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Re: carnivorous plants was: Clivia Golden Dragon

  • To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
  • Subject: Re: [CHAT] carnivorous plants was: Clivia Golden Dragon
  • From: "Marge Talt" <mtalt@hort.net>
  • Date: Sat, 17 Jan 2004 00:05:56 -0500

> From: Bonnie & Bill Morgan <wmorgan972@ameritech.net>
> Point taken, Marge.  Brenden helps me garden during the season and
he's been
> very good about taking to heart what he should and shouldn't do. 
He doesn't
> the pets around here or at his house either, so I think he'd be
O.K. and I
> would be caring for the plants most of the time anyway. :>)  Thanks
for the
> advice!
----------

Well, Bonnie, I forget how old Brenden is; know you've mentioned it,
but it did not stick in what passes for my brain.

IMO, most kids would be fascinated with carnivorous plants and
positive experiences with them might trigger long lasting interest in
plants in general or related stuff.  With supervision and
explanation, I'm sure he'd do fine with some - esp. if you're
actually caring for it/them most of the time:-)

Not only are the habits of carnivorous plants fascinating, many of
them are simply beautiful plants.  I have found mine to be very
undemanding to this point.  They need cutting back in spring to
remove dead growth and you *must* keep the soil wet; they are true
bog plants and do not take kindly to drying out.  

Besides providing rain or distilled water, you need to give them the
proper soil, which in cultivation consists of a mix of washed sand
and peat - either peatmoss or the preferred sphagnum peat.  Most of
them require as much sun as you can provide - full sun is preferred
although mine make do with somewhat less than this.  Other than the
watering and tidying, they require no real care.  No staking or
continuous division or fertilization.  I save rain water for them in
a 30 gallon plastic trash can with a piece of plastic screenwire over
the top to keep out dirt and insects.  I store it in used spring
water jugs.

The hardy types require a cold period in winter as well.

The flowers on Sarracenia are incredible as well.  I've only got half
a dozen sarrs and one Venus flytrap in my minibog and long for the
day when I can increase bog size so I can have more...they're sorta
like potato chips; you can't just have one:-)

There is lots of information on the web about building bogs for these
plants as well as keeping them inside. 

Barry Rice's Carnivorous Plant FAQ is a great place to start:

http://www.sarracenia.com/faq.html

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
mtalt@hort.net
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