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A trough... Garden?

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Lately I have been considering getting a trough about 1 meter in length and 50 centimeters in width and making a mini bog out of it. I'll decorate it with different rocks, wood, etc. There will be a part consisting completely of pure sphagnum, and a part consisting of peat. Due to the different consistencies, they should not mix together.

In the pure sphagnum, I will plant some Darlingtonias , perhaps some S. Purpureas (they have the tendency to grow in sphagnum as well).

In the peat, I will plant some Dionaeas, temperate pings, and perhaps some D. Rotundifolias.

Obtaining the appropriate amount of sphagnum will not be a problem since it grows in my yard (I live at the base of a mountain with very acidic soil and like 60 % of it is peat bogs).

I will make a row of relatively small holes at the level that I want the water to be. I will water it daily and the excess water will drain from the holes until it is at the level I want it to be (the level the holes are).

It would take 2-3 people to move it inside during winter and outside during summer, but since I am growing my plants in the same conditions, they are all used to the same dormancy period.

Do you think this would be possible? Would the sphagnum and the peat mix? What do you think could go wrong?

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It is impossible for me to have Sphagnum growing outside without a wire cage over it.. In spring the Blackbirds would strip every last strand.

As you have a plentiful natural supply around you. you hopefully won't have that problem.

The trough seems a good size to have a very good display, good luclk

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A couple of things:

Rocks - ensure they are of a type that will not dissolve.

Maybe think about a capped drain hole at the bottom if possible. Just in case you want to drain the whole thing out to make it lighter for moving or if an animal has a pee in it and you need to wash it through. Most of the time you would keep the hole blocked off.

I have found that a thick deep strip of sand is a good boundary to help keep the sphagnum from encroaching. You could use anything like gravel etc just make sure it is washed thoroughly first.

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Hello, thanks for the tips.

The watering is vague to me, though. Do any of you have any suggestions on the easiest system to water a said mini bog?

Edited by Random

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For 1m x 0.5m, why not just pour a watering can full of rain water into the sphagnum when it looks thirsty?

Do you mean some kind of automatic watering system?

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Nope. I just need a way to maintain the water level in the bog.

What I am hoping to achieve with it is to mimic as perfectly as possible the plants' natural habitat, since I find the diversity and peculiar shapes a lot more fascinating than plain old boring pots. I just want to maintain one water level, not just pour some water on the sphagnum and hope for the best.

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You could rig up a water resevoir and try one of these float valves which I have found useful in the past. It will look after the water level for you, but check on it every now and then, I have had one block and stop the water flow once, but fortunately I noticed before any damage was done.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/181133302737?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649#ht_1180wt_721

I do hope I haven't contreveined any rules by putting that link in, if I have I apologise and ask the mods to change or remove it.

It will keep your water level constant, although you will find that the water levels in the field, do change with rainfall, droughts etc so by maintaining a constant level you arent actually mimicing nature.

Cheers

Steve

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Hey, thanks for the link, I might find it useful.

What I meant was to mimic it visually. I want to recreate the interesting shapes that form in the natural habitat. Perhaps I might do it in a bigger trough (1m x 2m), I'm not sure yet.

If I ever get to doing it, it will be later in the summer.

If anybody else has any advice, feel free to add something.

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I have an old bath tub (was a horse trough) as a bog garden, I used the first 20cm as sand, then peat/sand for the rest, but one end has more sand for drosera, dionaea, byblis and utrics, then the other end has more peat for sarra's and other utrics.

I then sunk it half into the ground and rocked around it, then I used left over peat/sand to put over the rocks and planted some ferns there, this way the soil can cool sufficiently (as i'm in northern Aust), I also have a couple U.Gibba in the sarra end as they grow well as aquatics or emergents, as for wateriung in summer, rain, in winter however I get my little brother to water it once a week (as I made it at dads becuase I rent whilst at uni), so far so good.

I also put my cephalotus in a pot (30cm tall) and sunk the pot half into the bog, so far they seem happy there.

As for darlingtonia, I thought they preffered flowing water?, although as your in a cool climate perhaps you have countered the root:heat problem.

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