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Posts posted by lorisarvendu

  1. I've just noticed what look like thrips on one of my heli's old leaves.  Looks like pepper.  I've had these before on sundews and successfully got rid of them by drenching the plant in provado. Can I do this with the heli?  I'm not sure how widespread they are, I'll have a proper look at the weekend, but if so, then they're probably in the soil.  Drench? Spray? Both or neither?


    Any advice gratefully received.



  2. If you leave it in direct sun the new leaves to form will be adapted to the new conditions. I have mine outside in direct sun and they love it


    I didn't know that!  I've manged to get a bunch of seedlings into another pot.  I might sacrifice them in the cause of experiment then.  Speaking of capensis, would they do ok in an outside bog then?  And what about binata?

  3. Do you really mean 20cm?  Isn't that a bit thick for moss?  Sure you don't mean 20mm?


    This year I discovered 5 or 6  d.rotundifolia and d.anglica that had self-seeded and grown through established sphagnum, so yes they have no difficulty.

  4. You seem to have an identical collection of plants to me. Plus I also have a Belfast sink in the garden, though it is currently unused.  I couldn't use it for a bog now, as we have rabbits in the garden and they would quickly make a meal of all my plants.  I have had to use plastic troughs raised a metre or so above the ground.


    I'd agree that your Butterwort looks Mexican as it looks the same as mine.  As does your Cape Sundew.  Both of these have been living happily on a south-facing indoor window ledge for at least the last five years, and would not do well in a bog.  The capensis in particular doesn't do very well out in the sun anyway.  It goes red and dries up if I don't put it in some kind of shade.

  5. Well the bogs are starting to come back to life with a vengeance now that the sun's getting higher. I went out today to have a poke around, you know pluck out weeds that were starting to grow, that sort of thing.  And I was surprised and delighted to see three more sundews lurking in the moss in between the sarra shoots.  From the look of things they're the old English round-leaved variety and they appear to have seeded.  I've moved them out from the sarras because they'll get swamped once they start growing.  Looks like if nothing else I'm successful with sundews!


  6. Re: expensive prices.  Well that was from Wickes.  I could have shopped around I guess but I was on a time limit.  The pots were in the garage in darkness, it was the weekend, and I needed to get the plants out into the sun.  If I hadn't done it on Sunday I would have had to wait until the next weekend and they'd probably all be dead by now!

  7. Just my 10pence worth.  i agree with everyone's recommendations.  Alicii, Capensis and Binata.  I've had those 3 on my window ledge for almost a decade now and they are almost impossible to kill.


    The Capensis continues to seed all over the place (even in the other two's pots!).  So much so that every year I repot loads of babies and give them away to people at work.

  8. Nice,  


    are the pots just standard of have you modified them with drain holes ?

    No, they have no drain holes and I've never used drain holes in almost a decade of outside pots.  In fact I've gone to great lengths to plug them where they exist (sometimes with limited success).  I tend to drill a couple of holes just under the lip of the pot to avoid the smaller plants drowning in heavy rain.

  9. Sorted!  Plants repotted and relocated! If anyone's interested the pots were £4.50 each from Wilkos, while the 18 blocks were £1.43 each and the three lengths of decking £3.99 each (the last two from Wickes).


    £51 in total.  Blimey, it's a lot when you add it all up.


  10. I've been successfully growing CPs outside in 5 large bog pots.  See here:




    Up until about 2 years ago all was fine, until our daughter decided she would like a rabbit.  Since our back garden is totally enclosed, the rabbit was given full run of the garden.  A few months later he was joined by a female friend.  Not long after that I found they were nibbling my CPs.  I completely enclosed all the pots with plastic-coated mesh fencing, which was fine...until they began nibbling through that.


    I was reduced to moving the pots to the front garden, where they got slightly less sun, but still managed to survive.


    Now we've had the front garden completely tarmacced and there's no room for my pots.  I can't move them into the back garden because of the rabbits and I can't keep them in the front.  Can anyone think of a suggestion to save my plants?  Some sort of strong table I can put the pots on (although they're plastic they weigh a ton because of the water content), or some kind of fencing I can use? 


    I've collected my plants for over a decade now and I don't want to have to get rid of them.  Any suggestions?







