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Thread: Dormancy for my new plants (D. binata and D. filiformis)

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    mcantrell's Avatar
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    Dormancy for my new plants (D. binata and D. filiformis)

    I got a new package of plants yesterday (no pics, but soon!):

    Drosera adelae
    Drosera filiformis var. tracyi
    Drosera binata [T form]
    Drosera binata [dichotoma 'Giant Form']

    I immediately repotted D. adelae into a bigger pot, as it is doing pretty good (although it has much smaller, redder, leaves than my D. adelae that came from Lowes Deathcubes -- probably because it was grown in better conditions before I got it) and I want to get some clumping going on. I also took a cutting from my D. adelae and put it in my clear box of water with my Cape Sundew cuttings -- and the Gro-Bulb I am using to keep that warm and bright promptly broke, so... ya... Bad timing.

    I also repotted the D. binata [T-form], as it looks, well, dead. If I didn't know better, I would say it's pot was empty. It was in a 3" pot, I put it in a slightly bigger 4-5" pot. I do not know how they look during hibernation, but I am a bit worried. Should I be seeing a bulb or a hibernation bud of some kind? When repotting, I simply slid the old plant, media and all, out of the pot and put it into the new pot, filling around it, but i didn't see much in the way of roots on the side.

    The D. filiformis var. tracyi has a few dead stems coming out of it, but it also has teardrop shaped buds of growth sitting there. I am planning on leaving it in it's current, small, pot until spring, then moving it to a 5" pot (if I'm going to have it inside during winter) or one of my new foam planters (if outside).

    The D. binata [dichotoma] is the one I actually have some questions about. It has 2 pale yellow (kinda sickly looking) leaves out of it's bulb, which are kinda hanging out ready to unfurl.

    How important is dormancy to a D. binata [Dichotoma]? I was going to repot it in a nice 8" pot real quick while I have time this weekend, but said pot would need to be a bit further back from the window if I went that route -- I plan on putting it on my bookshelf that is right next to the windowsill, overlooking my other CPs. I could keep it in a smaller pot (it's current 3", or a 5") and keep it on the windowsill, but I was hoping to get it in a 8-12" pot and let it go nuts with new growth in the spring.

    The heating in my apartment (central air, I cannot lower the temperature of just one room) is kept at 70 degrees while I am home, I could grab a sweater and drop the temperature if need be, or even crack the window ever so slightly. Closer to the window it hovers around 50-60ish. At night, when I turn off the heat, the room drops to the mid-low 60s, and the window drops to the low 40s. Would that be cold enough for D. filiformis var. tracyi / D. binata [Dichotoma] dormancy?

    I do have a VFT and S. leucophylla in the same windowsill, which appear to be having (very green) dormancies -- growth has stopped/never started with them (I rescued them last month from a local grocery store), but they don't seem to be dying back and aren't looking confused. Maybe the (extremely) limited photoperiod -- about 6 hours of direct sun -- is keeping them dormant?

    Outside isn't a good option right yet (next year maybe) -- it's hovering as a high of around 31-32 degrees, and lows in the mid twenties, and they're not acclimated to that yet. D. filiformis var. tracyi might be able to handle it, I donno if D. binata [Dichotoma] will ever be able to handle that.



    tl;dr: Binata T-form, Dichotoma 'giant': Dormancy required? 55-60 day/45-50 nights cold enough for dormancy?
    Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 02-07-2009 at 05:05 PM. Reason: Nomenclature adjustment

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    CPlantaholic's Avatar
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    That is true love- the willingness to sacrafice your warmth for a plant,

    Sounds like your D. binata [dichotoma] needs more light
    i don't know if dormancy is a "must," but my T-form formed a hibernacula in 38-50 degree temps. here is a pic of the hibernacula of the T-form. It's pretty distinct, so I'm guessing your's doesn't look like this: http://i451.photobucket.com/albums/q...s/3ef96927.jpg
    I read the D. binata [dichotoma] will die down to the roots when frozen and then will come up again in the spring- just like any normal flowering perennial.
    Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 02-07-2009 at 05:06 PM. Reason: Nomenclature adjustment
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    mcantrell's Avatar
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    No, I do not have that on my T-Form. Maybe it's buried. I hope so anyway...

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    Halt's Avatar
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    im thinking your vfts and sarr are in a light dormacy. deep dormacy is freezing temps, and light is just a little adjustment in temp, and less light.

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    mcantrell's Avatar
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    Well, Light or Deep, as long as they live, that's my concern.

    I just wonder if D. binata [dichotoma 'Giant'] *needs* a dormancy. I heard that D. binata can take one or leave it, and doesn't need one for long term survival, I wonder if D. binata [dichotoma] is the same way...
    Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 02-07-2009 at 05:08 PM. Reason: Nomenclature adjustment

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    I've had a variety of binata & filiformis types on window sills and I didn't do anything special for them in terms of temperature. They took whatever I gave them and responded to the change of photoperiod on their own. I've had California Sunset and straight up binata dieback to hibernacula in December, only to re-emerge ~6 weeks later, in January. I wouldn't go out of your way to do anything special.

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    Probably the only plant that has a critical dormancy is D. filiformis tracyii which should have a good tight bud formed at this time of year. The D. binata forms will go dormant with reduced photoperiod or in times of general stress and resume growth when conditions improve. I suggest you keep the photoperiod short for all except D. adelae.

    Unless you can give good light to the D. binata, it's best to encourage them not to grow in winter, since they tend to get etiolated and use their reserves doing so in less than bright conditions. However, if the plants are weak and still in active growth, you should try to give them the best light possible to get them established.

    Should the worst occur and you find no active growth with increased daylength for the D. binata, be sure to take root and leaf cuttings. Depending on the plant vigor, it might be wise to do so now.

    The primary factor in plant dormancy is the daylength, not the cold. I have D. binata forms that held their dormancy all winter in a warm terrarium with the photoperiod set at under 11 hrs. daylength. This applies to some extent to the genera requiring a true dormancy like VFT's and Pitcher Plants as well. Cold is a consideration, since it acts as a deterrant to microbal actions which can affect the plant when not in active growth, but dormancy mechanisms are controlled in plants by daylength, as is flowering.

    I hope this helps you get your plants established. Congrats on your new additions, they are all fine sundews!
    "Grow More, Share More"

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    mcantrell's Avatar
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    Well, the tracyi has a few "teardrop" shaped buds in the soil, it is not actively growing. I have not repotted it yet.

    The adelae has very small leaves, looks like it has several grow points already. It is in a 6" pot surrounded by my other plants, in a clear plastic tote acting as a, um "super-saucer" (keeping the rented apartment's carpet clean, woo).

    The Binata T-Form looks spartan, I don't see anything aboveground and am afraid to just dig into it and see what I find. There are no leaves to cut off for cuttings, and I was loathe to dig it apart to look for roots.

    D. dichotoma has 2 very long, spindly, yellow leaves, looks like they were dormant before the plant shipped, I am.. guessing?

    I did notice what I thought was a little red, push-pin sized bud in the middle of the plant but I can't be sure of that... I think it was in dichotoma but it might have been the other one.


    Current plans are to take cuttings of all of them ASAP, just in case they can't survive winter around here (either in my windowsill or outside).

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