Hey all, new here. I've been looking around the forums, but haven't been able to find all the specific information I need.
I bought my first and only VFT earlier this summer (sometime in late July, I think), and it seems to have been doing fairly well. Initially, it caught bugs constantly and grew like woa, but now it's slowing down and worrying me a bit. I'm keeping it in a dish of water on my dorm room windowsill in northern Colorado, and I'm afraid that the change in location from the kitchen window at home hasn't left it entirely perky. My best guess is that this is at least partially due to the weather, since it's been unusually cold and I still have to keep the window open most of the time to avoid a stifling hot room. Three of the traps have dead flies in them that are either undigested or oddly complete exoskeletal remains, and the traps that are currently growing are doing so very slowly. Judging by past growth, I'd expected the newest nearly-mature trap to open by yesterday or the day before, and the other three (two are still dinky) that are growing haven't shown much of any change since last week. I know that they require a dormant period each year, but I'd hate to do it so early in the season. I could send it back home for my mom to look after, but she's notoriously bad about plants (though she did pretty well at taking care of it the few weeks I did leave it with her) and I'd miss having it here. If I do need to put it in the dormant stage soon, I can either put it in the basement at home or my little fridge here, so I'd like some advice on which would be better. I've left it in the soil the garden center had it potted in and I've used all distilled water, and the only thing I ever fed it by hand was an earwig.
I'm also concerned because there's something white and whispy in one of the traps. Is it fungus?
And also, at one point the leaves stopped growing with nice, even edges. It wasn't like that when I first got it, and it stopped growing ragged-edged leaves after I trimmed off the dead traps that were on it, but I don't know if that's what fixed it. You can still see a few of the leaves that grew like that. Any idea as to the cause?