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Planted my VFT today

Joined
Oct 2, 2011
Messages
182
Location
Bloomingdale, NJ
I took my 15 VFT out of the refrigerator today and removed them from the moist peat moss they were stored in over the winter. Potted them in pure peat moss. They are in a sunny window in my unheated garage since we are expecting a cold snap late this week down to the mid 20's. Might bring in my other plants later this week.
 

curtisconners

Greetings from the netherworld.
Joined
Feb 7, 2016
Messages
923
Location
Columbus Ohio, U.S.
cool! let us know how they respond! I hope you have good luck, I have heard refrigerating vfts is risky business.
I never heard it for a long time, but I sure did learn it. I've been growing vft's since I was really young (7 comes to mind) and I have only managed a successful fridge dormancy ONCE. I did manage a successful dormancy in my windowsill this winter and plan to build a cold frame this summer to put them in for dormancy. In short, I learned that the hard way.
 
Joined
Oct 2, 2011
Messages
182
Location
Bloomingdale, NJ
They looked green and healthy. I twisted all the traps off in the fall when I put them in the fridge. When I sorted through the peat moss to get the plants out, I found one that was rotten. I didn't use any fungicide at all. I brought them out of the garage today because the weather looks pretty good for the next few days temperature wise. Rain for tomorrow.

These plants are the only ones that survived being in my unheated garage winter of 2014-2015. Temps were well below freezing down to single digits. I lost most of my Sarracenia Scarlet Belle and another. The wild types did fine. I was going to leave them in the garage last winter but chickened out.
 
Joined
Apr 6, 2015
Messages
111
I never heard it for a long time, but I sure did learn it. I've been growing vft's since I was really young (7 comes to mind) and I have only managed a successful fridge dormancy ONCE. I did manage a successful dormancy in my windowsill this winter and plan to build a cold frame this summer to put them in for dormancy. In short, I learned that the hard way.

Slightly off topic, but how cold does it get over the winter for you? I had mine in a cold frame this winter, and they almooooooooooostttt made it through, were looking really great, but then we had a warmup briefly in February, and then an immediate cold snap. Almost all of my VFT crashed after that, even in the cold frame. Will be brainstorming this summer ideas how to get remaining ones (and a couple of new ones) to make it through that kind of disaster again. You sound pretty experienced, any ideas how to circumvent this come next winter?
 

curtisconners

Greetings from the netherworld.
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Messages
923
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Columbus Ohio, U.S.
I'm not as experienced as I sound, that windowsill dormancy was only my second successful dormancy, but here's what I did. I kept my venus fly traps outside until it got down to really cold temperatures (somewhere below zero I think) after that I put them in some apothecary jars, though any glass container should do, and kept them there until it got warm and they started growing again. I too, suffered from a cold snap, but I brought one in that had divided a bunch of times to keep the little divisions from getting too cold. I thought the the others could handle it, I'm now hoping they make it through my mistake. I would suggest watching the weather report and bringing them to your windowsill until the cold snap passes. I hope that helps.
 
Joined
Apr 6, 2015
Messages
111
Well. That's two more successful dormancies than I've got right now. Alright, cool, thanks! Hopefully this year will treat my traps better....if not, I'll take it as a hint to stick to neps/dews for a while! :p
 

curtisconners

Greetings from the netherworld.
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923
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Columbus Ohio, U.S.
Keep trying, my friend. It's taken me 4-5 non consecutive years to figure it out. Vft's are quite hardy really, the dormancy is really their only difficult area of care in my opinion.
 

chibae

An orchid fancier with a CP problem
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mid-Atlantic coast, USA
Okay, do any of you have a small piece of land you could use to overwinter your plants? Land that you can actually dig? If so respond back and learn the bonsai method of overwintering that I have found worked well for any cps that I didn't have bog room for in Zone 7A.
 

curtisconners

Greetings from the netherworld.
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923
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Columbus Ohio, U.S.
I have heard of that, being a novice bonsai enthusiast myself. would that work with CP's in long fiber sphagnum or would it not insulate the plants enough? I'm in Ohio.
 

chibae

An orchid fancier with a CP problem
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Messages
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mid-Atlantic coast, USA
Okay, actually I overwintered bonsai and cps in their growing pots. Dig a hole at least twice as deep and as large around as the pot. Layer mulch (leaves, straw, what ever, newspapers in a pinch) on the bottom about 1/4 of the way. Place the pot in the hole use the rest of the mulch to fill in around and over the pot but leave the plant itself exposed to the elements. Then place peat moss over the top to keep the mulch in place. (for bonsai I would substitute soil for peat moss). if you have small pots they can all go in the same hole, just put some mulch between them.
This prevents a freeze of the media within the pots. The mulch acts as insulation bu the plant goes into a natural dormancy. I've had 2 ft of snow cover my plants, then ice form over the top without a loss.
 

curtisconners

Greetings from the netherworld.
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Thanks, the only problem is that the soil in my yard is impossible to dig, I can't tell you why this only occurred to me NOW, but it did. Thanks for the help though.
 

chibae

An orchid fancier with a CP problem
Joined
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Messages
1,530
Location
mid-Atlantic coast, USA
The same principle works in a cold area that is still open to natural sun, rain, cold etc. Get a large tub at a home store like home depot and put drainage holes in it. Take each pot and put it in a pot at least an inch larger all the way around and fill the gap with mulch or even soil. Then place mulch or other insulation in the bottom of the tub and bury the pots in the tub surrounded by mulch. Still let the plants stick out above the top. Then, surround the tub with insulation. I would either pile plastic bags filled with leaves around the tub or bales of straw/hay.
 
Joined
Oct 2, 2011
Messages
182
Location
Bloomingdale, NJ
Here are my VFT a day or so after planting out of refrigerator dormancy. We are expecting some snow tomorrow night. I'll bring them into the garage for that.

2016-4-2 Potted after winter refrigerator storage.jpg
 
Last edited:

tommyr

Gardening freak!
Joined
Jan 25, 2006
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926
Location
Hudson Valley of N.Y.
I never heard it for a long time, but I sure did learn it. I've been growing vft's since I was really young (7 comes to mind) and I have only managed a successful fridge dormancy ONCE. I did manage a successful dormancy in my windowsill this winter and plan to build a cold frame this summer to put them in for dormancy. In short, I learned that the hard way.


I've been doing the fridge method for 9 years. Never lost a plant. I also do some sarracenia that way as well.
 
Joined
Jun 24, 2012
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Location
Mansfield UK
As you can't dig in your yard, you construct a raised bed and fill it with sharp sand. The pots are then plunged in the sand to overwinter, the sand around them acts as insulation
 
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