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Discussion Starter · #161 ·
So cool news. Sort of. I have a job! Hah. I'm back with my former/current employer, the ones that let me go. I start back there the week after next in a new role. 2 days before my employment would have formally ended. I'm not very optimistic about long term stability there, BUT this gives me the financial security to continue moving forward as planned, to not have to move out of our apartment, to just keep on like nothing happened and I just got a 3mo vacation. Hopefully it'll last until I can grow this large enough to replace that job.

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Discussion Starter · #162 ·
M. umbrosum is moving into multiplication medium now that I'm finally satisfied that it is fully established and sterile. So it looks like giant baby tears will be #2 in my species list. Killed all the flame moss. Too much peroxide apparently. Hah. Will have to order more and try again. Christmas moss did not fare well either. Luckily I have that growing in my own tanks to try again for free. I regretfully had to just drop another chunk of change on a replacement heating element for my tool steralizer. I bought it used on eBay. When it came in, the ceramic was already old, breaking apart. Pieces falling out. It lasted me a few months of regular use, and considering I bought it for like 90% off face value, I can't complain. Luckily it still works on low. That just means it takes longer to heat up, and to actually steralize. It won't run on high at all. I don't know how much more life it has in it. Hopefully the new one comes soon and this element keeps running until it arrives. Kinda wish I'd splurged on a bead steralizer now, but oh well.


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Discussion Starter · #163 ·
So. First week almost done... It's a pretty cool gig.

I'm working maintaining the largest RODI system I've ever seen. It'll handle about 1.5-2m gallons per day. There's half a dozen activated carbon filters in it... With 10k lbs of carbon in each one. The inlet and outlet lines for the RODI racks are 4". Our UV system? Is thousands of watts. Banks of Chambers with 40x 4' bulbs in them. Numerous Multimedia and polishing Chambers with 35k gal capacity, resin beds that are the same size. Its pretty crazy. Here is am used to working on a system for less than a hundred gallons of water total volume recirculating at home. Now I'm dealing with 6k gal per minute. And then treating the crazy waste streams that come out of the facility at the same volume. It's pretty wild (and giving me ideas for better filtration on my tank project I'm also drafting up currently haha).


Could have found a far worse position, that's for sure. at least this is enjoyable while I continue to move forward with my own work.


Oh and the ceramic steralizer still hasn't arrived. So much for 2d shipping.

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So cool news. Sort of. I have a job! Hah. I'm back with my former/current employer, the ones that let me go. I start back there the week after next in a new role. 2 days before my employment would have formally ended. I'm not very optimistic about long term stability there, BUT this gives me the financial security to continue moving forward as planned, to not have to move out of our apartment, to just keep on like nothing happened and I just got a 3mo vacation. Hopefully it'll last until I can grow this large enough to replace that job.

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oh shoot i didnt see this

im late!

CONGRATS!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #165 ·
Thanks man. I started Tuesday. The *day* before I no longer would have still been considered an employee and my severance check issued. Came just in time. I was dreading trying to move all my plants and tanks in December.

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Discussion Starter · #167 ·
Have you had any success with mosses?
Sorry for falling out of this. Last fall was pretty crap. And TBH I almost abandoned it all. But I didn't.

To answer your question... No. I am killing mosses. Lots of mosses. I'm gonna get in down eventually. I got some journal articles from a friend with university access on media for mosses ... Will try some new formulations next time I get more moss to work with.

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Discussion Starter · #168 ·
These past few months have been up and down. But I've slowly moved forward day by day.


In the last month I have gone from 2 species to 13 solidly established and multiplying. I have 2 others that are fighting to hang in while I clean them up (Iguazu 2009, and Elatine hydropiper). I've also killed 3x Cryptocoryne x timahensis... So that's not so great. But the fact that the rest of my plants are doing so well makes up for it.

I'm going to be moving my lab in the spring into my mother's old commercial bakery that she retired from and closed. It has far more space that I need, a 50 amp breaker vs the 15 amp breaker I'm working off of right now. And it makes room for the nursery (assuming we're still living here in October when the baby is due). Very exciting to be looking forward to not only winter being over, but moving into a drastically more appropriate work space. I'll be able to set up my barnstead still to make water (grade 2 water distillation, that automatically runs and fills the ~20 gallon glass carboy... So no more hooking my little RO system up to the kitchen sink to make 2.5 gallons at a time). I'll have the electric to run both my 14qt pressure cookers at once to make 7 liters of media at a time. I'll be able to have room to set up a full rack for each species, rather than one shelf for each, which will allow me to maintain not only more of my large multiplication containers but also produce far more sale size cups to support wholesale operations.

That is the direction I decided to go with this all. I don't have the time, experience, or desire to develop ads, place ads, drive sales, maintain a website + online store, do customer service, handle people who want refunds because they ordered something and then were gone for the weekend it arrived and it baked/froze on their porch and they want their money back. No... I don't ever want to go back to customer service. I'll keep the stuff up on ebag and Amazon for now. But my plan is to focus on wholesale operations. Find a few (my goal for 2019 is 4 or 5) customers buying a decent quantity of plants from me each month. Websites, brick and mortar stores... Work directly with business people rather than the general public. Sell to the people who already have the whole customer service end of it down, rather than trying to compete for market share with no experience.


