johns

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Everything posted by johns

  1. Came across this, thought somebody here might find it interesting: http://www.the-scien...-Burglar-Watch/
  2. Nice pictures, thanks for posting. Potato ferns are interesting indeed. I'm currently reading A Natural History of Ferns (highly recommended), and there's a short chapter about Solanopteris. To mention a few interesting things: they grow high up in the rain forest canopy, and the ants inhabiting the tubers (actually modified stems) attack anyone unlucky enough to poke the plants. Organic matter accumulates inside a tuber until there's no more room for ants, at which point the ants find a new tuber, and the walls of the old tuber degrade so it becomes permeable to water. Roots covering the wall
  3. Just to be clear, the ebay link is an example, not a product recommendation. I haven't tried any of their products so can't vouch for them. It's hard to give a definitive answer about what you should look for in a T8 setup (I think that's the reason you rarely see definitive answers), but I'll mention the options that I have seen. I'm not an expert by any means, but have spent a bit of time looking into this. You can sometimes find industrial fixtures with a reflector (e.g. two tubes mounted inside a deep reflector) cheap in hardware stores, the downside is that you may need an electrician t
  4. Here is an example: http://r.ebay.com/tyFyvI Basically the bulb is mounted inside the reflector, and light that would otherwise travel sideways/upwards is reflected downwards to the plants. But if you're planning to grow more than two plants under lights, you may be better off using T5 HO or T8 fluorescent tubes (using a fixture with a reflector is important for efficiency.) Finally, depending on your available windowsills you may not need artificial lighting. I grow my my venus flytraps without artifical lighting, keeping them on a cool north-facing windowsill in winter, on a south-facing w
  5. A 40 watt CFL should be plenty for just two plants, but it depends on the distance and the lamp/reflector. The distance should be as small as possible while allowing enough light spread, perhaps 15-20 cm. You'll also want to use a lamp/reflector that ensures that as much as possible of the light reaches the plant. Using a CFL without a reflector, over half of the light will be wasted.
  6. This is what my Pinguicula 'tina' looks like at the moment. It's kept on a east(ish)-facing windowsill which receives no direct sunlight in the winter. The temperature ranges from maybe 16-21 degrees. I gradually reduce watering in the autumn.
  7. Is the fan on 24/7 or is it on the same timer as the lights? It might help to run it 24/7 if possible.
  8. johns

    Byblis liniflora

    I've grown Byblis liniflora from seed twice now. To my surprise the seed germinated within ten days both times. The first time I used seed from BestCarnivorousPlants, and the second time I used seed from ICPS (stored in the fridge for a year before sowing). No idea if I've just been very lucky. (Sowing conditions: not very bright light, approximately equivalent to bright shade, and 26-28 degrees during the day.)
  9. See http://www.carnivorousplants.org/seedbank/seedgermguide.htm , "Temperate Drosera" Basically the answer is that you should sow the seed outdoors now so that they will get several weeks of cold and wet, just as they would in nature. You might want to use a sieved part of the soil mix as a top dressing, and cover with fleece or otherwise protect the pots from the rain so that seed won't be washed down into the soil. The seeds will germinate in the spring.
  10. I've seen U. graminifolia for sale at aquarium/pet stores. You'll probably also find it at some aquarium (or carnivorous plant) webshops.
  11. I sometimes treat small amounts of soil with boiling water, a method often recommended for sowing fern spore. Basically you fill a pot with soil, cover with 2-3 layers of kitchen paper to prevent the soil from being washed out of the pot, and pour boiling water through the soil. After treatment the pot is then put in a airtight box or zip-loc bag and allowed to cool before sowing. I don't remember the recommended amount of water at the moment, I would guess at least three or four times the soil volume. I think it's more effective if the pot is standing in a deep saucer. This method doesn't s
  12. Sarracenia purpurea ssp. purpurea can probably be left outdoors in the Finnish winter. Mine has survived outdoors here during the past two winters in a pot, protected only by a layer of snow. I think it might be worth trying to put at least one of your Sarracenia on a cool, north-facing windowsill through the winter. Natural Sarracenia habitats can be surprisingly warm in winter, so the reduced photo period may be enough to make them go dormant. For example, look at the winter temperatures in Wilmington, North Carolina. In November the average high is 21 degrees Celsius, average low 7 degree
  13. I've successfully overwintered venus flytraps and Sarracenias on a south-facing windowsill where the temperature is kept between 4 to 10 degrees celsius. The windowsill receives a little sunlight at the height of the day but is otherwise dim, and the day length here is just below six hours around winter solstice.
  14. The default now seems to be to show all unread posts, rather than the new posts since the last visit. One can choose "New since my last visit" on the sidebar on the left to get the old behaviour.
  15. While in Finland I visited the Valkmusa national park. Valkmusa is located in southern Finland and covers 17 square kilometres of several different types of mires. I only saw a small part of the park, as I only followed the 2.5 KM board walk. Visitors are advised not to walk on the mires during the nesting season, or I would have liked to explore further. I was impressed with the size of the place - it's a rare sight to see bogs stretching far into the distance. The pictures were taken on june 23.
  16. What about mounting a clear acrylic plate below the lights using brackets? That will separate the hot air from the plants below, while not reducing the light a lot. You can then use a fan to cool the lights directly, without blowing away the humid air below.
  17. To avoid fungal problems associated with soil I've fridge stratified some Drosera filiformis seeds on kitchen paper dampened with distilled water. I wonder if anybody here has done this and have some tips on how to best get the seeds onto the soil? In this batch there are few enough seeds that I can pick up the seeds individually and place them on the soil surface, but I'd prefer a more practical approach. One idea I had was to carefully tear away the top layer of paper along with the seeds, and letting it dry so that I can tap off the seeds. But I'm concerned that the seeds will be damaged
  18. I don't think it's a good idea to use Azolla for that purpose. They have a symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing bacteria, which is why they are used as a natural fertilizer on rice paddies.
  19. You didn't mention what kind of conditions you will be growing them in? Are you looking for temperate or tropical butterworts? For windowsills the Mexican pings found in garden centers such as P. 'tina' and P. "fake weser" are easy and attractive.
  20. I think you're right, I initially discounted it because all the Phlebodium (where P. aureum is now placed) I've seen have had greyish green leaf blades. (It might be a different Phlebodium though, best to check all of the similar-looking species to get a correct ID.)
  21. I think it's a species of Microsorum, but I can't say which one.
  22. Not all Salvinia species are tropical. E.g. Salvinia natans is native to much of Europe.