I am new to this forum, and I'm really impressed by the volume of information amassed by this group. I recently (2mo ago) bought two Nepenthes (gracilis & coccinea) and I have a few questions about them. They are doing ok for now, and coccinea is even producing new pitchers (but gracilis is not, even though they are growing only 2' from each other). I'd like them to survive for a long time, so I've read portions of a couple of books and have searched online for answers/advice, but the information I obtain is often conflicting. I was hoping people could provide me with some information based on practical experiences:
1. My growing environment: Small apartment in New England. Both windows receive low-light (even during the summer) due to being under a 4' overhang and nearby trees. What sort of CPs can be grown here (if any). I'm thinking of buying a few more CPs (VFTs, butterworts, sundews) but I'm afraid that the light levels are too low, so I was thinking about putting them in terrariums (individually or together). However, I've tried this before, and within a month, all my plants have died of fungal/slime mold infections. Enclosed terrariums and me don't seem to get along well.....any advice?
2. Lowland vs. Highland Nep. species: Can these be successfully grown together? Is one type better/easier to take care of in an apartment environment?
3. Light: I've supplemented my gracilis with 100W-equivalent florescent light (12" away). Is this the right distance? I've read that light is important for pitcher growth.
4. Humidity: I have a humidifier that keeps humidity ~60%. I mist the pitcher plants 2x/day with distilled water. I've also read that humidity is important for pitcher growth--is this enough? I'm afraid if I go higher, mold could start growing in my apartment.
5. Fertilizer: I'm foliar feeding with 1/4 strength Schutz 19-30-17 orchid fertilizer 2x/month.
6. Other CPs: I'm giving serious thought to buying a few more CPs (nepenthes, butterworts, sundews) and begining a collection. How is ordering online? Are the plants in good health? Any advice on housing the plants during the few weeks after shipping?
7. Terrarium: Because of the low light condition, I was thinking of putting the CPs together in a terrarium. Is this wise, or should I put them in separate containers? Also, in the past, most plants I've put in terrariums have died of fungal infections (probably due to the extreme humidity and stagnant air). Any suggestions on how to avoid this problem and still maintain high terrarium humidity? Do you take the plants out of their containers when planting them in the terrarium? If not, how do you make the terrarium look aestheticaly pleasing (i.e., I'd like the plants to look like their growing in moss, etc.).
Sorry for the long-winded message, but I thought I'd ask my questions at once. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks,