in...
Self-contained, Closed System Vivariums
This is my first posting; apologies if I've overlooked...
Where to purchase miniature plant seeds
I have would like to grow my own fairy garden plants...
overwintering maidenhair fern in cloche
In the late fall I dug up and potted my Maidenhair...
My Miniature Terrascape
I started this Terrascape some time back but there...
Sponsored Products
Fairmont Designs Belleair Beach 21" Vanity and Sink Set - High-gloss White
Modern Bathroom
Void Pendant - Stainless - Tom Dixon
$615.00 | HORNE
Benetti's Italia Furniture Montecarlo Dining Arm Chair
$790.00 | LuxeDecor
Georgia Crib Bedding
Home Decorators Collection
The Pillow Collection Paegna Ikat Pillow - P18-PP-IKATDOMINO-BERRIESDREW
$71.99 | Hayneedle
Missoni Home | Jazz Orange Bath and Hand Towel 5 Piece Set
Cachoiera Pink 18 x 18 Stripes Throw Pillow
$57.95 | Bellacor
House of Troy 5" Contemporary Gold Picture Light
$49.00 | Lamps Plus
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™