Dendroboard banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello, Dendroboard!

As the title suggests, this thread will chronicle a demonstrative build focused on Hygrolon. Be sure to subscribe to be updated on the build progress and to see the growth of the plants!

Objective
A terrarium utilizing Hygrolon for growing miniature Pleurothallids and ferns, particularly Lepanthes species.

Enclosure
Green Leaf Aquariums 18" Rimless Cube

Build Stage 1


A polyurethane foam structure (in this case, Great Stuff Pond & Stone) serves as the foundation for this build. The lighter colored "stone" in the foreground is actually a precured blob of standard Great Stuff foam created from the remnants of a previous build. Using the leftover foam to make "rocks" like this results in less waste and saves time in future builds. The precured foam can be used alone or to help build volume quickly - in this instance, the trunk being formed in the background was started from several bigger, precured foam blobs, with additional spray foam serving as a mortar.

The trunk will need to be built higher and just needs more volume in general. The foam "stone" in the foreground will also need additional volume. One more can of polyurethane foam should be sufficient and will be added once the existing foam has cured.

Some of you may be wondering why the foam was created directly on the bottom glass. This was intentional, and the reason will be made clear in a future post.

'Til next time!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
432 Posts
Subscribed!
Very interested to watch a Hygrolon build.
Thanks for sharing!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Subscribed!
Very interested to watch a Hygrolon build.
Thanks for sharing!
Can't wait to see what you've come up with Dev! Subscribed.
Thanks guys!

subcribed! It's the first time I see a post about terrarium with hygrolon, can't wait to see some photos, it's very interesting
Hope it gives you some inspiration :). I took a look at your website, and you have some very nice, clear tutorials. Happy I could pique your interest!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Build Stage 1 Continued


More foam has been added to the trunk and to the stone / burl in the foreground.

Build Stage 2


Materials Consumed
  • 2 x Great Stuff Pond & Stone
  • 1 x Hygrolon Sheet Large
  • 1 x Hygrolon Sheet Small

The Hygrolon is laid on top of the foam structure and trimmed.

A few tips for the trimming process:
  • Use a Vis-a-Vis marker to mark the cut lines.
  • Use folds where necessary to accomodate rounded surfaces. These folds should be marked for removal.
  • Be conservative with the trimming. You can always remove excess material after the Hygrolon is adhered.
  • Don't be too concerned with small wrinkles or overlaps. These can be trimmed off or concealed later with plant growth.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Build Stage 2 Continued

Materials Consumed
  • ~4 fl. oz. Gorilla Glue

Useful tip - it will be extremely beneficial to come up with a sequence for how you will apply the Hygrolon, and then to practice it. The process outlined here is the best and easiest method for getting the Hygrolon to conform tightly to your target surface. No toothpicks or weights will be needed to keep the Hygrolon in place. You'll find that the biggest challenge is unsticking the Hygrolon should you need to reposition it, so it will be highly beneficial to be able to do it right the first time.

A variety of adhesives can be used to adhere the Hygrolon to the foam. Gorilla Glue was the adhesive of choice for this build, and a strong recommendation for Hygrolon related applications.

The glue was poured onto the foam structure and spread by hand (with gloves). Do not forget to wear gloves! Polyurethane is not a very fun adhesive to wash away. Also, do not panic if you get Gorilla Glue on the glass! It's quite easy to scrape away using a razor blade once it has cured. Do not try to wipe it up as you will only create more work for yourself.



The glue was allowed to sit for between 30 to 40 minutes. It becomes much tackier and more viscous during this time. Use a toothpick or something similar to test the glue as it sits - the goal is to let the glue get almost gummy and extremely aggressive. How quickly or slowly the glue reaches this state is highly dependent on the relative humidity and temperature that the glue is exposed to, so do not assume that 30 to 40 minutes will be the correct time frame for you.

Apply the Hygrolon once the glue is ready. You should find that it sticks extremely well. Be patient during this time and try to position the Hygrolon correctly before sticking it down.



As evident from the picture, several pieces of Hygrolon were used to cover the stump. The square shape of the original piece of fabric was not able to accommodate the extended foot.

Next steps: the final trim, reservoir + filler, and planting!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,279 Posts
I'll feature your epiweb and hygrolon in my fx viv if I can get some samples...I'm going broke buying frogs and plants.. I need a mist system too...both you and Marty could sponsor me! Heck lets get Light your reptiles in on this too! :D
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Build Stage 3



Materials Consumed

  • Horticultural charcoal

Horticultural charcoal was used as the substrate. The substrate in this build is essentially just a filler to make the floor a bit more aesthetically pleasing, and to somewhat hide the fact that the entire floor is a reservoir. Charcoal was specifically selected for its black color and to keep the water clean.

There are a couple of prototype Folius products in this photo.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Build Stage 4

We're now nearing the end! I say nearing even though there will not be another stage of building after this one since the display will always be a work in progress. The plants added now will need to grow in, new plants may be added, and some of these plants may be removed. Time will tell.



Nearly all of the orchids present are Lepanthes species, with some miniature ferns and a Pleurothallis making up the rest. The Hygrolon is dotted with a smattering of processed moss. It's not actually the moss mix offered on the Folius website, but a blend of live moss species that I had been growing. The main stump will definitely become crowded over time and some of the orchids will need to be moved. Watching this tank grow-in until then should be quite interesting!

I hope this demo helped inspire more builds using Hygrolon products or answered any technical questions regarding their application. Check back on this thread as it will continue to be updated with photos as the vivarium matures!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #18

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
144 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
No need to apologize, the omission of that information was an oversight on my part.

The orchids and ferns were secured with toothpicks. A toothpick inserted into the foam at an angle served to hold the root mass of the plant to the Hygrolon.

Dev- I apologize if this has been covered in another thread, but what technique do you use to secure the orchids/ferns to the hygrolon?
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top