Welcome to my parlor said the Flytrap to the Spider

21 11 2005

I’ve noticed lately that all of my friends have become very introspective lately on their Blogs, I’m not going to do that today.

Several months ago we purchased a Venus Flytrap, since then I’ve become rather obsessed with finding insects to feed it, aside from one really confused mosquito, the only bugs that have that I found are spiders. I’ve been really concerned that they aren’t working, as more and more of the traps have turned black and fallen. So went the online search of “How can I improve my green thumb for exotic creature eating plants.” What I found is this:

Dionaea muscipula, or Venus’s Flytrap, is a low growing perennial herb native to coastal bogs of North and South Carolina. (I don’t live anywhere near here) Leaves will reach up to 5 inches long with flat, winged petioles. The blades are reniform (kidney-shaped), 2 lobed with the lobes hinged and fringed with stiff cilia. The upper surface has 3 sensitive hairs that when stimulated by insects cause the lobes to close together quickly (much this closing happens within ~1/30 of a second, or fast as I would put it). Plants are easy to grow and are great plants for terraria. They are hardy in USDA zone 8, (Again, I don’t live anywhere near here, I’m not even sure what zone I’m in) but growing them in nature may be a challenge because of their need for low nutients and low pH — difficult unless you intend to simulate their natural bog environment.

Culture: Dionaea muscipula need full sun to partial shade to high indirect lighting and a humid atmosphere with a moist to wet soil. If grown in containers, the container should be placed in a tray with at least 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water at all times. (Done this) Water must be distilled or rain water because they do not tolerate city or hard water. During the winter months, they should be allowed to go dormant from Nov-Feb. (Ah ha! This is what I needed to know) Plants need to have winter temperature of 45-50° F (5-10° C) or the small bulbs should be lifted and stored in moist peat at a cooler temperature.

Now that I know it’s suppose to go dormant I’ll stop worring untill Feb when I can’t get to wake up. Utill then I have to help my daughter stop calling it a “Penis Flytrap”. She’s four and doesn’t understand why Mommy and Daddy laugh when she says it.

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