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Ask questions about how to grow and care for Venus Flytraps

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By davinstewart
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Posts:  101
Joined:  Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:29 pm
#393617
Has anyone tried growing baby flytraps under 24 hour lighting?

I have a large number of baby flytraps from flower stalk cuttings this past spring and want to grow them out as quickly as possible.

I'm currently growing them under the following conditions:

Light: 20 DLI with 14 hour days
Air Temp: ~73F days / ~68F nights
Water: Distilled 2 ppm
Humidity: ~80%
Soil: 1 peat:1 perlite 6 inches total soil depth sitting in 1 inch water
Fertilizer: 100ppm maxsea applied with cotton swabs to foliage only once a month
Dormancy: Skipping dormancy for the first winter. Will resume dormancy from year 2 onward.

I could reduce the light intensity and extend the photoperiod to 24 hours (resulting in about 25 dli). I've heard that professional Sarracenia growers do this for their seedling and was wondering if this would be of any benefit for flytraps.

I'm also considering changing the soil to 1 sphagnum : 1 perlite and possibly implementing an ebb/flow watering system to eliminate the standing water.

Any advice or thoughts?
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By MaxVft
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#393619
I've been growing mine in 17h lighting (6AM to 11PM) but the only difference seems to be coloration... speed in growth hasn't seemed to change since my swap from 12 hour lighting.
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By Savethetrees4life
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Joined:  Thu Sep 09, 2021 10:26 pm
#393621
I’m trying 18h days just started 3 days ago. I’ve read of ppl doing it for 24 hours but they never mentioned how well it worked.
My thoughts are that like most other flora and fauna they need some hours of “sleep”
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By elaineo
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Joined:  Tue Jul 24, 2012 4:07 am
#393624
I get diminishing returns on flytraps for anything more than 16 hours of light per day. They turn red and don't really grow. Some dried out and died. I got the best results with my flytrap seedlings when I feed every mouth as soon as it opens. Results may vary depending on cultivar.
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By ChefDean
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#393635
Strikes from cuttings will grow faster than seed grown, but still need a couple of years or more to fully grow. Seed grown will usually take longer than that.
That being said, the fastest I've seen a VFT grow is just under 18 months from a seed to flowering. I have only had that once, every other VFT seed of mine has taken at least three years to get to the flowering stage.
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By MaxVft
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#393729
Huntsmanshorn wrote: Sun Nov 28, 2021 5:00 am The best way to get quick growth I have found is to feed them as frequently as possible. Really makes a big difference.
Trust me, I have yet to find small enough tweezers to feed the still-too-big dried bloodworms to them. I think it'll be worth waiting the extra year waiting to feed them :D
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By elaineo
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#393730
MaxVft wrote: Trust me, I have yet to find small enough tweezers to feed the still-too-big dried bloodworms to them. I think it'll be worth waiting the extra year waiting to feed them :D
You can do it! I just fed a batch of seedlings that germinated only a month ago.

Crumple the bloodworms into powder, then soak in water or maxsea until you get a goopy glop. Use a needle or a toothpick to put a tiny drop in each mouth.
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By Huntsmanshorn
Posts:  669
Joined:  Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:32 am
#393731
MaxVft wrote: Trust me, I have yet to find small enough tweezers to feed the still-too-big dried bloodworms to them. I think it'll be worth waiting the extra year waiting to feed them :D
Springtails work magic, it's almost like they were made to feed the little traps, or perhaps, the traps were made to feed on them and when the flytraps are a little larger the "dreaded" fungus gnat is the perfect size.
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By davinstewart
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Posts:  101
Joined:  Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:29 pm
#393737
Huntsmanshorn wrote:Springtails work magic, it's almost like they were made to feed the little traps, or perhaps, the traps were made to feed on them and when the flytraps are a little larger the "dreaded" fungus gnat is the perfect size.
Sounds good ... but where do you get them and how do you guide them into the tiny, tiny traps?
By davinstewart
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Posts:  101
Joined:  Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:29 pm
#393738
elaineo wrote:You can do it! I just fed a batch of seedlings that germinated only a month ago.

Crumple the bloodworms into powder, then soak in water or maxsea until you get a goopy glop. Use a needle or a toothpick to put a tiny drop in each mouth.
I like the bloodworm approach but don't the traps need more stimulus to close completely and digest properly? I would normally come back every 5-10 minutes and stimulate the traps by hand but they're pretty delicate and that's a LOT of baby traps.

What has worked for you in the past?
By Huntsmanshorn
Posts:  669
Joined:  Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:32 am
#393739
davinstewart wrote: Mon Nov 29, 2021 3:01 am Sounds good ... but where do you get them and how do you guide them into the tiny, tiny traps?
Well, I've never had a problem getting them, they just pop up in the pots on their own, and they really seem to like crawling into the traps all by themselves, no help needed.
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By elaineo
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#393740
davinstewart wrote: I like the bloodworm approach but don't the traps need more stimulus to close completely and digest properly? I would normally come back every 5-10 minutes and stimulate the traps by hand but they're pretty delicate and that's a LOT of baby traps.

What has worked for you in the past?
I don't do anything after dropping the food :? Sometimes the traps pop open after a few hours, but most of the time they stay closed and digest the food without further stimulation.

My theory is that flytraps can seal and digest prey in response to chemical stimulus instead of mechanical stimulation. I don't have any scientific evidence or anything; it's just what I have observed. Sundews curl around dead bloodworms without any other stimulation, so something else must be triggering digestion for these plants.
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By MaxVft
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Joined:  Sat May 08, 2021 4:17 am
#393745
I agree with @elaineo on this, as Charles Darwin himself has said, the plants (specifically dews and flytraps) rely more on the chemicals (nitrogen) than actual stimulus in order to digest the food properly.
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By davinstewart
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Posts:  101
Joined:  Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:29 pm
#393896
Ok, I tried feeding the babies with mushed up bloodworm and it worked! The vast majority sealed properly and are now digesting. Thank you for the advice!

Now I just have to figure out a way to feed several thousand tiny, tiny traps every couple of weeks without driving myself insane. Good times!

On an completely unrelated note, I'm also experimenting with foliar feeding baby venus flytraps with dilute maxsea applied with a cotton swab which can be completed in roughly 1/1000th of the time.
elaineo liked this
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