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applestar
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Latest update photos. ...may come back and add more comments later...
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TOP-RIGHT PHOTO: ...Note the brand new germinating seed discovered in the upper portion while photographing... :-()
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Oldest seedlings are unfolding traps on their first true leaves...


"Spoonzip" (link to my summary evaluation last post on 1st page)
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Five are sprouting out of TEN. 10th seed isn't in the picture because it was stuck to the seedzipbag :roll: A couple more may have germinated, but it's hard to tell due to unusual root structure. First clue is the seeds start to stand up on the pointy end.
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Allyn
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

This is awesome. :) I read with interest your post about the spoonzip. I didn't have time to compose a reply yestersday, but I'm watching your progress.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Time for another Venus Flytrap update! :-()

I pricked out (literally -- with a toothpick) and Uppotted the biggest three from the Spoonzip and 7 or 8 from the seed starting container. The biggest ones have developed toothed traps! Image
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I used 5:3:2 mix recommended on the seed supplier's website. 5 peat moss:3 white sand:2 perlite, and topped with sphagnum moss sold for orchids, all washed 4 times with rain or distilled water.

Ha! While writing this, I realized that the location where I left my cute little set up gets direct sun and will cook the precious babies! :eek: …I forgot because it's such a dreary, overcast day today. I'll need to move it to a different location.
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Allyn
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

This is so exciting. :) Your first baby traps. :-()

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

...and the little trap has opened! :D (But I haven't had the chance to go to the pet store.... I wonder if there's one in the direction I'm going today.... :? )

I found a Build-a-bear bridal veil to use for the direct sun problem. The elastic loops for the ears work perfectly to keep it secured on the knob of the cheese tray cover. :()
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Thanks so much, Allyn! :-()
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Image

Hmmm... Ones left in the seed starter without transplanting seem to be doing better. Maybe because they have remained in the heat mat.

Have not tried to feed them yet. Those traps are way too little for my clumsy fingers.... :roll:
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Allyn
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

That's a nice bunch of baby flytraps you have there. :)

When they're teeny like that, I use a toothpick and a magnifying glass to feed mine. You don't have to; you can wait until they're a little bigger. I cut the bloodworms into tiny pieces, hydrate them and feed the traps with a toothpick. My fingers aren't the determining factor for me; it's my eyes. I have to use a magnifying glass or I just can't see to do it when they're that small.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Wellll...... That was as far as I got. :(

...They started dying off, then mass collapsed. :roll: ugh. It seems like I can keep most things alive or at the very least keep them from dying, even if they don't thrive or grow to their potential, but OBVIOUSLY, I need more practice with these.

So I spent the summer VFT-less, then couple of weeks ago, They had a cute little display of tiny pots of Venus Flytraps at Whole Foods. I walked by them, then went back.... :lol:

Rather than the pots with one big and strong plant in each, which I suppose are what most people would have reached for, I rummaged and found the pot with absolutely the most number of plants crammed in together :()

Since they settled in, I fed them some bugs, which they have mostly successfully digested. So, today, I separated them and repotted/uppotted them. They were originally in pure sphagnum moss.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

I had noticed teeny tiny flea beetles in the Venus Flytrap pots a few days ago. They were crawling around INSIDE the traps, but were too small to trigger them.

They are no bigger than tiny black specks. At first I thought they were mites, but most Venus Flytrap care descriptions only mention red spider mites. Then when I tried poking at them with a tip of a pin, they JUMPED!

I tried dusting with DE without much hope because DE is not always effective against near-microscopic pests. They just pushed past the dust particles. Someone at a carnivorous plant website mentioned using neem oil, so I filed that away as a possibility while inspecting closely every day to see if the plants are deteriorating. I thought I saw a springtail as well, but search indicated that they are not too big of a deal, with repotting as best course of action if too numerous.

Then today, I saw a tiny skinny black something crawling on the surface next one of the pots and reflexively squished it... THEN realized it was a teeny tiny wasp -- most likely a parasitic wasp, and these two VFT pots are the only plants in this room and it looked fresh. Since I'd already killed it, I was trying to feed it to one of the baby traps, when ANOTHER ONE started buzzing my face. (oh yeah I felt REALLY bad that I accidentally killed one of its sibs) ...it was so persistent that I had to desist trying to feed the dead one to the plant. LOL

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Now, since only bugs in these pots I've seen are about a dozen flea beetles and the lone springtail, I searched to see if any parasitic wasps prey on flea beetles. I was hoping this is true because my eggplants out there are being turned into lace by flea beetles... Enough that I had tried using DE on them as last resort -- didn't help much -- too humid and dewey due to cooling temperatures.

But YES! Looky here:
Flea Beetles | VegEdge
https://www.vegedge.umn.edu/pest-profile ... ea-beetles


Microctonus vittatae Muesebeck is a native braconid wasp found more commonly in the eastern half of the U.S. Female M. vittatae can lay fertile eggs without mating; therefore, male M. vittatae are very rare. Not only is the adult flea beetle killed with the emergence of M. vittatae, but the larval wasp sterilizes the female flea beetle while developing in her body. M. vittatae is a major player in controlling the striped flea beetle north of the Mason-Dixon line.
Hopefully these ARE my tiny Garden Patrol against flea beetles and the fact that they came in with the venus flytrap means they are already in deployment out there :-()
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Allyn
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

They died, yes? Not just went dormant? I think you mentioned before that you know they go dormant when it gets cool and the daylight gets short.

I lost almost all my flytraps this summer. :( Turns out that chickens really like the traps. I saved a pot with a few babies in it, but the rest of the plants were dragged around the yard by the chickens playing Keep-Away with each other.

Keep us posted on your new batch. :)

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Yeah, they died pretty early on in the summer -- drought? Too much rain? Too much sun? Not really sure.

