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Thread: Acclimating Sarracenia Outdoors

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    Acclimating Sarracenia Outdoors

    Hey everyone!

    I tried searching my question but couldn't find anything. If it's already been answered apologies for the extra thread. I haven't tried my hand at Sarracenia yet but will be changing that up soon. For most CPs I either use the humidity dome or baggy method over the course of 4 - 6 weeks when acclimating indoors. For those who grow their Sarrs outdoors:

    Do you acclimate them to the humidity with the baggy? Or just throw them straight outdoors?

    How long do you take to acclimate them to their full sun spot?

    Also: how do you know when to repot them into larger pots? I've seen some flavas with 1'+ tall pitchers in 3" pots?! Coming from primarily Neps it seems insane.

    Thanks for all the help!

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    Steve Booth's Avatar
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    Unless your climate is unusually dry or the plant has been grown in high humidity indoors for a long period, generally the humidty level wont matter too much. If it has been grown indoors try to keep it out of the wind whilst acclimating it otherwise the wind will draw moisture from the leaves faster than the roots can draw it up from the substrate as they have never had to grow large enough to cope with that loss of moisture indoors.
    Otherwise gradually acclimate them to full sun over a couple of weeks and they will be fine, they are very tolerant usually. The worst that will happen is that the leaves will get sunburn and eventually die back, but the new leaves that grow from the rhizome will be be fully sun tollerant.

    As for the repotting, again they are very tollerant of small pots but generally the taller and larger the better. you will find that your substrate will decompose over two or three years and that is the time to repot them, not for any other reason than they will start to deteriorate due to lack of acidity in the medium and often lack of oxygen too, or another yardstick is if they start to break out of teh pot they are in is the time to repot

    cheers
    Steve

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    scottychaos's Avatar
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    Mike,
    there are two schools of thought on this:

    1. acclimate them slowly to full sun and being outdoors.
    there are many different variations on what that means, and how to do it.

    2. Just stick them right in the sun and be done with it!

    I have been growing Sarrs and VFTs for almost 20 years, and I always do version 2.
    I used to bring my plants out of dormancy in Mid-February, then grow them indoors until they could go outside for the season in Mid-April..(mid February is still WAY too cold for them to go outdoors in my climate! (western NY) They would always get sunburned when they went outside..I have a write-up about sunburn, with photos, here:

    http://1stclass.mylargescale.com/sco...CP/page5a.html

    (the part about sunburn is about 3/4 of the way down the page)

    I tried the "acclimating slowly" method when I was first into the hobby, and quickly concluded
    it wasn't worth it! because IMO those "indoor leaves" are going to burn no matter what..
    if you acclimate slowly, or just stick them right in the sun, they will still burn, because they aren't adapted to full sunlight..So IMO its just better to get the plant right in full direct sun (which it needs) and let a few leaves burn, I dont think it hurts the plant..and the benefit of full sun outweighs the slight drawback to a few burned leaves..

    Now I am no longer taking my plants of out dormancy in Mid-Feburary..I am leaving them in their dormancy spot straight through Mid-April, until they can go outside on the deck for the season..
    That results in a FIVE month dormancy for my plants! which is much longer than they need (they really only need 3 months) and I have been concerned that 5 mights might be *too* long and perhaps weaken the plants, but I think this is the 3rd spring I have been doing it this new way, and its working fine..

    So, I vote for "dont bother to acclimate slowly, just plop the plant right in the sun.."
    in my experience, they handle it just fine..

    Scot
    Last edited by scottychaos; 05-10-2013 at 06:42 AM.

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    Yeah, I have to agree. Since the plants were grown indoors with suboptimal lighting, losing a few etiolated, green pitchers shouldn't cause too much heartache. The plants will acclimate quickly and the rhizome will not be affected as it's going to be kept wet anyway.

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    BS Bulldozer SubRosa's Avatar
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    I keep mine outside year round in a half barrel full of peat that's totally above ground and receives no winter protection beyond the microclimate created by the presence of my house, blacktop driveway and black slate patio. I'm located a couple hours north of you and further away from the ocean as well. Bringing them in at all seems an unnecessary complication for me, and it would seem to be more of one if I lived where you do. Fwiw my VFT survived in one of the same half barrels, and last winter was a colder one than we've had around here in quite a few years.

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    Thanks for all the great information everybody seems like they're a lot more hardy than I thought they'd be. I might have accidentally ordered more than I should have but I'll be jumping in the deep end soon with Sarracenias, super pumped! I'll have to develop some tough skin to witness the first few leaves burning though

    Scot: I checked out your page and really like the idea of chicken fence over the pot. Last time I put a bunch of CPs outside I witnessed the squirrels foraging through, knocking over pots, etc. I was going to try building a chicken wire enclosure but I like your idea a lot more!

    SubRosa: Your avatar is super tripppy, that being said it's awesome we can keep them out year long. I saw I lived in their natural zones so I definitely wanted to try them outside. With your experience with VFTs I might try to throw some of my extras out and see how they fare year round.

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    Maiden's Avatar
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    For myself, i just throw the plants outside(When i grow my sarrs outside). Exept for the seedlings of course!
    Maiden

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    In MD sarrs will do very well, we had a mild winter the last 2 years and i honestly regret not putting them outside year round, that said i do have an unheated sunroom that gets subpar lighting. All my sarrs from last year have made it theough the winter even though they are growing slowly right now, i did manage to throw them outside after the last frost 2 months ago and they are doing great. Like everyone else has said throw them outside they will be fine, there will be sunburn and it may look unsightly but it happens. Most or all of mine have had some sort of sunburn, well except for a few i got from a loal grower but they are more happy out then in

    They will be fine i promise, im about an hour or less from your part of MD an the temp is pretty much the same for both of our areas for the most part

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