Carnivorous Plant Update [Nature]
It was ridiculously dry here in North Florida this past spring. We’ve gone for weeks without a single drop. At least at my house. My partner and I have watched storm fronts plowing their way towards our location, only to see them dissipate or break around us. We joke that someone built a dome over our part of town. I blame Mr. Burns.
But Tropical Storm Claudette seems to have broken the dry streak. She made landfall hours to the west of here a month or so ago, but the majority of the rain was on the east side of the storm (as it is with most tropical systems) and we finally got some rain. And then every single day. My yard is transforming into a jungle.
Which is great. Especially for my carnivorous plants. My big pitcher plants were in rough shape and my smaller plants – flytraps, sundews, and small pitchers – were struggling. Even my rain barrel was bone dry. I was getting desperate.
A bit of rainfall made a huge difference. The big plants are still recovering, but the small ones are thriving.
I think my little shop of horrors is going to be damp and happy for the foreseeable future. In fact, I’m so happy about their recovery I thought I’d share some recent photos of my little shop of horrors.
I picked up a new flytrap last year from California Carnivores and he (or she?) is doing great. Lush and green and gobbling up little insects. The brown traps are ones that are used up. Meaning, they’ve caught at least one insect, no more than two, and now the plant discards the trap and develops new ones.
But what I’m most happy about is this little one on the right side of the screen. I’ve had this flytrap for over five years, but this past spring was especially rough on it. I thought it had died off, but I left the pot alone because I still had hope. Carnivorous plants, although somewhat difficult to take care of, can also be surprisingly resilient.
And I wasn’t disappointed. About two weeks ago I noticed a tiny bit of green poking up through the moss. Now it looks like it’s on the way to a full recovery!
These guys are my small Nepenthes and Sarracenia pitchers. Both are new additions to my patio. These guys grow low on the ground in the wild. I have them because I love the colors and patterns on the pitchers.
The one on the left, with the companion sundew, will have to be transplanted once the weather cools. Winter dormancy is the time to uproot them or take cuttings. The sundew was a bonus. I had ordered the pitcher, but the sundew suddenly appeared and almost took over the pot.
This one has beautiful coloring and, judging from the dead/dying pitchers, has been eating well. In fact, if you check out the second photo you’ll see a recent victim.
I have a few more members of the ensemble, but I’ll save them for the next post. I hope you enjoyed seeing these unique plants. Remember, carnivorous plants are protected, so please don’t dig them up if you find them in the wild. If you’re interested in adding a few to your garden, please do your research first and buy from a reputable dealer.
If you have any questions or comments, you can post them below.