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My first viv was an 18x18x24 Exo- Terra, and I think it was a valiant attempt. It had an ambitious water feature, which obviously failed; it leaked and rotted plant after plant.
Here is the original thread: http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/parts-construction/64959-18x18x24-exoterra.html
So, when I moved I decided to revise the drainage of the water feature. It didn't take very long to do just that, and the tank sat froglets for a while. It looked nice and the leak was fixed, but I still wasn't entirely satisfied with it,
Now, here I am. I gutted the tank completely. I found inspiration in Raf's thread, so I thought I'd give something similar a try. It's not as big and impressive, but still proud of my efforts.

I still have some areas to touch up. The wood, foam and acrylic are my awkward attempt at a retaining wall for a shelf I'd like to try to incorporate.
 

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Thanks edhurl. Did you see Raf's thread yet? It's very detailed and informative on making a scape like this. If you haven't seen it yet I'd be happy to dig it up for you.
My method was similar, but not identical.

Field, thanks. I used silicone with straight coco fibers for the vines. With the back ground I still used coco fiber, but I also used a little bit of crushed walnut to try to give it a different texture from the vines.
 

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I got around to planting my tank. :)
All of the plants were either lying around the house or clippings from my other tanks, so there's a lot of growing in to be done. I'd still like to add a moss or similar growing plant to the walls, and maybe some a low growing plant or two. I'd love some suggestions for species.
I also seeded the tank with springtails and isopods.
I can't wait to move my amazonicas in :)
 

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Nice tank Gnarly, I love the vines! I might try something similar in the future, can you please go into detail about how you made them. I also have to say, that all I could think about with these vines is me trying to chase some pumilio froglet into the back corner and not being able to capture it ...

some suggestions for plants: I am hooked on microgramma right now it would be good epiphytically on the vines or the background, Tropical PLantz has some (Jason Desantis). Also Tropiflora has some cool bog plants that are very hardy and tolerate wetter conditions as well as some others. NE Hherp have some cool hoyas, dischidias and pepperomias amongst others and they are very reasonably priced. Those are some to name a few...
 

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Thanks DendroRachel and jessejames801. I appreciate the compliments :)

Thanks for the advice cbreon. I am looking into the microgramma. I saw a few varieties, which have you had experiences with? And how much do they grow outwards?
I wasn't even considering chasing frogs down. It will still be a while before my frogs start to breed though, they are still quite young.
The vines were actually really easy to make, so I'm happy to go into detail about the process. I grabbed a few feet of rope in various thicknesses, then Jeff started doing the first coats of silicone and coco fiber on all of them. It's a simple process, gloves on, a handful of silicone, roll the sticky rope in the coco fiber, then throw it all in a messy pile and let it dry. All of the smaller ropes had a nice texture and shape to begin with, but the thickest rope really just looked like a dirty rope, and not vine like at all. So I wrapped the ropes with the thinnest rope and pulled it tight. This provided not only a more appealing texture, but also some more structure; it wasn't so floppy anymore.

Then it got two more coats, and after that some spot touch ups. It would have been too much of a pain to coat them once they were attached to the background, so I finished them outside the tank.

Then I taped them to the top of the viv, and spray foamed away.


I didn't have much of a problem siliconing and covering the background because the vines were not attached at the bottom (they are just buried in the dirt) so I was able to tape them back to work on the sections of the background behind them.
Lastly, I glued a few to the walls for good measure.
It was a very enjoyable build for me.
 

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Thanks DendroRachel and jessejames801. I appreciate the compliments :)

Thanks for the advice cbreon. I am looking into the microgramma. I saw a few varieties, which have you had experiences with? And how much do they grow outwards?
The microgramma reptans has smaller leaves (approx 1in) and the leaves seem to be more densely packed together than the microgramma vaccinfolia (2.5-3 in leaves). They both look very cool and I doubt they could really take over. But I haven't had mine that long, so I don't know. Another cool, epiphytic vine would be hoya curtsii, it's usually inexpensive and has an interesting look.
 

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I've yet to make my mind up on additional plants for the tank, I'm not in a huge rush though. I'm really enjoying it so far.
And so are the Amazonica! They climb in and out of the vines in the back. Actually, two of them still prefer to spend almost all their time in the lead litter, but whatever makes them happy.
 

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