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Thread: Watering too often...

  1. #9
    A leuco by any other name would still be as gluttonous. CorneliusSchrute's Avatar
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    Here is the one I am worst about letting dry out. A ventricosa, I think. I have watered it as described for three or four months at least.




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    Keeping 1/4'' to 1/2'' of water in a tray will not cause rot if done properly. Just allow it to dry out for a couple of days before you add it again, and only pour water through the tops of the pots every month or so, not every time you add water to the tray. This method is useful because it allows the plant to absorb what it needs, without becoming involuntarily saturated. There are many, many growers who use this method exclusively and grow very robust, healthy plants. You will want to add some aggregate to your mix if you decide to do this, but it should ultimately save you some time between waterings.

    Also, there is a huge difference in peat grade and quality. The stuff you find here is a "soil conditioner," and is usually too fine to be useful. You want fibrous peat. If you do decide to add a bit of peat, you will want to mix it thoroughly with coarse sand to ensure it doesn't become too compressed on its own, then you can add other aggregate ingredients, like perlite, pumice, orchid bark, or whatever. Again, there are many growers who only use this and their plants appear to be healthy.

    Personally, I think Nepenthes do best in sphagnum, but I have used other mixes that work well for respective species: kanuma clay and laterite for rajah, pure sphagnum for Sumatran species or small seedlings, peat/sand and limestone for campanulata, pure coco husk for mira - these mixes depend on what plants you're growing and where you're growing them. Plants in a terrarium will need a different media than plants on a windowsill, and rajah will need a different media than mirabilis. Cater to the species, not the genus, and keep environmental factors in mind.

  3. #11
    A leuco by any other name would still be as gluttonous. CorneliusSchrute's Avatar
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    Quality info, Mato! I think i will experiment aling the guidelines you set up in your response.

    Any specific info or recommendtions for N. ventricosa, alata, Miranda, or Wrigleyana? All are in sphagnum now.

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    If those are the mass produced clones, they should be fine with nearly anything. Judging by the size of your pots, you will need aggregate in the mix to avoid compaction. Just mix the sphagnum with some sort of aggregate (perlite is often the go-to) and keep an eye on the plants. Don't pack the substrate - just place it in the pot over the roots and water it to fill any gaps. Check the roots in a few months to see if the watering method is working in relation to the media. If not, loosen it up or add more sphagnum, whichever you think it calls for.

  5. #13
    A leuco by any other name would still be as gluttonous. CorneliusSchrute's Avatar
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    Roger that! They are the widely available, mass produced varietals. As such, I will follow your sugsstions above. I probably won't repot until the days get a bit longer, but I will post the results after I do.

    Thanks again, to all!

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    I can second mato's suggestions. I have used a 60-70% LFS mix for a Nep I hated watering inside, and used the tray method to bottom-water only. It would stay wet for quite a while. After the water in the tray was soaked up, I'd have an additional 3-5 days before I'd need to fill it again. LFS as a wicking agent works beautifully, and provided you don't pack the pot densely there will still be a decent amount of air space in the root zone.

    Also--I know I advocate this a lot but Turface or Aquatic Plant Soil is excellent for Neps. It's water absorbent and does not compact. So unlike Perlite, Turface will add just a little bit more water retention to your mix if it's going dry too fast. And perhaps the best trait of all: it doesn't rot or break down or decay! It will keep your media puffy for years.

    If you're planning to toy around with media ingredients, getting your hands on some Turface would probably be really helpful.

    http://www.turface.com/distributors/state/
    Last edited by theplantman; 02-09-2014 at 04:01 PM.

  7. #15
    Formerly known as Pineapple Nepenthesis's Avatar
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    I never have issues with watering. I pot in either pure Sphagnum or Sphagnum with some perlite. I usually use live Sphagnum as a top dressing which keeps a lot of moisture in. I put trays under the pots to save water and keep moisture in too. I water whenever the live Sphagnum on top starts to get drier than it should be.

    They can be much wetter than people think as long as there is good air circulation and light.

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    I agree that it is somewhat of a hassle to keep watering it. Although my alata has survived about a decade with some periods of no watering, it doesn't make pitchers and just seems to be limping along. Is the container in the photo you posted drained?

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