Pinguicula Wall, now also at California Carnivores!

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Hello all,

My Ping Wall (http://www.cpukforum...ic=17560&st=140) now has a twin!

Today my good friend Stephen Davis & I built a Ping Wall for California Carnivores. We used many of the same materials, but Steve had some great ideas for improvements.

We began by attaching a horizontal wooden beam, under the supervision of Peter D'Amato himself:


And here's Steve leveling the wooden beam while I hold the eggcrate lattice that we used to create two panels with sphagnum.


We then attached the plastic gutter on top of the wooden beam (which was put there to support the weight of the water-filled gutter and panels):


Here you see Steve and I creating the 1st panel, after having spread sphagnum over the eggcrate, and about to wrap it with bird netting:


To help keep the bird netting in place, Steve & I cut the smooth edges of the eggcrate before adding the sphagnum, leaving the edges of the lattice sticking out, so that we could hook the netting under these. It was a bit troublesome to do this, since we had tos ecure the netting around all 4 sides, making sure it was pulled tightly over the sphagnum to hold it in place before flipping the panel over -- but not too tight so it wouldn't rip either.

In order to keep the Sphagnum from sagging and the soil from dropping out, for my wall we sewed the whole thing together with fishing line, after adding each layer of sphagnum -- and this took HOURS!

So Steve had the great idea to use plastic cable strips instead, similar to these:


We tied the strips at several spots along the middle of the panels after each layer of sphagnum, pulling them tight. Here's a pic of Steve and Damon Collingsworth attaching the cable strips:


(Damon gave us a hand during his few breaks -- there were lots of customers visiting California Carnivores this Sunday, enjoying the beauty of CPs in spring!)

We also used the cable strips to attach plastic U-shaped edge trims along all four sides of the panels. The edge trims helped seal the bird netting, sphagnum and soils along the edges of the panels (another one of Steve's great new ideas).

Here's a pic Steve took of the edge trim and eggcrate lattice:


And here's another pic Steve took of the edge trim attached to the panel by a cable strip:


Also, here's a pic of a smaller panel that Steve put together at his house as a test run, before we committed to the full panels on Sunday:


Here's a pic Damon took of Steve attaching the cable strips to the 1st panel, while I trimmed the ends of the strips so they wouldn't stick out:


Axel Bostrom also gave us a hand. You can see him below helping Damon to spread his Ping mix inside the eggcrate of the 1st panel (right), which already had sphagnum on the opposite side, held by bird netting and cable strips. The soil was then covered with sphagnum and more bird netting was wrapped around to seal it all in, followed by more cable strips. You can also see in the pic below the 2nd panel getting its first layer of sphagnum (left).


Below you can see the first finished panel being put inside the plastic gutter:


And then the 2nd panel was placed in position:


Notice in the pic above that along the top of the panels we attached another large wooden beam. To this large beam (dark color) we attached two smaller wooden beams (lighter color), which we used to sandwich the top edge of the panels, thus propping them up vertically (and hiding the edge trims too).

Here's a pic Steve took showing the top part in more detail. You can see the bracket used for the large wooden beam, as well as the smaller wooden beam holding the front side of the panel (the second beam holding the panel up from the back is not visible):


And finally, here's Steve and Damon planting the first Pings once the wall was complete:


So how long did it all take us to do all this? About 5-6h of work (excluding travel and shopping for materials). It was actually really fast if you consider that it was only about 1/3 of the time it took us to build my Ping Wall last year, with several people working non-stop.

Damon, Peter and Axel will now have the fun job of choosing which CPs to plant where on their new wall. Good luck guys, I hope it fills out quickly and becomes one among many CP highlights at California Carnivores -- everyone should make the effort to come and visit them in a few months!! :)

Best wishes,

Fernando Rivadavia

Edited by Fernando Rivadavia
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The idea is that the sphagnum will wich the water to the top, so adding water to the gutter should be sufficient to keep everything wet.

I think this will work better at CC, because their greenhouse is so humid. At my place I end up having to use a spray bottle every once in a while to keep the top humid.

