Orchid grower is hooked by new CPs

cutterpup(z7MD)April 29, 2007

Hi all. I'm not new to GW but am new to this forum. (I usually hang out in orchids). Last week I received two Drosera capensis from a fellow member and have gotten hooked. I've put these guys among the orchids on my light bench on Wednesday. By Thursday they had uncurled. By Friday they both had dew and yesterday they had both caught plenty of fungus gnats. Plus they are so darn cute.

Okay, now here is my problem. I have been doing a lot of web surfing and am still somewhat confused as which would be the best plants (other than more tropical sundews)for me to try. I want to keep them with the orchids so here are my growing conditions:

Four bulb flourescent light bench with two warm spectrum and two cool spectrum bulbs. I can raise individual plants as high or as low as needed from the lights. Temps are between 65 and 70 degrees with a nightly drop of about ten degrees. Humidity stays between 54%-60%. A low output circulating fan is run during the day. I live in zone seven and can easily put plants outside for the warmer months but would like to bring them back in again and enjoy them for the winter, not have them be dorment.

My final requirement is that they do not have a mature growth greater than eight inches or so in height or require pots bigger than six inches.

Thanks in advance,


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Hello cutterpup,

It sounds like the tropical sundews are about right for the height and non-dormancy requirements. Drosera spatulata, Drosera adelae, Drosera prolifera, and Drosera alicia are some of the sundews that are easy growers and about 3-4 inches in rosette or height at the most. Some of the Butterworts might be worth a try as most grow low rosettes and some, like the Mexican species, grow year round and produce beautiful flowers. Cephalotus follicularis might be worth a try even though it is considered a semi-temperate as it would enjoy the temperatures you can provide and will only rest for a short time in winder, not go completely dormant.

If you can get more space, a Nepenthes would eventually be worth a try as they are large beautiful plants, some liking a drop in night temperatures as well. Nepenthes can be slow growing, so if you get one that is only a few inches tall, it might take a couple of years to grow too large for your setup. They eventually vine out and some species have been reported growing out to 20-30 feet across the ground or up trees in the wild though you can clip and trim them, producing cuttings to make more plants.

My Nepenthes sanguinea was about 3 inches tall when I received it, producing 2 1/2 inch pitchers. Now, only 4 months later, it is still only about 4 inches tall and producing 4 inch pitchers.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2007 at 10:43AM
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I too started with orchids, then got into sundews. Then I ran into Nepenthes Ventrata and it blew my mind, so I modified my lightstand, and I love it. This past weekend I ran into Nepenthes Miranda and that *really* blew my mind. (6-8 inch furry bright red and green pitchers!!) It is currently on my balcony awaiting another lightstand modification. My point is that there is always room for one or two more 40 watt cfl's and a hanging basket. Especially for Miranda

Also, Terrestrial bladderworts, have flowers similar to orchids, albeit teeny tiny orchids, but I'm not familiar with their cultural requirements. And their carnivorous activity is invisible as it occurs with organisms in the soil getting sucked into a bladder.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2007 at 10:37PM
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I would go with D. spatulata, capensis, aliciae, anglica, capillaris, adelae, and just about any Mexican butterwort.

Here is a link that might be useful: sundews, butterworts, and bladderworts

    Bookmark   May 1, 2007 at 4:46PM
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