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Gaz

N maxima winter care advice needed...

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Hi all,

I'm looking for winter care advice for my new N maxima, I live in Derbyshire in the UK so this question will be mostly aimed at any Nep growers in the UK Midlands I guess but all advice, no matter where you live, will be gratefully received.

My wife bought me the nice N maxima for a birthday present this year and it has grown really well during the summer. I understand it is a highland variety.

As this is my first Nep I'm not sure what will be the best way to get it through the winter. I've done a bit of reading up but you can't beat advice from more experienced growers. Here in Derbyshire we can expect some sub-zero temperatures and mid-winter daylight is down to about 8 hours or so.

I've added some heating to the greenhouse and I'm hoping to be able to keep it at a minimum of somewhere between 6-10 degrees C. I also have a couple of heated propogators for the smaller plants (Drosera, Pings, Utrics etc) but nothing similar into which the N. Maxima could fit so it will be sat on the greenhouse staging. Will this be adequate or do I need to bring the plant into the house for winter? What minimum temperature can it stand?

Do I need to put it under artificial light? Does this species have any dormancy requirements?

Thanks in advance for any advice you have.

Cheers

Gaz

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Hi Gaz

Keeping it in the greenhouse will be fine. I would recommend that you put bubble wrap around the greenhouse as well as using the heater. As long as the temperature does not go below 7 c then the plant should be fine.

regards

Mark

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Gaz

if this is the only plant you have that requires about 10 degrees, (less won't kill it as long as it is only a rare occurance) I would be inclined to bring into the house and place in a sunny window.

If you consider that every 1deg c increase is an increase in heating costs of at least 10%, then you will see that raising temps by an additional 4-5 deg for 1 plant will cost another 50% in fuel, it's just not worth it.

If you had lots of plants it is a different matter.

An alternative is to erect a growbag tent inside the greenhouse (a solution with additional problems of its own) and heat that with a tube, but in your case I would definately take it inside where it will be safe and likely stay active too.

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Hi guys, thank you for all the good advice.

I do intend to insulate the greenhouse with twin-wall polycarbonate some time soon. However, at the moment I only have this 1 plant which requires the raised temperature but won't fit inside my vitopods. That being the case I think Dicon's idea probably suits me best this year so I'm going to take it into the house for the winter.

I don't want to take any risks with this plant which, apart from being my first Nep, was also a present from the other half...so losing it is definitely not an option ;)

Thank you all again.

Regards

Gaz

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N maxima is the best choice for a starter Nep. If you can kill one of those, you might as well give up growing CPs and concrete over your garden.

Any windowsill is good, I've kept them on North and South windowsills with cold or warm winters with no problems.

The only word of caution is that one Nep leads to another, maxima leeds to burbidgeae (another good windowsill plant) and before you know it, you're prepared to kill for an edwardsaiana. Just saying.

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ha ha....thanks Gareth, yes we picked the N maxima because it was described as a good beginner plant, hopefully I won't need to concrete over the garden any time soon ;)

I've been so busy with my Drosera, Pings and Utrics that I've so far resisted the urge to take the plunge and get another Nep...but I'm not sure how much longer I can resist the temptation......as we all know "resistance is futile" to quote a well know sci-fi series.

Cheers mate

Gaz

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