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Hey All,

After a long experimentation with "things" i have come back to CPs :banana2: . I have thrown away all of my old plants a long time ago and my terrarium too. I am looking to go back into Nepenthes strictly with maybe one of some of the others.

I am most likely going to build a rack/shelf area, covered in clear shower curtains and florescent lighting. Is ottlite all it's cracked up to be, or should i just go with the normal 2 bulb things.

Also I remember alot of the names and things for nepenthes but i forget which are the hardier of the species. I know highlands are harder, but I think they are cooler, and would rather base my terrarium off of the temperature that highlands need.

Growing outside is not an option because i live in Colorado and it freezes, and is really dry up here.

So ya, any comments or helpful hints u guys want to give is gladly accepted. I am experienced but also lost a lot of my memory thanks to my "experimentation" so yeah. ???

:-O Glad to be back
Hey welcome back! See, you can never really get away from cps. They come back to haunt your dreams.

Anyway, keep it simple. Stick with the 2-bulb 4-foot fluorescent units. But use two of them so you have four bulbs per shelf. (Get one of those chrome shelf units from Costco. They're $70 but should go for twice that.

Anyway, on what to grow. Simple, you can grow almost any nepenthes this way in your home with the exception of the ones on either extreme. So grow pretty much any hybrid that looks cool to you. There are hundreds of them out there - almost all far better looking than the boring N. x Ventratas. I once got a N. hirsuta x veitchii as a giveaway, and didn't think anything of it. It's a great plant!! It sits in my windosill, and outgrows the N. ventricosa next to it. Speaking of ventricosa, get one! They're cheap and widely available, and vastly underrated as a result. And you can get a lot of hybrids cheap if you look around a bit. PM me if you want specifics.

:banana2: Thanks, ya I'm really liking the bical look and lowii... i remember lowii is expenisve and high matenence and ya, i also like the ampullarias (SP) and ya so thanks!!

would live LFS work better than LFS? also whats ur opinions on peat?
Why do people like N. lowii so much? It looks like a deformed bagpipe. Unfortunately you can't grow them together.

LFS work better than LFS.... I've never thought about that one. I dunno what capslock thinks of peat but I hate it for nepenthes. I like 1/1/1 LFS/fir bark/perlite.

And with that said, I'm going to PM you about what your mysterious experiment of mystery was.
why JLAP? because its so unusual. if lowii had different pitchers i dont think i would want one. i want one though and as soon as my B-day comes around im getting one of those shelves. ill grow neps, pings, utrics, dews...and more!!
Lmao, how can you know if you'd want one before you know what it looks like?

Yeah it IS unusual. It looks like a literal stomach on a vine. I guess I partly dislike it because they very frequently look a little twisted and misshapen. I love the structure of the leaves and vine, though. I like the lowers, too. The secretions and protrusions are great.

Protrusions and secretions are fun!
Yep. Live LFS grows and has antifungal properties. Not sure if the dead has antifungal properties... but the life does fo shizzle. It'll die once it's covered up anyway;there's no light under the media and then it'll become dead LFS with life Sphagnum growing on top. I never understood why people plant in live LFS for any other reason that you can grow it yourself.
nice so are u trying to say plant in lfs? and have live on top... also is the soil mixture pure lfs? or like other stuff in it like coconut husk or whatever that stuff is
EVERYONE has a favorite mix. Some are complicated and some are simple. The mix can depend on the species and your personal conditions.

Mine is 1/1/1 fir bark/perlite/LFS. For others it might be straight LFS or LFS and mulch or peat and perlite and lava rock... you get the idea.

You can have LFS on top if you want. It looks nice :)

also would anyone like to post their setup for their nepenthes? as in the indoor ones that are in terrariums either home built or just glass tanks bought
Go with half lfs and half chunky stuff as your mix. The chunky stuff can be orchid bark, perlite, pumice, charcoal, whatever you have. But make it at least half chunky stuff or the lfs gets too wet and turns to mush. You can put live lfs as a topdressing, but in Colorado, good luck. Use your shower curtains, but make sure there's air movement! Get a little fan or something. Neps don't like stagnant air.

Here's my setup. We have cool humid air here so I don't have to enclose the shelves in any way.



Incidentally, I'm trying a new mix with no lfs at all. It's cedar mulch and pumice/charcoal:


This needs to be watered more and may not be right for your dry climate. If you get good humidity in your enclosure, though, you might want to try it.

Don't be silly, Clint. Everybody likes lowii because it hunts bird poop!
Welcome back, jmenprkr. I don't have much advice about growing Neps that you probably haven't already heard, but I can tell you that Ott-Light sucks and is not worth the extra cash. Just get ordinary tubes. If you really want to max out what you're getting from your lights, change them at least every six months. Expensive lights might be a tiny bit brighter, but all fluorescent tubes quickly decline in overall output as they age, and you lose more from age than you can hope to get back with nicer bulbs. Also, someone here (I think it might've been Clint, actually) recently suggested cleaning your tubes regularly to remove dust and other light-flitering funk.
Of course, if you feel like doing a little extra work, you can go with Fluorex fixtures - these are a special name-brand of high-output compact fluorescent, and they're much more powerful and cost effective than ordinary T12 fluorescents. I have two in my bedroom and it's like waking to an angry desert sun every morning. Harder to find and you have to wire on an appliance cord (they come set-up for mounting as outdoor floodlamps, so no wall plug) but you can find them for cheap - I got mine for $30 a piece with bulbs - and they'll save power in the long run.
I hate using LFS. I think the stuff sucks and sucks hard. I have never noticed anti-anything properties...except anti-being good. In all the different mixes that i've ever used, ones topped with lfs are the only ones to ever also grow mold/fungus/liverworts/anything else bad. If you want to keep unwanteds out of your media, vermiculite does the same thing, and as far as I've seen, does it way better. I use 1:1:1 peat/vermiculite/perlite. Other good ingredients can include cedar mulch, orchid bark, and lava rock. I've been on a crusade against LFS recently, but thats because if you ask anyone why they use it, their answer is either "because everyone else does", or because "it is antifungal". From what I've seen with my own eyes, as aforementioned, I'd render that as hearsay...never seen ANY evidence to support that claim
I think that it's live sphagnum that's antifungal - I'm quite certain that dead sphagnum is a mold magnet.
I think I potted my neppies in peat/LFS/perlite/orchid bark. There may have been vermiculite involved as well. Honestly, its been a couple years, and I didn't right down the recipe, which was stupid of me. The plants seem happy enough (re: not dead). My understanding is that there's a lot of leeway with neppy soil mixes, at least with the less temperamental ones. The soil needs to be thoroughly aerated, of course, and clean, but apart from that I think you can take more or less equal portions of some of what I used, and I understand pumice, charcoal, and lava rock are supposed to be okay too, sterilize it, and chuck it in a pot.

My plants grow next to windows and have compact flourescent bulbs in clip lamps pointed at them.

And there's an electric space heater involved now because I'm tired of fighting over the thermostat with my roommates, the heat fascists.
thanks guys for all the help! so capslock.. is urs inclosed, like ur lil terrarium thing. also do you guys reccommend anywhere i can get live lfs or lfs? pm me.. dont post it cuz im pretty sure thats against forum rules. But ya thanks guys alot, i am now saving up for my wire shelving and materials i need.. once i have everything in order (basically everything with pots filled with soil) ill start ordering plants and keep you guys updated:-D