Nepenthes hamata #2
I recently mentioned that my second hamata just produced a dud pitcher and the plant growth slowed way down. It turns out that the NZ sphagnum became too compacted and caused the roots to rot away. The tap root is still long and healthy looking and there is no foliage die-back so I re-potted using rooting powder and with a soda pop bottle greenhouse over the top in reduced lighting. This has worked for me on other plants but I wanted to check here to see if I should continue to place the plant in cool conditions at night or just leave it in the regular rack with the other plants until growth begins again? I like the look of the green moss growing on the surface but after reading that it can cause problems I decided to let it go. Hamata #1 is growing vigorously so I will leave the moss in place unless a problem is detected.
QUESTION: Would it be wise to repot every six months or so as a rule in order to keep fresh, loosely packed NZ sphag' around the roots.
Here is a picture taken today just before re-potting, the plant is about 2" across leaf tip to leaf tip:
hamata is one of those that doesn't take kindly to repotting. Pouts for some time afterwards..
Probably should add more aeration to the media if it's becoming compacted that often. Like large chunk perlite..
Yes, keep it in cool highland conditions. Repotting every six months is too frequent for almost ANY plant, especially neps (except perhaps rapidly growing/crouded seedlings). Ideally, you should try to KEEP from repotting if the plant is doing well, because at times plants can TAKE up to six months just to recover from the shock of repotting, especially if you wash all the soil off the roots.
When you repot, put the plant in a pot slighty too large for its present size so that the plant can have time to grow into it and fill the space. Also, as Mass mentioned, use a variety of coarse materials in the mix so that the soil will be open and airy, and last a longer time without breaking down (perlite, fir bark, lava rock, etc.-- in addition to a good portion of sphagnum). That way you don't have to repot as often, and the extra airation will help keep the roots from rotting.
I personally am not a fan of using pure sphagnum for any Nep. I agree, it is too dense and stays way too wet if you're not really careful with your watering; especially the New Zealand sphagnum.