Minibog for Cold Climate
I just graduated from College (lived in a dorm all 4 years, couldn't grow anything), and want to get back into growing carnivorous plants. I will likely be moving to the Upstate New York (Ithaca/Finger Lakes area) in the next several months and If my future living situation has enough outdoor space (like an apartment balcony/roof) I would like to set up a mini-bog. The area I am moving to falls within USDA zone 5a, and has very long and cold winters, with lows of -15f and short, relatively mild summers. It falls withing the native range of Pinguicula vulgaris, Drosera rotundifolia, and Sarracenia purpurea v. purpurea.
I want to grow Sarracenia purpurea v. purpurea, Drosera rotundifolia, D.anglica, D.intermedia, D. filiformis v.filiformis, Pinguicula vulgaris, and Pinguicula grandiflora in the minibog. Should these all work in my area?
Even though P. vulgaris is native to the area I am moving to, I have heard it is difficult and dependent on very specific microclimate conditions. I have heard the sites in Upstate New York are all dripping cliff faces and not a typical bog situation.
Also, since I will likely be living in an apartment (and growing on a balcony or roof), the mini bog will be raised and not in-ground. I have heard from other growers that I have to prevent it from freezing solid. What can I do about this?
Only one recommendation - I don't know who has had success with them, but none of my seeds from rarexoticseeds germinated (D. Anglica and P. Vulgaris) even though I followed the stratiication process and all.
Sounds like a good idea!
I'm not planning on growing my plants from seed, that just adds another layer of complexity. I was planning on buying the plants and setting up the mini bog sometime next spring.
I live in an apartment in zone 5 right on the edge of zone 4, and grow on a patio, so for what its worth, here is my advice. Assuming you only want one bog garden, I would grow only the purp, Drosera rotundifolia, D.anglica, and D. intermedia. These can all live together in the same pot fairly well, although you will probably want to keep things a little dryer then intermedia will find optimal. For me, D filiformis struggles under the conditions the above plants find acceptable, esp. in the spring, they aren't too expensive though, so if you lose one, its not really a big deal. As for the pings, they can be pretty tricky. Keep in mind, even grandiflora is only "easy" compared to other temp. pings. many of which are somewhere between hard and ridiculous.
The other advice I would give is don't use a black pot. Remember, when the temps hit 90, and they will, it can be pushing a 100+ in the sun. Too hot for black pots. I killed my favorite purp and a couple of oreophilas this way during an extended heat wave. Definitely not one of my finest horticultural moments.