  11. I've got 4 large pots out in the front garden, filled with a variety of pitchers bought over the years. They've done very well and always come back after winter. They used to be in the back garden, but the wife bought two pet rabbits, who discovered a taste for all plants carnivorous! I therefore had to move them out front.

    They were doing ok until a few months back, when I would wake up and find something had been digging in the soil and flipping it over the lawn. Most of the plants survived, with the exception of my two sarracenia anglica :(

    But what was going on? I tried putting long sticks in the soil, thinking it was a hedgehog, but nothing seemed to stop it. Every week or so, there would be holes in the soil. Thankfully I found no poo, so it wasn't a cat.

    Then one morning I happened to glance out of the kitchen window, to see a blackbird merrily excavating one of the pots, flinging soil this way and that!

    I looked online to see what people recommended. Coffee grounds in the soil was a favourite. No good to me of course. Then there was shiny CDs on string waving above the pots. That didn't work. But now I 've found something that does. I went down to Wilkinson Stores, and bought 4 rubber snakes, you know the type that kids play with. Cost me a £1 each. One in each pot and it seems to have done the trick. I haven't exactly seen a bird fly down, look startled and fly away, but the pots have been left alone ever since, and I envisage the birds sitting up on my roof looking down at my pots, each one with a terrifying new bird predator sitting amongst the leavings....waiting and watching!

  12. My personal line for what plant is carnivorous or not is that it must trap insects and absorb the nutrients throught the leaves. Anything other than this can just be put down to a coincidental benefit and not a specific evolutionary adaptation.

    Yes but it does make you wonder what possible evolutionary advantage can sticky hairs on the stems have? Obviously the fact that several tomato species now have them implies that it is a successful adaptation. What we now have to figure out is what does it achieve for the plant? Unfortunately trapping insects does seem to be something that these hairs do very well, so the question remains is that enough of a benefit for the gene for "sticky stems" to be propagated?

    "Carnivorous" is really just a handy label we use to categorise certain plants into a logical group for our own purposes. Carnivory may well be (as the article's author suggests) more of a broader spectrum than a sharply-delineated classification. In a very very broad sense all plants benefit from (indeed depend on) the death and decomposition of animals and the subsequent return of nitrates to the soil.

    In fact the more you look into this, the more cases there are. Petunias and potatoes also have these hairs, and it appears that Shepherds Purse even secretes digestive mucilage.


  13. Personally I see this as a mechanism evolved primarily as protection. I think the fact that the insects decay and provide nutrients is just a coincidental benefit.

    A tomato is a relatively large plant with fairly deep roots when grown in the ground. The amount of additional nitrogen reaching them from a few small insects is going to be tiny and insignificant compared to the nitrogen already present in a normal soil. So not a evolutionary advantage in my opinion.

    Hmmm...but isn't the whole mechanism of Evolution based on coincidental benefit?

    It does kind of blur the distinction between specifically-evolved carnivorous plants, and those that benefit from indirectly-caused animal death. A plant evolving highly poisonous foliage is generally assumed to have done it solely for protection. However if the creature that takes a bite out of you dies immediately then the knowledge that "this plant is bad - avoid!" can never get passed on, which would not make such an adaptation sufficiently successful to propagate.

    On the other hand, if the animal you've just poisoned dies close enough to decompose and add nutrients to your soil, then that does make for a successful adaptation...no matter how slight the nutritional advantage.

  14. Haven't got into neps yet. If they're reasonably priced maybe worth a try. Surprising how quickly the neglected sarracenias pick uo though after a bit of TLC.


    £12.99. Dead easy to look after, so long as you have a bright south-facing window to hang them in to get the best out of them. Our house is a bit dark so mine doesn't do fantastic, but then again I've had it over 7 years so I must be doing something right. I've even propagated from it. Got it from the old Toton Co-op superstore just before it closed. Would love to buy one but absolutely nowhere to put it.

  15. You'll find, like the older pots, that moss will gorw of it's own accord. The plants won't actually gain any benefit from you adding moss, apart from on hot days it may help retain moisture, but if you want to, live sphagnum moss is the only type to use.



    That's what I thought would be the benefit, keeping the soil damp.

  16. I've got a bunch of sarras in large pots outside. Although some moss has grown on the older pot (about 3 years now), the others are relatively new and only have peat mix in them. Would the plants benefit from having living moss growing round their roots, and if so what kind and where can I get it?



    Local garden centre sells living sphagnum. Would that do?