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Old 08-11-2010, 06:54 AM
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Default 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Ok so my friends gave me a crappy 4mp camera tonight so I took pix of the 2 new builds I'm doing. I'm not super impressed with the camera or the pix but it was free so hard to complain

First up the hex. The hex is like a 35gal or something. Its almost done but it needs a few more plants, and more pumps for the 3 waterfalls. I scrapped the rain bar for now. The 3 waterfalls are the 3 tiered 1 of wood on the right, a small one in the center piece of wood that makes up most of the pond shore, and 1 coming out from the slate on the left. All drain into the pond. All around the edges of the drip wall is an extra thick layer of gravel so more water drains down and less goes into the substrate. Actually though it is unseen the entire substrate structure is pretty complicated with seperations and different layers and mixes to favor plants overall given the design and/or in specific areas. Original plan was to run it all off 2 tom's lifting pumps...Ya bad plan. I'm going to need 3-4 pumps after testing, basically 1 for almost each water feature. So right now only the drip wall is running. I broke both Tom's but it seems I fixed 1 better then the other, 1 isn't getting enough suction to run center/shore waterfall well.

The first teir of planting mostly consist of Utricularia species, that I've probably killed screwing with stuff and will have to replant. 2nd tier is mini violets and sinnigas. 3rd tier is 2 Streptocarpus and 1 Episcia. For the most part the drip wall isn't planted yet and in the pics you can see at least 1 of the 2 large planters mounted on the back wall, neither planted yet. The drip wall is made from broken pieces of cork and cork tubes in a mosaic pattern with various live and dead mosses jammed into the spaces. The tube pieces are meant as mini planters. Water is still fairly saturated with tannins, and currently murky since it hasn't cycled yet. I'm going to flush it one more time and fill from the pond instead of straight through the substrate, should be at a tolerable point by then. Still some landscaping detail work to do to make it all pretty, decorative green/black/white gravel and whatnot. Here are the pics...





Soil mix is peat, small amount of clay, exoterra forest moss, some sphagnum, ground coco fiber, sand, and some potting soil in bottom layers, and some aquarium gravel throughout.

Full Plant list for the hex...

Ground/drip wall cover
Micro liverwort sp.
Mosses that came with Utricularia and hitchhiker mosses
Frog moss as filler (likely dead)
T & C tropical moss
Black Jungle tropical moss
At least 2 Oklahoma mosses (1 I don't expect to live but makes a good substrate for other mosses)

1st tier... (Probably have to replant this, since I squished the sandersonii which is what I mainly wanted to take hold there. I'm a moron for fiddling with it.
Utricularia Sandersonii
Utricularia calycifida
Utricularia graminifolia
Utricularia nephrophylla (likely dead, crappy small portion nearly obliterated in transplant)

2nd tier...
Sinningia White Sprite
Sinningia High Voltage
2 mini violets

3nd tier...
Episcia 'Silver Skies'
Bristol's Black Light (this and next are the streps I mentioned above)
Salmon sunset

Drip wall...
Bacopa (may pull this)
ground star (crypth..may pull also)
Micranthemum sp. (aquatic/semi aquatic very small "baby tears")

Misc..
Chirita longangensis
Nephrolepis 'Fluffy Ruffles' (Mini Fern)

Thats probably half- 2/3rds the plants it will have when done...Adding some wet growing mounted orchids, 2 larger plants in the planters I'm undecided on so far. The entire pond section still needs planting. After that it is whatever else I Like, can find, can fit in, and afford
As god is my witness I will get some Utricularia growing and even flowering in this tank!!!!!

Viv #2, the 20gal....

I have a lot of extra supplies laying around so I decided to gut and clean up this old tank and get it started at least. It has no plants so far other then the various mosses I've mentioned. It will have a drip wall, and a stream that runs through the middle center piece log which is hollow and you could probably role a golf ball through it...frogs will love it. Obviously the drip wall needs filler and I've left some open spaces for future mounted plants. I took the extra drainage under the drip wall idea further and though you can't really see it there is a divider under the substrate filled with gravel all the way to the open air...so basically the water will run straight through to the false bottom and have little contact with the substrate, should extend the period between top offs and lessen the amount and/or speed at which tannins leach out. The center thingy is a small slate mosaic section I had left over from the glowing desert viv some may remember. I just threw it in there, not sure it will stay. The tank has a typical eggcrate false bottom and mesh substrate divider but above that is a layer of gravel and another divider because I wasn't quite happy with the height of the false bottom and wanted the pond a little deeper. For the most part the soil mix is similar to the Hex but with a little more coarse sand especially near pond for better Utricularia growing conditions.

