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By cbennett4041
Posts:  489
Joined:  Thu Aug 05, 2010 5:22 am
I have some U.gibba and Aldrovandra coming next month or so, and have begun to set up my small water feature for them. So far I have done the following with a 4 gallon or so washing bucket.

- started with a base layer (~1 inch) of plain kitty litter for clay content
- added a layer of boiled peat moss (~2 inches)
- topped it up with a layer of silica sand (~1/2 inch) to hold it all down
- filled the water up to about six or seven inches above the media being sure to use as much"peat tea" (the water left from boiling the peat) as possible
- planted 4 large-ish stalks of bamboo and two cattails (Typha is their scientific genus, right?). I collected the latter from a local pond, while the bamboo was collected from a vase in my living room.
- I plan to know let the container "age" and come into balance.

...and now three questions:

1) I am curious about the zooplankton that need to be present. Can I just take a gallon of water from a healthy local pond and add it to the container? Is there a better source to get microorganisms for my little setup?

2) Also, are those enough monocot plants? I can easily obtain more cattails along the road side and more bamboo from Wal-Mart.

3) Finally, should I gather some cattail litter to place on the sand in the tub, or will the living plants produce enough of this as they go along?

This is my first attempt with Ultrics and Aldro, and I hope to make it a good one! ..with your help, that is.

Thanks in advance, gang.
By fattytuna
Posts:  749
Joined:  Sun Jan 22, 2012 4:00 am
To answer the microorganism question. You shouldn't need to do a lot to introduce them to the set up. I found heaps in a bin of rain water I keep, even though i didn't introduce any water to it (it all came from the sky). I have a thriving population of copepods in a small rice bowl where I grow my utricularia dichotoma ( i watered it with the rain water). Adding some pond water will certainly kickstart population in my opinion, but if your adding soils and plants, there should be some there already.

(i'm not sure about the rest of the questions to be honest)
Last edited by fattytuna on Wed Jul 10, 2013 7:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
By parker679
Posts:  1642
Joined:  Mon Mar 14, 2011 8:34 pm
I agree with fattytuna.

All of my trays outside are full of tiny copepods. If you're leaving this set-up outside it will get populated pretty quickly.

I would love to see pictures of your set-up so far, from what you're describing it sounds like it's going to be pretty cool.
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