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Thread: New vft help

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    Eats genetically engineered tomatoes Sig's Avatar
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    New vft help

    So I got a few new vfts a couple weeks ago after the squirrels of death killed all of my old ones. I planted them up in 50-50 peat/sand and a layer of lfs, and kept them for a week on my windowsill, covered (for shipping shock), and the past week they've been outside in partial shade. I was planning on moving them to full sun soon, but all of the plants have experienced significant dieback. All of the traps and some of the leaves have turned black, and the plants look, in general, thin and stringy if that makes any sense. I don't know if I've done anything wrong, but this hasn't happened in the couple of other times I've gotten VFTs. I've moved them back inside because I know that it's better for a shocked plant in the short term, but if people say to move them outside I'll do that. I just want them to be okay.

    Thanks.
    Formerly known as Silenceisgod!

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    scottychaos's Avatar
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    Most likely suspect in this scenario, IMO, would be the sand..
    do you know its composition? are you sure its inert and pure?

    (personally I wouldn't bother with sand at all..never cared for it..I tried a 50/50 mix of sand and peat once..hated it! very heavy, and eventually hardened into the consistency of concrete..was not impressed..switched back to pure-peat and never looked back..)

    Scot

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    Eats genetically engineered tomatoes Sig's Avatar
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    The sand is unused sandbox sand, which is essentially pure silica. I've used it before without any problems, including previous vfts.
    Formerly known as Silenceisgod!

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    Weak growth is generally an indication of poor lighting. Another possibility is that the peat you are using may contain fertilizer, as some brands (such as Miracle-Gro) do. I generally prefer a 2:1 compost of peat to sand and that has never posed a problem . . .
    “Sì perché l'autorità dell'opinione di mille nelle scienze non val per una scintilla di ragione di un solo . . ."

    -- Galileo "Biff" Galilei

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    Eats genetically engineered tomatoes Sig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigBella View Post
    Weak growth is generally an indication of poor lighting. Another possibility is that the peat you are using may contain fertilizer, as some brands (such as Miracle-Gro) do. I generally prefer a 2:1 compost of peat to sand and that has never posed a problem . . .
    That's what doesn't make any sense... It's not weak growth, it's actual dieback. I'd expect weak growth eventually, but that's not what's happening here (and it hasn't been long enough anyway). The peat is regular Canadian bailed peat, again, I've used it without problems.
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    scottychaos's Avatar
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    could be the lighting then..
    if the plants were weak to begin with, then subjected to "patrial shade" and "back inside" that could have been enough to push them over the edge..
    weak plants at the start + bad lighting = more weakning and dying..
    the plants havent had enough light to "get stronger"..

    I would put them straight in the direct sun right now..
    they are already on the downward slope..the worst that that can happen is they will still die..
    but the sun might give them a boost and new growth can appear..

    (I dont believe in "slow acclimation"..I always put new plants straight into the direct sun!
    I figure thats the conditions they need to be fully healthy..so why wait?)
    IMO, the need for "slow acclimation" is a myth, and can sometimes do more harm than good..

    Scot

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    Eats genetically engineered tomatoes Sig's Avatar
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    I don't know how weak the plants were to begin with, but I got them from flytrapshop. I also don't really know how much of a downward spiral they're in, just that the leaves turned black. it's possible that they'll come back from the rhizome, I just don't know. To me, the light thing just doesn't make any sense... after a while, lack of light will make growth weak, but lack of light doesn't just cause all the traps to die (especially since the windowsill is south facing and the "partial shade" was pretty close to full sun). Is it possible it's just shipping shock, and if so, how long should these guys take to recover? I'm pretty hesitant about throwing them into full sun because if the problem isn't light related, it might be more stress than they can take.

    Also, thanks everyone for the help, I really appreciate it.
    Formerly known as Silenceisgod!

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    scottychaos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by silenceisgod View Post
    To me, the light thing just doesn't make any sense... after a while, lack of light will make growth weak, but lack of light doesn't just cause all the traps to die
    it could..if the plant is weak to begin with (for whatever reasons..a recently purchased "big box" plant, bad conditions before it was purchased, etc..) then why wouldnt sub-prime conditions (not enough light) cause the plant to weaken even further?

    lack of light doesn't just cause all the traps to die
    sure it could..lack of light could kill the plant..

    It has never made sense to me why full sunlight is considered *bad* for some VFTs and Sarrs..
    if we know a VFT needs full, direct sun in order to thrive and be in perfect health, then why is low-light somehow considered *better* than full sun for "weaker" plants? yes, its true that leaves that havent been acclimated to full sun can actually burn:

    http://1stclass.mylargescale.com/sco...ge5a.html#burn

    but new leaves quickly emerge that are "acclimated" and can handle the sun..and those new leaves will quickly start photosynthesizing in the full sun, giving energy to the plant, and helping it recover from whatever weakness it might have been experiencing from its previous sub-prime conditions..

    It makes sense to me that a "sick plant" can get sicker, and possibly die, if it isnt given enough light..and "enough light" for a VFT equals full, direct sun..as much as possible.

    IMO, any VFT, even a "sick" or "weak" VFT, should just go straight into the full sun..because full sun = the best medicine..its exactly what it needs. I think maybe this "give it less intense light if it's sick" idea might just come from anthropomorphism applied to plants..we do much better in shade than in full sun! but many plants do far worse in the shade than in the full sun..

    Im not saying im absolutely right! (and this might not actually be the problem in this case..)
    I havent tested my theory on "sick" plants..but I do know I have burned plenty of leaves, and the plants are always fine..
    it just makes logical sense to me that more light is always better than less light..

    Scot

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