Pics...




Further updates to come as things grow in, get planted, plumbed and working right

Enjoy!
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Old 08-11-2010, 03:27 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Love the hex. I'm getting that itch.
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Old 08-11-2010, 03:35 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

That's an impressive looking hex!! Man.... That looks like it belongs in a display exhibit
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Old 08-11-2010, 05:52 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Thanks guys. This thing should end up being a solid mass of green when the mosses take off and grow in...they are just starting out. Also almost every plant in the viv now and will be in the viv will flower...so I think once it greens up, the orchids are added and the streps and espicia flower, and the utrics if i stop killing them, and the new plants to come, this will be pretty mind blowing if I do say so myself. I'll try to post a vid when I get all the water features working and running. Wanna add fog too.
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Old 08-11-2010, 06:37 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Very nice tanks! I LOVE the hex! You need to make me one like that! lol
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Old 08-11-2010, 08:50 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

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Very nice tanks! I LOVE the hex! You need to make me one like that! lol
Thanks man! No prob, this one will probably have cost over 500 by the time it is done, and thats not counting the tank/stand since that was given to me. So start saving

This one will likely go to the people who gave me the tank/stand in a few months at a substantial discount as a wedding present.
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Old 08-11-2010, 08:51 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Oh okay ha. Well thats a little more then I have right now lol. What kind of moss do you use? Where do you get it?
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Old 08-11-2010, 09:59 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

I listed them in the plant list sir Other then the ones where I said the source, I can't really say. The micro liverwort that looks like moss just popped up in a tank, a few came on utricularia and other plants...Mostly hitchhikers. The more plants you buy from various sources the more you tend to get things like that.
I seeded that tank I sold you with the micro liverwort I think, so unless you threw all that stuff out or it got to much shade and died off you should have it
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Old 09-25-2010, 12:10 AM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Some updates on these viv...

For the 20H
Added plants and gravel, mostly finished back wall. There has been some growth/greening up. Still have a pump to add to get the hollow log stream going. Splitting the water between it and the drip wall with one toms pump and valves is to much of a hassle and not giving me the flow I want through the log.




For the Hex, some growth, added new liverwort/moss samples, added blue oxalis and pulled one plant that was dying. Still have planting to do and more growing in, and pumps to add for waterfalls and dripwall.

I just can not get a good picture that does this tank justice, It is much more impressive in real life ;(


Here is a link to a new thread on a new 10gal...
http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/mem...lil-10gal.html
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Old 09-25-2010, 05:21 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Hey Dave-
Im in tulsa too. Where do you find your driftwood? Any special prices out there? I need to build 2 10's and 2 20's.
Thanks
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Old 09-25-2010, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

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Hey Dave-
Im in tulsa too. Where do you find your driftwood? Any special prices out there? I need to build 2 10's and 2 20's.
Thanks
Brice
Hey neighbor, I just pick mine up at petco, petsmart, petfun here in sand springs southern ag, or a love a pet out in Broken arrow...so no special price usually. Every once in awhile I order some online...I think that is cheaper but often you can't pick your piece (Sometimes you can). In that hex alone there is probably a $100 in wood
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Old 11-30-2010, 11:51 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

I got a new LG Vortex (android phone) so I took a few update pics on the hex as I was playing with it. Not horribly impressed with the camera, but the phone was the only free android phone. I planted the water section with some baby tears and dwarf anubis (I think) and added a few cuttings especially in the right back planter... and portions of Utricularia graminfolia and mini sinningia white sprite in a few places. Still tinkering with it and letting it grow in. Here ya go...







