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Ask questions about how to grow and care for Venus Flytraps

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By Gravity is Real
Posts:  6
Joined:  Tue Oct 03, 2023 8:30 am
#440689
Around 2 weeks ago I repotted one on my venus flytraps in a potting mix for carnivorous plants that I found, however about 2 days after repotting around 25% of my plant died overnight and has been slowly blackening ever since. At the moment I'm left with almost half of what the plant was originally. I believe it's the soil, as I have read some mixed reviews about it , however i'm not sure and would like an opinion on what you think it is. I believe the plant is getting at least 5-6 hours of sunlight and I have been watering it daily with distilled water. While I don't think this is the main cause, when repotting it I accidentally triggered basically all of the traps, some of which started digesting on dirt, however they all have died by now. If it is the soil, then what should I replace it with?(Peat or Sphagnum-live or dead?) It's pretty hard to find anything good in Romania, but I have found a few options, one being this https://secretgarden.ro/products/5023-p ... 512a&_ss=r -This appears to be made by the same company that grew my flytrap and on the same site I bought the flytrap from, so it seems more likely to work
I have also found some black peat on the same website and I already have some perlite https://secretgarden.ro/products/turba- ... 4729&_ss=r
As for sphagnum, I only found some dehydrated packages for terrariums, idk if they're good or not
I would like some help quickly as I still need to order the soil and I'm not sure the flytrap will hold out until then
Attachments:
Flytrap a few days ago
Flytrap a few days ago
20231005_103417.jpg (2.74 MiB) Viewed 1650 times
Flytrap after repotting
Flytrap after repotting
20230923_181151.jpg (2.29 MiB) Viewed 1650 times
Soil description
Soil description
20231008_001858.jpg (2.71 MiB) Viewed 1650 times
Soil I used
Soil I used
20231008_001836.jpg (2.92 MiB) Viewed 1650 times
Flytrap at the moment-Currently nighttime
Flytrap at the moment-Currently nighttime
20231008_002050.jpg (2.69 MiB) Viewed 1650 times
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By ChefDean
Location: 
Posts:  9028
Joined:  Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:44 am
#440695
Well, sorry to say, but it looks like there's a few issues here.
First, triggering the traps is usually not an issue. Here, it might be, for the reasons below. It would only be a small contribution, but compounded with others, it all adds up.
Next, modern glass filters sunlight to the extent that a windowsill is insufficient for its light needs. Flytraps need direct, unfiltered sunlight or very strong artificial lighting. In fact, theyll get better light outside on a cloudy day than on a windowsill that gets twelve hours of sun. So your plant has slowly been dying, and the stress of a repot is exasperating that.
Last, that media looks to be strikes two, three, and four. Biohumus, green waste compost, and organic matter are all nutrient rich ingredients in a media that is being wrongly marketed as a good choice for plants that need a low to no nutrient media.
The dry sphagnum for terrariums might be the best choice as they're usually free of fertilizers, just make sure they're not dyed and you should be good.
I'd repot into sphagnum moss or a peat/perlite blend as quickly as possible.
By Gravity is Real
Posts:  6
Joined:  Tue Oct 03, 2023 8:30 am
#440696
Thank you very much for your help. I'll order some sphagnum asap then
As for the light, I have a grow light under which I'm growing a nepenthes, do you think that will be suficient?
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By ChefDean
Location: 
Posts:  9028
Joined:  Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:44 am
#440699
I'm no expert on artificial lighting, but from what I've gleaned from others, I'd definitely say that won't be enough for a VFT. Nepenthes are typically on the opposite end of the light needs scale from VFT's. More than a couple hours of direct sunlight for a Nep can burn them up.
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By MikeB
Location: 
Posts:  1829
Joined:  Sat Apr 25, 2020 4:13 pm
#440725
Gravity is Real wrote: Sat Oct 07, 2023 10:00 pm It's pretty hard to find anything good in Romania, but I have found a few options, one being this https://secretgarden.ro/products/5023-p ... 512a&_ss=r -This appears to be made by the same company that grew my flytrap and on the same site I bought the flytrap from, so it seems more likely to work
I translated the page and looked at the ingredient list:

Composition: Sphagnum peat, compost, calcium and nutrients, fertilizer.

