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Just got a venus Fly trap and I have a lot of questions

Posted: Thu Nov 26, 2020 8:18 am
by NewAtThis
As the subject line says, I just bought a venus Fly trap earlier today.

I've had venus flytraps before, but they all either died or they went dormant and I thought they had died.

But I decided to give it another go after spotting a healthy looking trap at my garden store. As you can see (hopefully) by the picture all the leaves are green on the outside and red on the inside. Very appropriate for the season.

Currently my Fly trap is on a table in my living room next to a vase of flowers. There is almost no light, except the glare from the light in my kitchen. It's still in its plastic box.

Normally I would wait three days to open it because of Covid, but I'm concerned that it will die if I leave it in the plastic enclosure or "death box" as I've seen some people call it especially without steady light and water.

But I'm not sure what I should do with it after removing the plastic. It isn't acclimated to the sun yet, so I don't want to leave it outside. But I have three curious cats that will nibble on it or knock it over if it's outside of its plastic enclosure.

I don't have a pot to transfer it into or distilled water on hand. The spot it's in right now exposes it to inconsistent artificial light but no direct sunlight. The temperature is too warm for it to enter dormancy. The humidity fluctuates day to day.

I feel like a terrible plant owner woefully unprepared to care for my new plant. I really want to keep it alive and healthy, but I'm not sure how much time I'll have tomorrow to do anything with it. So I guess I have a couple main questions: what do I do with it now and how long can it survive in its plastic enclosure without water? Also, how do I encourage dormancy in an environment where winters are not reliably cold? Greatly appreciate any tips and advice.

Re: Just got a venus Fly trap and I have a lot of questions

Posted: Thu Nov 26, 2020 9:17 am
by steve booth
In answer to your specific questions, it will be OK with reduced light for a couple of days, I'm not sure where in the world you are, but as you mention in the Northern Hemisphere they are entering a dormant period from now till March/April. Again a few days delay won't hurt, be sure to acclimate the plant to the cooler temperatures as its probably spent its whole life indoors, to make it grow for resale as fast as possible.
They do best out of doors, again I dont know what your winters are likely to be like so cant advise on whether it will need protection, but ideally, they need to be kept just damp during dormancy, in temperatures ideally 3-10C. Sounds like you know about using rain or distilled water.
How long it can be kept in the cube temporarily, depends on how dry the medium is at the moment, if its damp, again a couple of days shouldn't hurt.
Have a read of the fact sheets and growing instructions on this site it will give you all the info you need, but generally, light, temperatures and water are the main requirements to get right.
Good Luck

Re: Just got a venus Fly trap and I have a lot of questions

Posted: Thu Nov 26, 2020 10:04 pm
by Adelae
They ship them to the stores in the cubes and keep them in there until they sell them, so it should be fine in there for another few days.

If you're worried about putting it in outdoor light too quickly but the cats will eat in indoors, it might work to put it in a shady spot at first and gradually move it to places that get longer sun. That depends on how cold it is where you are, though; they can survive light freezes but in that little container you won't want temperatures going much below freezing at all. Mine have gone down to 25ish F but they were in a bigger pot that didn't freeze all the way through.

If it gets too cold where you are, there are some posts on here about keeping them in the fridge over winter. It also might be okay skipping one dormancy (just not a bunch of years in a row), but if you keep it inside longer-term you're going to need some kind of grow light for it.

Re: Just got a venus Fly trap and I have a lot of questions

Posted: Fri Nov 27, 2020 2:11 am
by Apollyon
I also wanted to chime in to say that the photo periods are more important to trigger dormancy than cold weather. My flytraps began going dormant when nights were still in the high 70s. It knows when to go dormant based off of the sun. I know how overwhelming it can be in the beginning and there is tons of conflicting information out there. I agree you should put it in a shady spot for a week and then gradually introduce it to more light. Beyond that, if the soil isn't completely dry Itll hold out a couple more days. Id definitely check some of the articles on the site or some forums to help "demystify" cps. Good luck