Taking a chance: Adding lianas to the background


Sometimes you have to take a chance. I wanted some realistic roots worked into the background (above water). But how to find nice pieces that will not rot too quickly?



Contestants for a wooden background above water

I have been looking at a lot of different types of wood to use in the background on land. The wood should not rot too quickly, so my first thought was to use driftwood, or rather the sinking type used in aquariums all over the world.

But it proved to be very hard to actually find pieces that look like roots. So I had to find another type of wood. But which?

Using Lianas

Then I stumbled upon pieces of liana. They look very much like roots, plus the fact they grow in the tropics should hopefully give them some resistance to rotting. It is taking a small risk: These vines will be glued onto the background, and have to sit in a very moist environment for years to come. But sometimes you need to take a little risk, right?

I was strengthened by the fact I saw several other paluariums and vivariums using the same lianas, like this very nice example from gifkikkerportaal.nl:

Nice view into a paludarium featuring the lianas I will be adding too - image by gifkikkerportaal.nl

Nice view into a paludarium featuring the lianas I will be adding too – image by gifkikkerportaal.nl

Here you see the exact same vines as I will be using. I cut small holes out of the styrofoam background and glued in the pieces of liana using silicone glue:

Lianas glued into the styrofoam background using silicone glue.

Lianas glued into the styrofoam background using silicone glue.

Now all I need to do is to add a layer of epoxy to the styrofoam and apply jungle dirt to it. Let’s hope these vines won’t rot.

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