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Thread: Where to grow my Mexican pings

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    JMurphy97's Avatar
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    Where to grow my Mexican pings

    I have a couple mexican pings in my highland set-up in the basement. From when I got them in the spring they just took off, getting four times their size and more since I got them. But I've been starting to wonder first if they are too wet. Next the temps are getting down into the 40's at night. I have the neps sitting on LFS, but they pings are sitting in water. I try to keep the humidity high since they are young neps. I have a set-up where I have my D. falconeri and other of the same sundews. I kinda feel like I should move the pings up there and grow them more on the dry side. I also am not sure what to look for as far them changing their type of leaves. What would you do? I have them in a mix of peat,sand, and vermiculite.

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    You'll get a variety of opinions. Between what I have read and what I have experienced, they could use decent lighting, well-drained media, alkalinity, a pretty good day/night temp differential, and drier during the fall/winter.

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    With a reduced photoperiod you'll notice distinctly different leaves coming from the plants center. At this stage reduce watering as the process advances until the medium is nearly dry. Humidity at this stage isn't much of an issue. Give the resting rosettes good light on a short day cycle. Lightly mist on sunny days.

    As daylength increases and non-dormant leaves are produced, increase watering, humidity and feeding. I used a light airy medium, and did not note any great difference concerning acidity or alkalinity
    "Grow More, Share More"

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    Here's how contrasting the leaves can be:

    Summer:



    Winter:


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    JMurphy97's Avatar
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    Well my lights are on for 16 hours a day. I don't plan on dropping them down at all. They all are growing and don't look to be changing. Do they need a dormancy?

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    They don't seem to need it but we're talking about plants from the mountains of Mexico, so mimicking their environment would be the best. That means some variation of day/night temps and ~11-13 hour photoperiod.

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    Moderator Joseph Clemens's Avatar
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    Mexican Pinguicula do not have a "dormancy". Dormancy is like hibernation, and is without active growth or development. These plants simply change their leaf form when their environment changes. In cultivation they do not always do this, nor is it essential for their health. A few of these species retreat beneath the soil when they are in their Winter leaf form - most of these prove they aren't "dormant" by flowering from beneath the soil.

    For more than four years I grew all of my large variety of Mexican and other tropical Pinguicula continuously floating in trays of water under "cool white" fluorescent lights with varying periods of light and dark. All thrived very well, those that received the highest levels of illumination, duration and intensity, without generating high temperatures, responded best. For various reasons my entire collection has gone without water (other than fluctuating humidity levels) since the late Summer of 2007. I did maintain my usual lighting, and those that have done best have been under illumination continuously during this entire period.

    I will soon post a more detailed description, and include photographs.

    One environmental factor that I believe to be of importance is the natural intensity of UV light in the regions where these plants originate. In the vicinity of the equator, natural UV intensity is some of the most intense on the planet. Then consider that they often grow at high elevations in this region, which subjects them to even higher levels of UV light than they would experience at lower elevations. One of the few ways to provide high UV levels in cultivation is by use of fluorescent lighting which leaks excess UV while in normal operation.
    Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 12-19-2008 at 08:51 PM.
    Joseph Clemens
    Tucson, Arizona, U S A

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    drosera5150's Avatar
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    Hey Joe!
    It will be a pleasure to see some updated pics of your wonderful Pinguicula...

    Happy Growing,
    Brian.

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