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how do you grow yours?

Ian Salter

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Ok Pete, I figured i'd give you one more...but this could be scary.

Greenhouse/indoors etc..


Outdoors in the open

Outdoors in a mini-greenhouse

Only a few inside


Into the garage you go

Light levels. Full sun/Part shade etc..


Full sun, as much as I can possibly give them up to about 14 hours in mid summer.


Hmm, pretty shady. They're in the garage. Two windows, one on the south face, one on the north face. Door is partially translucent letting a bit of light through.

How much water you use.


Well, if there outside water them if they're dry. If not, let the rain do it when it comes.

Inside...well, I remember that I did water them once last summer... :D


Usually they're soaked in the late fall by the rains, so no need to really do much here

Pot size or depth.

3"-6" pots, mini-bogs, anywhere I can find a spot for them. Never under a 3" pot, but I have been known to put multiples into a 3" pot depending on size.

Soil mix.

peat:perlite, topped with peat, or milled sphagnum to mask the perlite.

More towards the peatier side.

Sometimes orchid mix on top for a nice contrast to green plants.

Sand has always given me problems.

general condition and colour.

Well...they're kind of going to sleep so it's not a good time to judge, but in the summer they were going nuts. I'll show you guys some pics soon.

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I've only got 2 different ones - well, they started off as 2 but now there are about 5-6 of each of them. i keep them outside all year round, but put them either in the boiler room outside or a small poly greenhouse that we have (open at the bottom) when it gets really cold (Dec-Febish). As I've moved quite a bit, they've sometimes survived the whole winter totally exposed outside, or have lived all year indoors. Since last year though, they have both flourished (since the greenhouse thing). I keep them standing in water til the winter months, then just damp. They've only been repotted once as I used to use Barry Rice-Meyyers web pages, and he STRONGLY advises against repotting as he claims this will kill them. I repotted mine last year as it was on its last legs (aphid attack and stem rot) and this year it has come back as 6 plants ... think I will stick to these pages from now on!!!

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Many of you have seen the VFT here..

Here is how I do it:

1 Full sun all year round.

2 Peat: perlite mix 3:1

3 Pot size 9x9x9cm or 11x11x11cm

4 Keep in an unheated greenhouse

5 Spray with a bifenthrin insecticide 1 week apart at the beginning of the growing season

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Hi Ian

Here are my details

Plants outside in a coldframe all year round, in good light most of the day

Container depth 15cm, in a mix of equal parts peat/perlite. A nice side effect of this combination of mix and depth is that the surface stays relatively dry, and moss growth is weak.

Watering - i try to leave the tray dry for a few days between waterings, but if its inconvenient i will top up water already in the tray, usually to a depth of a couple of cm.

I get good sized colourful plants from these conditions.

I used to grow all my plants in 7cm square pots in 2 peat to 1 sharp sand. The pots were filled to the brim with compost and pushed together to form a roughly 2 foot square "carpet" of VFT's, the moss hiding the pot tops. It was a good idea, but unfortunately i found that not only did the plants never have a decent root system, but crowns would often turn themselves into leaf cuttings which in turn became clusters of small plants struggling to outgrow the luxurient moss. My conclusion - the easiest way to fail with these plants is to grow them too wet.

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No probs Vertigo, just overawed by the amount of info. It's good, thanks to you and all for great input.

And Graham wrote "in a mix of equal parts peat/perlite. A nice side effect of this combination of mix and depth is that the surface stays relatively dry, and moss growth is weak."

I like the sound of this, The moss often chokes the spring growth I find.

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Soil mix 70/30 peat and sand

Kept in 4 inch [ I think] pots

Tray method of watering, kept just damp in winter

Garden is directly south facing so in full sun for nearly all of the day

Kept outside nearly all year, occasionally get put on the shed windowsill if theres a hard frost forecast and if I remember to do it

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VFT will grow very well in pure sphagnum peat moss. Use this as your base for comparison to other soil mixes.

My Growing Conditions


The outdoor humidity fluctuates widely on a daily basis and does not seem to bother the plants.

Full sun.

High temps up to 90 F, Summer low night temps 60’s F.

Winter dormancy low night temps mid 50 to mid 40 F, rare frost some years.

Deionized water, ¼ inch in tray system, add water daily so tray is never or rarely dry.

Pot size 4,5,6 inch.

Soil is pure long fiber sphagnum, pure sand, pure sphagnum peat moss, sand/peat mixes of up to 50% peat, everything works.

Traps turn brilliant red when they want to, and the plants flower readily in spring.

Propagation of VFT by cuttings and germination of seed indoors under (shop lights) 4 foot florescent 40 watt cool white bulbs, 16 hour daylength year round.

