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Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 9:44 am
by JenStone
Thanks for accepting me into the forum.

I live in Ludlow, England, and although a big lover of plants I know very little about the carnivorous ones.
I’ve recently purchased few for my kitchen window (indoors) from the garden centre:
Nepenthe x ventrata
Sarracenia - (small pitchers)
Drosera capensis

I’ve been keeping their pot trays in water, filled from the water butt.
The ambient temperature is in the 20’s c (70’s Fahrenheit) and it gets the morning sun.

I just wanted some help to make sure that I’m caring for them correctly.

The one that appears to be struggling is the Drosera. There has been a lot of dieback underneath the plant and there was white flecks on the plant, leading me to suspect aphids, and I treated this by immersing the plant in water for 48 hours and now it’s back on the window. It just doesn’t seam happy, so all advice is appreciated, I’ll try to attach a photo.

Also, the Dionaea has gone into flower, do I allow this or should I remote it?

Many thanks. Jenny :D

Re: Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:35 am
by toiletshorts
Hi Jenny!

I'm in Manchester :) small world!

I don't have any pitcher plants, but i do have a venus fly trap and a capensis too.

I'd say it's time to repot the drosera? get rid of dead leaves etc in the process as well. if you've bought them from the garden centre, make sure they've used the correct soil. i bought my vft from b&q and they used the completely wrong soil, watered with the wrong water, and the pot was way too small.

ideally, you'd want to use a nutrient free soil or sphagnum peat moss. both of which i've bought on amazon uk. i can give you links if you want. water only with distilled water/rain water - i used deionised water from halfords. and plant in a 6 inch deep pot because these babies have deep roots. i'd say use a plastic pot as ceramic tends to leak nutrients back into the soil and damage the plant.

the aphids seem to like my plants too :( i used a neem oil mixture (again, bought it off amazon).

Also, i expect people might tell you to put them outside if possible :) but i don't have pitcher plants so i don't know how to care for them. my capensis sits outside mostly. i had her on the window sill in the bathroom as it is nice and humid and sunny in there, but i've moved her outside. she seemed fine with both locations :)

Re: Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:46 am
by JenStone
Hi Toiletshorts.
Thanks for replying.
I will get the necessary pot and compost and pot it on. I have contemplated whether it should be outside or not, I’ve not found a definitive answer thus far.
I’ll keep my eye on it.

Do you have any other tips for me?

I haven’t wintered any carnivorous plants yet so I’m expecting a challenge there, especially as my house has fairly consistent temperatures.

Kind regards

Re: Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 8:22 am
by toiletshorts
Hi Jenny

I'd say if you have a venus flytrap, it should stay outside. They need the direct sun and will benefit from being outdoors even though it's hella cloudy in england, they still benefit from it. They also go into hibernation so they need to be outdoors to feel the change in seasons. I'd say keep them covered if it gets frosty in the depths of winter, just make sure their roots don't freeze. my vft hasn't experienced winter yet, just got him this year in spring, so i don't really know what the best course of action is for hibernating carnivorous plants.

For sundews, mine is alright both outside and in, but she needs a sunny window if she's indoors. The rain washes away her dew but that's not a concern cos it comes back almost immediately. I think the best principle to keep in mind here is that these plants live outdoors in their natural habitat and rain is never bad for plants as long as we give them the correct growing conditions i.e. good draining, balanced with good water retaining compost, etc. and they'll catch loads of bugs naturally if they're outdoors too. Capensis don't need to go into hibernation, so consistent temperatures are probably good for them. Capensis are very hardy.

I have no idea about pitcher plants, though. I've seen quite a big one on sale at Affleck's palace in manchester and it's indoors, hung from a ceiling, gets no natural light, and i want to rescue it so badly but i have to read up on caring for it first and find a place for it since i live in an awkward rented property and hanging stuff requires a bit of engineering and less drilling into walls :'D wowza that was a long sentence haha

Keep us updated on your progress with your plants :D and pop by B&Q if you want to rescue a venus flytrap to add to your collection ;)

Re: Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:17 am
by JenStone
Thanks. So should the vfp be permanently outside?
Ive attached a picture so you can see if it needs repotting or anything else....
I’m unsure whether to let it flower, like it’s doing at the minute. I know in the gardening world that flowered are often removed as they take energy away from the plant.

I’ll make a new post re for care for the Nepenthe and Sarrancnia so I can make sure they’re getting the best care.
I’ll keep my eye out in b and q :P

Re: Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 11:39 am
by toiletshorts
ooh wow that's a long stalk :D

vft looks fine, i'd say keep that baby outside. otherwise, get grow lights if you want it inside (but the sun is free!). hmm, i'd say the flower is probably too long now to cut (i.e. it is kinda too late now but they tend to reabsorb energy from the flower afterwards anyway so it should be ok).

Yes it needs repotting into a pot that's at least 6 inches deep. Preferrably plastic? I found some at B&Q, otherwise amazon will have some. Don't use black pots, they retain heat (although i doubt the UK is gonna get much heat now haha).

Now here's where i'm too much of a newbie to give advice...
The vfts are now in the middle of their growing season. I've read it's not a good time to repot them, especially yours because it's flowering. It may not survive the shock of the repotting, especially if you're having to wash the roots of the soil that it's planted in now. Though i think it might be alright if you plop the whole plant including the soil around the root ball into the new soil so that it won't suffer too much shock.

My advice would be to make a new post over on the "VFT Care Questions" page venus-fly-trap-questions.html and more expert people can give their advice :) I got lots of help with my vft there.

Re: Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:31 am
by JenStone
Thank you so much. I will post on the care pages for each of the plants and gather some advice. I really appreciate you getting me started here in the forum :D

Re: Hello from Middle England.

Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:29 am
by toiletshorts
awh, it's no biggie! :D just glad to find another friendly cp enthusiast :)