Isopod enclosures are a popular way to keep and care for live plants in a controlled environment. Isopods are also known as “pillbugs” or “sowbugs” and they are a type of crustacean that can live in varying types of habitats. They are also known for their ability to break down organic matter and convert it into nutrients that plants can absorb and thrive on.
Benefits of Keeping Live Plants in Isopod Enclosures:
Live plants offer a variety of benefits when kept in isopod enclosures. Firstly, they provide an aesthetic appeal to the enclosure. Plants come in different shapes, sizes, and colours, and can create beautiful backdrops for your display. Secondly, live plants can help maintain humidity levels in the enclosure as they release moisture into the air through transpiration and can reduce the need for regular misting. Thirdly, plants can be added to the enclosure as a food source for the isopods, which can help maintain their population and reduce the need for additional food sources.
Considerations before Keeping Live Plants in Isopod Enclosures:
Before adding live plants to your isopod enclosure, you should consider some important factors. Firstly, it’s important to select plants that are safe for both isopods and humans. Some plants are toxic to isopods and can harm or even kill them, and others can be harmful to humans if ingested. Therefore it is important to research the plants you intend to use and avoid those that are known to be toxic or harmful to animals or people. Secondly, it’s essential to ensure that the plants are compatible with the environmental conditions within the enclosure. Isopod enclosures usually operate under a specific set of conditions, including temperature, humidity, and lighting. Therefore it’s crucial to choose plants that thrive in similar conditions to your isopods. Finally, it's important to keep in mind that live plants require maintenance. They need to be watered, pruned, and monitored to ensure they stay healthy.
Choosing Plants for Isopod Enclosures:
When deciding which plants to add to your isopod enclosure, it’s important to select plants that are non-toxic, low maintenance, and that can withstand the conditions of the enclosure. Some popular options include:
- Spider Plants
Spider plants are a common houseplant and are popular for their unique appearance and low maintenance. They are non-toxic to animals and humans and are able to absorb a variety of pollutants from the air, including formaldehyde and benzene. Spider plants prefer indirect light, and moderate watering.
Pothos is another popular houseplant known for its ability to purify the air and remove toxins. It’s also non-toxic to animals and humans, making it a safe choice for your isopods. Pothos prefers low to moderate light, and soil that is kept consistently moist.
Ferns come in many different species but are generally known for their ability to thrive in humid environments. They can absorb pollutants from the air and are also non-toxic to animals and humans. Ferns prefer indirect light and soil that is consistently moist.
Maintaining Live Plants in Isopod Enclosures:
Once you have selected the appropriate plants for your isopod enclosure, it’s essential to maintain them properly to ensure their health and longevity. Regular watering is important, but care should be taken to avoid waterlogging the soil. Overwatering can cause root rot and can be harmful to the plants. Underwatering, on the other hand, can cause the plant to dry out and wither.
Pruning is also an essential aspect of plant maintenance. It’s important to keep plants in isopod enclosures trimmed to prevent them from growing out of control and to ensure that the isopods have adequate space to move around.
Keeping live plants in isopod enclosures can provide both practical and aesthetic benefits. However, it’s essential to select the appropriate plants that can thrive in the environmental conditions of the enclosure and that are safe for both isopods and humans. Proper maintenance and care are also crucial to ensure the health and longevity of the plants. With the right selection and ongoing maintenance, live plants can provide a beautiful and healthy environment for your isopods.