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Thread: Strange topic - but does anyone else love the smell of peat?

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    kwende's Avatar
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    Strange topic - but does anyone else love the smell of peat?

    When I was - oh - about six or seven my father brought me to a carnivorous plant exhibit at a botanical gardens in St. Louis (I'm from Nebraska but have relatives who live there). I had read about carnivorous plants but had never actually seen any. My imagination was really kicking when we pulled up to the building in which they were housed. As I turned the corner into the exhibit, apart from being greeted with some of the most magical looking life on the planet, I distinctly remember that biting, almost sour smell of peat and sphagnum. Maybe it was part emotional and part just having smelled it distinctly for the first time (and therefore correlating that smell to that excitement), but I've always really enjoyed the smell of peat.

    Later in life this translated into an equal love for real peatty scotch.

    But I digress. At any rate, whenever I enter the west portion of my house (where my plants are kept), and I start to smell that acidic, peaty smell again, I get all excited and just have to walk the extra ten feet to check out the plants for the day. I'll stand there for fifteen minutes with my glasses pulled down to my nose, examining the movement and growth of each plant (how it's curled around a bug, or how a new pitcher is evolving). But that smell, it always gets me. Whether I'm looking at someone else's collection or my own, I sometimes feel the need to nose over the top of a couple plants and just get the full experience.

    We're all a bit "strange" given that we even have this interest in the first place, but I'm wondering if I'm the strange among the strange for having such a full sensory-based love of these plants. I feel the leaves of my pitcher plants, I listen as the soil pops a bit while water seeps in, and so forth. About the only thing I haven't done is tasted the plants

    Call me weird, but I really love this hobby. Such wonderful little plants.

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    mcmcnair's Avatar
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    I've tasted Sarracenia and Nepenthes nectar and the dew from Sundews. I inspect my plants every morning after I shower and everytime I come home from school and just before I go to bed. For me its not so much the smell of peat but the smell of good soil that gets me excited about plants. As much as I hate the stuff Miracle Gro soils tend to smell incredible. Oh and I also talk to my plants a fair amount of the time. For instance, the other day my N. x dyeriana decided to unfurl a leaf on top of my Pinguicula hanging baskets completely starving them of all light and I just was like "Why would you do that there's tons of room in every other direction and you choose to unfurl behind the nests twined between wires so I have to redo these nests. Thanks a lot dyeriana..." then I realized I was talking to my plants. true story. Needless to say you're not alone
    NCSU's Carnivore Nut
    Original President of the CCPS & Co-Founder
    Mason M.
    My Growlist

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    for me it is fresh cut grass or some nice rich topsoil....both such great smells. mm mmm

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    Formerly known as Pineapple Nepenthesis's Avatar
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    I like the smell of dry sphagnum.

    That's earthy smell, but it is more pungent and smells more living than just dirt.

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    That One Guy's Avatar
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    I just really love the smell of gasoline...
    Gettin there...

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    kwende's Avatar
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    Mcmcnair, what does the nectar taste like?

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    mcmcnair's Avatar
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    sweet but its got a weird texture to it once it dissolves, its kind of slick feeling. Hard to explain... try it sometime
    NCSU's Carnivore Nut
    Original President of the CCPS & Co-Founder
    Mason M.
    My Growlist

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    Peatmoss's Avatar
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    I do smell good!
    <Av8tor1> as big as peat is, the bear runs not him

    Big Boss, Founder, and Major Cheese of the Canadian Association for the Cultivation of Carnivorous Plants... Ask if you want to join, I'm the only member...

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