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Thread: Bioactive Plant Help

  1. #1
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    Bioactive Plant Help

    I'm setting up a planted terrarium for the first time. I'm using NeHerp's temperate substrate, and I chose to use Phyla nodiflora since this is native to the snake's habitat (Cali Red-Sided). I have two plants, which I placed in the terrarium on Wednesday. I know that I can expect some minor die back as the plants acclimate to the terrarium, however as I've never done this before, I was hoping for some advice.

    Here's how things currently look:



    So, you can see that the rear plant has a couple bright green shoots, with a few that aren't looking so hot. The front plant looks more like the "bad" parts of the other plant, tho there's some bright green in there. Should I be trimming away those drier bits so the plant can better establish itself? Or should I give it time to come around on its own?

  2. #2
    "Preparing For First shed"
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    Re: Bioactive Plant Help

    That looks great. I don’t keep my garters in bioactive setups yet because I’m waiting until they’re bigger. But as an avid outdoor gardener and houseplant person, my rule is to trim off any dying (brown, withered, dry, etc.) leaves and branches because they drain a plant’s energy and ability to grow or recover.

    Sounds like that plant is a flowering plant. I typically find most plants that flower extensively are difficult to grow indoors without very powerful lights or very good sun exposure. Of course there are exceptions like African violets and orchids. Everything’s worth a try and I hope the plant works out well for you.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
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    Re: Bioactive Plant Help

    Quote Originally Posted by MNGuy View Post
    That looks great. I donít keep my garters in bioactive setups yet because Iím waiting until theyíre bigger. But as an avid outdoor gardener and houseplant person, my rule is to trim off any dying (brown, withered, dry, etc.) leaves and branches because they drain a plantís energy and ability to grow or recover.

    Sounds like that plant is a flowering plant. I typically find most plants that flower extensively are difficult to grow indoors without very powerful lights or very good sun exposure. Of course there are exceptions like African violets and orchids. Everythingís worth a try and I hope the plant works out well for you.

    Good luck!
    Ok, I'll try trimming off the brown bits and see if that helps. Thanks for the feedback.
    MNGuy likes this.

  4. #4
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    Re: Bioactive Plant Help

    Well, I think the nodiflora is officially dead. But that's ok, because I picked up a Dichondra (Silver Falls variant. I think getting the native California species from the snake's range in St. Louis is going to be problematic. But I figured a more readily accessible species would be close enough) and it seems to be thriving.

    IMG_0950[1].JPG

    Once the snake will be big enough for a larger tank I'd like to get more variety, especially with a height gradient (some sort of taller grass towards the rear, with the Dichondra up front as ground cover). But this works for the 10gal.

    I'm still working on the environment. My apartment tends to be a bit humid, so I'm getting humidity spikes into the 70s when the basking lamp goes off at night. Even when on it tends to run a bit high (I just checked it and it's about 66% on the cool side). I picked up a small fan I'm going to have blow across the top of the screen to see if that helps, but I need to pick up a proper swivel hook because it's not angled properly. :-P

  5. #5
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    Re: Bioactive Plant Help

    So that Dichondra that was doing well? Yeah, not so much.

    IMG_0951[1].JPG

    I'd added a second to replace the other nodiflora (in back) but the one in front which HAD been flourishing now isn't. It's still alive, but I need to figure out what's wrong so I can keep it that way. I've not kept live plants ANYWHERE prior to this, could it be the humidity?

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