Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Any negative effects to not using soil?
Okay, here is my idea for my 20L. Since it is already significantly limited on height, i want to just do a pure drainage layer ~2" in depth. Then simply cover the leca or gravel (whichever i choose) with sphagnum and leaf litter.
As for plants, im going to use all mounted and air plants so no need for soil right?

Now will micro-fauna be able to flourish in this situation?
I know spring tails will but what about Isopods?

Is there any other problems with not using soil that i did not for see?

Thanks for the input, i just want to check before i commit to it.

Azureus - Imitators "Cainarachi Valley" - Leucomelas - Black Jeans
Additional thought, is the water retained in the soil demanded for sufficient humidity?

Azureus - Imitators "Cainarachi Valley" - Leucomelas - Black Jeans
Check out the "Enclosures" part here, I think his humidity is room controlled though since he has free roamers: ... groom.html

A LOT of leaf litter would probably be needed for isos.
Casper provided details on his 20L froglet viv which used a Turface AllSport substrate with leaf litter and no soil here:

I replicated a similar viv for my froglets, but I added a short false bottom. I have not run a data logger in this vivarium so I don't have firm humidity numbers. Anecdotally I do see lots of condensation on the glass and I would expect humidity values >90% based on the data and observations from my other vivarium. I do have the top sealed with glass and no vents. The Turface was a pain to clean (very dusty), but it has a large surface area and wicks water well, so it may be a pretty good alternative substrate to consider.

I have not attempted isopods in the froglet viv, so I'm not much help there - my focus has been on springtails for the froglets and that seems to be working out. I have stuck a number of cuttings from my main viv directly into the Turface. It's too early to tell right now, so it will be a few months before I can really say how well the plants are doing. Anyhow, not terribly helpful since this is such a new viv, but perhaps the humidity observations will help.
Jim from Austin --- Lorenzo keepers PM me about a US breeding program
lorenzo | nominant fants | highlands | summersi | bakhuis | azureus
Chris, i envy that guys frog room. He is really lucky to have so many and such a facility! I noticed he used pure leca. I definitely want to have leaf litter over it. Leaf litter is a must in all my vivariums. Thanks for the post though, at least someone out there is doing it and quite a lot more as well lol. I really enjoyed looking through that site.

Jim, thanks for the post. I am really interested how the plants do in the Turface. Please update me on how things develop.
I am still concerned about the humidity though. I think if i leave water in the bottom of the tank it should hold the humidity just fine. Water may need to be added periodically.

Anyone else have thoughts?
Azureus - Imitators "Cainarachi Valley" - Leucomelas - Black Jeans
I have a friend that used turface and about 2 inches of leave. His microfauna is insane! I'll be trying it myself. I set up some Iso bins up with turface, a thin layer of sphagnum and topped it off with leaves and they're doing very well. It keeps the containers nice and humid by wicking water up slowly through the turface. I don't even have to mist them. When the water is low in the turface, I use a watering can and top it up.
I've seen a bunch of 100% bare false bottoms too. Microfauna is def in there, but I'd have to think leca / hydroton has to be really really good for springs. They just seem to love those nooks and crannies. The clay balls have a good bit more surface area for aerobic activity- Springtails on tiny treadmills and ellipticals.

"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
Wow thanks guys, that helps a ton. I might just make this my all time method if it works well. Why waste extra space on soil? lol

Glenn, any idea how plants do in Turface?
Azureus - Imitators "Cainarachi Valley" - Leucomelas - Black Jeans
I use about four parts turface to one part ABG for my substrate; plants do well with it. I'm not sure it would work well without a drainage layer (in other words, with the bottom part of the turface submerged) however, as turface wicks water to a substantial degree -- it might stay too wet for many plants.
Thanks chuck, i appreciate the turface feedback.
Im going to give this a try. If i have any serious problems ill make sure to comment on this thread.
You all have been very helpful.

Thank you.
Azureus - Imitators "Cainarachi Valley" - Leucomelas - Black Jeans
Sorry, I don't. I don't use many terrestrial plants. Most get to big for my liking and take up floor space. I use wood and attach plants to that, for the most part.
Thanks Glenn. that was my thoughts for this vivarium exactly.
Azureus - Imitators "Cainarachi Valley" - Leucomelas - Black Jeans

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)