Which plants would be suitable to include in a vivarium housing dart frogs?

With many amphibians, and particularly dart frogs, it is quite easy to create and maintain a naturalistic setting. Large-scale specialist planted vivaria of this type are popular in the Netherlands and Germany, although you can achieve a similar effect on a smaller scale using Hagen’s Exo-Terra enclosures. 

Obviously, you need to try to match the plants to the conditions in the vivarium, which in this case will be basically warm and humid. The lighting requirements of the plants are also important, because this type of enclosure will not be brightly-lit, mimicking the surrounding in the rain forest where these stunning frogs are to be found.

Strawberry dart frog on bromeliadIf you hope to breed your dart frogs, then you will need to include bromeliads in their vivarium. These plants are often epiphytes, growing off branches, and have a central cup where rainwater accumulates. The dart frogs deposit their tadpoles in this water. Choose relatively small bromeliads to include in the vivarium, and keep the central cup filled with dechlorinated water.

Other plants should be selected so they too will not rapidly outgrow the enclosure. They can be set in pots, rather than planted, with the pot itself being concealed by vivarium decor and moss. Be sure to remove dead leaves, before they start to become mouldy. Avoid using fertilisers for the plants in the vivarium too, as these can be harmful to the occupants by raising the level of nitrogen.