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Thread: Coffee and Nepenthes

  1. #25

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    awesome information!
    Thank You for sharing!

  2. #26
    tysneps's Avatar
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    Newman,
    Thank you very much! This is incredible info and further makes me want to take a plant physiology class, as I have been considering doing!
    IMO, nepenthes probably have a lot of the IAA oxidase enzyme, which is why we see this incredible result (even on the most difficult of species) with coffee. Plenty of times, nepenthes don't grow like regular plants, but like genetically disadvantaged runts. When we add coffee, however, we see the growth that should be expected from healthy plants.
    I feel we would see maximum results when using coffee as a "release agent" when mixed in with other fertilizers and things like superthrive hormones. Doing so would require an appropriate photoperiod of course.

    P.S I have used root auxins on nepenthes before with mediocre results. Maybe I should have added coffee!
    Also, maybe part of the reason why some species are more difficult and slow is because they have more of this IAA oxidase enzyme! This is all speculation, of course.

    Once again, thanks!
    -Tyler

  3. #27
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    I find this very interesting matter too. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the plants contain that IAA oxidase which slows down growth? What is the evolutionary advantage of growing slow? I always was under the impression that a plant does everything to grow as fast as possible, but of course I don't know much on plant physiology and such...

  4. #28
    tysneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bellsprout View Post
    I find this very interesting matter too. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the plants contain that IAA oxidase which slows down growth? What is the evolutionary advantage of growing slow? I always was under the impression that a plant does everything to grow as fast as possible, but of course I don't know much on plant physiology and such...
    There could be many factors at play here. Of course, first reason that comes to mind is what Newman put in his post here:

    Quote Originally Posted by Newman View Post
    It is important to note that the degradation of IAA and similar auxins via IAA oxydase is a normal process that all plants are doing in order to regulate growth (ie seasonal growth spurts).
    The key phrase here is seasonal growth. Plants must slow down growth in winter when the days are shorter in order to not use more (building tissues) than what they take in (photosynthesis) and exhaust themselves. Although, degradation of IAA and similar auxins for the purpose of reduced photoperiod doesn't make much sense in nepenthes habitat since they are nearly equatorial. Meaning, they experience basically the same amount of light all year. They don't really need this mechanism in their habitat, but they still show use for it when people like me grow them in more northern regions, they definitely show the correct response and slow down in the winter.
    Of course, they still need this enzyme to regulate and slow down the flow of auxins for other reasons other than shorter days. It would be like if you had no restriction on the hormones in your body. What do you think would happen? Not good!
    Short answer: This mechanism is important in regulating all plants hormones. If you have a solid 12 hour photoperiod for your plants, feel free to unlock this restriction with coffee periodically.

    I can see your line of thinking evolutionarily, but this INDEED would be a evolutionary advantage!
    -Tyler

  5. #29
    jimmy uphwiz's Avatar
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    i too have used the coffee treatment on my nepenthes for years.
    and it does seem to make some difference , but from time to time i also notice the same plants IE burkei will have bursts of growth with out the treatments , so over time i use it less and less.
    but if you have great results id keep it up.

    i typically have leftover coffee in the pot and when it strikes me i pour it to all my neps.

  6. #30
    bellsprout's Avatar
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    Ok Tysneps thanks for explaining. Now I know I should give my neps too much coffee because I would exhaust them too much. My conditions aren't yet the best and they don't receive too much light. I'll start with coffee in spring then

  7. #31

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    I'm going to practice getting this right too when i finally find my first Nepenthes. I plan on doing the coffee treatment in Spring and then washing it out after a few days or a week, then fertilizing normally once a month or something throughout spring into summer, where i may repeat the coffee thing again. I think it's best to dilute the coffee a bit to get good results, so i will try doing that too.

    maybe I'll do this with my other plants too like my bromeliads.

  8. #32
    Stasisgate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tysneps View Post


    Although, degradation of IAA and similar auxins for the purpose of reduced photoperiod doesn't make much sense in nepenthes habitat since they are nearly equatorial. Meaning, they experience basically the same amount of light all year. They don't really need this mechanism in their habitat, but they still show use for it when people like me grow them in more northern regions, they definitely show the correct response and slow down in the winter.
    That's an interesting point you brought up there Tysneps. These are my thoughts on that, having also taken Plant Physiology and considering the nature of Nepenthes as a carnivorous/insectivorous plant:

    Using carnivory to supplement their diet with nitrogen and other nutrients which would otherwise be lacking or in very minute quantities in the soils that they grow in, this IAA oxidase would come in very handy in regulating growth. If the plants were to use up the nutrients stores too quickly it may lead to poor growth (lanky or stunted), or maybe even death (hypothetically) if available nutrients ran out. So the IAA oxidase may serve a very beneficial purpose in causing slow but strong growth for the overall survival of the plant by using available nutrients wisely in the wild tropics and not just in temperate regions.

    In cultivation Nepenthes are usually fed and taken care of in such a way that there is almost always (depending on the grower) a constant supply of nutrients, whether from fertilizer or feeding the pitchers, and IMO adding coffee to cause the increase in growth shouldn't be a problem once growing conditions are optimal. Newman really did shed some light and important information about the effects of coffee (caffeic acid) on auxins in plants.

    Just my 2 cents on the topic.

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