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By Fishkeeper
Posts:  828
Joined:  Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:59 pm
(I promise it looks better in person- it's difficult to photograph nicely. I'll take it outside sooner or later and try for some better pics in the sun.)

The terrarium is from UrbanBornShop on Etsy, though they seem to have discontinued this particular style. Everything is planted in a plastic cereal bowl that I cracked while drilling and superglued back together, and what looks like a layer of peat in the bottom of the terrarium is actually about half an inch of peat soup that the bowl is sat in to keep it wet. If this setup does well, I'm going to try to grow some terrestrial bladderworts down there, since they should like the fluctuating water level.
There is a fair bit of perlite mixed into the media, I just put a thin dressing of pure peat on top because I think it looks better that way. The pinguicula is surrounded in essentially pure crushed lava rock to hopefully keep it a bit less soggy.
I need to go in there with some tweezers and pull all the dirt and perlite off that sundew, I think.

I've only had this up for a week, but it's looking good so far. My main point of excitement is that the light I'm using, a cheap little dual-headed LED plant light I picked up from Amazon, is actually too bright when only a couple inches above the plants. It scorched the Cape sundew leaves a little, and has the D. spatulata under it forming the start of a hibernaculum.
Exciting, because I had thought that it wouldn't be bright enough, and that I would have to add the other head of the light. Also because I suspect that, if it's too bright for D. spatulata, it might be bright enough for a flytrap placed directly under it. I've moved the light up about an inch, and if that doesn't do the trick, I'll tinker with how to dim it a little more.

Plants are D. capensis "Bainskloof", D. capensis "Alba", D. spatulata var. gympiensis, D. spatulata 'Fraser Island', U. sandersonii "Typical", and Ping. moctezumae. All from, which I highly recommend- excellent customer service, excellent plants.

I also have some assorted sundew seeds started off recently. In a year or so, when they're at a good size, I might add a couple into here. Assuming this isn't a tangled mess already. I probably should have put the white sundew further towards the center- it's gonna hit the wall when it starts growing. Ah well.
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By DragonsEye
Posts:  1343
Joined:  Sat Oct 01, 2016 1:22 pm
Fishkeeper wrote: Sun Jan 07, 2024 2:34 am I need to go in there with some tweezers and pull all the dirt and perlite off that sundew, I think.
Having some perlite, and peat stuck to its tentacles, shouldn’t harm the Drosera at all. So you could just wait until it grows new leaves. Or if it’s really bothering you, instead of tweezers, go ahead and just get a spray bottle. Set the spray bottle to stream as opposed to mist and just blast the stuff off.
By Fishkeeper
Posts:  828
Joined:  Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:59 pm
I did try spraying it off, but I didn't have much luck. Maybe I didn't spray quite hard enough? It's purely an aesthetic concern- if these plants minded having inedible things stuck to them, they probably would have gone extinct a long time ago.
By Fishkeeper
Posts:  828
Joined:  Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:59 pm
Having moved the light up about an inch, the D. spatulata has lost its hibernaculum and is growing again, but still has some really nice color. I think this one's a winner. It's currently unavailable, but it's this ... B0BGXQG748 Sansi light, from Amazon. The light head is about 3" across, lightweight enough to be easily held up by some coat-hanger-thickness wire I built a support out of, and seems to be satisfyingly lighting this whole bowl from around 5" above the substrate surface. I can't put it any higher to test if it can light a wider area, as the roof of the terrarium is in the way.

Once my flytraps are out of dormancy, I intend to test if this light will work for a smallish pot of them. Bright enough to burn D. capensis that had formerly been on a bright windowsill seems promising. Even if it doesn't work for them, this light is definitely suitable for D. capensis and D. spatulata, and the U. sandersonii seems happy as well. Assuming it doesn't keel over and short out in the next couple of months, I would definitely recommend it (once it's back in stock) to someone looking to light a couple of sundew pots.
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By ChefDean
Posts:  9501
Joined:  Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:44 am
Andrew072 wrote: Fri Jan 19, 2024 11:15 pm Drosera Spatulata does not form a hibernaculum.
Actually, many tropical and subtropical species of sundew will form a hibernaculum if conditions drop far enough below optimal as a means of survival for those odd times when it's necessary. My capensis do it almost every winter because Tennessee is a far cry from South Africa.
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By Fishkeeper
Posts:  828
Joined:  Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:59 pm
Andrew072 wrote: Sat Jan 20, 2024 2:33 am I've never heard of or experienced this, but I'll take your word for it. I do have capensis that occasionally go into a "pseudo-dormant" state in the summer, where they die back to the roots :lol:
If you look closely at the D. spatulata in the first post, there are a number of stiff white hairs jutting up from around the center of the plant. It looked very much like when my pygmy sundews get a bit too dry and go into emergency protection mode. Given that it started growing again when I lifted the light up, but is still very intensely red, I suspect it did that as a response to having far too much light.

Apologies for forgetting to update this, but- photos! Almost everything is doing well. The D. spatulata 'Fraser Island' is sulking and doing very little, so I'm going to be experimenting with trying to shade it, and I may see if I can gently tease it out without ripping up everything else if it turns out to want less light.
Both D. capensis are sending up flower stalks, and the U. sandersonii has been flowering constantly, so heavily that it shades itself. The ping does lose its leaves rather fast, and keeps having burnt tips, so I've tilted the light slightly in an effort to give it a little less intensity. Given that it's still growing, I'm not too worried. The other D. spatulata is actively flowering, with at least two stalks, and should hopefully have seeds soon.
Finally, the D. capensis 'Bainskloof' has at least two plantlets, I suspect three, growing from places where its roots have hit the surface. I may need to experiment with planting Drosera in heavily mounded substrate so that the roots will naturally encounter light and open air as they grow outward- this may be a good way to get more plantlets to grow.
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By wcrosman
Posts:  481
Joined:  Thu Apr 14, 2022 2:03 am
I repotted my thin leaf drosera awhile back. Got peat and perlite all over the leaves. Spraying with water did little good. Leaves eventually died, but new ones had already come in strong. I just clipped the dead ones off.
By Fishkeeper
Posts:  828
Joined:  Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:59 pm
I've now removed the ping, as it was losing its leaves faster than it was replacing them. I'm not entirely certain why. I'm reading that they're often found on limestone in the wild, so maybe it wanted calcium? I have it in a small pot of lava sand with some limestone pebbles mixed in. Hopefully that perks it up. May try it on a limestone rock in another setup.

The smaller D. spatulata has been sulking for a long time. The larger was also beginning to lose some leaves faster than it was replacing them, which I think may be light stress due to it being directly under the light. I've removed the smaller one entirely, as well as the larger one, and will probably replant the larger one near the edge.

The capes are, of course, thriving, and there are sprouts emerging where the Bainskloof's roots are finding the surface. Both have bloomed and appear to be setting seed. I'll be donating the seeds to the seed bank, and will in particular have a lot of the Bainskloof, probably over 20 flowers worth. The bladderwort is also doing very well, and hasn't yet stopped blooming. It's sent a few runners out over the edge of the bowl, making a nice trailing effect. Can definitely recommend this sort of setup for both species, not that it's any particular surprise to see both of them growing well.

Will try to remember to take photos.
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