...chickens probably thought they were green aliens from space. :lol: :> (eh hem. sorry to hear that -- your chickens seem to be rather mischievous... Are they ALL like that?)
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

I didn't realize I hadn't posted an update. :oops:
Here's how they look now. I divided and uppoted the smallest into another water bottle SIP. I think they DO prefer deeper root space, even though they seem so shallow-rooted. I'm pretty happy about their progress so far, considering all of these originally came in that little orange plastic pot.

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As I mentioned elsewhere, they are catching food, including some of my Indoor Garden Patrol ladybugs. Today, while I was checking the repotted plants, I watched a ladybug manage to get its HEAD TRAPPED :shock: Apparently, the lure -- I think its something sweet -- the traps exude inside them is also atttractive to the ladybugs, because this one kept sticking its head in the tiny trap until its was triggered into closing. But the trap was only as big as the ladybug's head, and it was able to brace its legs against the outside rim of the traps and yank its head out. :lol:
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Oh! Good show! That's funny about the ladybug. The trap will probably get big enough to eat the whole bug soon.

I missed your reply last time:
applestar wrote:.......chickens probably thought they were green aliens from space. :lol: :> (eh hem. sorry to hear that -- your chickens seem to be rather mischievous... Are they ALL like that?)
Yes, they are all like that--a truly strange combination of curiosity and scaredy-catness. They are afraid of anything new, but have to investigate absolutely everything.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

So, how are they doing?
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

They -- my VFT's right? Not Allyn's chickens? -- are doing well. In the last ten days most of the traps have caught something and each container has one or two spent traps (traps turning black) that need to be clipped off, with brand new traps starting to open.
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Yes the VTF's... It amazes me that you people can do that - weird seeds to maturing, healthy weird plants.

My guess is Allyn's chickens are just like the others I have encountered - noisy, nosy, often in the way, sometimes a bit aromatic, and if they are not annoying you, you had better go check on them... sort of like when kids get quiet. :lol:
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Thanks, but I want to emphasize that the plants I'm posting about now are store bought seedlings because mine died. But this is good practice for me and maybe next time I can do better -- there are some interesting variations and mutations that some enthusiasts are carrying forward :cool:

Here they are in the Winter Indoor Garden. I opted not to put any of them in dormant state this year and that may or may not be a good idea, but they are experiencing night time temps as low as 50's and, even though inside the plastic covered shelves, the one closest to the northwest window in the largest pot has probably had severe chills when lower half of that double-glazed window was encased in ice with outside temp in the negative single digits. We can sometimes still get temps like that into early Feb. Most likely definitely as low as 40's during the coldest early morning before the lights turn back on, but once the lights are on, the enclosed shelves are warmest (and can be maintained at mid 70's to low 80's with front flaps secured -- hence designated "Winter Paradise" :wink: ).

The single in the hanging SIP is probably staying the warmest average daily temp, and catching bugs flying up around and against the lights. Big bulges that are being digested I think are ladybugs. :roll:

Image

I'm wondering if the VFT's grow larger with deeper root space, so I'm not going to uppot the ones in the small plastic pot and if I do, will continue to pot in shallower container.
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

I'm not sure about root space. I've never planted them in anything deeper than a Solo cup. I saved three plants from last year's poultry-apocolypse but I'm considering buying started plants this year instead of doing seeds. I like doing seeds, but I don't feel like I have the time this year to do the long germination thing and then feeding the itty-bitty traps.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Update --
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...would you agree I should snip off that flower stalk to preserve the plant's energy?

When you groom them, do you just snip off the spent trap heads or the entire petiole?
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

First, I gotta say, I love the paper-clip hanger. :)

I clip off the whole petiole after it turns black. There is still photosynthesis happening on the parts that are green, so I leave them. Once the whole petiole turns black, I clip it off. Other folks have a different opinion. They'll clip the trap when it turns black and then clip the petiole later when it turns black, or clip the whole petiole when the trap turns black. There doesn't seem to be one 'right' way. I just find the flytraps seem to do better when I leave them alone -- well, other than giving them rainwater and a bug now and then.

If you don't want seeds, you can go ahead and clip that flower stalk.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Thanks! ...about the petioles, I was thinking along those lines, too. Since the traps are meant to supply nutrients to the rest of the plant, maybe as long as the petioles are green/healthy, the plant continues to suck whatever nutrients are left in the blackened trapheads? I think I will wait until the petiole fails, too.
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Again, these are NOT the ones I started from seeds but the ones I divided from the store bought cluster pot.

...they are barely surviving. I thought there were none left in the bigger plastic container, but looking at the photo, I think I see one little teeny tiny trap in the middle....

Image

— they are in the Garage on the V8 Shelf (GV8S) and temperatures hovered at and just below freezing during the deep freeze, which should be just about right for their necessary winter chill. So hopefully, they will come back in the spring. I keep a bucket of melted snow/ice for watering them.
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Venus Flytraps are still hanging in there (along with marjoram) on the storage shelf across from Garage V8 Nursery with just a double t12 fixture to supplement. This might be a viable solution for overwintering them.
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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

...and the Venus Flytrap in the hanging water bottle self-watering container is still alive, although not thriving. I may try uppotting it to a 2L soda bottle version since I have heard that they like plenty of root space.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Wow. VFT's look seemingly picky. If I get one it probably wouldn't last as long as @Applestars.

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

I haven’t killed them yet — They are still alive :()

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Those are adorable! 8) But what's the ferny looking leave growing from it?

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Re: Carnivorous plant - Venus Flytrap from seeds

Well, it’s a Fern. I don’t know how or from where the spore managed to set roots in my little VFT pot, but I haven’t had the heart to weed it out. I’m sure I should st least separate them though....
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