Plants that tolerate cooler temperatures?

gratts

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Does anybody know of any "tropical" plants that can tolerate cooler temperatures, say ~15C?
Reason I ask is that I'm quite interested in growing plants emersed, for some reason! :rolleyes:
There's an empty cold frame in the garden that I want to change into an emersed plant rig, and ideally I'd like to start it in the spring, once it's warmed up a bit, but obviously I'd be limited more than in the (hopefully) warmer summer.

Cheers.
 

Ed Seeley

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I think you'll find a sunny cold frame will be much warmer than that in summer. I have a quarantine pond in one of my greenhouses that has lots of insulation on and the temperature is around 20 degrees centrigrade now. The heaters turn off at 16 so the extra is just good insulation and sunlight! You might have more problems with temperature fluctuations rather than low temps. From May onwards you should certainly be fine keeping tropical plants in there.
 

gratts

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Cheers Ed
Yeah I know it will be fine during the summer months, I'm just eager/impatient and wondered if any could tolerate cooler temperatures so I could get them out there April-ish.
I might DIY some sort of polystyrene insulation on the inside to stop temperature dropping too much. We'll see how it goes!
 

Ed Seeley

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gratts said:
Cheers Ed
Yeah I know it will be fine during the summer months, I'm just eager/impatient and wondered if any could tolerate cooler temperatures so I could get them out there April-ish.
I might DIY some sort of polystyrene insulation on the inside to stop temperature dropping too much. We'll see how it goes!
Polystyrene's ok, but if you can get hold of some Kingspan foam insulation with reflective lining then you'll up the light levels from the reflective surface as well as much better insulation. You might also need to bubblewrap the glass and add a heater if you can? This would enable you to put plants in now if you wanted.

My point about the summer was that I think you may need to think about shading it rather than it being warm enough!!!
 

gratts

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Yeah true. I'll wack a thermometer in and see how we go.
What's the theory behind the bubblewrapping?
What sort of heater did you have in mind?

Cheers
 

vauxhallmark

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I think nearly all the plants we keep in our aquaria can tolerate much lower temperatures than the 24/25 degrees we usually run our tanks at. I keep some spare tanks (admittedly inside) for growing out , and keeping a small stock of plants I don't want in the main tank at that time, and I never heat them. They're in a centrally heated house, but the heating only comes on twice a day, and the temperature over this winter just gone was below the scale of my stick on thermometer, so I think that's below 16 degrees. if I'm just keeping plants without animals I usually just have a powerhead, light, and yeast CO2 - the plants seem to grow just as fast as the plants in my heated tanks.

Basically, as long as you don't put your whole stock of any one species in the cold frame, just try them all! As long as you've got a little bit inside still you can always grow your stocks back up if any don't make it. Let us know how they get on!

Mark
 

Ed Seeley

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gratts said:
Yeah true. I'll wack a thermometer in and see how we go.
What's the theory behind the bubblewrapping?
What sort of heater did you have in mind?

Cheers
Bubblewrap will insulate the top glass rather than just sides without blocking light.

As for the heater you might be best with a heat-mat or propagator that has a thermostat so you don't boil them, but it'd mean having power in there.
 
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