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Trishorton

Dying Pitchers

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Hi All

I have been looking at photos of some amazing nepenthes, but have noticed that some of the older pitchers have started to die back. How long to do you leave the pitchers on the plant before cutting them off?

Trish

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I don't know what official Nepenthes geeks would say but I know from seeing it in the video news from Sarracenia Northwest in the past that they at they just advise to cut off when they start to look ugly.

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I just leave them till they're fully withered then nick them off at the top of the tentacle.they're still photosynthesising and have functional digestive glands so I that's why I always wait till the pitcher is completely dead.

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I never cut off anything even after they are dry and brown and long gone. I like seeing the old and new together like in nature.

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Interesting. I will follow your advice in future and not be so hasty to cut them off. I thought it would be detrimental to the plant to leave them on, but of course it makes sense that they stay on in nature without harming the plants! The only other thing I have to worry about now is whether or not to pot up off shoots and take cuttings from leggy plants and how to do it!

Thanks for your help.

Trish

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Interesting. I will follow your advice in future and not be so hasty to cut them off. I thought it would be detrimental to the plant to leave them on, but of course it makes sense that they stay on in nature without harming the plants! The only other thing I have to worry about now is whether or not to pot up off shoots and take cuttings from leggy plants and how to do it!

Thanks for your help.

Trish

the ICPS has a handy guide for doing nep cuttings here

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Just had a look a the page - it is very informative. Thank you.

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I would agree with maxxima. As a rule I only remove old pitchers once the tendril starts to wither (cutting through withered part not into live or soft brown tissue) If the bottom half is alive it'll still be absorbing nutrients. The same goes for leaves, only once completely withered and 'dry' (not just brown). It might not look the best all the time but this way I know I'm not taking anything from the plant.

However, If your plants are getting large and leggy then a bit of pruning isn't going to do much harm and since you'll have some spare bits may as well pot 'em up as cuttings eh?

If the offshoots are small I'd leave them (unless you're re-potting anyway) until they're 'reasonable sized' plants themselves.

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Thank you all for your advice and comments. I am not going to do anything with them at the moment as I have a flower spike on Rebecca Soper. I’ll wait until that has finished. I may leave it until next spring now although the plant is getting quite leggy. I’ll have to keep lowering it so it doesn’t touch the roof!

Trish

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