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Thread: Feeding seedling sundews

  1. #1

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    I've got several species of sundew started and I'd like to know if I need to feed them to give them the nutrients to keep them healthy. I generally keep them in plastic bags until they're a reasonable size since ambient humidity is never very high here. They're all growing in peat so there's not a lot of the stuff that CPs became CPs to get from insects around.

    Should I even bother? I still have the D. gigantea seedlings - now 5 of them and growing pretty fast - in the peat, but they have never had a meal of anything at all as far as I can see.

    Andrew




  2. #2
    Moderator Colieo's Avatar
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    I never feed mine anything, they always eat enough springtails & other little life forms from the soil to get them to a good size, and when those no longer satisfy them, and they can handle more food, I feed them regular meals. So they are really hassle-free as far as feedings go for a while.

    Cole
    Duele no tenerte cerca, duele no escuchar tu voz. Duele respirar tu ausencia, pero, duele más decirte adiós.

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    Feeding seedlings is not necessary, or desirable unless the prey is very small. If it is so large that the trap cannot digest it, the remains will become host to fungi that will quickly kill the small tender plant. Feed them light.
    "Grow More, Share More"

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    Neps, Neps, Neps.........
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    I have several tiny Drosera petiolaris seedlings which are so gorged on tiny insects that supplemental feeding would be impossible. Other species seem to be less inclined to become covered in prey as seedlings. I just fed tiny ants to my D. indica and D. burmanii seedlings and they accepted them quite well. My D. nidiformis are only 3 months from germination and are about 3" tall and have never been fed but, as Tamlin stresses, receive very high light from compact-flourescent bulbs just inches from the plants.

    (As a post script I would highly recommend trying compact-flourescent light fixtures for your CPs. They are sold in specialty saltwater aquatic supply houses and are intended for use on live corals, which cohabit with photosynthetic algae and require strong light to survive. I have used these for years and they are amazingly bright and energy efficient as well. I use 2 'white' bulbs instead of 1 'white' and 1 'actinic blue' as are used for corals.)

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    The lighting is sufficent, but I was wondering more about nitrogen and phosphorous supplements. Since you say they don't need them I'll just let them continue on. There aren't many soil critters around since the pots are sealed in a plastic bag and I find that stops peat flies and stuff multiplying for some reason.

    Andrew

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    Lightbulb

    well, I don't know if it is a good idea to feed seedlings or not, but when my seedlings were about a month old I gave some a tiney itty bitty bit of betta bio gold pellot. Both sets of seedlings grew well, but the ones that fed are shorter and more robust while the ones that did not eat are taller and skimpy looking. They are all about 4 months now and I'm going to start feeding them more regularly, but what you do with yours is up to you. Do watch for mold though and should it show up, dab rubbing alcohal on the seedlings to kill it [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif[/img]

    -Darcie
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