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Thread: Nepenthes soil in nature

  1. #1

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    Here is one for the field observers/growers(Andreas, Rob-hope you are reading this one)
    I was wondering how many people out there adapt their compost formula, based on the habitat description of a particular species of Nepenthes.
    For example, if a certain species grows in mossy forest, as an epiphyte, does it actually grow in the moss on the trees? Therefore, wouldn't sphagnum moss with some bark be a good choice? I think most people who try to cater to epiphytes use more of a bark medium(or other chunky materials) and less sphagnum or peat.
    I think we touched a little on laterite, which seems a good component for somwone trying to copy ultanmafic or ultrabasic soils.
    I guess another example would be trying to grow N. lavicola with lava rock(scoria) in the compost or at the bottom of the pot.
    I get curious when I read the specific habitats of these plants, even though most grow them in their standard composts.

    Regards,

    Joe

  2. #2
    Nepenthes Specialist nepenthes gracilis's Avatar
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    Certainly NOT a Nepenthes naturalist or seen them in the wuild but from what i've read and done.

    Epiphytic species do best in a very airy,light,well drained compost. Lowii is one of the best examples for this and I have mine in pure sphagnum and it grows great. Just be sure not to pack it too tightly or if you wanna be on the safe side I'd add a touch of perlite and orchid bark.

    For terrestrial species you can go with your basic mixes. Peat,perlite,sphag,orchid bark,coconut chips,vermiculite,laterite,etc. For an example I'll use Bical you could use a more comapact compost if you don't have other materials at your use. More peat and perlite could be used if you don't have some chopped sphag or orchid bark to help aerate it. Hope I was of some help.

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    Yep, that's what I do too, mix up fine grade orchid bark with long fibered spahgnum about 50:50 and a handful (not very precise about it) of charcoal chips when I'm mixing up highland potting soil. I would like to try growing a plant as a true mounted epiphyte like my orchids, in a clump of wet living moss attached to a branch. Perhaps a smaller one like N. inermis would do OK this way?

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    Hmmm, I'd really like to learn more about terrestrial vs epiphyte species...

    What is the best book available to learn more about particular species' habitats??

    "Nepenthes of Borneo" by Clarke is out of stock in the US, but is available through the UK amazon.

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    Neps of Borneo and Neps of Sumatra & Pen. Maylasia are fantastic books! I sure wish somone would write similar monographs on the other species from the Phillipines, Indonesia, India, Madagascar, etc.

    I can direct you to a distributor of the two Clarke books (as well as the smaller two "field/park guides" which accompany these two books) inside the US if you send me a private message.

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    Josh

    At the risk of sounding pompous, here's a bit of a geography lesson.

    The island of Borneo is divided into two separate countries with the top one third belonging to Malaysia (which is further divided into two states called Sabah and Sarawak) and the TINY country of Brunei stuck in the middle of those two.
    The bottom two thirds of Borneo is owned by Indonesia and is called Kalimantan, which is also broken up into 5 states - Kalimantan Selatan (South Kalimantan), North, East, West and Central.
    Indonesia is a country of about 16,000 islands including (some you may have heard of):
    Java - the only Nep species as far as I know is N pectinata/ gymnamphora but they grow GREAT coffee!
    Sumatra - as in the book "Nepenthes of Sumatra and..."
    Komodo - where Komodo Dragon's come from
    Sulawesi - where N hamata comes from
    Irian Jaya - what Indonesia calls the Western half of the island of Papua New Guinea which it owns, the eastern half is independent and is still called Papua New Guinea. The Western Irianese are fighting for independence from Indonesia and you might hear about it in the news sometimes.
    Bali - where I live, no neps [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/sad.gif[/img]

    So, someone HAS written a book about Neps of Indonesia.

    I can tell you that Charles has no plans to write similar books about the Philippines or any of the other places at this time sorry.

    Cheers, Troy

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    Troy,

    now that is some info. that i didn't know and you just tought me something new. thanks for that info.

    to bad charles doesn't plan on writing a book about the neps of the Phil. they have some pretty neps from there.
    George McKay

    In The End We are All Dead
    Florida

  8. #8
    swords's Avatar
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    Thanks! I didn't know any of that stuff either! So I didn't detect any pomposity (is that a word?). [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img]

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