Things are finally clicking into place.

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These past few months have been up and down. But I've slowly moved forward day by day.

In the last month I have gone from 2 species to 13 solidly established and multiplying. I have 2 others that are fighting to hang in while I clean them up (Iguazu 2009, and Elatine hydropiper). I've also killed 3x Cryptocoryne x timahensis... So that's not so great. But the fact that the rest of my plants are doing so well makes up for it.

I'm going to be moving my lab in the spring into my mother's old commercial bakery that she retired from and closed. It has far more space that I need, a 50 amp breaker vs the 15 amp breaker I'm working off of right now. And it makes room for the nursery (assuming we're still living here in October when the baby is due). Very exciting to be looking forward to not only winter being over, but moving into a drastically more appropriate work space. I'll be able to set up my barnstead still to make water (grade 2 water distillation, that automatically runs and fills the ~20 gallon glass carboy... So no more hooking my little RO system up to the kitchen sink to make 2.5 gallons at a time). I'll have the electric to run both my 14qt pressure cookers at once to make 7 liters of media at a time. I'll be able to have room to set up a full rack for each species, rather than one shelf for each, which will allow me to maintain not only more of my large multiplication containers but also produce far more sale size cups to support wholesale operations.

That is the direction I decided to go with this all. I don't have the time, experience, or desire to develop ads, place ads, drive sales, maintain a website + online store, do customer service, handle people who want refunds because they ordered something and then were gone for the weekend it arrived and it baked/froze on their porch and they want their money back. No... I don't ever want to go back to customer service. I'll keep the stuff up on ebag and Amazon for now. But my plan is to focus on wholesale operations. Find a few (my goal for 2019 is 4 or 5) customers buying a decent quantity of plants from me each month. Websites, brick and mortar stores... Work directly with business people rather than the general public. Sell to the people who already have the whole customer service end of it down, rather than trying to compete for market share with no experience.

Things are finally clicking into place.

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This write up was beautiful just saying.... lol.

Wish the best of luck to you like always, seems even if things are growing slowly, they are indeed growing ;) !!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #171 ·
Echinodorus 'Iguazu 2009' has, so far, made it through the worst. Steralizing (left) took much of the plant along with the bacteria and fungus, but the center remained healthy and alive (center) and is starting to come back around (right).

With continued care, it should be multiplied and ready to ship to retailers later this year.


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I hear the FDA was playing with irradiating vegetable to kill off e-coli. It's successful but people are too freaked out to eat them. Right now they're using high power RF(radio frequency) to kill off contaminants but not sure how successful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #175 ·
I hear the FDA was playing with irradiating vegetable to kill off e-coli. It's successful but people are too freaked out to eat them. Right now they're using high power RF(radio frequency) to kill off contaminants but not sure how successful.
The level of radiation to steralize for tissue culture would cause mutations in, or kill the plants. Anything that comes from a non sterile environment needs to be cleaned up completely. It's why establishing is so hard. I've seen that ozone used on terrestrial plants, but lack the capability to generate ozone in my setup so I've stuck to the more traditional chemicals and meds used. Can't leave any bacteria, or any fungus. Even species that might have a nice symbiosis in nature can rapidly overtake the plants in culture because they are in a sugar media, at 75 degrees, in almost 100% humidity in those containers. Plants grow but the contaminants grow faster.

I *do* want to get into mutation breeding eventually, but will probably do chemical mutagens. Having radioactive sources on site requires permits and such to run the equipment. Extra OSHA training for future employees. Etc etc etc. Also hoping to get going with some of what I studied in my undergrad and do actual genetic modification. Protoplast fusion, CRISPR, agrobacterium mediated transformations.. putting new genes into plants and combining plants that could never otherwise hybridize. That's a 2020 goal, to start protoplast fusion.

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Discussion Starter · #176 ·
I googled it, and I understand why you are growing these. One place wanted $100 for one!! They are very attractive plants.
I paid that for this one. And my big one I paid about 75 for (bought the little one first). They're very hard to find

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Discussion Starter · #178 ·
How effective is good ol' UV sterilization? No need for a radioactive permit :)
For hard surface sterilization, like the inside of the laminar cabinet, effective. For tissue, not. Fungus can be living with hyphae inside the plant. Bacteria living in pores on the leaves and in the little spaces like where roots and stems join together and light can't get in. That's why you need chemical soaks

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Discussion Starter · #179 ·
Calling them sterile isn't an exaggeration. All external and internal (endogenous) contamination has to be killed so you only have plant tissue. So they're washed with things like bleach, isopropyl alcohol, potassium permanganate, and peroxide. Then grown in media containing chemicals that inhibit infections, both bacterial and fungal, sometimes even being made with antibiotics like your or I would take (rarely, they're a less desirable route, but it can be done). Goal is to kill em all. Light and radiation simply can't give that level of clean

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