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Thread: My Nepenthes

  1. #25
    PsychoSarah's Avatar
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    I thought you should get rid of them because it looked like it was about to close off the pitcher. That and I was unfamiliar with that behavior and thought the ants might be farming a pest like scale. And they genuinely aren't attractive.
    Come to me flies and crawling bugs. This plant wants to give you great big hugs
    Aren't I pretty, don't I smell good? I'd come to you if I could
    But I can't so you must come to me, I'm sure we will get along splendidly

  2. #26
    Whimgrinder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PsychoSarah View Post
    I thought you should get rid of them because it looked like it was about to close off the pitcher. That and I was unfamiliar with that behavior and thought the ants might be farming a pest like scale. And they genuinely aren't attractive.
    I would think the opportunity to study the relationship between the Ants and the Nepenthes would override any perceived revulsion one might feel about the appearance of the ant "nest". Isn't that why we grow these plants; to study their behavior and relationships to their environment?? Not every insect is a "pest" and not all insect activity has a negative impact on their host.

  3. #27
    BANNED
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    Quote Originally Posted by PsychoSarah View Post
    And they genuinely aren't attractive.

    You must be unfamiliar with in situ lowii pitchers

  4. #28
    Whimgrinder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mato View Post
    you must be unfamiliar with in situ lowii pitchers
    ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!!!

  5. #29
    Plant Whisperer Bio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mato View Post
    You must be unfamiliar with in situ lowii pitchers

  6. #30
    PsychoSarah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whimgrinder View Post
    I would think the opportunity to study the relationship between the Ants and the Nepenthes would override any perceived revulsion one might feel about the appearance of the ant "nest". Isn't that why we grow these plants; to study their behavior and relationships to their environment?? Not every insect is a "pest" and not all insect activity has a negative impact on their host.
    That is why that reason was last. Personally I wouldn't be into potentially risking the pitchers to observe ants.
    Come to me flies and crawling bugs. This plant wants to give you great big hugs
    Aren't I pretty, don't I smell good? I'd come to you if I could
    But I can't so you must come to me, I'm sure we will get along splendidly

  7. #31
    theplantman's Avatar
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    I get ants in the greenhouse all the time. Almost always they're nectar-feeding ants.

    IMO the benefits:
    --Free food... ants feed the plants
    --Keeps leaf diseases down. The extrafloral nectaries are a source of sugary food for black mold and mildew. By eating and removing the sugar, the ants keep the leaves clean and I don't get ugly stuff marring the apprearance of the plants.
    --Really, really, really cool to show to people. It is easy to say "N. bical lives in symbiosis with ants!" The minute people see it actually occurring, however, they are awestruck. I have seen this time and again.

    Downside:
    --Many nectar-feeding ants also farm pests like aphids, mealybugs, and scale, which make sugary excretions. They will truck nymphs of these pests into the greenhouse through small cracks and deposit them on the plants. Minor annoyance for me, compared to the sense of wonder you experience at seeing the mutualism right before your eyes.

  8. #32
    Whimgrinder's Avatar
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    Couldn't have said it better myself, Kevin!

    Not twenty minutes ago I was marveling at a big pitcher of N. Mastersiana, loaded with ants. Nom, nom!

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