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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I was just wondering if my method of building of vivarium is correct, so please give me input if there is anything wrong, or if it helped anybody.

Step 1:
hydroton bottom

I would Put 1-3 inches of hydroton on the bottom of the tank.

I would Put enough substrate liner to cover the whole bottom of the tank and a little to stuff in the sides.

on top of the liner, I would put about 3-5 in. of vivarium soil or ABG mix.

then I would add plants. I'd make sure I don't over plant it. depending on the size of the plants, I would say about 3-4 medium sized plants in a ten gallon tank. I'd add a few more for every 5 gallons.

then I add enough sphagnum moss to cover the floor of the tank about 1-2 centimeters thick.

then I add leaf litter. I would leave some areas without leaf litter so I put in driftwood and additional decorations I could move the leaves over out of the way of the decor into the bare spots.

then I should be ready for the next step.

step 2:
Lighting

what I would use is reptisun 2.0 6700k bulb for my tube fixture, but for regular fixture I would use CFL's 6500 to 6700k in power to bring out color in the frogs and helps plants.

Step 3:
background

what I would do is just is skip the background so I won't include this subject.

step 4:

Decoration

what I would do is put a coconut hut around some plants to give the darts another hiding spot. then I would put in multiple peices of driftwood into the tank, normaly purchased instead of found. If it came from outside, I would boil it. For rocks from outside, I would boil it and then bake it.


Let me know if I skipped a subject (excluding background) or if I just did something wrong. Also, let me know if this helped anybody.
 

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Alternately make a false bottom out of egg crate (light diffuser) that rest on cut sections of PVC with a slot or notch cut into the bottom of the pvc tube to allow it to drain and prevent stagnation. This can be any height but it is recommended to have an air gap between the bottom of the egg crate and top of the water to prevent the substrate from becoming too saturated. Cover the diffuser with screen or some other material that won't break down and prevents the substrate from falling through the diffuser.

Make sure to have a way to drain excess water whether it be through a bulkhead fitted into the bottom or a hole cut in the screen and diffuser...
 

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I would say closer to 2 inches of ABG mix which will allow space for at least 2 inches of leaf litter on top.
 

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im relatively new to vivs but not sure that i would put down 2 inchs of sphagnum unless i was going to be growing carnivorous plants in the viv.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I said 1-2 centimeters of sphagnum moss, not 2 inches.

other then that, great advice. I bet you people make great vivs.
 

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ok then i would skip putting 1 to 2 cm of sphag on top of your abg. not alot of point of putting down a great drainage layer, then a very well draining potting mix, and then covering it all with a very moisture retaining layer. some plants will do well with it but most will do better without it.
 
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