Nepenthe ‘Miranda’


Sue
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My Nephew gave me a Nepenthe ‘Miranda’ to look after. It was bought with pitchers which have since died, he has never got it to grow new pitchers.

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I’ve searched on the internet and found the information sketchy. It seems this is a low level Nepenthe which requires warmth and high humidity to grow and produce pitchers. The closest I have is a conservatory/covered garden which is around 25-30 degrees (in the summer) with 85-90% humidity. It was growing the beginnings of pitchers from the ends of the leaves and then they would shrivel up and die.

I asked at very helpful person from a carnivorous nursery at the Malvern spring show, he said it was virtually impossible to get these to grow new pitchers under normal UK conditions. That sounded like a challenge to me, I’m always up for a challenge.

I moved the plant to a shadier position, filled a 5lt garden sprayer with rain water and gave it a good drenching 3 or 4 times a day.

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It has the beginnings of three pitchers, the largest is just beginning to open.

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So I suppose my question is ‘what now’? I know nothing about these plants.

Where it is, is not heated and the temperature will drop to around 3 degrees in the winter. Last winter I was bringing it in to the house if the temperature was going to drop below 10 degrees, I read this is the lowest it can tolerate.

Should I catch flies and feed it? I did notice a few flies crawling round the pitcher before it was open. I have Sarracenias in the same room and they manage to catch enough flies to be very healthy (although these haven’t been on an involuntary diet for the past two years).

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Hi Sue,

As you have found Neps can adjust to quite low humidity and resume pitchering.

For winter I would ensure it does not drop much below 10c if possible and give it as much light as you can. In the past I never bothered feeding my Neps but in the last few years have done so and found some very positive results. You could for example give the pitchers a few freeze dried bloodworm (tropical fish food), and a fortnightly feed of an orchid fertilizer. I reduce the fertilizer in the winter to about once a month.

The plant looks nice & healthy :)

cheers

bill

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I asked at very helpful person from a carnivorous nursery at the Malvern spring show, he said it was virtually impossible to get these to grow new pitchers under normal UK conditions.

Doesn't sound very helpfull to me!

You conservatory sounds ideal. As Bill quite rightly says 10C is a good winter minimum. Mirandas are not too difficult and do enjoy some sunshine for part of the day. Mine is somewhat abandoned in the greenhouse in a semi- sunny spot and pitchers freely, although waiting for pitchers is a bit like waiting for a kettle to boil in ultra-slow motion sometimes.

Is that 3C min outside? I can only dream of such things :Laie_71mini:

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So I need to wipe the smug grin off my face because getting it to grow pitchers was not impossible.

Thanks for the advice, it is all very doable. The only pain is moving it in and out during the winter, the house is not light enough and definitely too dry.

I have been looking after it for about 9 months and it has quadrupled in size during that time, is it going to keep growing at the same rate?

Manders, I wish we only got down to 3 degrees, that temperature was in the conservatory/indoor garden. Our outside temperature last winter dropped to -15

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-15 is colder than it ever gets here so i feel somewhat releived lol :D. Yes it will probably keep growing at the same rate, many neps are vines growing up to 30 or even 50m in length, but what most people do in cultivation is prune them down and maybe try and root the cuttings. It's certainly not Impossible to produce pitchers in the uk, for some species its relatively easy, for others it can be a real challenge and for some species just keeping the plant alive is a challenge. Of course some of the most difficult have the most bizzare and interesting pitchers and once you get hooked its a slippery slope to frustration :D Lol.

Edited by manders
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Deep down I’m hoping the two I have will try my patience over winter so I won’t get hooked.

What time of year should they be pruned and how? I’m used to pruning plants back to a healthy bud but my Nep seems to have long vines without buds.

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Side shoots typically come form around or under ground level (ie basals) or sometimes grow from the the leaf axils ( if you look close you may see dormant shoots waiting to develop). If you cut the growing tip off they often start to grow from the last remaing leaf axil on the main stem. Basals usually just grow on their own when the main stem is long enoigh.

Personally i hate cutting them as you can never be quite sure what will happen but eventually theres just no choice. If you want to make cuttings spring is not a bad time as it then gives them all summer to root and get growing. If you just want to make the pant smaller it probably matters less what time of year but probably still best done while the plant is actively growing.

Rooting the cuttings can be a bit hit or miss.

There are worse things to get hooked on :D

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Thanks, it will still be small enough to move in and out of the house this winter so I'll look at it again in the spring. I'm a bit addicted to taking cuttings so I'll have to try it just because :rolleyes:

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I don't think so... They make their own fluid to drown their prey, plus the lid is their to stop rainwater from entering. (in most cases) I don't think that the rainwater would harm it though.

Don't trust me though!!!!!

Edited by TheInactiveMoth
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Thank you

I'll leave mine as it is. It is very hard when you are a complete beginner to know the difference between those who think they know and those who really know. I’ve had advice from people who have never even owned a pot plant. I now have five pitchers on my plant and am feeling rather pleased with myself (little things please little minds :D)

I'm going to get some freeze dried bloodworms, there is one fly in one pitcher but as this plant has not had pitchers for two years it could probably do with a little more than one fly.

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It is not uncommon for growers to use a fertiliser with Nepenthes. Non-urea based, such as orchid fertliser, seem to be the prefered type. You might want to ask specifically about your particular plant, but I root feed my Ventrata with 'Orchid Focus' or 'Ionic Hydro Grow'.

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Thanks Mobile, I’ve given it a spray with dilute orchid fertiliser and water the soil with rain water.

Great instructions Stephen. I have been successful with air-layering other plants so I shall definitely have a go at my Nepenthes. Can they be layered at any time of year? I did ask the same question on your other thread.

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