FlytrapCare Carnivorous Plant Forums

Sponsored by FlytrapStore.com

Discuss water requirements, "soil" (growing media) and suitable planting containers

Moderator: Matt

By mobile
Posts:  64
Joined:  Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:48 pm
#119530
I have started a pine needle experiment. This is not a comparative, rather a long term experiment. I have used approximately 3 parts dried pine needles to one part peat, with a 10mm top layer of fresh (green at time of planting) pine needles. I've used an 18cm tall pot, which is standing in approximately 2.5cm tray of deionised water. I have noticed a oil film forms on the surface of the water, which must come from the needles. The VFT was taken out of my bog garden, where is wasn't doing well. The young growth that you see in the centre of the plant has developed since potting in the pine needles on 24th August 2011. It is under 35W of metal halide lighting.

Image

Image

Image
mobile, mobile, mobile and 1 others liked this
By Jaws
Location: 
Posts:  1296
Joined:  Sun Apr 18, 2010 11:11 pm
#119547
Yeah great experiment, i also would be interested in the results you obtain.
User avatar
By Steve_D
Location: 
Posts:  3913
Joined:  Tue Nov 18, 2008 5:06 pm
#119620
This is a very interesting experiment, and thank you for posting it, mobile. I'm thinking of doing an experiement myself mixing evergreen needles with desalinated coir and sand for a growing medium. Anyway, please keep everyone updated with photos and results, if you don't mind.
By Adam
Location: 
Posts:  2892
Joined:  Sat Dec 13, 2008 4:39 am
#119672
Interesting although I would like to remove the dependency on peat altogether.
By mobile
Posts:  64
Joined:  Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:48 pm
#119673
Adam wrote:Interesting although I would like to remove the dependency on peat altogether.
I suspect that the peat can be omitted. I only added it because I felt that pine needles alone seemed too open and was worried about the moisture level being too low at the roots. Though, one of the UK growers is running an experiment using different ratios of pine needles:peat and one of them is pine needles only, which is doing well.
By mobile
Posts:  64
Joined:  Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:48 pm
#119677
Daniel_G wrote:Hmm, i'm sure i've seen this before mobile.... :lol:
Oh yes, its been done many many times before... my post is just my experience in doing it and I do not profess to be any sort of pioneer. You've seen it in the recent CPUK Forum thread, which mantrid started. There are threads on here too, as well as the other CP forums. What I struggle to find though is long term results. There's many threads on people using various ratios of pine needles in mixes, but very little in the way of follow-up. This makes me wonder if long term growth in pine needles is possible, or whether it fails and hence people did not follow up on their initial posts. I suspect that the pine needles submerged in water will rot and I intend to top up with fresh needles as they sink into the pot, but I wonder if the rotting pine needles will become 'toxic' to the VFT.
By anarchyonline
Posts:  36
Joined:  Fri Aug 26, 2011 10:25 am
#119679
mobile wrote:
Daniel_G wrote:Hmm, i'm sure i've seen this before mobile.... :lol:
I suspect that the pine needles submerged in water will rot and I intend to top up with fresh needles as they sink into the pot, but I wonder if the rotting pine needles will become 'toxic' to the VFT.
Pine needles take years to rot down, even when used to make compost with the high temps, humidity, active bacteria and bugs etc so i don't think that the needles themselfs would be an issue given that we would usualy repot the plants on a regular basis.

my personal take on this is that the sap in the needles may leach into the water and that may prove fatal to the plants as it contains resins which may affect the roots ability to absorb water? i may be way off the mark with this but just a thought :geek:
By mobile
Posts:  64
Joined:  Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:48 pm
#119684
anarchyonline wrote:my personal take on this is that the sap in the needles may leach into the water and that may prove fatal to the plants as it contains resins which may affect the roots ability to absorb water? i may be way off the mark with this but just a thought :geek:
I have already observed this, I believe, as an oily film on the top of the water reservoir. Thus far this has not shown any ill effect, but time will tell. The VFT is growing fast, which makes me wonder if the pine needles are providing a nitrogen source. I have no control plant though, so this is just an observation. There is noticeable growth since the pictures above and this plant is long enough out of TC for me to dismiss any chance of that influencing it.
By Daniel_G
Posts:  5472
Joined:  Thu Mar 25, 2010 7:27 pm
#119685
Will you be one of those people who "Follows up" On this, even if it results in death?

Why didn't you opt for a control plant? I would have thought it would make results more conclusive?
By mobile
Posts:  64
Joined:  Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:48 pm
#119690
Daniel_G wrote:Will you be one of those people who "Follows up" On this, even if it results in death?

Why didn't you opt for a control plant? I would have thought it would make results more conclusive?
I intend keeping this thread updated, with new photos posted whenever there is any significant change, good or bad.

I'm not that interested in whether it grows any faster in pine needles, I'm more interested on whether it grows long term; therefore, the lack of a control. The CPUK thread that you particpated in has a test with four identical clones being grown in mixes of various proportions, so might be of more value if you're interested in growth rate.
By anarchyonline
Posts:  36
Joined:  Fri Aug 26, 2011 10:25 am
#119692
mobile wrote:
Daniel_G wrote:Will you be one of those people who "Follows up" On this, even if it results in death?

Why didn't you opt for a control plant? I would have thought it would make results more conclusive?
I intend keeping this thread updated, with new photos posted whenever there is any significant change, good or bad.

I'm not that interested in whether it grows any faster in pine needles, I'm more interested on whether it grows long term; therefore, the lack of a control. The CPUK thread that you particpated in has a test with four identical clones being grown in mixes of various proportions, so might be of more value if you're interested in growth rate.
to my mind i would think that rate of growth would be dictated by lighting conditions, amount of food caught in the traps providing the required nutrients and the amount of available lighting. also worth noting is that in low light conditions the plant will exibit ingreased growth as it attempts to reach the light. excluding these factors ie optimal conditions the only other factor that would affect growth rate is genetics so you would need a cloned plant to be able to bet a true reflection of the affect on grownth in these conditions.

regarding the resin in the needles i would anticipate changing the resivoir pereodicaly (once a week) and throughly cleaning it on every change to remove any buildup along with periodic top watering to attempt to rinse any resin (if any) out of the media might prove useful?

however that being said the plant seems more than happy at the moment so wouldn't change anything as yet but might be worth considering if it starts to deteriorate ;)
Root rot?

I live in arizona. The pot is about 4 inches tall,[…]

A gem at Walmart!

How big are those traps? They look huge!

Looking for Sundews

CASH ONLY: I am looking for sundews(any variety),P[…]

Drosera for sale

Hi,do you take cash orders(Like where I send you a[…]

HI,do you take cash orders? Like where I send you […]

No problem,I understand.

Utric lateriflora Seed Giveaway

1. Panman - why not? 2. Deadly Carni - Fun! 3. isa[…]

One I found in mine (even if they labeled the sph[…]

Support the community - Shop at FlytrapStore.com!