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Thread: Potting and growing questions when in native plant range

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    Chicxulub's Avatar
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    Potting and growing questions when in native plant range

    Hello all

    I live in NE Florida where I have a bunch of native CPs already. I've collected some that are growing on my land as well as recently purchased a few Sarrs to round out my collection of native Florida species. I'm wanting to pot them up so I can have them in my back yard to enjoy without having to go slog through the woods to a bog. I have a 16" diameter pot. The planned stocking is all six Florida Sarrs that are either mature or nearly mature. All plants have a single growth point. I will also ideally include Pings and Droseras from the yard. I have one, maybe two species of Ping and two, maybe three species of Drosera. Utriculara subulata is also present, but I won't be intentionally gathering any of those. I'm sure I'll get some regardless.

    Anyhoo, my questions are as follows:

    If I live in native CP land, is there any reason to assume that shoveling some of my yard dirt into the pots would be bad?

    I have a 16" diameter pot. Would my planned stock work, or should I take it back and find something bigger?

    I assume that even though I'm in the native range, I'd need a way to make sure the pot stays wet. Correct?

    Is there any reason to think that my well water would be bad for the plants? It is untreated and AFAIK the same thing they're getting anyway.

    Here's pics of the pot and the planter to hold the water:



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    If I live in native CP land, is there any reason to assume that shoveling some of my yard dirt into the pots would be bad?
    My guess is if it has CPs already growing in it it is ok, maybe not great but ok. However, you run the risk of all kinds of nasties/creepy crawlies using yard dirt so you might want to sterilize before using it.

    I have a 16" diameter pot. Would my planned stock work, or should I take it back and find something bigger?
    6 Sarrs plus 3-5 Pings/Drosera seems like a lot to me in a 16" pot, I think bigger is better, or get two or three.

    I assume that even though I'm in the native range, I'd need a way to make sure the pot stays wet. Correct?
    Yup.

    Is there any reason to think that my well water would be bad for the plants? It is untreated and AFAIK the same thing they're getting anyway.
    Could be fine or maybe not, depends on your local geology. You can buy a cheap tds meter and find out or you could try calling your state Dept. of Natural Resources, they might know. Heck, the info might even be online.

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    Chicxulub's Avatar
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    If 16" is top small, how big should I go? The ideal would be to have everything in one pot, though I realize that may be a logistical impossibility.

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    Hi Chicxlub

    You don't say what type of Sarracenia you have, but given that all the tall Sarracenia varieties tend to form clumps, and in a short space of time (2-3 years) as suggested by HH your pot will probably be overcrowded by the end of year 1. As you are in a native area, can you get hold of the bottom of a barrel or something about 30" diameter and line it with polythene if it has holes in? That would give you plenty of room for 3-4 years growth by which time the plants will probably need dividing and the soil replaced anyway.

    With regard to the soil if there are plants growing vigorously in it already then you will be fine but it may be worth doing a PH test on it just to be on the safe side.

    Wet as HH says yes, if you do make a barrel type bog, be sure that you include some means of regulating the water level.

    Your water supply - test it for total disolved solids, if you have something less than 50 PPm then it should be OK so long as is washed through occasionally with rain or rainwater.

    Cheers
    Steve

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    Chicxulub's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies.

    I'm going to take the stuff back to the hardware store and buy some larger stuff. I have a 140 gallon Rubbermaid that I'll use to hold water and I'll try to get something about 30" to plant then plants.

    How deep should I keep the water column as opposed to the pot? I intended for a mean water table of roughly six inches below the surface of the soil as happens with the area naturally, but I would also allow for occasional flooding. The rain will do most of the work for me as this will be outside.

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    Just out of curiosity, why don't you just plant them in the ground right in your yard? If your going to use your yard dirt anyway it sounds like you could just plant them up wherever they will get enough sun and you should be good to go. No criticism intended here, I'm just interested in your reason.

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    Steve Booth's Avatar
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    Hi Chicxlub

    Good idea with the pool, or you could line your container with polythene and put a cork in it to regulate the water level. The water level in these artificial conditions, if kept too high for long periods induces rot (lack of oxygen to the roots) or the substrate goes anaerobic and the carbon dioxide created floods the soil again depriving the roots of oxygen and kills the plants. Possibly in the wild this effect is lessened by the fact that the water is moving all be it slowly and has some entrained oxygen. There is no problem in occasional innundations or high water levels it is just constantly high levels that does it. A good yardstick is dont keep the level above 2/3 ds of your pot height for long periods.

    Cheers
    Steve

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    Chicxulub's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huntsmanshorn View Post
    Just out of curiosity, why don't you just plant them in the ground right in your yard? If your going to use your yard dirt anyway it sounds like you could just plant them up wherever they will get enough sun and you should be good to go. No criticism intended here, I'm just interested in your reason.
    I was under the impression that introducing nonnative plants was generally frowned upon, even if they are in a de-facto garden. There are six Sarracenia species in Florida, but only three where I live.

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