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Discuss any carnivorous plant that doesn't fit in the above categories here or general chat about carnivorous plants

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By Jade
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Joined:  Mon Feb 05, 2024 6:57 pm
#446386
I’m going to be focusing on my VFT for now hoping to save it, but I’m really interested in getting another carnivorous plant this year. I’m a 100% beginner as far as plants go in general because I have had bad luck trying to keep regular plants, but I decided I just need to try harder! :D

So I was wondering what would be a good beginner plant for me. Another VFT would be fine too, but I thought it would be better to ask. I am going to be asking y’all a lot of questions now that I made this decision, so take your sanity into account with regard to that lol.
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By Panman
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#446388
It depends on the environment that you want to grow it in. Drosera capensis is a pretty bulletproof sundew that can grow indoors. Nepenthes ventrata is a good choice for a fairly humid environment and a bright windows. Some Mexican pings are pretty easy and can be grown under lights. Outdoors Sarracenia and flytraps are a great choice. I'd avoid red flytraps at first as I find them to be a bit more finicky.
By Jade
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Joined:  Mon Feb 05, 2024 6:57 pm
#446389
I’m looking at outdoors or depending on how much the electricity bill is going to spike indoors under lights. I live in Ohio and there’s really no way to tell at any given time what the weather is going to be like. Sometimes we get high humidity, but sometimes it’s dry.

I was thinking about maybe getting one of those little greenhouses that are on Amazon too, but with how overcast it can get in the winter, I would definitely still need the lights, so I may just set them up in an area that my cats won’t be able to bother in my house.

That’s kind of one of the questions really. I see a lot of folks who seem to have that little space, but I’m not sure if the greenhouse with natural light would be better.


ETA those are all so beautiful. I looked up pings and got pinguicula which is my favorite, but they’re all gorgeous.
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By optique
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Joined:  Fri May 24, 2019 11:15 pm
#446392
Cape sundew's do really great in a sunny window, you can gets seeds from the seed bank for the price of 2 stamps.

As far as outside not sure how cold it gets in Ohio i am betting you would need to protect your plants in the winter like moving them to a unheated building or something. They can handle freezing but not long term freezing they get a frost burn effect over time killing tissue.

Some great plants for outside are Sarracenia, Its the same care as fly traps just lager plants. Some even grow in much colder climates then fly traps can handle.

I would avoid green houses they love full sun and it would just overheat with out some type of cooling.
Last edited by optique on Thu Feb 08, 2024 1:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
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By Panman
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#446394
You don't need a greenhouse. You just need a way to give the Sarracenia or flytraps some protection in the winter.
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By evenwind
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#446395
Assuming you can protect the plants from your cats, I'd suggest lights and indoor-happy plants like (sub)tropical drosera and/or Mexican pings. In particular, either Drosera capensis (as Panman already mentioned) or Drosera spatulata for the sundews and maybe P. laueana x emarginata (a personal favorite) for the MexiPings. (Probably a good idea to stick to MexiPing hybrids for a first plant.) Indoor growing allows much better control of the plant's environment and the plants we're talking about are fine with most household conditions, so it should be straight forward. I won't talk to outdoor growing - I grow exclusively indoors - but as you can tell, there's a lot of folks here who grow outdoors. Just ask your questions.
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By Jade
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Joined:  Mon Feb 05, 2024 6:57 pm
#446407
We have had some mild winters here surprisingly for a couple years, but that’s not normal and we did have some freezing days for sure. Especially with the wind chill. Like below zero for a bit, but it has been kind of a yoyo between that weather and 40-50 degrees this year.

So could I actually grow VFT indoors during the winter? I ask because this one I got in October only got direct sun maybe a couple hours a day and was fine until maybe a few weeks ago. I had been waiting for it to be dormant, but it was healthy looking and put out new traps even so I thought it would hold out until spring. I would obviously need a better setup, but I’m not sure how I would protect it during the winter months without the option to have it inside. I don’t have a heated outdoor area to store it in unfortunately. And I wouldn’t mind just building a whole place for it, but I’m on disability and I live with someone else who I pay for utilities and such. I’m not certain how amenable she’d be to me doing that, but also not certain if I could afford the extra monthly bill lol.

Also I do really like those Mexican pings Evenwind and the Cape Sundews too Optique.