Steve, Steve, Ivo and Bob, nice photos and you all grow very nice healthy plants.

Take care,


Ventura California

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It's going well but I want lots more input, even if your VFTs are not growing too well (this is also important info) I've been logging the details so far but it's not enough to draw any conclusions, Please keep posting every post helps.

A big thank you to all that have posted so far :wink:

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Soil: third sand in peat

Pots: from 3" to 12" & a few long trough

Mainly greenhouse, few outside in with cobra's

Insulated & thermostat heated to 6/7 C over winter

(they have been frozen down to -12 C with a heating failure)

Water: stood in few cm in summer, esp the big pots

in winter kept damp but not standing

Every few years 'rip' them up, clean up, and re-pot around March

Seems to work - willl try some in just peat and just moss next year!


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here is how i grow mine:

Growing season: Feb(Mid) - Oct(Late)

-South facing windowsill

-Full sun (approx 6 hours or more direct sunlight)

-Temp ranges from 22oc - 32oc

-Water once a day, allow tray to dry before refilling 1cm of water

Dormancy: Oct - Feb

-Garden shed

-Partial sun

-Temp -8oc to 15oc

-Keep damp/slightly on the drier side. Water once a fortnight


-soil mixture: peat 80%/ perlite 15% / sand 5%

-Pot range form 3" - 5-6"

Observation: Under the same growing condition "Royal red" has a deeper red colouration compared to "Akai Ryu".

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I grow mines in a mini greenhouse comprised of 4 small wodden posts and 4 sheets on plexi glass.

They get about 4 hrs. of full sun and the rest is bubbled sun(trees partly shades it).

The traps get red quikly for some of my varieties.

The compost is 100% peat in 3 inch pots to 5 inchers.

Most are doing great except for the plant labled dingly's whos health seems to waver.

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In a unheated greenhouse all year round

stood in water from around march till october

Sun fron about 10am till around 6pm during summertime

2:1 peat/perlite

1 per pot mostly and slowly changing pots to standard 11cm square size

temps to around -3c in winter upto 35c this summer (bit too warm)

No major problems from me so far

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  • 2 weeks later...

Various mixtures and amounts of LFS, peat, pumice, silica sand. Various sized pots, including some homemade from PVC pipe (approx. 2" (5cm) diameter), (approx. 8" (20cm) high). These seem to be working remarkably well. Spider mites are a frequent problem, I control with an emulsion of cinnamon and clove oils sprayed on the leaves frequently.

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Here is another one to add to the lot.

Dionaea Grown outside

Location: Outside in a Bog Garden

Light: Direct Sunlight

Soil: Pure peat with live sphagnum moss

Watering: Wet all year round (Well I do live in Ireland!)

Temperature: Generally 0C - 25C (but can be sub-zero the odd time)

Humidity: 60%+ (really just depends on what the weather is like)

General Treatment:

Well I find that letting mother nature do her thing works best. But I do cover them in protective sheet when there is frost predicted. Or whta I have discovered recently to be effect loose shagnum moss.They are planted free in the soil with as much space to themselves. They grow great and are quite robust if left to their own devices.

Dionaea Grown Inside

Location: Unheated Warm house (if that makes sense)

Light: Direct Sunlight

Soil: 50:50 Pure Moss Peat and Sharp Sand

Watering: Wet for growth season; damp for dormancy

Temperature: Generally 5C - 30C

Humidity: 70%+

General Treatment:

I find that the plants respond to a good dose of neglect now and then. But they grow brilliant in these conditions. They grow fast and big a flower quickly. I cut off flowers depending on how strong the plant looks. The two thing that you have to be wary off is boritis and green fly which the plants can fall victim to in a area with no air circulation. But the odd time I may bring them outside to catch their food.

Hope this helps.

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thanks for the advice but I would get a pest problem(neighbours kids) this does more damage than overheating :oops:

Even when the door is open it only alters the temp a few Deg C.

I may try some in the polytunnel and outside, and see how they do.

Thanks for posting guys.

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Guest PlantAKiss

I live in Virginia in the US a few hundred miles from VFTs natural habitat. I grow my VFTs outside year 'round. They've even been frozen with no ill effects. Their worst enemy is squirrels which are tearing them up. :D Just bought some fox urine to try as a deterrant. :(

I normally use a 1:1 peat sand mix, sometimes using perlite as well although I hate perlite.

Summer temps are 70-90+ degrees (don't know Celsius :D ) with high humidity (ugh) and winter can get into the low 20s to close to 0 in extremes.

Hope that helps. :)

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