Compost (decayed plant matter), calcium, "nutrients", fertilizer -- in carnivorous plant soil? I wouldn't trust this mix with my plants.
Gravity is Real wrote: I have also found some black peat on the same website and I already have some perlite https://secretgarden.ro/products/turba- ... 4729&_ss=r
Does this store sell blonde or white peat? This comes from the upper layers of the bog and is less decayed.
Gravity is Real wrote: As for sphagnum, I only found some dehydrated packages for terrariums, idk if they're good or not
Sphagnum moss is sold in a dry state (much lighter and cheaper to ship this way).
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By Gravity is Real
Posts:  6
Joined:  Tue Oct 03, 2023 8:30 am
#441174
ChefDean wrote: Sat Oct 07, 2023 10:34 pm Well, sorry to say, but it looks like there's a few issues here.
First, triggering the traps is usually not an issue. Here, it might be, for the reasons below. It would only be a small contribution, but compounded with others, it all adds up.
Next, modern glass filters sunlight to the extent that a windowsill is insufficient for its light needs. Flytraps need direct, unfiltered sunlight or very strong artificial lighting. In fact, theyll get better light outside on a cloudy day than on a windowsill that gets twelve hours of sun. So your plant has slowly been dying, and the stress of a repot is exasperating that.
Last, that media looks to be strikes two, three, and four. Biohumus, green waste compost, and organic matter are all nutrient rich ingredients in a media that is being wrongly marketed as a good choice for plants that need a low to no nutrient media.
The dry sphagnum for terrariums might be the best choice as they're usually free of fertilizers, just make sure they're not dyed and you should be good.
I'd repot into sphagnum moss or a peat/perlite blend as quickly as possible.
If you wouldn't mind, I would like your advice again
I have repotted the VF in some sphagnum, but it's still dying. I have brought the grow light to my windowsill in addition to the sun, and judging by my other trap, it appears to be at least "sufficient", as it's now growing normal traps and started growing leaves that are a bit smaller, but not enough for the traps to turn red.
Yet my plant is still dying, there are only about 3 half leaves still green. Idk if the plant didn't have enough energy left to establish its roots again or if I overwatered it. It took a while for me to tell how much water the sphagnum holds and I accidentally soaked it. I haven't watered the pot in a week and a half, hoping for it to dry. It's still kind of wet, but appears to be better. Could I have given it root or rhizome rot? I'm a bit hesitant to pull it out to check, as I'm afraid I will just finish it off.
What do you think is the problem, and if it's even worth it trying to save it or is it too late?
If it's necessary, I can pull it out and send a photo of the rhizome
Attachments:
Now
Now
WhatsApp Image 2023-10-21 at 11.16.32_9348e221.jpg (316.47 KiB) Viewed 1357 times
Now
Now
WhatsApp Image 2023-10-21 at 11.16.32_7544d774.jpg (292.47 KiB) Viewed 1357 times
Flytrap after repotting
Flytrap after repotting
WhatsApp Image 2023-10-21 at 11.26.37_29b2c679.jpg (370.98 KiB) Viewed 1357 times
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By ChefDean
Location: 
Posts:  9028
Joined:  Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:44 am
#441175
Notwithstanding that it is dealing with being repotted twice in a short period of time, I believe that your plant may be too far gone, but don't give up quite yet. The media it was in most certainly poisoned it with too many nutrients. That it was marketed as a carnivorous plant media was just wrong in my opinion. However, there is still a chance it can recover. Top water it to keep flushing it, and discard the water that drains out. Water again when the top feels dry, let it sit in the water to absorb as much as possible, then discard the water left over.
Next, as stated before, it is not getting enough light on a windowsill, even with the small light you pictured. It needs to be outside in direct sunlight, bright, indirect light at least. A windowsill is insufficient as modern glass, even in Romania, filters sunlight. I'm not sure of the weather in your area but, if it's staying above freezing, put it outside in bright, indirect light at least. Bright shade will still be better than that windowsill, and put that other flytrap outside as well.
