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By Jack Hoo
Posts:  3
Joined:  Tue Apr 23, 2024 12:34 am
Hi there. My name is Jack and I have been caring for Venus flytraps for a little over 2 years now. We live in South Florida, that means a lot of heat and a lot of storms.

I started with one, her name is Cleopatra. Bought her in an Aldi here, and I fell in love with them. I inmedialy looked up the best soil, water, and growing conditions to them, II tried my best to stick to that, but our rain doesnt make it easy ^^'.

When I first repotted her, I discovered her rhimezome was splitting, so I ended with a Baby trap, named him Caesarion, who unfortunately didnt survive the summer, it was just too hot and I didnt water them one day (yes, one day of no water in the summer can be THAT BAD). Cleopatra pulled through though.

Starting this year, I expanded the family and got myself 3 more plants, named: Achilles, Hannibal, and Julius Ceasar. I repotted them all (including Cleopatra) on amixture of peat moss, sand and perlite, I rinsed it with distilled water to reduce the minerals and particles in the water. One Idea I had though was making the top layer Long fibered sphagmun Moss, because one of the main challenges that we face is that our rain is very heavy and pelting during summer, Cleopatra had a hard time, so I figured that the sphagmun moss would provide some additional protection being a bit of a cushion for the plants, but most of the pot is the mix of sand, perlite and peat.

the new plants are looking good, specially Julius Ceasar. Hannibal and Achilles were nto too pretty, most of the traps died, but I see A LOT of new growth coming form under the old traps, so I think they will be fine.

Cleopatra However.... I'm worried about her.

Poor thing has suffered a lot as I learned how to care for these plants in my own particular conditions, so she didnt grow a lot last year, getting chunks of perlite pushed into the traps by the rain was a nightmare, but on her new pot she doesnt seem to be doing much better, all her new growth is turning brown before it even gets a chance to open, right now she only has one trap left. I'm scared for her, I dont want the matriarch of my garden to die like this :(

I keep them all out in our patio, where they get about 6 hours of direct sun a day ( and plenty of indirect if that helps in any way).

Nice to meet you all!
Cleopatra Before.jpg
Cleopatra Before.jpg (3.17 MiB) Viewed 382 times
PS: I cutted off the flower stalk shortly after it blossomed, I waited too long :(
Cleopatra today.jpg
Cleopatra today.jpg (4.12 MiB) Viewed 382 times
THis is Achilles:
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Hannibal.jpg (3.76 MiB) Viewed 382 times
And Julius Ceasar:
Julius Ceasar.jpg
Julius Ceasar.jpg (3.18 MiB) Viewed 382 times
And this is where I keep them
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achilles.jpg (4.22 MiB) Viewed 382 times
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By andynorth
Posts:  1518
Joined:  Fri May 12, 2023 9:08 pm
First, Welcome to the forums. I will start by saying I am by no means an expert but I am sure someone with more knowledge than myself will chime in at some point. Did you acclimate to the heavy sunshine properly? It almost appears to be mineral burn but I could be wrong. Have you washed the soil mix thoroughly? Where is your LFSM from? It looks quite dark to me. I grow all of my VFT's in straight LFSM and it looks nothing like that. Just a few of my thoughts and as I said, someone with more experience will likely chime in. Don't forget to check out the seedbank. Free seeds of all sorts.
By Jack Hoo
Posts:  3
Joined:  Tue Apr 23, 2024 12:34 am
Hi, Andy! Glad to be here!

Well Cleopatra has been living in our weather for almost two years now, she recently went through dormancy and I have been increasing the sunlight she gets by about an hour every week untill she was spending all of her time outside.

I washed the mix with distilled water until the TDS meter read about 50 PPM. but I guess I can try running some water now and see what it reads when it some out onto the saucer.

the LSFM is from Home depot. it just rained today so it might look darker than normal.
this is the one I used:
s-l500.jpg (55.31 KiB) Viewed 374 times
Thanks for responding to me, I will be sure to check the seed bank :)
andynorth liked this
By cpgrower126
Posts:  83
Joined:  Thu Apr 04, 2024 3:51 am
Hey there, welcome to the forums!
First things first; your conditions seem to be alright, but I would check the rhizome just to make there is no root rot. The lack of traps and the amount of black worries me. If the rhizome is black and mushy, or has black on it, your flytrap may be experiencing root rot. Second, one of my flytraps died in Mosser Lee LFSM because the sphagnum held way too much water. Second, while Mosser Lee is perfectly fine and safe for carnivorous plants, it breaks down quite easily, which is why it is turning black. If you have a Lowe's nearby, go pickup some BetterGrow LFSM and get some fresh potting medium.
I wish you luck, and happy growing.
andynorth, MikeB liked this
User avatar
By andynorth
Posts:  1518
Joined:  Fri May 12, 2023 9:08 pm
cpgrower126 wrote: Tue Apr 23, 2024 2:52 am Hey there, welcome to the forums!
If you have a Lowe's nearby, go pickup some BetterGrow LFSM and get some fresh potting medium.
I wish you luck, and happy growing.
Agreed. This is what I use and I have not had any issues with it.
By Dan J
Posts:  37
Joined:  Sat Mar 23, 2024 7:07 pm
Completely agree on the Lowe’s BetterGrow vs the stuff at Home Depot. The HD LFSM is the crappiest I have ever seen and by me, it is more expensive than the better stuff at Lowe’s!
By Jack Hoo
Posts:  3
Joined:  Tue Apr 23, 2024 12:34 am
Thanks everybody for all your advices and giving me a warm welcome. I bought some more potting mix for carnivore plants (a mix of peat moss, sand, and perlite) and some LFSM from Lowe's and repotted Cleopatra in it. The poor thing indeed had some brown on the Rhymezone. Removed the worst of it and cleaned it as best as I could. Did mostly the peat moss and a small layer of the LFSM to cushion it at the top.

I did see one of the roots had a white tip, which I understand it's a good sign.

If there is anything else you think I should do to give Cleopatra the best chance to spring back, I appreciate all your advice. Will also replace the moss on the other plants today and maybe add some more potting medium to them to help them thrive.
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