Washing and sterilizing pots for Sarracenia.

Richard Hole

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I am thinking that for the healthy Sarracenia I may be able to pot one of the divided plants back into the same pot it came out of again without having to wash or sterilize the pot.  This is because the plants were growing all right in the pot that it came out of and there was no crown rot.  Could this be all right?

I was just thinking this because it takes many hours of work to wash pots and then sterilize them.  What it costs me in wages is more than the pots are worth new.  I can see the point of washing and sterilizing pots if the Sarracenia died or maybe better still not using those pots any more for Sarracenia, but instead for something else that is very hardy and common. That would save washing pots.

I used bleach (1 part bleach to 10 or 20 parts water) to sterilize the pots.  Hydrogen peroxide could be better because unlike bleach it may not have to be washed off the pots before planting in them.  However, it is expensive if it is diluted to about 3% in a bucket of water.  I am not sure how many pots can be sterilized in one bucket before the water and peroxide or bleach mix needs to be changed due to the dirty water?  If the one bucket could be used for hundreds and if dirty water did not matter, peroxide may be viable.

Your help would be appreciated
Regards Richard.

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i have used the same pot,straight away without washing or sterilizing many times without a problem.

I usually wash them out only in cold water and i haven't had any problems.

Sometimes you can over think a problem,if your really worried just bin the old pots and buy some new ones,save the money you'd spend on bleach or hydrogen peroxide and put it to the new pots plus you save on cleaning time.


Edited by ada
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I have only ever washed, never bleached my used pots. I wash the plastic pots in warm(ish) water then allow to dry.  I can think of no reason to ever use terracotta for CPs apart from Slack's double potting of Drosophyllum so I'll skip that.

I would only ever consider sterilising ( English spelling, ignore the American spell checker) a pot if there had been an infected plant in it previously and then that consideration would only last the time it took me to carry the said pot to the rubbish bin.

If you're going to differentiate between chemicals you need to be more specific than the generic term bleach, as this includes Hydrogen peroxide.


Bleach = Sodium hypochlorite,  Calcium hypochlorite,  Hydrogen peroxide, Sodium percarbonate and Sodium perborate. Plus, of course, the reducing agents  Sodium dithionite and Sodium borohydride.

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The bleach I am referring to is described at http://www.whiteking.com.au/faqs/ which states:

”White King bleach is chlorine bleach which contains the chemical sodium hypochlorite. This chemical kills germs and disinfects clothes and household surfaces. It is the same chemical that makes swimming pools clean enough to swim in”


If I ever do sterilize with bleach, do you think this bleach is all right to use?  I rinsed it off the pots.  However, I heard it should not do harm even if it is not rinsed off as it breaks down.


However, if I do the below only a quick rinse and no bleaching may be needed.


I thought it may be best to pot one of the same divided plants back into the pot it was orginally in rather than another pot that a totally different Sarracenia was in.  This is because if the pot had a disease in it, the disease would probably be on the plant anyway.  However, if the plant was planted in another pot that a different Sarracenia was in, that pot may contain a disease that the plant had not been exposed to which could cause a problem.  Do you think likewise?

Your help will be appreciated
Regards Richard

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I am in full agreement with ada. Our view is - If the previous occupant of the pot didn't succumb to a deadly disease then there's no need to sterilise. If the previous occupant did succumb then bin the pot.

The final decision rests with you.

Edited by FredG
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