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By Sundews69
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Posts:  1362
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#410209
Hey everyone,

I been wanting to try lowland neps for a bit now, but I want to make sure my conditions aren't to cool. I plan to keep them outside during the summer and grow them in a terrarium during the winter. My winter temps are 60-64 degrees at night and 68-72 degrees during the day. Is that to cool? I'm almost certain that is too cold, but I thought I should mention it anyways. In the past, I tried to use a heat mat, but it didn't seem to be heating my 20 gallon terrarium. Does anyone have any suggestions for heat mats that have worked well or have any heat mat alternatives? If I should try heat mats again, where do I place it on the terrarium? The side? The bottom? Inside or outside the terrarium? Should I set the plants on the heat mat? I do have some grow light that I think give off some heat, but I'm not sure. Sorry for asking a million question and any advice is appreciated!!
By John W
Posts:  121
Joined:  Sun Oct 24, 2021 1:11 pm
#410251
In my "terrarium" (plastic storage box) I had a ton of luck putting down bubble wrap on the bottom, then putting the heat mat on top of it. This was bare bottom without any substrate or anything though, not sure if that's what you are doing. Joshscarnivorousplants on instagram has a plastic tote lowland chamber he posts about, you could probably shoot him a message as well. I think t5s produce a bit of heat as well. Sorry I'm not more helpful!
By Sundews69
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Posts:  1362
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#410253
John W wrote: Sat May 07, 2022 1:24 am In my "terrarium" (plastic storage box) I had a ton of luck putting down bubble wrap on the bottom, then putting the heat mat on top of it. This was bare bottom without any substrate or anything though, not sure if that's what you are doing. Joshscarnivorousplants on instagram has a plastic tote lowland chamber he posts about, you could probably shoot him a message as well. I think t5s produce a bit of heat as well. Sorry I'm not more helpful!
Thank you so much! Any help is very much appreciated especially because no one ever posts anything when I ask this question. I should have mentioned this, but I plan to do a potted terrarium with no substrate. How much does the heat mat bring up the temp? Why do you put bubble wrap under it? Do you have a link to this heat mat you could give me? Did you place the plants directly ontop of the mat or did you place them on a egg crate or something along those lines? What plants are you growing in there? Sorry, for asking a million question!
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By John W
Posts:  121
Joined:  Sun Oct 24, 2021 1:11 pm
#410255
I used https://www.amazon.com/BN-LINK-Durable- ... 05505c9d1e that one.

the bubble wrap acts as insulation - if you search for "insulation bubble wrap" there will be a ton, its reflective as well to make your terrarium brighter. It looks really trash in my opinion, but it does work.

I have a small grow area for sarracenia seedlings in my outdoor shed - I have a shelf wrapped with the insulation, and have the bottom of the shelves covered with it as well. Before the insulation under the heat mat, it did not seem to do much - with the insulation, my germination trays were getting up to 80 degrees+ in the winter. In the summer inside, especially if enclosed, it could easily probably hit 90+
By Sundews69
Location: 
Posts:  1362
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#410256
Ok, thanks for the link! do you put the bubble wrap on top of the mat too? Should I wrap the bubble wrap around the sides of my glass aquarium as well?
By John W
Posts:  121
Joined:  Sun Oct 24, 2021 1:11 pm
#410257
No, just underneath it. Putting it around the sides will help insulate it, and if you put a top on it, it will help the most, not sure how big your plants are though so that might not work for you. if you put a top on it, you will definitely need a fan inside to prevent mold and mildew. I would say just try and experiment around with it
By Sundews69
Location: 
Posts:  1362
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#410258
John W wrote: Sat May 07, 2022 2:07 am No, just underneath it. Putting it around the sides will help insulate it, and if you put a top on it, it will help the most, not sure how big your plants are though so that might not work for you. if you put a top on it, you will definitely need a fan inside to prevent mold and mildew. I would say just try and experiment around with it
Yeah, ok, I'll experiment around with it sometime in the future when I have the materials. I actually don't have any lowland neps yet. I need a set up for them first so that they don't die in the winter when it's to cold for them (I think).
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By specialkayme
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Posts:  235
Joined:  Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am
#410278
Insulation will surely help, but I don't think heat mats will get you to the temps you need. Heat mats are intended to bring the rootmass and soil that's directly in contact with the mat up to germination temperature. It isn't meant to (and won't) take the temp of the terrarium up to 85 degrees or so.

A grow light that puts off some heat would be helpful, as it will produce useable light and heat.

But you may find you're better off getting a small heater. You can try a small office desk heater (https://www.amazon.com/andily-Heater-El ... s9dHJ1ZQ==), just make sure you aren't putting the plants right next to it. An alternative that would probably be better would be a heat bulb for a reptile tank (https://www.amazon.com/Simple-Deluxe-In ... C80&sr=8-6) you could plug either into a fairly inexpensive temp controller (https://www.amazon.com/Inkbird-Max-1200 ... NrPXRydWU=) or if that's too expensive, just dial in the temp with the lights on and open a vent or so.

While heat is a concern, it shouldn't be the only one. Make sure you're providing sufficient light, and adjusting for humidity. Most lowland nepenthes like humidity. It isn't something that will be easy to adjust for in a small terrarium.

