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Thread: U. nelumbifolia Growing Tips

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    U. nelumbifolia Growing Tips

    Believe it or not, I googled cultivation for them and about all I can find is a reference to LFS and high water table. Do they need a cold period or should they be in warm temps?. Are they a good terrarium plant or are they best on a grow rack? Do they need a big day/night temp differential?

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    swords's Avatar
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    I've got mine in a net orchid basket of live sphagnum moss in with my highland Nepenthes which means cool temps (days 65-75*F and nights 40-50*F) and high humidity (80-90%). I water it like a Nepenthes, flushing the pot but I don't have it sitting in water.

    I treat all my larger Utrics this way, I also fertilize them with Grow More Urea Free Orchid Fertilizer, they seem to respond well but too much kills the moss - if you're using live moss.

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    I have no live moss, unfortunately. Trade perhaps?

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    swords's Avatar
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    I'm establishing some live moss that I trimmed off on my last maintenance day, I should have enough to trim in a couple months but I haven't got any onhand at the moment.

    You can use the dried / dead stuff too just don't pack it densely let it be loose.

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    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    This Utricularia is primarily an epiphyte so I grow mine in an artifical urn (brandy snifter) in live Sphagnum moss. From what I've read these like highland conditions. Mine is just growing on my plant shelve near the door/window and gets filtered light with maybe an hour of direct sunlight a day. It didn't seem to like ambient humidity, the photosynthetic stolons that grew out of the snifter were burning. So I covered it with a dome. I've had it less than six months so expert I am not. Mach and Ron Lane have much more experience with these than me.

    Pyro's growing methods should work just as well.

    I can send you a handful of some of Mach's Hawaiian Sphagnum moss and a handful of moss from Clint's bog in Georgia. The Hawaiian stuff is a monster and will needing trimming every few months.
    Grand Hotel... always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.

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    i dont do pots. amphirion's Avatar
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    also, does not light bright light. likes shaded conditions.
    " You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." -Inigo Montoya
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    Do not think this one will need a dry period to flower. I have kept mine wet all year and get flowers all the time. There may be a minimum chilling requirement to induce flowers, but there is also a point when it gets too cold and flower buds will abort on the spike. Maybe mid 30s F. I tend to keep them in artificial bromeliad urns composed of 1 gallon plastic water jugs with the tops cut off. The top can used to help add more humidity. So far have used un drained containers and had decent luck with live sphagnum with some large chunk perlite and or lava rock in the mix. Once it gets going it will go walking all over the place..........

    it doesn't seem to like bright light. Might be in my case a UV light issue.
    this one is near the open door of the greenhouse getting more light. rarely puts leaves up above the sphagnum



    Back side of greenhouse on lower shelf . Does fine nice leafs. Flowers all the time

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    RL7836's Avatar
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    The Iperua utrics have been somewhat tricky for me. In general, they are quite easy to get them to be moderately happy but getting them to thrive (get huge, flower consistently, etc) is a bit problematic.

    Last year in my 75 gal tank (where all the pots are ether on a shelf or sitting on 3-4" empty pots) I 'allowed' an aerial stolon from a humboldtii & a nelumbifolia to escape into the lower region - as I was curious how they would grow. The bottom of the tank is filled with a thin layer of light-starved live LFS and huge D. prolifera and a water level that normally ranges from 0 to 1/8" or so. The nelumbifolia acted as if it went to heaven. Within a few weeks it sent up multiple flower stalks. Both plants sent up leaves above the existing potted plants. The nelumbifolia leaves eventually reached 4-5" in diameter and blocked a significant chunk of light from the other plants - so I had to cut them all back. The humboldtii leaves are also 2-4 times larger than any in pots but due to their different structure, do not block as much light as the nelumbifolia - so the humbo has been allowed to stay (for now).

    My potted nelumbifolia typically have leaves which are 1-2" in diameter and flower when they are in the mood (1-3 times / 2 years). The potted humboldtii leaves have maxed out ~1-1.5" wide 7 ~6-7" tall (compared to 2-3" wide & 12" tall). None of my humboldtii have flowered yet. All of my potted humboldtii & nelumbifolia grow in live LFS (my original experiments showed that they didn't like my peat mixes).

    So far, I have not figured out a way to duplicate these nasty conditions in a pot ... As NaN noted, Mach seems to have found conditions to make his plants consistently happy as has Jeremiah iirc...
    Last edited by RL7836; 06-08-2012 at 02:50 PM.
    All the best,
    Ron
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