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Winter Orchid Growing Set-Up: Grow Tanks

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J.Green17

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Hello ST community! In my first ever post I mentioned the idea of creating an orchidarium (later realizing I actually meant a simple grow tank). And wanted to share my very simple set up with everyone and to see if anyone had any suggestions or thoughts! Living in upstate NY and in an apt that receives very little sunlight, especially in the winter can make things a little tricky! So here is my temporary solution! Here are two 20 gallon vivariums with a pebble "false bottom" where I keep reservoir of distilled water. I have sphagnum moss, club moss, a Hoya (in less than desirable growing conditions), some Spanish moss and a tillandsia. Both grow tanks have a computer fan running in them to help with air circulation and a grow light for each one.

RH- 60-80%
Temp- 70-75ish

Currently struggling to come up with ideas to increase temps. The tanks have plastic bottoms so I do not want to use a heating pad under them just in case. I tried sticking a heating pad on the side of the tank- but created very little difference.

Paph tank- Sanderianum, Liemianum, Rothschildianum, Maudiae (Using an average bulb grow light)
"High light" tank" Dendrobium Gatton Sunray, Dendrobium Victoria Reginae (shaded above to avoid sunburn) Cattleya Dowiana (doing GREAT in this setup so far! [so relieved- hopefully will be able to get it to bloom in the next year or years] putting out many new roots, a little late in the season but due to transport and repotting setback), and a Neofinetia Falcata (shaded by dendrobium) (Using a mars hydro ts600, Mars hydro also overlaps into the paph tank)

All the plants have been growing in the tank set up for about 3 months
 

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eds

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To increase the temperatures, can you put a bit more water in and a small immersible aquarium heater in? There are some micro ones that will sit in a couple of inches of water with preset temperature to 25oC.
 

J.Green17

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To increase the temperatures, can you put a bit more water in and a small immersible aquarium heater in? There are some micro ones that will sit in a couple of inches of water with preset temperature to 25oC.
Ouuu thats a great idea!! I will have to do some research on aquarium heaters!!! I believe I even have one from way back when! Thank you!
 

TropiCool

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I have used heatpads (designed for placing on greenhouse benches) under my plastic grow boxes for many years. No problems at all. You can use in combination with a thermostat, normally supplied separately.
 

NYEric

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Just a warning, I steamed a large number of Pleurothalids to death in a closed tank system, the light and extra humidity was good, until it wasn't.
 

J.Green17

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I have used heatpads (designed for placing on greenhouse benches) under my plastic grow boxes for many years. No problems at all. You can use in combination with a thermostat, normally supplied separately.
Good to know! Sometimes I can just be a huge worry wart!
 

J.Green17

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Just a warning, I steamed a large number of Pleurothalids to death in a closed tank system, the light and extra humidity was good, until it wasn't.
Was it with a heater? Or just in an enclosed system? Thats definitely something to be on the look out for! Thank you!!!!
 

J.Green17

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No heater, lights and too much humidity. It would have been fine if I had egg crate on the top.
Noted! I will make sure to have adequate ventilation!! Thank your for sharing your experiences with grow tanks!!
 
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