Thinking about upgrading Chandler's cage to Bioactive


Chameleon Enthusiast
So looked up the basics for a bioactive enclosure and realized that I had one running ages ago when I was keeping all sorts of carnivorous plants. With the success of my enclosure build, I also realized it's almost perfectly setup to go bioactive easily, my drainage tray is deep enough to become the drainage layer and then it's an easy matter of converting the bottom 7 inches of his enclosure into a giant pot, which is easy. Also helps that my local pet store, Pisces Pet Emporium, has started to stock cleanup crew critters for making bioactive setups. Plan on adding live Sphagnum Moss, a few species of sundews and butterworts, Madagascar Jasmine, the two current pothos I have in there, a Cephalotus follicularis, a Nepenthes, a Sarracenia, and possibly a Darlingtonia. Thoughts?


Chameleon Enthusiast
My setup is 12" deep. No plants. Plenty of cleaner crews. No drainage (really i have to add a gallon of water per 4cuft of dirt per week to keep it from dusting). 4" of driveway gravel as the first layer for drainage and a biobed. "dirt" is peatmoss, topsoil, and peathumus.

most "easy" house plants will work out great. Ficus is another "hard mode" to keep alive. Long term i have only been able to keep pothos and dracaena alive and growing. I have 4-5 hibiscus, so those i pop in the tank for about 6 months before they start getting iffy, and then i rotate them out.


Chameleon Enthusiast
Also plan on adding an orchid and bromeliad. I actually had a full bioactive carnivorous plant terrarium in a 5 gallon fish tank with a few adaptations to it going for over 7 years, shut it down as the Sphagnum Moss started to take over lol.


Chameleon Enthusiast
Turns out I actually have enough materials from various projects over the years to convert it almost instantly. These will become the sides of the bioactive tray.


Chameleon Enthusiast
These are the plants I plan on adding to it, with pictures.

Cephalotus follicularis

Mimosa pudica,
I have a decent sized one already.






Chameleon Enthusiast

Madagascar Jasmine

And then my two massive pothos

Possibly a bromeliad, not sure yet though.


Chameleon Enthusiast
Nice, I'm still kicking around the idea of adding one of my Venus fly traps to my active bio setup. I figure it would just live off of some of my cleanup crew, or I'd feed it some dubia's as well


Chameleon Enthusiast
Basically my thought is that the pothos a tumbling vine plant, in combination with the flex vines I have, will grow in tandem with the Madagascar Jasmine, as climbing vine, the idea is that enclosure will essentially become a micro rainforest kinda ecosystem almost, and have a literal living wall of vegetation. The flowers of the Madagascar Jasmine, carnivorous plant, possible orchids, possible bromeliads, and the sensitive plant will add to the greenery as well as a splash of color and as an added benefit, the carnivorous plants should be alternated perfect natural pest control. I should say that this setup will be assembled by highly relying on my natural ability to make plants grow like weeds, doesn't seem to matter the type, and my knowledge on soil horizons and environment that I'm trying to replicate from my schooling in Archaeology and Geology. Honestly having a bit of knowledge in soil processes, soil formation, soil maturation and soil horizons makes setting up a bioactive setup easy, I find it relatively easy set up a biosphere, which is what a bioactive enclosure is basically.
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