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Cleaning Out My Terrarium

Posted by Homer_Zn5 z5 IN (My Page) on
Thu, Jul 15, 04 at 22:03

Okay, it's that time for me. The ficus pumila needs to be clipped, little lemon button ferns are popping up everywhere, my Cryptocorne beckettii is crawling out of the pond, my Fittonia 'white brocade' is getting leggy, and I swear that I would eliminate my Selaginella plana if I could get to every last piece of it . . . it's time to do some hacking and pulling.

How often do you guys have to hack and pull at your terraria to clean it and keep it from being overgrown.

P.S.--looking to trade for some small bromeliads, ferns, or other unusuals (for any of the above). . . e-mail me if interested.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Cleaning Out My Terrarium

Well mine is so cramped and full of little pots that the only thing that can deal with it and gets out of control is the ficus pumilla. I just trimmed it about a week ago I'd say...probably four good sized handfulls. I figure that will be good for nearly a month before it starts to block the light from other things again.

spanish moss will grow very well and from time to time I do pull some of that out but it's never an issue.

The only other thing that really grows rampantly to where I need to mess with it is peacock moss...can't remember the latin name... The neps. do get a little crazy sometimes but I mostly let them do their own thing.

RE: Cleaning Out My Terrarium

My original intent for my 75 gallon was to have 5 inches of water on the bottom and the 17 inches above that for epi's. Found I had very nervous fish which hid all the time. Incrementally raised the water level which is now at 8 inches.Solved the fish problem but this reduced the canopy section that I had to remove several specie.Still not enough depth to keep the water plants submerged even with constant pruning. The Java fern has invaded the land area and without constant pruning it would smother the dicranum moss.
The truly rampant growers are the ones I thought would be ideal lol The Solomon ribbon plant and bears foot fern are growing at least 3 times the rate of the shadehouse ones.The Geonoma and sealing wax palms have not grown too tall but are holding the fronds horizontally.Blocks the light to the nerve plant and moss which has responded by becoming leggy. I've allowed the ribbon plant to grow above the tank in hopes of getting it to flower. No flowers but it's standing 2 feet above the tank lol.
Another has been the silver spot begonia.I've removed almost 30 inches from one 3 inch cutting since Feb.!!lol
Of the original 30 species of plants I put in it the only ones that have not done well are a red oxalis and C.
esculenta"black magic" Both are still growing but are weak and spindly. Oh well, I knew this would be wayy too small when I started. I think the water depth should be a minimum of 12 inches with at least 30 inches for the canopy area.
Really going to have to step up the lighting for one that deep!!

RE: Cleaning Out My Terrarium

I really like reading about your setups. I always imagine you must have a pretty amazing terrarium room? Seems like you haven't posted much in the way of ya have a digital camera? I'd love to see some of these things you've described i.e. the tank you just described, your shade house, frog tanks, etc.

I've slowly been accumulating cork pieces and panels for my "dream tank" that remains...but a dream.


ok i just realized that I was posting on Homer's what Gary said. So...Homer, I don't know if you have a shadehouse or not...but regardless I'd like to see pics of YOUR stuff as WELL as Gary's. haha

RE: Cleaning Out My Terrarium

Yeah, I was going to mention that we hadn't seen any pics of gary's terr yet! I also visualize this incredible terrarium from his descriptions, but I'd like to see it for real! =)

With regards to cleaning the tank, I find that I do small almounts of 'tidying up' about once a week, sometimes more (like if the flowers on the AV have faded and are beginning to rot), and once every two months I do some serious chopping of certain plants. My tank is 'younger' than all of yours though, so I don't need to get rid of any moss yet. i wish I did! I love that moss-covered look. Most of my driftwood is still bare. Soon I will divide some of my selaginella in order to spread it around more, and I'll be removing a plant or two to put better ones in, but so far, I find that terrariums are pretty low maintenence. I don't find it to be a chore though, I absolutely love puttering around in the dirt, doing things with plants. Every day I'm out on my balcony dead-heading or watering or just sitting and enjoying my little oasis. One thing I do hate is scrubbing algae off of my fishtanks and my fountain outside. Algae is such a bugger to get rid of. . .

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