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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
-I am working on the plans for a hundred gallon, temperate vivarium withs plants and animals native to DE (mid atlantic seaboard). It will end up in a nature center at a state park, and they are giving me a decent budget for it, (around $500). It will be a rocky piedmont-style tank ( as opposed to southern DE's coastal plain habitati).
Beingf such a large tank, I will have the chance to have a variety of different mico-habitats in the tank, which is obviously great.

--First off, I am used to dart frog vivariums with false bottoms and tropical plants. Which plants would be good for this set-up?
--It will have a water feature, Should i do the false bottom thang?
---If no (false bottom), then how should i build the substrate?
--also, if I could contact a supplier and convince them to donate any of the supplies for the tank, or even give us a discount, then they could write it off as a tax deduction and we can make the set-up even better. The donation would be officially donated to the non-profit associated to our park.They would also be recognized in several forms of publication dedicated to the park system. Does anybody know any suppliers that will be willing to do such a thing?

Thanks everybody in advance,
Ethan

~Looking for familiar faces, in an empty window pane.~
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I can probably think of a few plants for you to use. But first we need some more detail on the habitat you are tring to create and the animals you will be housing. You said rocky-piedmont type habbitat with a water feature, which is kind of broad.

If it were me, I would do some sort of rocky seepage slope planted with: Claytonia virginiana (Spring beauty), Cardamine (one of the tooth-wort types),various Saxifrag, live Sphagnum, Mitchella repens, various liverworts, Aquilegia canadensis (Columbine), Asurum, Phacelia, Geranium maculatum, various Viola sp., Hepatica, and possibly a Plantanthera or a Cypripedium... to name a few anyway. Basicly I would put a stacked rock background in the tank, with water flowing slowly over (think drip wall, not water fall) and plant the plants in the pokets between the rock. The problem with this type of set up is, most of the plants that inhabbit seepage slopes (at least the ones that fit in a viv) are spring ephemerals, providing only a breif (but dramatic) show.

The other issue is no matter what temperate habbitat you chose to model in the viv, a dormancy period is required. If it were me I would put it on wheels and move it outside for the winter.

Once you decide (or to help you decide) what community type you are going for, look for a natural plant communities guide (this may be more difficult then it sounds). The one for GA is published through the USGS and the one for NC is published through the state's natural heritage society. I would imagine that those would be good places to look for it in DE as well. This guide should provide a list of all plants that deffine a particular community type, as well as the soil type the community occurs on (which will be very useful info). Just look up your community and there you go: a list of appropriate plants.

Hope this helped,
Jay
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Jay, very helpful.
Whats up Justin,
its going up at Brandywine Creek's nature center. if you want to help out, or if you have any suggestions, let me know. should be getting started in the next couple weeks.
 
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