there dieing what I am doing wrong here?

I started my terrorium about a month ago maybe a bit less. I have several plants in it. 6 flytraps 1 pitcher plant and 1 sundew. All of these plants are starting to shrivel up now. I don't know what is wrong here. I used distilled water and there VERY wet (you touch the peatmoss and water gushes up). I planted them in plane peatmoss. I have a 50watt plantbulb that I leave on between 9 and 10 hours a day. AT night I turn it off (my room is about 78 degrees at night). I have a lid on this tank so there is plenty of humidity during the day and on into the night. I did force feed 2 of the plants. One of them I fed small chunks of worms, the other a live fly (it smacked the fly with a swatter but it was still moving a bit). Those traps turned black and rotted away about 3 days later. I was told it was cause the traps are not produceing there juices, and the traps do look dry on the inside of the traps.

I can't figure anything wrong here? Give them good water, got the right peatmoss (there is no mixed in stuff just plane ordinary peatmoss). They get plenty of light and heat?

The temp inside this tank is about the same as it is outside. I have 1 plant outside and its doing great. Anybody see any problems. Only things I can figure is either 1. Its too hot with that bulb, or 2. That bulb isn't produceing what the plants need (but it is a plantbulb). The light is incadisent (or however its spelled).

I think there is still hope for them but if something isn't done soon I fear every one of them will die


For one I think it may be too wet try watering less. Another they don't need that much humidity ditch the lid so you can get some air circulation in there
and that will help as well, if you feel the need when you feed your plants you can put the top back on so the "food" doesnt get away.

Also it sounds like you are feeding your plant bugs that are too big they should only take up about a third of the trap. If you have a small plant and you cant seem to find bugs that small go to the petstore and see if they sell flightless fruitflies
Technically though they realy dont need to eat and will not starve if they dont. The bugs only serve as a fertilizer to them.

Also Im not sure if the lighting is right you may want to check to make sure its not putting off too much heat for the plants and Im sure somebody else here can help you out on what kinds work best.

By the way excellent description of your plants growing conditions we get alot of people who just say something "like its dieing help!"
Not too much to go on unfortunately

Oh and if I havent welcomed you to the forums yet...
The cause is probably what has been mentioned about the water level etc.

However as far as the incandescent plant bulbs go. They produce a huge amount of heat to the point where in order to get enough intensity out of them they end up frying the plants quickly. Try laying a thermometer down next to the plants when the light is on and see what kind of reading you get. Just make sure the red bulb is getting hit with the light as if it was a plant leaf. I wouldn't be surprised if it is much hotter than the air in the terrarium.
Hope that helps
I would listen to all of them. And I would use Canadian Spahgnum Peat Moss, not regular peat moss, because you are only supposed to use Candian Spahgnum Peat Moss. You can find it at most gardening centers. Also, I would use a cool 40 watt bulb. One question; how far away are the lightbulbs from the plants? I would take the lid off at night for good air circulation.

Hope I Helped,
I don't think its the medium... Remember, the plants are designed to have poor soil... Thats not to say they can take anything, but peat IS fine... Investing in a better soil later on will likely improve conditions, but with plants like VFTs and Sundews, you don't have to be overly concerned with the medium...

Too much water tho for sure... Can you see how deep the water is thru the glass on the aquarium? If so, you would want the water table (right where the peat is underwater, as opposed to just damp) to be about... three to four inches BELOW the surface... Maybe five. I'm just guessing on this...
These are good ideas I will for sure try. Idon't care much for the idea of changeing the soil cause that means I will have to dig them up and take a chance on hurting them even more. The Water is about 1 inch below the plants so I will start letting more water evaperate. I do lift the lid at nighttime to allow air circulation. Does it matter what kind of light I use? I know I got some 20 watt clear bulbs downstairs. However they are not plant bulbs like this one was advertised as. The traps are about 6 to 8 inches from the bulb. I think you may be right on frying them I just got home and the one plant is burnts looking (looks like someone took a lighter and cooked it). It is also the plant that had traps up in the air instead of on the ground like the others. For the time being I think I will put a lower wattage bulb in there and see what happens.

Thanks again for the advice, hope this will help


I wouldnt bother with the soil quite yet it sounds like the plant needs rest not more poking around it youll just shock it and its not that serious at the moment. But keep it in mind when you take them out for dormacy.
A lower wattage bulb is not the answer. Try moving the light further away. At least with the plant type incandescent it is theoretically making some blue light. Which will be better for the plants than a lower wattage normal incandescent.