Best wishes,


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Many Thanks Fernando

I will try to make a mini version of the Ping wall, I have many seedlings of Pinguiculas moctezumaes that I would like to see them on a wall, Thanks for sharing this vertical growth technique, patenting your idea you should lol.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey everyone,

Steve & I spent the day yesterday at California Carnivores, planting all sorts of CPs on their new wall. Of course they have an amazing array of CPs to choose from, Steve & I felt like kids in a candy shop. :)

Here are some pics Steve took, starting with a pic of me putting in one of the first plants:


And here's what the wall looked like towards the end, left side:




Right side:


And here's the whole wall, after several hours of work -- are we ready to show it off to Damon yet??


Here's Damon carefully inspecting our work:


And here's Damon watering the wall, while I inspect his work:


We kept a careful list of what we planted, first the non-Pings:

Heliamphora heterodoxa(?)

Darlingtonia californica

Cephalotus follicularis

Drosear aliciae

Drosera capensis (red & narrow leaf forms)

Drosera slackii

Drosera spatulata

Utricularia reniformis

Utricularia sandersonii

And now the Pings:

P.agnata 'true blue'

P.agnata 'red flower' (label was propably supposed to have read 'red leaf')

P.ehlersiae 'Santa Gertrudis'





P.laueana 'red flower'

P.moranensis ('potosiensis' form)

P.moranensis ('potosiensis' form) 'red leaf'

P.moranensis (form??)

P.moranensis 'E'

P.moranensis 'G'

P.moranensis 'J'

P.moranensis 'libelulita'

P.moranensis 'Pachuca'

P.moranensis 'rosei'

P.moranensis site 1 #2 Oaxaca


P.primuliflora 'double flower'

P.laueana 'fuchsia flower'

P.laueana 'salmon flower'



P.rectifolia 'Huahuapan'

P.agnata X cyclosecta

P.agnata X gypsicola

P.agnata X laueana

P.agnata X moranensis

P.agnata 'red leaf' x emarginata

P.agnata 'red leaf' X emarginata 'B'

P.ehlersiae x oblongiloba

P.emarginata X moranensis 'superba'

P.emarginata X 'Weser' (moranensis X ehlersiae)

P.gigantea X cyclosecta

P.gigantea X moctezumae

P.gracilis X moctezumae

P.gypsicola X moctezumae

P.jaumavensis X cyclosecta

P.laueana 'fuchsia flower' X esseriana

P.moctezumae X pilosa

P.moctezumae X zecheri

P.moranensis 'A' X laueana

P. moranensi ‘ANPA’ X laueana

P.moranensis X ehlersiae

P.moranensis 'superba' X moranensis 'caudata' Hamburg

P.rotundiflora X hemiepiphytica

P. 'Aphrodite' (= agnata X moctezumae)

P. 'Encantada' (= laueana X moctezumae - such a beautiful dark pink flower!!!)

P. 'Florian' (= debbertiana X jaumavensis)

P. 'Fraser Beaut' (= moranensis??)

P. 'John Rizzi' (= moranensis X ??)

P. 'Kewensis' (= moranensis X moranensis 'rosei')

P. 'Pirouette' (= agnata X (moranensis X ehlersiae))

P. 'Sethos' (= ehlersiae X moranensis) X 'Fraser Beaut' (= moranensis??)

P. 'Titan' (agnata X macrophylla??)

P. 'Weser' (moranensis X ehlersiae)

P. ‘Yucca Do #??’ (= ehlersiae/ esseriana/ jaumavensis??)

(A few other Pings I found without IDs in random pots around the greenhouse were also added.)

In a few months the CP wall at California Carnivores should look AWESOME!!! :) Hopefully it will look nice for the Bay Area Carnivorous Plant Society meeting that will be held there on July 20 -- when Peter D'Amato will be autographing the brand new edition of his book the Savage Garden!

Best wishes,

Fernando Rivadavia

Edited by Fernando Rivadavia
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Dear Fernando, "Yucca Do 1717" is not P. esseriana. Not if my P. esseriana are correctly id'ed anyway.

