Sunbelle Exotics, Inc.
Specializing in Nepenthes and Sarracenia
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Water: Because they are bog plants, they need to be constantly wet. We recommend pure water such as rain water, distilled or reverse osmosis filtered water. Sarracenia are very sensitive to minerals and chlorine; they like acidic, soft water.
Light: Sarracenia like bright, full sun. In nature, they grow out in open bogs.
Potting Mix: Sphagnum peat moss (not amended - no fertilizer, we use Lambert brand) mixed with perlite, course quartz sand (e.i.: play sand or sand blasting sand), and sphagnum moss. This mix should always be kept wet. Sarracenia enjoy over potting. They have extensive, deep root systems. Repot when the mix begins to break down, this is usually every two or three years. The best time to repot is in early spring.
Do not fertilize Sarracenia.
Temperature: They enjoy hot, humid summers; weather typical of the Florida panhandle and the Carolinas. They will endure temperatures over 100 degrees F, provided they have enough water.
Dormancy: In winter, Sarracenia need cool conditions, with temperatures close to freezing and short daylight hours. This "cooling off" dormancy period extends from Dec. to Feb., and is important to give the plant a rest. During this time, most Sarracenia will produce "Winter Leaves", called Phyllodia. These are flat, blade-like leaves without the carnivorous pitcher shape, allowing photosynthesis, so the plant can store up energy in its rhizome in the ground. In spring, a mature plant will burst fourth with flowers and a fresh crop of pitchers.
They will look horrible in during this winter rest period... but that's a good thing. The below pictures show the dramatic contrast between a healthy Sarracenia in dormancy and early summer pitchers. The photo on the left was taken in early February, just before they will begin to come out of dormancy. The photo on the right was taken in May.
Pests: Aphids and Thrips are the most common pests, as well as snails and slugs. We recommend standard non-petroleum based insecticides, such as Malathion 50 wettable powder or Orthene. Use all insecticides as directed, never use indoors. To prevent any fungal problems we spray with a systemic fungicide four times a year.