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Thread: Making lots more Drosera binata 'Marston's Dragon'

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    Making lots more Drosera binata 'Marston's Dragon'

    I realize D. 'Marston's Dragon' is not exactly uncommon, nor is it difficult to propagate. This thread is mainly to document the origins of some plants I'll post as giveaways. I also wanted to ask some questions along the way, as I have a almost no experience propagating any Droseras.

    I picked up a rather vigorous looking plant at the hydroponics store across the Bay from me (the place I go to buy pots and other supplies). I like to try to propagate new plants if possible. I didn't realize what I had gotten myself in for.

    Here's the new plant, which was $16. There is a coke can for scale; the pot is about 7 inches in diameter:



    As a first propagation step, I decided to divide it, since it looked like there were several in there. In fact, there were enough that it was hard to make out the structure of the leaves easily. I'll post the results shortly.

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    This is what I found when I emptied the pot, and separated the individual plants:

    The tape measure is hard to read, but it's 5 feet total length.



    When I potted them up, they looked like this (there are 23 total). The pots are 4 inches (top row), 2 3/4 inches (lower rows). I realize this is too small, especially the bottom ones, but I figure I will be shipping many in the near future:



    Here's what one of the individual plants looks like:


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    I also have a couple leaves that broke off during the transplantation process, as well as some roots, which are not attached to any plant (I did not intentionally remove any):



    So questions:

    1) It sounds like propagating the leaves is easiest by floating them in water. How should I chop them (if at all)? My bias would be to try one unchopped, the other chopped into small pieces, and see what happens.

    2) The roots: Cut into segments? If so, how long. What medium to bury them in, and what depth?

    3) Seeds. One plant is blooming, and has dead flowers. Will it make seeds? Is it self-pollinating? I know the seeds will not make 'Marston's Dragon', which is a hybrid, but are they worth growing (if there are any)? Will they need to be stratified?

    I suppose one could ask why I would want to make even more of these, but since I have the material already I might as well play around with it.

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    kulamauiman's Avatar
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    I like to use lfs and keep roots or parts near surface. In fertile. Non compatible with either parent. Suspect is triploid

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    Lotsa blue bluemax's Avatar
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    You have chosen a good plant variety for propagation. All the members of the D. binata group are easy to propagate through leaf and root cuttings. I prefer to cut them into sections maybe 2" long, mainly because they take up less space that way. Having long-fiber sphagnum moss in the water they are floating in seems to increase the success rate and gives the pieces something to hold them up near the surface. You have enough material to produce many plantlets.
    - Mark

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    kulamauiman: Interesting. If it's triploid that might partially explain the large size. I did a search and ran across a post where someone had been sold what were described as 'Marston's Dragon' seeds. Perhaps an honest mistake by someone sold a D. binata var. dichotoma mis-ID'd as D. binata 'Marston's Dragon'.
    Last edited by RandyS; 04-28-2015 at 11:52 PM.

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    bluemax: living or dead sphagnum?

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    I'm not growing this cultivar, but I presume D. binata var. dichotoma should respond in more or less the same way.

    Just as a word of caution about using lfs in the water for leaf cuttings, as the plantlets grow quite quickly the ends of the leaves can get tangled with each other and the lfs, making them quite tedious to separate!

    The flower stalks from the flowering plant can be chopped into ~1.5'' segments and floated in water as well. Plantlets from flower stalk cuttings seem to be especially vigorous, and as the flowers are infertile anyway this provides a source of free propagation material.

    Root cuttings take rather quickly as long as they're kept moist. I like to put them on chopped lfs. Leaving the cutting horizontal on the surface seems to produce several smaller plantlets, while burying one end and leaving a bit sticking out seems to produce a single larger plantlet.
    Last edited by w03; 04-29-2015 at 12:10 AM.
    "Potential has a shelf life." -Margaret Atwood
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