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Hello,

this is my first post but Iwill be working on putting together a build thread a little later this week.

I'm currently working on a 10gallon tank with a cork background. I realize that 10 gallons is not a lot of room so I feel like my main challenge at this point in my build is to pick plants that aren't going to overtake my tank. I'm thinking that a "red waif" brom would be a wonderful choice as it is a beautiful plant with lots of colors and only gets to be about 6" by 6". I'm wondering if there's any suggestions out there as far as other plants.

I've got two very nice pieces of mopani wood as accents and chose one in particular to plant a brom in.

thanks and stay tuned for my build thread!!!
 

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in a horizontal 10 broms are pretty hard to pull off. the tank is just too short. plus, i know 6" sounds reasonable, but when you get it in the tank you might think again. its taken me years to finally figure it out, but simplicity is best with these sorts of things. pick 2 or 3 plants that you like and use a few of each in the tank. some true dwarf white fittonia would look nice. perhaps some sort of epiphyte on the cork background, and a miniature begoina, or sinn. or something like that to round it off.

james
 

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Thanks for the suggestions. I will take a look and see what I can figure out as far as layout goes.

I was able to find another brom that was smaller than the red waif, although I can't recall the name right now. It grows to around 3" so I'll look into that as well.

Is there a creeping plant that might look nice growing up cork background that doesn't grow too fast that would work well?

as far as epiphytes go, a nice tillandsia would look nice mounted to the background or to the top of one of the mopani driftwood chunks.
 

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look at neoregelia 'chiquita linda'. its a small hardy brom. but remember many frogs dont use broms at all, so adding it may be a waste of valuable space in your small tank, depending on the species you plan on working with.

when i said epiphytes, i was talking more about some kind of vine or perhaps fern. something to fill in your cork background. tillandsias, are nice, but tend to require much drier environments, that are not possible in a tank your size w/o some sort of forced air movement.

remember that you only have 6-8 inches of height to work with, and that drastically limits your options. it means that your gradients of temp and humidity are compressed into this small area. so whereas in a large enclosure, you could easily grow tillandsias in the dryer upper reaches of the tank while still maintaining a healthy humidity in the lower and middle areas, you will be hard pressed to achieve any growth, much less success at all, in a 10 gallon tank.

james
 

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As stated above, you really wont have much room. Some smaller bromeliads that would work are chiquita linda, wee willy, lilliputiana and its numerous crosses, punctatissima and its crosses, a couple pauciflora crosses, dungsiana(basically for looks) and bromeliads along those lines. Try to stay away from fast growing plants like pothos, philodendrons, alocasias and plants along those lines sold at the big box stores. They will overrun your tank in no time and pop whatever lid you use right off.
Jason
 

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Thanks for the brom suggestion to both of you!

As far as ferns go, I would love to have some! is there a particular species that anyone would recommend that would be decent (i.e. slower growing, with smaller foliage etc)? I'm discovering quickly that keeping a balanced overall look to the tank is going to be quite challenging.
 

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I am brand new to this hobby as well and have yet to build my first vivarium. They have already convinced me to move up to the 20gal High tank. I have NO first hand experience, so take anything I say with a grain of salt, but plants I looked into (and will buy for this 20H in the next few weeks) are Selaginella erythropus (fern with deep green leaves on top and blood-red on bottom that curl so both colors are visible), Pilea involucrata (both "friendship" and "moon valley"), Orthophytum saxicola, and a few Tillandsia (mesic species, not xeric!).

Also, I plan to use live moss instead of sphagnum, and attempt to use some lichens. Both can be found on eBay (seach "live moss", "live lichen", or "terrarium moss", etc.), but I'm sure someone here can direct you to a better source...

But I must reiterate, I have no working experience with any of this as of yet, just days upon days of research and cross-referencing, so if anyone knows more about anything I mentioned, please feel free to comment or correct me!!! :D
 

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I am brand new to this hobby as well and have yet to build my first vivarium. They have already convinced me to move up to the 20gal High tank. I have NO first hand experience, so take anything I say with a grain of salt, but plants I looked into (and will buy for this 20H in the next few weeks) are Selaginella erythropus (fern with deep green leaves on top and blood-red on bottom that curl so both colors are visible), Pilea involucrata (both "friendship" and "moon valley"), Orthophytum saxicola, and a few Tillandsia (mesic species, not xeric!).

Also, I plan to use live moss instead of sphagnum, and attempt to use some lichens. Both can be found on eBay (seach "live moss", "live lichen", or "terrarium moss", etc.), but I'm sure someone here can direct you to a better source...

But I must reiterate, I have no working experience with any of this as of yet, just days upon days of research and cross-referencing, so if anyone knows more about anything I mentioned, please feel free to comment or correct me!!! :D
here goes. the pilea, might work, but it can get quite "leggy" in thee terrarium and just looks, well, bad.
the orthophytum is probably going to rot, as will the tillandsias, because they just arent made to handle the same conditions in your tank.

now about the substrate sphagnum is used, not for aesthetics, but to retain moisture. live moss wont work for that. you need some sort of substrate, sphagnum, abg, clay based, something. then leaf litter.

james
 

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Thanks for the pointers, I'll rethink my plant choices. It's difficult to find aesthetically pleasing plants that aren't just what is in every other vivarium...

And I didn't mention that I will be using ABG over a bed of hydroton with a fiberglass mesh dividing them! The moss would theoretically be grown on the ABG, the grapewood, and the background.

Anyway, I won't hijack your thread anymore than this post has! Good luck! Hopefully the fern idea is something I can contribute since you seemed to want a fern, and I can't find a more dazzling one, except maybe the metallic blue peacock fern... :)
 

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You might consider a trailing vine--there are a lot of Dischidia's and some Hoya's with tiny leaves that will drape across the cork without overwhelming the tank. Pepperomia prostrata has tiny little leaves, and can form a "sheet" of growth across parts of your bark. This adds a nice difference in form and texture for a small viv.

Mike in Helotes

Hello,

this is my first post but Iwill be working on putting together a build thread a little later this week.

I'm currently working on a 10gallon tank with a cork background. I realize that 10 gallons is not a lot of room so I feel like my main challenge at this point in my build is to pick plants that aren't going to overtake my tank. I'm thinking that a "red waif" brom would be a wonderful choice as it is a beautiful plant with lots of colors and only gets to be about 6" by 6". I'm wondering if there's any suggestions out there as far as other plants.

I've got two very nice pieces of mopani wood as accents and chose one in particular to plant a brom in.

thanks and stay tuned for my build thread!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I was thinking that maybe if everybody saw where I was at that it might generate some inspiration. Thank you all for your suggestions, all of the plant choices are wonderful!
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