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Old 12-01-2010, 03:57 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Looking good Dave.
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Old 12-01-2010, 05:10 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

what kind of frogs do you have plans to put in these 2 vivs?
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Old 12-01-2010, 05:27 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Wow, incredible job on the hex. nice!
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Old 12-01-2010, 09:20 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Are you planning on putting any small fish in there?
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Old 12-01-2010, 10:22 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Thanks guys. The 20H has 3 azureus froglets in it now growing out. The 10, is empty. No idea what will end up in there. Possibly one of the azureus froglets when they get larger and I have some idea of sex.

The hex was given to me to turn into a viv for some friends, or for me to possibly keep. They recently got married so basically I'm giving it to them at cost or below as a wedding present kinda. They are still working out where they are going to settle down and looking for jobs, so I'm not exactly sure when they plan on taking delivery. So no plans to put frogs of my own in it yet, and I don't know if they are going to want to attempt darts or not. Frankly I'm kinda hoping they decide they don't want it I'm fairly sure either way it will end up with a beta in the water or a couple of other small hardy fish. I've found betas do well in such ponds since they can breathe air. Also in other vivs I've basically not had to feed them, they feed off springtails and ffs that get in the water.

There is still some work on the hex to do. It is plumbed for 3 waterfalls but I've got to get at least 2 more toms vacuum pumps to run those. 1 in the rocks at the bottom left, one through the front shore line wood, and the tiered waterfall of wood on the right that drips down to the rocks and into the pond. Those will all be on timers to minimize saturating the soil and evaporation of the water reservoir. I robbed 1 off of it to run the drip wall in the 20 which is also plumbed for a waterfall through the hollow log, and the other is running the drip wall in the hex. The 10 is even plumbed for a drip wall, so really I need at least 4 pumps still...and I'd like to add dripwalls to older tanks so maybe more. But to broke for that right now, plus I'm spending what money I have on expanding my plant collection. Getting some stuff from harry and a couple other orders to place in the coming months, then I'll focus on the pumps.
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Old 12-06-2010, 09:19 AM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

I did an image dump off my old phone to my new phone. Thank god for bluetooth or these would have been stuck there forever, or till I coughed up 20-30bucks for a data cable....Here are some construction pics of the Hex...









This one is more recent, but not as new as the last batch of pics posted...
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Old 03-23-2011, 04:17 AM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Both of these look really good, beautiful plants. I was wondering after seeing some of the early construction pics, did you use clay for the background?
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Old 03-23-2011, 04:49 AM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Both beautiful tanks!
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Old 03-23-2011, 04:59 AM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

any update on these dave? i'd love to see that hex grown in even more
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Old 03-23-2011, 06:36 AM
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I'll try to get some new pics up tomorrow if I don't forget. The ponds in both tanks look kinda crappy since they each have socks stuffed with activated carbon and a water pump in them to absorb the tannins and get the water to look clearer. If it doesn't get all the tannins at the very least it should take the water much longer to get dark between top offs, thus keeping it an acceptable light tea color, and not super dark brown. The 20H has really grown in quite a bit in the half opposite the pond. I've left the area near the pond sparsely planted because I'm letting utricularia graminfolia and sandersoni fill in the area. So hopefully someday I'll have shores with tons of little flowers growing on them. I've got a violet near the front glass that has gotten bigger then I had hoped, so I may pull that. Might replace it with something smaller or just leave the area open for moss.

I planted some peacock moss thats taken over the moss walls on the hex. Kinda sad to see the true moss go but I like the peacock moss (selaginella uncinata), even better. It makes the whole thing look much more "lush". I also filled in the left corner part of the pond area with sphagnum so I'd have an area to grow more utricularia at the pond edge. Just the area above the water line though, so I didn't actually make the pond itself any smaller. The original idea was to have a small waterfall there but the tom's pump just made a small trickle that really didn't add anything to the tank so I thought the area was better used for more planting.

The center "spring" that was supposed to trickle into the pond sounded good in theory too, but again the tom's pump flow was so low that the water was basically unnoticed and its just a waste of another pump that I could use for a drip wall or better waterfall in another viv, so scrapped that idea too. The tiered waterfall on the right came out good though and that is staying, though I think the splash may kill the violet near there. Its lost a couple leaves in the 2 weeks or so that feature has been up and running, but while it has died back a little it looks like the majority of the plant could survive so I'm going to risk it for now.