Largely though it depends on the nepenthes you want to plant. Some are very forgiving and have a wide range of adaptability. Others are pretty picky and have a narrow range of adaptability. If you find one that's forgiving you may be able to get away with having it as a houseplant, albeit by giving it a little supplemental light.

Good luck!
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By Sundews69
Location: 
Posts:  1362
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#410294
specialkayme wrote: Sat May 07, 2022 12:16 pm Insulation will surely help, but I don't think heat mats will get you to the temps you need. Heat mats are intended to bring the rootmass and soil that's directly in contact with the mat up to germination temperature. It isn't meant to (and won't) take the temp of the terrarium up to 85 degrees or so.

A grow light that puts off some heat would be helpful, as it will produce useable light and heat.

But you may find you're better off getting a small heater. You can try a small office desk heater (https://www.amazon.com/andily-Heater-El ... s9dHJ1ZQ==), just make sure you aren't putting the plants right next to it. An alternative that would probably be better would be a heat bulb for a reptile tank (https://www.amazon.com/Simple-Deluxe-In ... C80&sr=8-6) you could plug either into a fairly inexpensive temp controller (https://www.amazon.com/Inkbird-Max-1200 ... NrPXRydWU=) or if that's too expensive, just dial in the temp with the lights on and open a vent or so.

While heat is a concern, it shouldn't be the only one. Make sure you're providing sufficient light, and adjusting for humidity. Most lowland nepenthes like humidity. It isn't something that will be easy to adjust for in a small terrarium.

Largely though it depends on the nepenthes you want to plant. Some are very forgiving and have a wide range of adaptability. Others are pretty picky and have a narrow range of adaptability. If you find one that's forgiving you may be able to get away with having it as a houseplant, albeit by giving it a little supplemental light.

Good luck!
Thank you for all the links and advice! I can try to get some heat emitting lights. What types of lights give off heat? t5s? t8s? I don't think my parents would let me get a small heater or heat lamp because they're a fire hazard. I'll ask them again, but they probably won't change their answer. Do you have experience with that heat lamp and heater? Could I plug the heater into the temp controller? I plan to grow mainly amps, but also maybe a bical, truncata, rafflesiana, orbiculata and some others. I would definitely start with a rafflisiana or amp. Whatever is easiest.
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By specialkayme
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Posts:  235
Joined:  Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am
#410345
I've used the heater and the inkbird before. The heater plugs directly into the inkbird. It has a thermometer and cycles the heater on and off to keep the temp up.

I'd start off with a good intermediate nepenthes (sangunea is my recommendation) before you try anything else. If you've had a nepenthes already, I'd next go with an ampullaria, preferably a nice hybrid. Then go from there.
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By Sundews69
Location: 
Posts:  1362
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#410355
Ok, I'll probably start with a more temp tolerant amp (do you have any ampullaria suggestions?) or a 'suki' for the lowland set up. I've already got a lowii x ventricosa 'red', so I think I can try something new. I'm worried that the heater would dry out the air in the aquarium. Do you have any humidifiers that would keep it humid enough in there?
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By specialkayme
Location: 
Posts:  235
Joined:  Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am
#410362
Diana or hookeriana would be fine if you're looking for some level of a cross. Or a suki is fine too.
https://www.carnivero.com/products/nepe ... 2015793195
https://www.carnivero.com/products/nepe ... 5921500273

If you want to try and go with a "pure" ampullaria you probably could do fine. I'd stick with a $25-35 version though.
https://www.carnivero.com/products/nepe ... 9864018987

Any type of humidifier would probably do fine. I know some that use those small dollar ultrasonic disks that float in a small tupperware of water. Next step up would be some level of home humidifier. You can find one for $30 or so. With all of those, humidity levels are a guess at best. Plug it in and let it run and see what happens. So a small groove to measure humidity would probably be a good idea.
https://www.amazon.com/Govee-Temperatur ... C74&sr=8-8

I have a programmable humidifier that's used in reptile tanks, powered by an inkbird humidity controller. But that's beyond what you need at this point.
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By Sundews69
Location: 
Posts:  1362
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#410405
What do you mean by this:
specialkayme wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 3:59 pm I know some that use those small dollar ultrasonic disks that float in a small tupperware of water.
Is the Govee humidity reader water proof?
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By specialkayme
Location: 
Posts:  235
Joined:  Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am
#410489
Sundews69 wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 9:47 pm What do you mean by this:
specialkayme wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 3:59 pm I know some that use those small dollar ultrasonic disks that float in a small tupperware of water.
These: https://www.amazon.com/Atomizing-Transd ... 5286&psc=1
Sundews69 wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 9:47 pmIs the Govee humidity reader water proof?
I'm not a rep for Govee. Better to ask them. But the Q&A on Amazon had the following answers:
Q: Is it waterproof ?
A: No, please place the temp sensor under a shletered place. see more
By Govee on February 21, 2020
See other answers
Q: Will this work in a car?
A: Yes, it can work in a car. It is non waterproof.
By Govee on January 11, 2021
Sundews69 wrote: Mon May 09, 2022 9:44 pm If I have a cover on the tank, how would heat from a heat lamp get through?
The same way the sun's heat gets through your car windows.

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