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Bojahnik

deep red pitchers - 2000K or being buried

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Over the last years I noticed that lowii or lowii hybrids pitchers got deep red under my 400W highpressure sodium lamp with the standard 2000 Kelvin lamp. The same plants produced in the greenhouse under full sun quite pale pitchers compared to the pitchers I got in the winter in my basement under the hps with 2000 Kelvin. I've got another hps wich I run with a conversion lamp 7000 Kelvin. Also 1 m distance grown lowii hybrids got pale like those in full sun.

???? ... I'm nuts? No here are some photos to visualize what I'm talking about:

N. x briggsiana:

pitcher grown under full sun:

briggsiana06.jpg

pitcher grown under hps with 7000K conversion lamp (additional a vent x ephippiata):

vent_lowii_ephi01.jpg

pitcher grown under 2000 Kelvin:

briggsiana01.jpg

N. mira x lowii:

grown under full sun:

mira_lowii07.jpg

grown under 2000K:

mira_lowii_m01.jpg

complete plant with both sorts of pitchers:

mira_lowii06.jpg

N. lowii x truncata:

pitchers under 7000K:

lowii_truncata_7000K.jpg

pitchers under 2000K:

lowii_truncata_up02.jpg

Well ... do you see what I mean.

A well known phenomena is that mirabilis var. globosa get the most red pitchers when they are grown very dark or even buried. While red leaves are the result of bright sun:

I haven't got a pic of this buried pitchers but a deep red leaved globosa which was grown in full sun. So the sun turns the leaves red but not the pitchers!?

vik_red_leave01.jpg

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Wow, that's both beautiful and strange! :D

Thanks for sharing!

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This is an excellent point.... my greenhouse is shaded by trees all summer, meaning my Neps get some sun first thing in the morning, then after 4pm in the afternoon, but miss most of the day's intense rays. (This keeps highlanders fairly cool, at least until 4pm on hot days.)

I've never had a problem with my pitchers colouring up, I usually get nice red pitchers on things like truncata x ephippiata and globosa. This is the opposite of what I had expected.

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I think that shading is only needed because of the temperature factor but not as shield of too strong light. Nepenthes (and most of the other carnivors) are pioneer plants and are used to full light. The sun for the highland plants in nature is much stronger than our european lousy sunlight or even artificial light.

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Keep in mind many red colored molecules are fragile. So perhaps the plant is still making the same amount of red, it just is not being destroyed at the normal rate...

This is why red colors generally show up on plants better in cooler weather. And you keep your red wine in a dark, cool area.

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A well known phenomena is that mirabilis var. globosa get the most red pitchers when they are grown very dark or even buried. While red leaves are the result of bright sun:

I haven't got a pic of this buried pitchers but a deep red leaved globosa which was grown in full sun. So the sun turns the leaves red but not the pitchers!?

Yup, I've experienced this too; pitchers given a lot of sun end up light green or light pink, while pitchers which are shaded somehow can become very deep red. globosa seems to pass this trait to some of its hybrids as well: it is the case with the pitchers on my globosa x rafflesiana hybrid.

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Keep in mind many red colored molecules are fragile. So perhaps the plant is still making the same amount of red, it just is not being destroyed at the normal rate...

This is why red colors generally show up on plants better in cooler weather. And you keep your red wine in a dark, cool area.

A very interesting point, thanks Dave.

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Hmm, this experience is somehow surprising...

The most red pigments are of the Anthocyanine type. They are produced (among other reasons) mainly as an UV-protection to absorb the higher energetic radiation, and therefore are normally produced when light, esp. UV light, is strong. In fact they need energy-rich light to be built. So plants in strong sunlight normally colour up much better, esp. in the red colours.

It is true that they are temperature-sensitive. That may be one reason. But e.g. in Heliamphora, I had best colouration in strong sunlight plus a UV-rich metal halide light above it.

Regards

Martin

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My experience is the same as Martin's. High energy light, such as UV and blue tend to make plants turn red. I though the reason for higher red colouration in the cooler winter was due to plants slowing down the production of chlorophyll, which is a green pigment, thus other pigmentation is more visible.

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I also thought that more blue and stronger (like sun vs. artificial) light is the reason for a more red colouration. That's why I started this thread.

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I also thought that more blue and stronger (like sun vs. artificial) light is the reason for a more red colouration. That's why I started this thread.

Hi Boris,

Does this mean that using blue tubes instead of white tubes will result in more red colouration? The lights I'm using are T5 lights. I've been experimenting but many highland Neps can't take the heat from the lights(our normal day temps can go over 30C in the shade to begin with).

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Hi Boris,

Does this mean that using blue tubes instead of white tubes will result in more red colouration? The lights I'm using are T5 lights. I've been experimenting but many highland Neps can't take the heat from the lights(our normal day temps can go over 30C in the shade to begin with).

The theorie is that plants grown under blueish light (above 5000 Kelvin) get the best colours but for N. lowii and its hybrids I have got some doubts.

Edited by Bojahnik

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The most red pigments are of the Anthocyanine type.

Well, there is some split. There are two main red kinds of pigments: anthocyanins (red to blue) and betalains (red to yellow). For Drosera and Nepenthes, they don't have anthocyanins but betalains.

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The theorie is that plants grown under blueish light (above 5000 Kelvin) get the best colours but for N. lowii and its hybrids I have got some doubts.

I see. I have to say that the N. khasiana I've got is more colourful under blue lights. However, I share your doubts for N. lowii. That species not only didn't turn red, it died very quickly under my blue lights. Others like argentii and platychila seem okay.

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Well, there is some split. There are two main red kinds of pigments: anthocyanins (red to blue) and betalains (red to yellow). For Drosera and Nepenthes, they don't have anthocyanins but betalains.

Could you point me in the direction of this paper, Dave?

Seeing as it isn't part of the "core" Caryophyllales, it appears Nepenthaceae doesn't fall within the betalain producing families of the order Caryophyllales, instead relying on anthocyanin production. Betalain is not a synapomorphy for Caryophyllales.

Screen_Shot_2013_09_09_at_11_31_27_AM.jpg

http://onlinelibrary...lgy7hbj25f319d2

Edited by Mato

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I tried to grow under lights for a experiment , with many different types of lights, except LED, and for me all were very disappointing in my part of the world, the only way I ever got good colour was from sunlight , and I know that not all ways possible in many parts of the world , but for me its easy , and natural , all the best wild colour plants are in full sun of case too .

winter coulour N.lowii

P1170216.jpg

Spring colour

P1140838.jpg

some N. lowii summer co loured pitchers

P1140964.jpg

P1140965.jpg

P1150040.jpg

For me what the lighting manufacturers statements said the light would do and what the light did were not the same , may be lighting tec has improved , I hope so for every one who needs or uses it .

Edited by snapperhead51

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I think in the N.hemisphere additional lighting helps the plants tick over in deep winter, but in my opinion the 'gain' in growth on large plants to does not outway the significant cost of running lights in a greenhouse. However lighting for seedlings is a different matter...

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