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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi all,

I’m hoping to get some input on this tank as I’m not entirely happy with the planting right now.

What I do like:
The log surfaces, low areas around the fronts and sides of the log, the moss patches surrounded by leave litter.

What I’m not too happy with:
The back area underneath the log/broms, some of the back wall. The area I dislike the least is the base of the back wall and the open area it creates. It feels off balance.

I’m considering planting something that can tolerate some low light, get large and bushy, have larger leaves to fill in that area- or adding more wood and hardscaping to build up the base of the back wall and adding low light plantings on the sides and top of that to fill in that large gap. Im not sure what to do. Some of you on this forum have some stunning tanks and I’m hoping to get some advice on what you would have done differently or what you would change if this were yours. Thanks!

Short video of the viv: Vivarium walk around


295337
295338


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I'd add more wood into the empty space. I know it's not the look you're going for but you have a TON of empty space that the frogs will not be able to use right now.

What species of frogs are going in this tank?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Okay, yeah I'm sorta leaning that route myself. Something about that gap is just not appealing. Also the sporadic plants at the base of the wall are just random plants and cuttings I had already when I knew they weren't what I wanted. Plants get expensive and I started taking shortcuts...
There are 4 tinctorius Robertus in there right now. Usually they are super outgoing but I herded them into their hiding spaces while I had the door open to do some trimming and leaf litter adjustments for the photos.

Also, please ignore the unfinished carpentry and drywall etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yeah, I’ve heard that’s generally the case, though up until now I haven’t had more than 2 adults together. I’ve got an old exoterra that needs to be redone so hopefully I’ll have that as a backup solution for any problems that arise with territoriality as they grow into adulthood.


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This is a gorgeous viv! Don't beat yourself up on it, because in all honesty it looks great! If you do want to fill in that location, you could add more wood as @fishingguy12345 stated, the other option would be to add more of whatever substrate you're using and plant something larger like a larger Brom species, not Neoregelia, as they would fit your display and add a different texture but not be completely different. Personally, I would think a Canistrum Seidalianum would look lovely there and complete the look. That of an Aechmea Sp. would fit beautifully!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
@Tihsho Thanks! I do like it, I just know that section can be improved having seen a lot of the awesome vivs on this forum. That's an interesting idea, I hadn't thought about those larger broms.

@kennyb123 There's a mix of mosses in here, all of which I've just scavenged from the wild. I'm trying to locate my moss book so I can give you proper answer but I'll have to edit this answer later.
  • Some pillow moss patches with a few tufts of some other type of taller pine tree looking stuff mixed in to those patches.
  • A few live sphagnum moss patches
  • a few types of carpet moss
  • a few types of fern moss
  • you'll see some liverworts and Peperomia prostrata mixed in here and there as well
I'm not sure what the etiquette is for attaching large images to posts but here's some pics of the moss.
  • 295355
 

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Greetings,

I agree with others that your tank already looks very nice but also that you are wasting a good bit of volume. In addition, I'd say you tank is very open and bright - it might lead to shyer frogs. Some additional wood might create a bit more shade and overgrowth that will keep frogs more at ease.

The middle-front of your island screams for a larger bromeliad than you have there now (if the current brom isn't just getting started). Otherwise I would only add more leaf litter. A moss carpet is really only for human aesthetics - it doesn't benefit the frogs.

The heart fern and the wandering jew are not great tropical viv plants. The fern expects periodic dryness and the wandering jew is a maintenance hassle.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Yeah those plants were thrown in because that’s what I had on hand at the moment but were never meant to be permanent. The moss has really gone nuts but there are some pockets I routinely stop it from taking over and try to keep those patches strictly leaf litter. I opted for the patches of moss, patches of leaves approach to try to get the best of both worlds but I agree the moss seems to be winning. The one super mossy side I might have to bring back to being more litter friendly.


I’ll likely end up adding more wood and hardscaping under the log in the back, and maybe look into the larger broms to fill in as well there. What about an Alocasia for that spot? Too large? I love the look of them but not sure if their dark green will clash visually with the Bromiliads lighter greens and pinks or they will grow too big. I’ve got no Alocasia experience.

I like the idea of filling in the front section of the log with some more broms as well.

Thanks for the ideas. Appreciated. Hoping to get this really looking great since I ripped out my living-room wall for it lol.


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You would not be the first person seduced by an Alocasia - but they are too big for vivs (and even dwarf varieties want more room). You have the space for a really nice centerpiece brom in that spot and there are many small/mini brom cultivars to choose from.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
You would not be the first person seduced by an Alocasia - but they are too big for vivs (and even dwarf varieties want more room). You have the space for a really nice centerpiece brom in that spot and there are many small/mini brom cultivars to choose from.
Going with hardscape build up/brom route.

This vivarium is what got me thinking about Alocasia but this is a giant viv (not sure if Instagram links work here):

http://instagr.am/p/CFxDwFsAQ7T/

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That is a stunning viv - but it's also ~9 feet tall. I would also opine that it's a viv that looks better from a distance where you can get the overall effect of all that foliage. When you get close you see there's alot of dark shadow and a monoculture of moss. Another thing to notice is how few small-growing plants are there: The large-leaved plants grow so quickly they shade-out or physically overtop anything smaller. This is the way it works in nature too, of course - but in a small viv that can mean one large-leaved plant and not much else struggling beneath.
 

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Something like Peperomia turboensis should do fine on the back left side of the log. Would also grow up the background.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Something like Peperomia turboensis should do fine on the back left side of the log. Would also grow up the background.
I just looked it up and that plant is awesome. It even has some of those deep and dark Alocasia vibes but smaller. Thanks for the suggestion.


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