Richard Van Ingen was kind enough to let my partner and I stop by for a greenhouse tour and some plant shopping last weekend. It was definitely a high point this winter! The greenhouse is a massive 1500 sf and 52×30 (about 400 sf bigger than our house…) He did a lot of the greenhouse construction himself, and if I remember right just hired an electrician and someone to lay the foundation. He did the plumbing and a lot of […]
As a collector, of information and plants, there is often an urge to organize, to categorize and put like plants with like plants (both informationally and physically). This is one such time where it backfired, certainly not the first, and definitely not the last. Most of my Selaginella species are only subtly different to my non-expert eyes, and now they are even more disorderly and difficult to distinguish (yes, there are pots in there, under that mess). At least they […]
I found this Ranitomeya uakarii tadpole dangling from a Costus amazonicus today. I’m not sure how it ended up here as I check the tank daily and this tadpole looks to be about 10 days old. My best guess is that this Costus grows so fast, the egg was laid in a newly formed leaf and then the leaf unfurled and the egg ended up at the newly horizontal leaf tip. But, no way to know for sure!
For two years now I’ve been putting all my “stragglers” in this terrarium. Anything that isn’t doing well in my plant bins goes in here. The Bryophytes and orchids are just starting to come into their own, and this Pleurothallid is more or less always in bloom. There are also a trove of epiphytic ferns in here that I’m hopeful will create some nice colonies within the decade 🙂
Clay Types Over the past ten years I have experimented with a handful of clays in the terrarium, both as substrates and backgrounds. Below are the types I’ve used, with some details on the qualities and uses for each type. Bentonite Pelleted type -this clay really needs to be kneaded, or else certain parts will remain dry while others are oversaturated. Letting it sit in water does not suffice, because whatever clay isn’t touching water will not even get wet. […]
This one is difficult to photograph well from the front, but is more photogenic from a birds eye view thankfully. It has been setup since 2014 and was my first attempt at building a terrarium from scratch. It is a 14″ cube with a sliding glass lid that comes out the front and is held in place by clear H channel. This design was preferable to a front opening door because these particular frogs were very bouncy when I received them […]
Some shots of the R. biolat vivarium from this fall. Over the past two years I’ve probably placed close to 20 different Bryophyte species in here, and for a while they disappeared. Slowly, they have started to grow back and spread.
I’ve never seen it growing along the leaf venation like this before, and wonder if more nutrients are available in these areas for their ability to hold water and sediment. It reminds me of an experiment in which oats (a favorite slime mold food) were oriented to resemble the way cities are scattered around Tokyo. The slime mold’s path to consuming the oats was refined in a matter of hours to bear a strong resemblance the Tokyo public transit system. […]