My name is Zach Goodnow, and I am the owner of Equatorial Ecosystems. We have been supplying the terrarium hobby with quality plants since 2011, and more recently, we have also begun to supply the houseplant market with rare aroids and other terrarium-suitable plants that can also double as quality houseplants.
I have been surrounded by plants and the biological sciences since birth. My father is a landscape architect who spent his career integrating native fauna and flora into people's backyards. My mother is a medical technologist, who uses laboratory analyses to help diagnose and treat diseases. Growing up, I was constantly exposed to native plants and wildlife in addition to Petri dishes and pipettes.
It's no surprise that I got a little from each of my parents and use it in my "real job" in addition to this, my side project. I earned degrees in both Natural Resource Ecology and Management with an emphasis in Wetland Ecology and in Civil Engineering. Currently, I work in a firm that uses structural coastal protection and restoration techniques to create more resilient coastal communities, but this is my "boring job"...at least to those of you who are coming here for the plants and animals.
I began growing orchids in 1998 and have had them in some capacity ever since. In 2010, while researching terrariums for growing species with more strict temperature and moisture requirements, I discovered that Dart Frogs were being kept in captivity. I got my first group of frogs in early 2011, a trio of Ranitomeya lamasi (at the time, now referred to as sirensis) 'Orange', and I haven't looked back since. I have kept numerous species of Dart Frogs since then and have expanded into numerous other taxa including geckos, anoles, turtles, tortoises, other frogs, and even a few snakes.
The fun of keeping all of these species, though, resides in providing them proper enclosures and designing them to be aesthetically pleasing. Plants will always be my favorite hobby, and I enjoy growing virtually any and all of them. My specialties include orchids, bromeliad species, aroids, various terrarium oddities, and now recently, succulents and arid caudiciforms.
What is Equatorial Ecosystems?
By definition, Equatorial means "of, at, or near the equator", and an Ecosystem is a specific community of species and their interactions with their physical environment: climate, soils, etc.
Over the years of being in various hobbies, I have sold under several names set up to suit any given hobby or target taxa, but my interests have become so diverse that I needed a sort of catch-all. I also wanted to tie the name back to my interest in science, so it eventually became a no-brainer. Creating a conducive, captive environment for species that originated almost universally in the tropics was the ultimate goal of my hobbies and my sales, so EquaEco was born.
Our mission is to provide the highest quality specimens to hobbyists around the country with competitive pricing to allow both the beginner and the seasoned veteran to enjoy. We strive to grow and produce quality stock in addition to acclimating new and rare species to introduce to the hobby.
We are always up to new projects and inventory will be constantly changing, so stop by often and check out what we have going on!