I kinda get OCD about certain things and plant care is turning into one of them. Like when I cook 99% of the time I need an exact recipe to follow or I won’t cook it. I kinda feel like I need exact care plans to get another plant. I’ve already been trying to figure out exact plans for my VFT which turns into endless questions.
By Jade
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Joined:  Mon Feb 05, 2024 6:57 pm
#446408
Right so basically I probably need a plant that I can at least bring in for winter months and I would honestly like to have a year round indoor one as well. If that ends up being more than one plant I’m definitely interested in multiple kinds.

I can likely get a good indoor setup going in a fairly short time depending on how much grow lights hike electric bills and how much more I need to invest in base needs like the lights. If that’s expensive I will just piece it out over a few months.

The general maintenance like soil for repotting and jugs of distilled water and stuff like that won’t be difficult to keep up with.

I think between this post and my description of weather and whatnot I have probably given a decent idea of my limitations, but if I’m missing anything important that would help decide I can definitely answer more. I just really hope that I will be able to grow some beautiful plants.
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By optique
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#446409
If you have some where to store your plants in the winter that's cold like under 50f, a garage, basement. That would be the best, they don't even need light when dormant some people bag them in the fridge. I can just leave mine outside but a lot of people up north do grow them.

Dormancy is part of there natural cycle they can skip a year but at some point its like they just run out of gas. This link below is to a photo log of a flytrap of mine from winter to blooming.

post436449.html
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By andynorth
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#446410
I highly reccommend getting the book "The Savage Garden". Digital version is inexpensive. Very informative. Also, the ICPS web site has tons of info to help you get started.

https://www.carnivorousplants.org/
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By Intheswamp
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#446413
Somebody probably has already mentioned them, but drosera capensis is usually recommended as a good (fairly easy) starter plant because, well, it's an easy one to grow in most instances. There are several varieties of it..."Alba"(a green plant), "Reds", "Wide Leaf", "Large Form", etc.,. The added thing for capes is that they will curl their leaves around their prey more than most other drosera do. You could try some small spats or capillaris which are low-growing, ground-hugging plants that usually don't get much bigger than a US quarter (lots of time smaller, even). I *think* they require a higher light intensity than the capes do...they could grow in the outer fringes of the cape pot, maybe. Of course capes enjoy good light and color up better with higher levels of light...the higher light intensity would be good for the low-growers, too. Just some thoughts from a relative newbie. ;)
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By evenwind
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#446416
As a beginner, if your growing area is going to be outside, look at temperates like VFTs and Sarracenia. If indoors, you're better starting off with Mexican pings and/or Drosera. I think it's very unfortunate that so many people's first carnivorous plant is a box store, half dead, VFT that they try to raise as a house plant. Of course, once you gain some confidence, there's many other genera to explore, like Heliamphora, Nepenthes and Cephalotus. Take a look here: https://cpphotofinder.com/
By Jade
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Joined:  Mon Feb 05, 2024 6:57 pm
#446420
The heliamphora and nepenthes are both something I would love to try when I’m more comfortable with this. Thanks for the link I browsed through all of them.

I think the drosera and the Mexican pings are probably what I’m leaning toward. I’m not sure how to decide between them lol.

Thank you for the book recommendation Andy, I’ll probably try to get it as a physical copy because I don’t think I really have anything to read a digital on at the moment.

Yes so I think I’ll probably need to go with the refrigerator option for my VFT if I have it next winter. I may be able to close off the bathroom in the basement because we don’t really use it and see if I can get the temperature down, but I’m guessing it wouldn’t be low enough to trigger dormancy, and since it didn’t go dormant this year I definitely would want to make sure it would next year.

I got mine from a store that’s kind of niche? It’s like a holiday season store mainly for Xmas. I always look through their greenhouse, but I never found anything that caught my eye until last year. Most of them had a lot of black traps, but this one looked really good so I had hoped I would be able to keep it that way.
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By Panman
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#446423
When you want to venture into Nepenthes ventrata is just about impossible to kill, and even when you start to kill it you can cut off the top of the plant and start over. It does need the right environment to produce pitchers, but even that is pretty easy.
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By evenwind
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Joined:  Sun Jul 07, 2013 4:16 pm
#446424
Jade wrote: Thu Feb 08, 2024 5:31 pm I think the drosera and the Mexican pings are probably what I’m leaning toward. I’m not sure how to decide between them lol.
Easy decision - one of each!
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