The Bog Blog

A blog about growing carnivorous plants.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Yucca Do 1717



I put this ping (short for pinguicula, aka butterwort) outside last night. Normally I grow it indoors, but we got a warm storm last night and I figured it could use a shower. Looks like it survived with no problems. I'm going to have to see about propagating this plant in the next few months. It's been growing fairly quickly since I got it - it's probably big enough now to steal a leaf or two. :)

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Venus Flytraps are blooming


The flowers may be a bit difficult to see, but if you click on the photo you can see that both plants are flowering. Silly, VFT's! I was worried about the transplant, but it seems as if the VFT's are fine. :) FYI - most people clip the flowers from their VFT's since they don't produce much seed and they use a lot of the plants reserves. I'll be clipping these flower stalks in the next day or so.


Here's another shot from a bit farther back. They're still looking straggly, but this spring I expect them to put on a good show.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Going through a bit of a rainy spell

I took this shot last night as the rain was pouring down. So far, the bogs have held up much better than last year when the whole roof garden turned into a mud-spattered mess every time we got a rain storm.

Eye-level view of the newly replanted bog. The sarracenias (pitcher plants) have been heading toward dormancy, so I've been clipping the old pitchers as they die. In another month or two, almost all the pitchers will have died back. Starting in March, new pitchers will begin to grow again. My biggest concern in terms of transplants was the p. primulaflora (the butterwort flowering in the bog, directly above the red tag). At this point, they don't seem to have even noticed the move. New flowers continue to sprout from the original plant. This spring, at least 4 or 5 more plants should begin to flower as well. It will really make a nice display.

Nice shot of drosera adelae getting ready to flower. I haven't had this plant very long, and for a while I thought I'd killed it. Nice to see it doing better - though I think it may be confused as to what season it is.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Getting a good soaking rain today



This kind of soaking rain storm will be perfect for my freshly transplanted cp's. It should wash them off and get the soil settled into place. The nice pure water doesn't hurt either (remember, cp's like H20 with very low mineral content).



Bonus picture of my darlingtonia seeds that I just planted.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Photos of newly transplanted cp's

By the time I finished getting all the plants moved around, it was too dark to take many pictures. This first shot is of the new bog. I'm very happy with how it looks. I'm looking forward to seeing how it looks by the end of growing season next year.



I transplanted my "Red Dragon" VFT into the light green pot at the back of this picture. Looks pretty sad now, but it is in its dormancy phase. It should look pretty good next spring.



Here are the small drosera that I still haven't fully identified.



Finally, the Cape Sundews.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Finally transplanted the bog

What a chore! There's not much room to work. Provided a good opportunity to check on the health of the plants in the bog though. Everybody seems to be in good shape. I hope the trauma of the transplant didn't do anybody any harm. Here's a couple of pictures of the old bog as I get ready to transplant.



Here's a pinguicula esseriana that I discovered hiding under this saracenia. About a year ago, on a whim I threw a couple of extra p. esseriana leaves into the bog and months later I discover this guy hiding here, with another sibling nearby.



Another surprise. Still haven't identified this little drosera. I love finding new cp's in my garden.



First out, some small sundews. Those won't be going into the new bog. They're getting their own pot.



Next to go is the Venus Fly Trap (VFT). This is also going to get its own pot.



The following picture was taken after I'd removed four drosera Capensis (Cape Sundews). These guys will also not be moving into the new bog. Bye bye, guys!



After removing about 1 1/2 inches of moss from around the VFT, I discovered I actually had two plants!



My workspace





Out with the old, in with the new!



Tomorrow, I'll post pictures of the finished products!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Crisis during gemmae collection!



I was collecting gemmae this morning and almost had a disaster. I was holding my d. nitidula x puchella upside down over a white sheet of paper while teasing out the gemmae. Everything was going fine until the drosera and half the soil suddenly fell out of the pot. Looking back on the experience I don't know why I was so surprised it happened. I took the opportunity to transplant the mother plants into a larger, permanent pot and I also scattered the gemmae so next spring I should have a nice clump of pygmies. If you click on the picture above you should be able to see the gemmae very clearly.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

These carnivores have looks that kill

These carnivores have looks that kill | www.azstarnet.com �:
"Creepy, hungry things grow in Charles Lamb's house.
Sticky, hairy plants with pouches and traps lure flies, gnats and spiders to their demise. Bog-loving plants in aquariums also have an appetite for insects.
Carnivorous plants that capture, kill and digest other life forms provide most of the greenery in Lamb's Duluth, Minn., home. The rarer and more unusual the plant, the better.
'They have a beauty,' insists Lamb, 41. 'Most of it is the shape.'
With elaborate clamshell traps, fluted leaves and bristled stems, carnivorous plants are living sculptures, he says."

Friday, December 02, 2005

D. Capensis "Alba" - Growing Tips


If you're new to CP's or a long time grower, Drosera capensis (Cape Sundew) is a great plant to have in your collection. They come in a few color varieties. There is the 'normal' type with green stems and reddish tentacles, an all red variety and an all green variety (aka "alba"). If you live in a mild climate, the cape sundew will grow all year round. It does not need a dormancy phase, unlike many other cp's - though you may notice slower growth and smaller leaves in the winter.

I grow my Cape Sundews in full sun. They are planted in a 50/50 mixture of sphagnum peat and sand and they always sit in a dish filled with an inch or so of water. As with all carnivorous plants, the water you use is critical. It must be free of any contaminants. In most places in the US this means using tap water is not an option. Most growers will use reverse osmosis, distilled water or they collect rain water. If you grow them outside, there is usually no need to feed them, as they will collect enough flying insects on their own. If you grow them on a window ledge, monthly feedings of powdered blood worms (available at most pet food stores) will be fine.

As the plants grow the older leaves will die and form a 'skirt' around the base of the plant (see picture above). Some people like to trim these leaves away, and that's fine. In fact, it will help prevent seedlings from sprouting up. My personal preference is to leave the 'skirt' intact.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Our winter weather continues

The plants are getting really drenched. The heavy rain we've been having has put a hold on my plans to transplant some of the bogs this weekend (unless the weather improves quickly).