Now that we have our deals on Tanks, Materials & Plants from Part 1, we can move onto substrates, woods, leaf litter & misting.
-Make your own- dried leaves, peat moss, charcoal, tree fern fiber & coco bark.
-buy from a supplier
It may be cheaper if only doing one tank to just buy how much you need from a supplier. However, if you can always buy all the ingredients then for the next tank you already have all you need.
-Find your own driftwood- make sure there were no pesticides used in that area. My husband and I tore out a bush last year and I left it lay out on the wood pile for many months then finally washed it off and put it in the oven & now it is in my latest tank as shown above.
If you are not in an area where you feel comfortable that there were no pesticides/ can’t control it then you may be best off buying them.
-I have had good luck at our local small aquarium shop. Here we buy the woods by pound and we can sort through lots of different selections to find the perfect wood for our tanks.
-Make friends with people who collect their own leaf litter and would send some to you.
-Gather your own leaf litter is obviously the cheapest, plus when you boil it before you bake it then you can use the water for tadpoles as tadpole tea!
-Gather leaf litter from friends and relatives!
-I have found that for a simple spray bottle the cost ranges from $5-$10, however if you go to Walmart in their Laundry section (By irons & ironing boards) they have a 16oz spray bottle for just $1!
-Save even more money by using tap water that has sat for a couple days instead of buying filtered water, distilled water or fancy RO systems.
Edit: It was brought to my attention by Charles Schurman that I have added anything about expos! I have never been to an expo so I cannot share any first hand experience, but I have heard of lots of people talking about the great deals they got at expos. I would definitely see if there are any expos in your area and check them out for plants & other stuff! The plants that they have at these expos would be used to high humidity terrariums. Thanks Charles for pointing that out!
Stay tuned for Frogging on a Budget (Part 3) where I will focus on frogs, bugs, lights & decor items!