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Ask questions about how to grow and care for Venus Flytraps

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By +DieFlyDie+
Posts:  2
Joined:  Fri Oct 23, 2020 3:49 am
Hey all! Im new to this whole carnivorous plants world... ever since I was a kid I’ve been fascinated by them, particularly the venus fly trap. I recently bought two of them (because I thought I’d inevitably kill one), and to my surprise, I somehow got them through (read: avoided killing) the summer! Not only that, they've been thriving. However, I never thought about what I was supposed to do with them over the winter. I live in Colorado, and I've already left them out overnight in freezing (hard freezing) temps (accidentally)... what can i do to maximize their chances of survival? How should i keep them over the winter? Do they need to stay wet while dormant or can they dry out? What does “dormant” look like... do all the leaves turn black and fall off, leaving a bare pot of soil (I read somewhere that one should pluck the dead black leaves off the plant)? Do they still need sunlight in the winter? Right now they are still planted in the bog soil plugs they came to me in, and those plugs are surrounded by sphagnum moss in small pots. How and when do I replant them so that they can grow even bigger next year, assuming that they survive the frost I've inadvertently subjected them to? Can the roots spread out into the sphagnum moss, or do they need actual bog soil? Also, forest fires have been ravaging the state, and the largest one in state history has been sending ash and smoke plumes up since mid August... that ash has been peppering my plants since then, and I've been worrying about what effect that may have on them, knowing that they are very good at soaking up anything given to them (as is necessary in their somewhat nutrient-void home environments)... could this cause them any harm? Thanks in advance for taking the time to help!! I seriously appreciate it!! I was perusing existing posts but had so many questions, including some that haven’t yet been asked, so I figured I’d just lump it all together, knowing one of you all-knowing green thumbs would be happy to flex your plant knowledge and help a noob salvage his newfound hobby!! :mrgreen:
My guys!
My guys!
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Closer up
Closer up
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By +DieFlyDie+
Posts:  2
Joined:  Fri Oct 23, 2020 3:49 am
Oh, and some baby pics for a little perspective! Also, (sorry... more questions...) why did they start out a deep red but turn green? Aren't they supposed to keep some of that red? Does that mean they weren't fed enough? And how exactly do you know if they're catching enough food or if you beed to bust the fly swatter out and throw ‘em a bone?
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By Invasion_UwU_OwO_69_
Posts:  20
Joined:  Tue May 12, 2020 8:40 am
A traps color depends mainly on light.
Strong light = more color. Older traps have more overall exposure and are darker than new growth.
Also, depending on the variety, a flytrap's growth may get redder/darker as it gets ready for dormancy.

Dormancy... This will be my first rodeo for vfts. I'm hoping all my vfts survive through their first winter. I wanna get some 2 inch traps next year!
By steve booth
Posts:  921
Joined:  Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:15 am
Hi DFD and well done to keep them alive this long :D

Trap colour, as stated, is light related, green is generally not enough light.

Dormancy - ideally below 10C but above freezing, soil damp rather than wet, dont allow them to dry out. If they do get frozen (mildly) don't worry, mine have been down to -12C before now (in a bog, not pots so the mass helps) and come through. They are tougher than some people give them credit for.

Dormancy looks different on different plants, above freezing, they keep the younger leaves, but shed the older ones (your black ones), below freezing they can lose the lot. They will stand freezing but frequent freeze/thaw cycles can kill them.

Sun is not absolutely necessary for dormancy but the light does give the plant cues as to dormancy and breaking dormancy times.

Repot in spring in sphagnum moss peat and perlite 50/50 or pure sphagnum, this causes them the least shock problems. What is your 'bog soil' made of? if it's not sphagnum it could cause problems.

Ash fall out shouldn't cause too much of a problem, water the plants from the top and empty the water tray that will flush the nutrients out of the medium.

By tommyr
Posts:  1589
Joined:  Mon Nov 02, 2009 1:38 am
For VFTs, in mid – October I drain off excess water from the pots, hit them with a SULFUR based fungicide and place in zip lock bags and pop them in the fridge for 3 - 3 1/2 months. I occasionally check them (once a month) for fungus and hit with the fungicide if needed. Late winter around February/March I take them out and clean them up, hit them with SULFUR based fungicide again and place in a south and west window and some under florescent and white 'daylight' LED lights until night time temps. regularly stay above freezing then slowly acclimate them to full outdoor Sun. I've been using this method for 12 years with no losses. I just put all mine in the fridge last week. Year 13!
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