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Thread: Cutting back dormant Sarr pitchers

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    Sgt Sarracenia SgtSarracenia's Avatar
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    Cutting back dormant Sarr pitchers

    Yes I know this question is premature, but it is driving me nuts thinking about it after looking at my own plants and from pics. When Sarrs go into dormancy and pitchers dry out, how far should they be trimmed down? I cannot find anything that even suggests an answer, but it seems that there are no two people that trim them back to the same length or same place on the pitcher.

    Thanks for looking and any help would be appreciated.
    "Only when you live to learn, will you learn to live"
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    Sarracenia freak Brie's Avatar
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    Some people snip em off down to the rhyzome, while others will cut MOST the leaf off and leave 3-4" for the plant to photosynthesize with over the winter, esp if its a plant that doesnt produce alot of phyllodia.. Personally I do the latter, then when growth resumes in the spring, I hack everything off.

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    MICKEY's Avatar
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    so i should cut last years pitchers off even though there green except the very top

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    Sgt Sarracenia SgtSarracenia's Avatar
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    That is what my original thoughts were Brie. Thanks
    "Only when you live to learn, will you learn to live"
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    Class 5 Nepenthes hoarder lance's Avatar
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    It really depends. . . I usually wait till about febuary and then I cut everything off to make way for new growth. Whatever you want to do is fine. . . it shouldn't effect them either way since their dormant.


    In addition to growing plants, I design and build RC planes powered by Tesla batteries. Check out my progress at www.chargedplanes.com

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    scottychaos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MICKEY View Post
    so i should cut last years pitchers off even though there green except the very top
    Its not a question of "should"..its just a personal preference..
    And there are two different questions being discussed here:

    Question 1. How far to cut them back for winter dormancy.
    Answer: it depends..
    a. if you are leaving them outside for winter dormancy, then you dont need to cut them back much at all.
    because un-cut and green leaves will provide a "boost" when the plant comes out of dormancy the following spring.
    b. If you are not leaving them outside, and have to use "the fridge method" or variant of that, then its best to cut everything right down to the ground,
    because the plants will be in darkness all winter, they wont be growing, and the excess leaves (if not cut back) could provide a home for mold growth.
    I cut my down to about 1" tall, and I bag up the plants and use the fridge method:



    Question 2:
    Cutting back old pitchers during the growing season..
    its just a personal preference, there is no right or wrong answer.
    The best thing to do, IMO, is to just cut back the parts that have turned brown and crispy, (and are clearly dead)
    but leave any parts that are still clearly green and alive..because those cut pitcher sections
    will still provide photosynthesis for the plant and contribute to its overall health.
    but..
    IMO, its also not a bad thing to cut old pitchers away completely, to the ground, just for the sake
    of aesthetics..(even if only the tops have started to turn brown) because there will still be plenty of remaining pitchers,
    and cutting back the old ones probably wont harm the plants at all..
    So, its just a judgement call..

    With my Sarrs, I usually do one "mid-season trim"..
    sometime in July or August I will go through the collection and snip away all the older, half-dead or mostly dead pitchers..
    just to clean things up and make the collection look nicer..
    each plants still has plenty of remaining "newer" pitchers, and IMO this trimming does not harm the plants at all..

    (these same ideas pretty much apply to VFT's as well)

    Scot

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    MICKEY's Avatar
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    thanks will trim some this afternoon to pretty them up

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    Sgt Sarracenia SgtSarracenia's Avatar
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    Thanks guys ( and Brie). So it is pretty much an aesthetic or personal thing. Good, I would rather cut them down to 1" or so if they get burnt/crispy. The half way thing gets to looking like a tangle of junk. I assumed it was a preference thing but wasn't sure. Thanks.
    "Only when you live to learn, will you learn to live"
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