Is my capensis all right?

lizpallagiAugust 3, 2007

Hi, there, I bought a dorsera capensis about 7 months ago. A little mistreated on its delivery. I waited for the new leaves to come out but as they grow they curl down and have really not much dew, almost none. It's on an east window for at least three hours of sun, and in the afternoon about two more in the west window so I really don't know why the leaves aren't extended and full of dew. Rain Water in a tray.

My drosera spatulata that I've had for more than a year and was growing perfect is also going flat and no dew. Still growing but very slowly. Both are treated the same. I did use some tabaco water to kill possible nematodes. Please help.

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Try just bright indirect Sun. Less direct Sun. What is the potting mix? My caps get very little sun.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 1:16PM
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Hello lizpallagi,

Are their nutrients in tobacco water? If so, you might have inadvertantly fertilized your carnivorous plants. I have not used that treatment, so I would not know if it actually adds nitrogen to the soil or not. I would think that it would add some nutrients due to being boiled tobacco leaves.

Sundews need a lot of light to properly grow and produce dew. Tropical sundews can make do with window light or florescent light equivalent to 6000-12000 lumens. Ensure that your sundews get at least 4 hours of good, direct window light with plenty of ambient light the rest of the day. The flat, dewless appearance on the D. spatulata is a classic sign of too little light. Are the tentacles on the newest leaves developing a deep red color on your Cape sundew and a hot pink on your D. spatulata? If not, that is another sign of low light.

D. spatulata clump 5 inches from 12000 lumens of florescent light 16 hours a day. Note how the lower plants lack some pink pigment due to being shaded by the upper plants and from being an inch farther from the light.

This is a picture of D. capensis in the exact same conditions as the D. spatulata.

Here is a close up of a leaf capturing a gnat to show the red coloration and dew they get in bright light.

Another problem is that plants typically do not like to move around much. placing them in one good window that gives them at least 4 hours of good sunlight and lots of light the rest of the day would be best. You could always invest in a cheap florescent light setup for less than 20 dollars if your windows are inadequate.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 6:09PM
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Thanks to both. Maybe you're right about the tobbaco I'll recheck. And I'm also going to try to get the flourescent light to stop going from east to west every day. I'll inform what has happened in the next days.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2007 at 5:45PM
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A good light setup would be regular 40 watt florescent shop lights with twin 3000 lumen tubes. I use two sets for a total of four tubes and have them hooked up to a Christmas tree light timer... total cost was about 24 dollars. It provides a four foot area of illumination to grow my collection on a shelf and the light automatically provides 16 hours of photoperiod with that timer.. not much work needed on my part.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2007 at 7:34PM
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Both spatulata & capensis do well right a window sill, south facing the best. Here's a pictoral example:

    Bookmark   August 6, 2007 at 6:38PM
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Nice Cape Sundew petiolaris.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2007 at 7:10PM
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Thanks... we oughta hook up some time and work out a trade... but not right now.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2007 at 4:28PM
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Yeah I hear you. I need to move soon too. I don't have much of a collection yet, but I will have extra hybrid Sarrs that will be a year old soon. I will be looking for good homes for some of them when I am sure of which will survive their non-viability period. They should be mostly past that now.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2007 at 1:07AM
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We just moved and a good lot of the butterworts, bladderworts, and some sundews fried, when I had to put them outside. Fortunately, only a few plants have actually died. But there are a lot of plants that are just not shippable right now.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2007 at 4:51PM
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