If it's too cold, I'd try to get them to go dormant for the winter. I wouldn't put too much stock in that flytrap surviving, but I've been wrong before. However, if you want to keep that other flytrap for years, get it outside next spring or you'll likely lose it next year from insufficient light.
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By Gravity is Real
Posts:  6
Joined:  Tue Oct 03, 2023 8:30 am
#441239
ChefDean wrote: Sat Oct 21, 2023 10:36 am Notwithstanding that it is dealing with being repotted twice in a short period of time, I believe that your plant may be too far gone, but don't give up quite yet. The media it was in most certainly poisoned it with too many nutrients. That it was marketed as a carnivorous plant media was just wrong in my opinion. However, there is still a chance it can recover. Top water it to keep flushing it, and discard the water that drains out. Water again when the top feels dry, let it sit in the water to absorb as much as possible, then discard the water left over.
Next, as stated before, it is not getting enough light on a windowsill, even with the small light you pictured. It needs to be outside in direct sunlight, bright, indirect light at least. A windowsill is insufficient as modern glass, even in Romania, filters sunlight. I'm not sure of the weather in your area but, if it's staying above freezing, put it outside in bright, indirect light at least. Bright shade will still be better than that windowsill, and put that other flytrap outside as well.
If it's too cold, I'd try to get them to go dormant for the winter. I wouldn't put too much stock in that flytrap surviving, but I've been wrong before. However, if you want to keep that other flytrap for years, get it outside next spring or you'll likely lose it next year from insufficient light.
Well, the situation deteriorated quickly
I've tried putting it on my exterior ac unit during the day, then bringing it inside for a little more time under the light. I have been doing so for 2 days, and even after the first time outside, it's been dying way faster. Maybe it's shock, but there isn't really any time to accommodate it. It seems pretty hopeless, but I have an idea, maybe it will work, thought you can give me your opinion.
It's not yet freezing outside in my area, but I was thinking of putting it in the fridge, to try and force dormancy. Maybe that will stop the rhizome from dying and revive somewhere in the future. Do you think it will work? If so, should I put it with the whole pot or should I take out the plant along with the moss around it and put it in a bag?
Attachments:
WhatsApp Image 2023-10-23 at 19.04.04_94b217ce.jpg
WhatsApp Image 2023-10-23 at 19.04.04_94b217ce.jpg (390.57 KiB) Viewed 1258 times
WhatsApp Image 2023-10-23 at 19.04.03_1648cef9.jpg
WhatsApp Image 2023-10-23 at 19.04.03_1648cef9.jpg (295.55 KiB) Viewed 1258 times
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By ChefDean
Location: 
Posts:  9028
Joined:  Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:44 am
#441247
If you had repotted it, put it outside, and left it there, it would probably be past the worst of it and growing out of it. But, since you left it inside, it continued to decline. Then put it out, then in, then out, then in just further compounded the stress by making it try to adapt to two different environments.
You can try to force dormancy, but I would just leave it outside until the first frost and let it go dormant on its own terms. It's likely fruitless as it is already pretty far gone due to far from optimal conditions, but I'd try to mimic natural conditions as closely as possible to give it It's best chance at survival.
It's probably not going to survive, it just doesn't know it's dead yet.
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By Gravity is Real
Posts:  6
Joined:  Tue Oct 03, 2023 8:30 am
#441434
To anyone curious, unsurprisingly the flytrap didn't make it
It slowly lost all of its leaves until there wasn't anything sticking out of the soil anymore, so I made a last attempt. I took it out of its pot and put its roots in a plastic bag stuffed with sphagnum, with the rhizome exposed, as it was still green, so in my mind, still capable of photosynthesis, and taped it all to my exterior AC unit.
Unfortunately, it wasn't enough and a few days later the rhizome died
Attachments:
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WhatsApp Image 2023-10-29 at 13.45.02_208dae35.jpg (594.96 KiB) Viewed 1145 times
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