All Things Gardening forum: Reptile Vivarium/Plants and UVB?

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Name: Cheryl
Kingwood, Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Composter Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Amaryllis
Plumerias Ponds Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level
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ShadyGreenThumb
Aug 1, 2013 1:27 PM CST
My little rescue box turtle (1 year old) lives in a 29 gallon vivarium. I am having trouble growing plants in direct peat moss, the substrate turtles love. I need to strive for high (80%+) humidity with the low light conditions without keeping the peat soggy. Tough challenge. The Gro Light bulb was barely enough light for the plants and dried out the peat really fast. Now there is a UVB bulb to help Sheldon absorb the calcium that she needs to grow. Do plants thrive in UVB light? I have had trouble with Arrowhead Plant, Creeping Charlie, Mother In Law Tongue, Spider Plant and a host of others I have tried. What is now growing is in a pot of soil and buried into the peat. It is doing fairly well but not as good as it should be. Hints, suggestions? I want to make a nice environment for this little turtle.


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Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
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Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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woofie
Aug 3, 2013 10:35 AM CST
A quick google search for plants for vivariums yielded this website. They suggest, among other things, ferns and begonias. There's quite a bit of good information, although this site is talking about frogs, not turtles : http://www.dendroworks.co.uk/index.php/which-plants-should-i...
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J. (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Database Moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Forum moderator Heucheras Echinacea
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NJBob
Aug 3, 2013 7:16 PM CST
http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/plants/15387-turtle-safe-pl...
See if any info hear helps.
http://www.turtleforum.com/forum/upload/index.php?showtopic=...
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/thread-39470.html
http://animals.pawnation.com/plants-poisonous-box-turtles-23...
It looks like begonias are toxic to Box Turtles.
Name: Cheryl
Kingwood, Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Composter Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Amaryllis
Plumerias Ponds Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level
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ShadyGreenThumb
Aug 3, 2013 8:02 PM CST
Thanks, guys. I am real fan of Turtle_Tails website. I have learned a lot from them since rescuing this hatchling. Unfortunately, most of the plants recommended are so large or Sheldon gets certain types of leaves caught inside her shell keeping her from moving. It is amazing how little a 30" wide aquarium will hold. I have planted so many thing that take low light and low water as the substrate cannot be overly wet, either. I am an avid gardener but this is stumping me why I cannot grow stuff indoors. I have Gro Light and a UVB light. You'd think that would help? Nope. I am going to dig up some Peace Lily next. It has been quite the experiment getting things to grow indoors.
Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
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woofie
Aug 3, 2013 10:08 PM CST
Begonias are poisonous to turtles? Wow, would never have thought of that! Poor little guy; pay no attention to me! Hope you can find something suitable! Maybe you'll just have to surround your vivarium with external plants to sort of hang over it. Hilarious!
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Juli
(Zone 5b)
Region: United States of America Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Daylilies Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
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daylily
Aug 4, 2013 5:42 AM CST
Many plants used in aquariums can be grown submersed or emmersed. The Planted Tank forum is a fantastic resource for lighting, plant info, etc. here is a link to the riparium, terrarium sub forum. I am sure there are people there that can help. One thought I have is, could you put the plants in very small pots, then sink them into the peat?

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=25
Name: Cheryl
Kingwood, Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Composter Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Amaryllis
Plumerias Ponds Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level
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ShadyGreenThumb
Aug 4, 2013 5:18 PM CST
I put in pots of fern, fig leaf ivy, and a cane begonia shoot I had been rooting when it broke off my plant. Sheldon always comes out to inspect what Mom has done to her habitatbut she never says much one way of the other. Smiling The Cane begonia is tall and only for looks. There is no way little Sheldon could reach any of it's leaves. She doesn't eat many plants anyway. Who would when your Person feeds you nummy food all the time? Rolling on the floor laughing
Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.
Name: Juli
(Zone 5b)
Region: United States of America Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Daylilies Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Birds Hummingbirder Butterflies Dog Lover Cat Lover Garden Ideas: Master Level
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daylily
Aug 4, 2013 5:22 PM CST
I love turtles. Lovey dubby I have a couple planted aquariums now, which I always wanted, but no turtles. Had those little ones as a kid, poor things, but I did take good care of them.
Name: Cheryl
Kingwood, Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Composter Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Amaryllis
Plumerias Ponds Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level
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ShadyGreenThumb
Aug 4, 2013 5:34 PM CST
My little Sheldon is a Three Toed Box Turtle, a terrapin, actually who likes being in water but lives on land. I found her as a hatchling while mulching my yard last year. The heavy rains we had had unearthed her, maybe sooner than she would have on her own? I was going to set her free once she got healthy again. But since she was paraplegic I had to do some studying very quickly to learn how to care for her. I was told she would have died had I not brought her in as Fire Ants love turtles that are stuck on their backs. (ew!) Sheldon will live in her indoor vivarium for 2 more years when she can finally flip herself over and box her head inside her shell/carapace. After that I will build her a habitat outside where she will outlive me. I am trying to mimic the things she will see outside so she can learn to crawl over ricks and twigs and hide under plants and maybeb set free? IDK? She sure like her neck rubs and responds to her name. She might be a tad bit domesticated by now. The rocks and twigs are easy. Keeping plants green in her 90* 70% humidity vivarium has been my challenge.
Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.
Name: Juli
(Zone 5b)
Region: United States of America Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Daylilies Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Birds Hummingbirder Butterflies Dog Lover Cat Lover Garden Ideas: Master Level
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daylily
Aug 4, 2013 8:05 PM CST
Lovey dubby That is such a great thing you did for her!
Name: Cheryl
Kingwood, Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Composter Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Amaryllis
Plumerias Ponds Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level
Image
ShadyGreenThumb
Aug 8, 2013 7:16 PM CST
All done. Sheldon scurried around to see the changes mom made and then went back to her hiding places. What do you think?


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Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.

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