This 1717 is also the same plant that was called "accession". During the winter months, the stems elongate which makes this the only butterwort to vine slightly up to 10 cm in one season. This is not P. esseriana which simply forms a resting bud of very loose winter leaves that falls apart into gemmae like leafets if disturbed.

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I don't, but the flower are typical for P. esseriana.

I think people need to realize Ping flower patterns repeat and cannot be used to reliably separate or combine species--more data is need in conjunction. The best example I can give is P. gypsicola and P. moranensis--the flowers are nearly the same! If the leaves were more similar they might have been put into the same species--incorrectly.

This is a really cool idea. Folks with smaller areas might want to think about using a scaled down version for improved cultivation of certain species... Surely you'll put in a couple of N. campanulata??? It is just about the perfect thing for 'em to grow on and good for display.

Edited by Dave Evans
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Hey Dave,

I agree, Ping flower colors/patterns are often not reliable and we are too often making too many judgements based on a few clones introduced to cultivation (see the P.jaumavensis population I found several years ago in this link: An even better example of similar flowers and divergent leaves is P.moctezumae and P.elizabethiae. these grow in neighboring canyons, the flowers are identical but leaves very different. I'm sure these had a very recent common ancestor.

Best wishes,


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  • 4 weeks later...

Hello everyone,

So about a month has gone by, I went back to CC to visit the wall and this is what I found:





The top of the wall was very moist, the sphagnum seems to be wicking the water up very well (even better than mine, which is not as tall). Most plants/ leaves seem to have caught on and I believe the wall will fill pretty nicely and quickly too!

I can't wait to see it again on July 20th during the annual CC Summer Potluck event!

Best wishes,

Fernando Rivadavia

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  • 1 month later...

Hello everyone,

Today was a big day at California Carnivores, with the launch of the of the new edition of the Savage Garden book by Peter D'Amato. Here's a pic of the proud author and his "baby", taken by Steve Davis::


There were certainly lots of people there for the party:



There was also lots of food, including a few CP-themed dishes:


All the plants looked great as usual, but the big novelty for me was the beautiful new grand entryway, where they've covered tree trunks with mosses, bromeliads, orchids, begonias and Pings. See the pic below (taken from their Facebook page):


But of course I was most curious to see how the CP wall that Steve & I set up was doing, 2.5 months later. I was very happy to see that nice green club mosses were now covering most of the wall. Most CPs on the wall seemed to be alive and thriving, and lots of Ping leaf cuttings were sprouting small plants. Surprisingly, Darlingtonia was still alive and even the small Heliamphora was sending up two young leaves, one from each growing tip.

Here's an overview:



And here's a close up of the VFTs, D.aliciae, Cephalotus, and a few Pings:


Of course not everything was doing well and there were a few large empty gaps where probably no Ping leaf cuttings took hold, and melted away beyond detection. D.slackii was still there, but not looking so hot. Same with Cephalotus (which is barely visible above the VFT in the pic above), but this one was showing signs of life by one of the growth tips.

During the big event, I took the opportunity to do some weeding and I added a few more sundews, a large stolon of U.reniformis, and several Pings (plants and leaves). I also added a few large Pings to the BACKSIDE of the panels, which were clearly visible through the wooden lattice from the sales side. That should look interesting a few months from now. :)

Best wishes,

Fernando Rivadavia

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  • 4 months later...

Hello everyone,

Quick update. I went to CC yesterday and the wall is looking good. Winter is kicking in early and Damon has started letting it dry out a bit. I was happy to see that msot everything was still alive, including most Pings, Utrics, Drosera, Cephalotus, Darlingtonia, and Heliamphora. The Pings are of course going dormant, so the wall looks a little empty right now.

Here are the pics:






I intend to go back maybe in a month or two when all the Pings should have winter rosette leaves available for me to pluck and spread around the wall. This way, the wall will hopefully be covered in new growth when Spring comes around.

Best wishes,

Fernando Rivadavia

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  • 1 month later...

Even more motivation to get out to California Carnivores this spring. :) Can't wait to see the wall in person and bring updated photos to this thread!

Awesome work, Fernando! Wish I was still living in the Bay Area so I could attend the BACPS meetings! :D

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