The root of the problem however is that incandescent bulbs work poorly for growing plants under because of the wattage/heat problem. You should consider fluorescent lights. 2 tubes on a small terrarium, 4 on a larger set up.
The way this tank is set up I can't really move the light farther away since it lays on top of the tank. This is just a 10 gallon fish tank with the light on top of it. Only thing I could do is take soil out, but that would basically be transplanting them.

I think the problem is too much heat. Reason I think this because new traps are constantly growing back. So I think if they was not getting enough of something they would die and not grow anything back?

For now the only thing I can really do is use this lower wattage bulb. This is a 20 or 25 watt bulb that is used for those fancy lights. It don't produce the blue look though its just a plain light.
You could try a small piece or two of window screen on top of the tank. Preferably aluminum since it won't melt or catch fire. This would act to shade the plants a little. Ideally I would still recommend a small fluorescent fixture instead.
I don't know how old Veggita is, or anything, but I know for myself, even with a job (prolly kuz i'm not getting too many hourse), its not that easy to just go and grab a flourecent light fixture... They're not the CHEAPEST things out there, and even finding a way too hook it up... It not just like, screwing it into a desklamp, or into the ceiling... I dunno, just thought I'de bring up the fact that for the younguns its not as simple as hopping in the car and going to your local Home Depot, wipping out your Interac card, and swiping... Even if veggita IS an adult, he might not be in the huge-money-investment stage of this hobby yet... Am I at least partly right?

For now, I would say prop up the light fixture with sumthing, and that will not only distance the bulbs from the plants abit, but it will also allow some air ciruclation between the bulbs and the lid, cooling it down some...


Moderator Schmoderator Fluorescent fluorite, Engl
I think fluorescent lighting would help. I know money can be an issue for non-working members (and even working members sometimes&#33
but you can get shop lights from Lowes or Home Depot fairly cheaply. If its a small tank a 24" one would do...they are about $11 here (48" sets are cheaper at $9). Then get one cool white tube and one GroLux or Sunstick...they don't cost tooo much. Once you've gotten them, the cost part is over. The tubes last a pretty long time.

Sounds like the problem might be too wet and too hot. Incandescent bulbs do generate a LOT of heat and combined with the wetness can produce mush. And it can be hard to mix plants with different requirements in one tank.

Good luck Veggita...I hope things turn around for you.

I always try and offer the simplest cheapest most effective way to solve an environmental issue when a question is asked. And still give satisfactory results. Not to mention everyones idea of what is satisfactory is different. Some are happy the plant stays alive, others may not be satisfied until the plant is the biggest healthiest specimen that anyone has ever seen.

Everyone is on a budget regardless of income or accessability to gizzmos and gadgets...
Unfortunately a big mistake that many people make is spending money on plants without having the proper set up. Then later do they realize after they have killed a bunch and spent more to replace them that in the long run they have ended up spending more than if they had invested in a little equipment first. Even it if means saving for a little longer and holding off on getting the plants!

As for Veggita.. He has a problem that the current light is causing. A smaller wattage bulb will help with frying the plants but then they will simply be light starved and die that way. At least with putting a little screen between the tank and the bulb there is hope that the plants will live as the plant bulb does put out light more usable by plants for photosynthesis. This is the most economical thing I can think of to help his situation. But by investing a few more bucks for a small fluorescent rather than a few bucks for some window screen, he will have MUCH better results. It wouldn't surprise me in the least if that plant type bulb cost half as much as an inexpensive 2 tube fluorescent shop light...

nepenthes gracilis

Nepenthes Specialist
I bought a 2 tube flurescent fixture and it cost me about 23.00 then the bulbs were about 5 each so yeah I wasn't too worried with the price. And the best part is with a 2-4 tube fixture isd that you can put 1-2 coolwhite light and 1-2 growlights. or vice versa in different quantity's etc. But yeah I would get one IMO.
How about one of the new fluorescent bulbs that fit in a regular light socket. Wal-mart sells them from $7.00 on up. I have one for my nep and they work great. Just a thought, Jack.
Yea I have seen the fluorescent bulbs that fit in regular sockets. Actually that is what I use for my bedroom light. I was afraid those bulbs wouldn't offer the proper wattage for the plants. I could always get another one of those. The plant bulb I got was 3.99 but a fluorescent bulb is about 6 or 7 dollars. I am 22 and do work but am not looking to invest a great deal in this. The fluorescent bulb sounds like a good try and they do last awhile.