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I thought I would share my small (but growing) heli collection...

Currently I have the following helis:
H. chimantensis
H. parva
H. pulchella
H. uncinata
H. heterodoxa x ionasii

My setup is a 45 gallon terrarium (36"x12"x24") with two 39W T5HOs and reflective foam insulation on three sides. There is a small waterfall inside to help with humidity and the plants are on an egg crate rack which is covered by LFS which is also to help with humidity and will be for decoration as it comes back to life. For cooling and humidity I have a MistKing misting system that runs for a total of 45 seconds between two separate intervals. I also have a fogging system that blows cooled, humid air/fog into the terrarium for a few minutes every hour to keep the temperature stable.

My maximum recorded temp so far is 71.9F and the minimum recorded temperature was 66.8F. Humidity is almost constantly 90-92%.


Terrarium with fogger running:

Fogger with 23 gallon reservoir:

H. pulchella

H. heterodoxa x ionasii

H. uncinata

H. chimantensis & H. parva ( they aren’t quite ready for close-ups just yet)

Please let me know if there is anything that should be changed. The plants look a little beat up because they spent 11 days in the mail, but they have been in this setup for about 2 weeks and I’m already getting new growth on everything except the uncinata divisions and the chimantensis.
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You're going to need a small fan in there to circulate and move the moist, humid air. Otherwise it's going to get pretty nasty pretty quick.
Plus, helis love a cool breeze blowing across them.
I probably didn't make it clear enough but the fans that run the fogger are running constantly so there is always air circulation. The actual fogger is what turns on and off.

So far it hasn't been showing signs of being polluted and the LFS is slowly turning green and some of the helis are already starting to grow.
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You don't mention whether your following Butch's guidance:
Now fill the pitchers up with a weak fertilizer mix, I like 1/4 strength.
It helps keep new plants/divisions hydrated while also giving them nutrients to foster growth/repair. With decent conditions, tricho & this tidbit from Av, the Heli-meister/master/god, your're golden. :boogie:
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I certainly am following Butch's guidelines. When I was growing helis years ago my methods were almost entirely based on his help.

The pitchers have been filled with RO water with orchid fertilizer diluted in at 1/4 strength.

The potting medium is 1:1:1 aquatic planting soil, LFS, and perlite.

Also, the plants were bagged for a week before I started acclimating the plants to the lower humidity and I just barely unbagged them completely the other day.

I'm still making slight adjustments to the setup to make it as ideal as possible for the plants. I'm also going to be adding some LEDs soon to supplement the T5HOs because the current lights probably aren't quite enough to get great color and growth.
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Really nice set-up! Although one thing that stood out to me immediately is that you might want to consider raising those reservoirs off the carpet. Even if they're leak-free and don't seem to produce condensation on the sides, they can still cause damage when pressed against the carpet like that. Just a block of wood or cinder block or anything would work.
mato: Thank you for pointing that out! I will correct that this afternoon.
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Looking great Anne, welcome back to the hobby!

  • #10
Thanks guys! I now have new growth on everything except the chimantensis. I'll get decent pictures up in a couple days when the new pitchers open up.
  • #11
where does one purchase aquatic planting soil?
  • #13
Just a quick update...

Everything is showing new growth now and all plants seems to be healthy. I am planning on building an LED light to supplement the T5s within the next two weeks to help color up the plants more.

H. pulchella

H. uncinata

H. parva

H. heterodoxa x. ionasii
  • #14
Very nice over the top set up, well built. Your plants are going to LOVE it!