Cause of rot in VFT?


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Hi

What is likely to be a possible cause of where the heart of the VFT rhizome goes brown and rots? I have found a couple today and it looks like it has happened quite recently as they grew well this summer and have a few newer traps which look healthy until you follow the leaf back and it is brown at the base. They are in a mix of peat/sand/perlite and grown on in a water tray. I tend to let the water level drop between watering so I would have thought too much water was not the cause?

Any ideas and possible solutions?

cheers

bill

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Hi Bill,

It often seems to be caused by mould growing on pieces of old dead black petioles spreading down into the crown or spreading up from roots exposed out of the bottom of the pot. Anything that causes the plant stress seems to make it more common, but the three things that seems to be the most common cause for me are, lack of ventilation, nitrates in the water or a build up of salts in the peat.

Trev.

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What is likely to be a possible cause of where the heart of the VFT rhizome goes brown and rots?

Try growing Venus Flytraps with the idea to keep them moist, not wet, and never saturated for days at a time.

Water them thoroughly when you do water them, but allow them to dry out until just moist before watering again.

This is just a suggestion. Different growers have different techniques. But consider that Venus Flytraps' natural habitat is sandy savannah (grassy lowlands), not marsh, bog or swamp that have water at the soil surface most or all of the time. They thrive best in soil that has some drainage and some air, and don't tolerate continuously wet conditions as well as Sarracenia, for example.

Just my small bit of advice; whatever you do, you will learn from it. In that sense, there are no mistakes. :thumbsup:

Steve

Edited by xscd
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...consider that Venus Flytraps' natural habitat is sandy savannah (grassland), not marsh, bog or swamp. They thrive best in soil that has some drainage and some air, and don't tolerate continuously wet conditions as well as Sarracenia, for example...

Makes me wonder why most of use grow VFTs in peat based mixes when this is untypical of their natural habitat.

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Makes me wonder why most of use grow VFTs in peat based mixes when this is untypical of their natural habitat.

Their natural habitat is not pure sand. :thumbsup: But neither does it have much sphagnum peat moss in it, I'm guessing.

I just meant that they are not a natural swamp-dweller, although they can survive near a bog. The surface of the soil in which Venus Flytraps grow in the wild can seem surprisingly dry, according to observations, although the low land they typically grow in has a water source not far beneath the surface that wicks upward by capillary action. I myself have never seen Venus Flytraps growing in the wild. My information is only from other sources: photos, descriptions, reports, etc.

I currently grow Venus Flytraps in a mix consisting (by volume) of 50% sphagnum peat moss, 30% sand (almost purely silica sand, no other type of rock bits in the sand) and 20% perlite.

In my opinion, a potting mix with more drainage and more air, which is kept less saturated with water, can help very much to reduce the possibility of fungal outbreak and infection, including the crown rot that the original poster of this discussion thread asked about. There are of course other factors too that can cause, increase or intensify fungal outbreak, such as stale unmoving air in a terrarium.

These are merely my own thoughts and observations, not advice.

-Steve

Edited by xscd
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Classic VFT root rot, which then quickly leads to rhizome rot is most often caused by bacterial overgrowth in the soil substrate. The bacteria consume the oxygen and release waste products into the soil. Generally it is due to bad luck and promoted by the stagnant nature of the water techniques we employ in growing CP.

The process of root rot seems to often be initiated by a heat wave. This stimulates the bacteria to grow faster, therefore consuming more soil oxygen and creating more toxic waste products, at a time when the plant itself needs more oxygen and clean soil substrate. This results in root death and then several weeks later rhizome rot.

Brad

Ventura California

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Classic VFT root rot, which then quickly leads to rhizome rot is most often caused by bacterial overgrowth in the soil substrate. The bacteria consume the oxygen and release waste products into the soil. Generally it is due to bad luck and promoted by the stagnant nature of the water techniques we employ in growing CP.

The process of root rot seems to often be initiated by a heat wave. This stimulates the bacteria to grow faster, therefore consuming more soil oxygen and creating more toxic waste products, at a time when the plant itself needs more oxygen and clean soil substrate. This results in root death and then several weeks later rhizome rot.

Brad

Ventura California

Brad, how would you say one can prevent it?

edited for typo

Edited by Amar
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Amar asked: "how would say one can prevent it?"

Well if you have classic root rot, then following the advice above of Steve (xscd) is perfect.

Other ideas include, watering just enough to require daily watering, lessens the water stagnation situation. Also occasional top watering and discarding the flow through is helpful.

If you soil substrate has degenerated or is algae laden repotting to a new fresh soil substrate will help.

If a plant is suffering root rot it may be necessary to slowly nurture it back to health, before exposing it to harsh growing conditions.

Brad

Ventura California

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This is topical for me at the moment. I was removing dead growth from a big pot of typicals yesturday when i noticed one had just started sending out shock traps. On closer inspection i was able to remove some brown mushy pieces of rhizome. Is this the time to unpot completely, remove all brown rhizome, divide and save what I can of the other plants? Im not sure if its the best time to do this so late in the season. Needless to say im not going to water it again untill it drys up a fair bit. Any advice?

Edited by gypsyjazz
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