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Thread: How did you get into CP's?

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    bananaman's Avatar
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    How did you get into CP's?

    I just wanted to ask how did you guys get into CP's?

    For me, I came across a picture of some Nepenthes raffelsiana while researching for a project 5 years ago. I then HAD to try to grow some...
    So, I read up some on CP's, and decided to grow some.
    After getting a Drosera spatulata, Nepenthes ventricosa, and an "Akai Ryu" VFT from a large, general purpose online retailer.
    They arrived in terrible shape, but after nursing them back to health, and seeing how awesome they looked, I was hooked!
    Last edited by bananaman; 02-15-2014 at 05:51 PM. Reason: I forgot about a rule...
    Hope I helped!
    -bananaman

    Please check out My Growlist!

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    Basically I ordered some Utricularia graminifolia to grow and sell, way back when a few strands of the stuff was like $15. I'd read it was a weed and I'm always looking for nice easy to grow plants that can sell for a bit. So it just made sense to order some. One Utric, led to another Utric, and another, and just one more...ok I'll stop now...oh one more won't hurt...there is room right? As long as my wife doesn't see the package she won't notice the extra plant...I did have a problem for a few years.

    Then I met Mr. Cephalotus...

    I've been using my plants to pay for their electric and equipment for years, part of the reason I think my wife hasn't tossed them all out the window. I don't make a profit per say, and if you figured out my $ per hour wage...well I would be on par with a lot of sweat shops. But any hobby that can pay for itself is a win in my book.

    The amount of terrariums/lights/plants graminifolia has paid for over the years would shock a lot of people.

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    Cthulhu138's Avatar
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    Since I was a kid, I always had the odd vft or Nepenthes hanging around the house without giving them much thought aside from the novelty of their value as curiosities. I grew N.gracilis in several of my dart frog tanks but still thought relatively little of them. It wasn't until one autumn day about 15 years ago when I was visiting a friend who was working on a construction site in NH that the seeds of obsession really germinated.

    They were leveling a swampy area on the side of a road to make way for a new drug store. I looked to the side and in a muddy pile of bulldozed muck and sludge was a semi crushed Sarracenia purpurea purpurea. I walked over to examine the plant since I'd only seen them one other time in a cranberry bog as a kid when I noticed several more. The pitchers were mostly smashed to bits but the roots and rhizomes were still intact. I asked my friend "Were these just growing right here ?". He told me that they were everywhere and most had already been loaded into dump trucks with the rest of the "debris" and hauled off. He said that if I wanted them I'd better grab them because they were about to be under a few tons of hot top. I scooped up a total of 8 plants along with a few handfuls of the sphagnum moss that was in the pile with them.

    When I got home I quickly researched their care and got to work. The hardware store down the street had childrens wading pools on sale for $5.00 (since it was the end of the season). I picked one up along with a few bales of peat moss and headed home to dig a hole. An hour later I had my first "bog garden". I just hurriedly threw the peat in, hosed it down, covered it with the sphagnum and stuffed the plants in. The bog proved successful the following spring when all the plants flowered and started putting out new pitchers. I also noticed that many Drosera intermedia and rotundifolia were emerging from the moss. During that summer I added S. x'Judith Hindle', S. x'Dana's Delight' and 3 typical and 2 'Akai Ryu' Dionaea plants that I picked up from local garden centers.

    I never expected these plants to survive a NH winter outside unprotected but the following spring, all plants were doing just fine. I decided to abandon the small wading pool and construct a larger bog at my mothers house using a flexible pond liner. After my success with the bogs I started reading more and more about carnivorous plants and started to branch out into other genera and expand the collection.

    That first real bog while somewhat untended along with all 8 of those original Sarracenia plants is still intact and growing to this day.

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    scottychaos's Avatar
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    From my CP webpage:

    For me, it all began sometime in the 1970's..
    I don't recall the exact year, but I was probably around 8 to 10 years old, so it was the late 70's.
    One day I was at Tioga Gardens with my family, and I saw Venus Fly Traps for sale!
    Like all 10 year olds, I thought it was the coolest thing ever and I had to have one!
    and I got one!

    I remember trying to feed it bugs that summer..it died after a few months..
    which probably also happens to all 10-year olds with their first VFT..
    I didnt have the slightest idea how to take care of it..
    no books, no internet, no nothing..
    "oh well..they must be really hard to take care of." I thought..
    It was cool while it lasted..

    Flash forward to 1994..when the CP adventure really begins!

    Im now 25 and had just moved to Rochester, NY for my first "real" job after college.
    I remember watching something on TV with my roomate Rob..
    somehow, and I dont remember how, (it might have been WKRP in Cincinnati!)
    the subject of Venus Fly Traps came up..

    Rob said "I had one when I was kid, but it died.."
    "me too.." I said.."It would be cool to have one again"..
    "yeah, it would" said Rob.."I wonder where we can get them?"

    "yeah..me too..hmmmmm"

    and that was it!
    the seed was re-planted in my head, and I got my first Sarracenia and my second VFT that spring..
    and I have been obsessed with them ever since.

    I checked the Rochester library, and they actually had a few books about Carnivorous Plants!
    I was honestly amazed..those books taught me how to actually cultivate CPs properly!
    Information that was unavailable to me when I was ten years old..
    So one Summer circa 1979, when I was 10 years old.
    then 1994 to 2014 continuously..20 years this Spring!
    Scot

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    Decumbent Fanatic Jcal's Avatar
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    Great thread. I've always wondered how members got into these plants.

    I was breeding orchid mantis about 3 years ago and someone posted that they wanted to trade for sarracenia purpurea seeds. I got some seed and quickly got them to germinate to my suprise. There was a decent supplier for cps in SoCal and I was able to find some good plants at lowes the following months. I started trying to collect everything but found that I really enjoy purps and cephs. I do still have a handful of the purps that got me hooked in the hobby!

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    With the massive amount of orchids I've grown and had passed through my hands over my life how have I never know there was an orchid mantis!

    Must read up on these guys!

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    bananaman's Avatar
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    They are pretty cool looking. I'd probably keep them if I had enough space to. They are really beautiful insects.
    Hope I helped!
    -bananaman

    Please check out My Growlist!

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    Decumbent Fanatic Jcal's Avatar
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    One of the baby orchids


    Female


    Male - super tiny!


    I have some better glamor shots of the females somewhere. I'll have to dig them up. They are very beautiful bugs. I don't miss the hassle of caring for them though!

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