I think I'll redo the line on the right side of the drip wall. It doesn't seem to be working anymore, all the water is running to the left wall and back wall. But the waterfall on the right is picking up some of the slack caused by the drip wall on that side not working so its not a major issue and the plants don't seem to be suffering. I'm also thinking of reviving the rain bar idea but am undecided on that. This was the first viv I've tried tom's pumps on and they definitely have their uses but mostly for drip walls or higher waterfalls where the water will be dripping down ledges or tiers very visibly. On shorter features they just don't have enough flow to push the water out as a really visible "spring" or waterfall. It will get the area wet if thats all you want, but no visual appeal of running water really. A lot of things in this viv were kind experimental for me, especially the use of the tom's pumps so not every idea worked as grandly as I'd hoped but overall the viv even with just the one waterfall has come out really nicely.

The friends who gave me the tank are supposed to take delivery April 2nd so hopefully I'll get a lil money for frogs while I'm at their house warming party that day, and hopefully them and all the guests will all enjoy the viv I'll be sorry to see it go though. I almost hoped they'd change their mind about wanting it I'll try to get pics up tomorrow!!!
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Old 03-23-2011, 06:47 AM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

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Originally Posted by nschmitz06 View Post
Both of these look really good, beautiful plants. I was wondering after seeing some of the early construction pics, did you use clay for the background?
Nope no clay anywhere in this viv. Just cork mostly on the background and moss pushed between the pieces of cork, which is now pretty much over run by the selaginella uncinata.
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Old 04-21-2011, 07:31 AM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Here are some recent vids of both vivs...

20H...

The Hex...

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Old 04-21-2011, 12:53 PM
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They're looking great Dave. I still love that hex. Do you know if your keeping it yet?
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Old 04-21-2011, 09:45 PM
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They're looking great Dave. I still love that hex. Do you know if your keeping it yet?
Oh its gone. Delivered it a couple weeks ago to my friends in OKC for their house warming party. It was a big hit, I may have a few people wanting me to do vivs for them.
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Old 04-21-2011, 09:53 PM
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Oh man that sucks, well at least they get to enjoy it. Did they ever decide to put anything in it? Or are they just leaving it as a plant only viv?
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Old 04-21-2011, 10:08 PM
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Oh man that sucks, well at least they get to enjoy it. Did they ever decide to put anything in it? Or are they just leaving it as a plant only viv?
Andrea was in Tulsa for the Reptile show so we stopped by on Sunday and hit up several pet stores too but they are leaning towards a day gecko or some type of tree frog. Probably a red eye. Taron had some red eyes but was selling them as pairs and they weren't looking to spend quite that much. She almost got a clown tree frog. I didn't see any day geckos at the show or stores at all. The pet stores had a clown and red eye too but they didn't look to be in great shape so she just decided to hold off. I'm going to try to get up there for the OKC show in June? ..and maybe we'll have better luck.

They like darts but I think are intimidated by having to deal with fruit flies and would prefer something a little more simple to feed. They aren't ready to drop big money on an animal yet either so that kinda rules out getting anything shipped since even a 20 dollar animal will cost another 30-60 to ship So basically no rush, when the right thing comes along they'll snatch it up.
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Old 04-21-2011, 10:12 PM
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Default Re: 2 new New vivs...1 hex, 1 20gal.

Cool cool, let me know when the OKC reptile show is up! I don't think I've ever been to the OKC one..
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Old 04-22-2011, 03:49 AM
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Cool cool, let me know when the OKC reptile show is up! I don't think I've ever been to the OKC one..
Here is the site...
j&wexotics - Home

Looks like June 25/26. I hope to go, but its to far away to say for certain if I'll be able to. I've never been, only been to the Tulsa shows.
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Old 04-22-2011, 01:51 PM
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Same here, I might be in jersey that week... Lol. Idk yet. I'm going to try and go though. I'm sure it's bigger than the Tulsa show
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