Venus flytrap Fridge Dormancy Tutorial

Tutorial by Rug Thibert

I came across this step-by-step tutorial detailing how to prepare Venus flytraps for their dormancy period by placing them in the refrigerator. I am recreating it here with permission from the original poster. The original article can be found on the Ontario Carnivorous Plant Society website. It was written by a user on that site to illustrate the way that he chooses to put his venus flytraps to bed for the winter. This method could be very valuable for growers that have few options when it comes to providing dormancy for their plants. It is a good demonstration of how to put a lot of plants into dormancy with little effort and space. He has over 60 Venus flytraps, and the whole procedure took him approximately an hour. The original poster of this article said that he has used this method before and didn’t lose a single plant.

1) Get a Tupperware container or other wide, flat container that can be sealed. Place a thin layer of long-fibered sphagnum moss that is moist but not wet at the bottom of the container. To do this, soak the moss in distilled, reverse osmosis or rainwater then wring it out and place in the container as seen in the image below.

Flat plastic container lined with long fibered sphagnum moss
Flat plastic container lined with long-fibered sphagnum moss

2) Uproot all the plants and rinse off as much soil as you can from the roots. You can use regular tap water for this since there will be no build-up of salts and minerals in the soil because you are simply using it for rinsing purposes.

Rinsing the Venus Fly Traps
Rinsing the Venus flytraps

3) After rinsing all the soil off, go ahead and trim off any dead or dying traps. If it’s turning black at all then you might as well trim it off because over the course of winter it will be a source of rot when the trap or whatever is in it starts to rot and is not being digested.

Trimming Off the Dead Leaves
Trimming Off the Dead Leaves

4) After trimming all dead or dying leaves, place the plant on the long-fibered sphagnum mat that you made in the container. Don’t be afraid to stack the plants on top of each other because they are not heavy and the plants on the bottom won’t be crushed by the weight of the plants on top.

A Venus Fly Trap placed in the Bed of Sphagnum
A Venus flytrap placed in the Bed of Sphagnum

There are about 60 plants in this container.

A container full of Venus Fly Traps!
A container full of Venus flytraps!

5) Get some “No Damp” or other fungicide and mix it into a spray bottle as per the manufacturer’s directions. Spray all the plants down in the container. Make sure to get it “liberally” all over all the plants and LFS. This should help control the mold that will grow since there is no air movement inside the container. An important side note is to spray the fungicide outside because the stuff smells bad and is probably not too good to be breathing in. Keep the leftover mixture because you will need to respray a few times throughout the winter.

No Damp Mixed and Ready to treat the Flytraps
No Damp Mixed and Ready to treat the Flytraps

6) Cover the container and place it somewhere out of the way in your fridge. The crisper drawer is an ideal place to put it.

Placing the Container in the Crisper Drawer
Placing the Container in the Crisper Drawer

7) Do not forget to look at your plants from time to time to catch any mold starting and respray with a fungicide! this is very important because mold will grow!!