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RE: Sundew and terrarium (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: sehtnepen on 04.22.2008 at 04:23 pm in Carnivorous Plants Forum

Terrariums are generally not a good idea, however I grow a ton of Nepenthes in them and they do great. I have a couple rare ones too. For Sundews, VFTs, and Sarracenias however, they aren't usually necessary since they don't really require high humidity. If you must go with a terrarium, keep the plant in a pot and elevated above the bottom of the tank (especially if leftover water has pooled there). Also keep the cover open or off-center a little bit to allow for ventilation.

For fluorescent lights, just pick up some cheap shoplights at Home Depot. They have a 2 T12 bulb 4ft. fixture for 9$ (cheap Lithuania Lighting fixture). Get 2 bulbs of 6500K daylight bulbs and you're good to go (about 4$). You can always double the fixtures if you want more plants and better growth.

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clipped on: 05.10.2014 at 08:50 pm    last updated on: 05.10.2014 at 08:51 pm

RE: Leaves just shrivled up, stems are mushy (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: whitelacey on 04.30.2013 at 12:08 am in African Violets Forum

Whim,
There are many different soil formulas growers use for violets. The main objective is to use a soil that is light and therefore well-drained. Store-bought mixes are invariably too heavy without addition of perlite. Your perlite and potting soil mix looks light so it shouldn't be a problem. When trying to achieve a soil mix for av's, think "fluffy".
A clamshell is fine as long as the plant is not crowded and there should be NO holes. You want a complete seal. When it is established that you have roots, you will open the container gradually to acclimate the violet to the conditions in which it will grow. But that comes later.
Your pot looks a little big but I think it will be okay. Just check on the violet every few days and make sure it's not too wet. You want nicely moist. If it gets too dry, and it shouldn't if properly sealed, give enough water to moisten. If the inside of your container looks as though it's raining, vent the container to release some of the moisture and then reseal. (This is usually a sign that there was too much water in the soil. Venting should take care of that).
Your plant looks good. It looks like you did a good job. How did you feel when you were doing the "operation?"
Most people cringe the first time they do this. I've done so many, I could do it in my sleep, I think!
Keep me informed of your progress and ask any other questions you have. I'll be happy to answer. Somebody once did this for me and someday you will do it for someone else. It's how we AVer's hook you! ;)
Linda

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clipped on: 05.24.2013 at 04:55 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2013 at 04:55 pm

RE: Leaves just shrivled up, stems are mushy (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: whitelacey on 04.29.2013 at 11:15 am in African Violets Forum

Whim,
The first thing you need is to be brave! Many newbies hesitate to do this but it's a tried-and-true method and it works great. First, remove the plant from its pot. shake off as much soil as you can. Inspect the roots. If they are all brown remove the bottom leaves to reveal the stem. Check the stem ("neck") for brown areas. Now....cut ALL the roots off of the violet. Cut out any brown areas on the stem. This is rot and you need to get it all out so it doesn't spread. Now re-pot in your mix; preferably 1:1:1, in a pot that is 1/3 the diameter of your plant. It will probably be smaller now due to removal of the bottom leaves. Water lightly; you want your mix just moist. It helps to pre-moisten peat before you pot. I just dump some water in my mixing barrel when I am going to pot. Now-the most important step-put your violet in a baggie or under a dome and seal. There are lots of things you can use for this: some people use the clam shells from the salad bar, some use a cake pan. Use whatever has a clear top and can be sealed. The baggie retains humidity which the plant must have since it cannot take up water due to having no root system. Put pot in your light source and check it occasionally to make sure the soil is still moist. In a short time; mine usually take about two weeks, you'll have roots! Give a leaf a gentle tug. If there's resistance, you have roots. If nor, re-bag and give it a while longer.
It all sounds complicated and time-consuming but it's not really. It takes me about ten minutes and works like a charm!
Let me know if you need more help.
Linda

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clipped on: 05.24.2013 at 04:55 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2013 at 04:55 pm

RE: Leaves just shrivled up, stems are mushy (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: whitelacey on 04.28.2013 at 11:52 pm in African Violets Forum

Whim,
First-don't give up so easily! AV's are tough! Usually when leaves /stems are mushy it is an indication of too much water-either over-watering or the soil retains too much water. Your soil looks very heavy. You need to remove the dead material and then re-pot into a non-soil mix. Most growers use peat moss, perlite and vermiculite in equal parts. (You will see this referred to as a 1:1:1 mix.)
Check your root system. It should be firm and whitish not brown and mushy. If mushy, remove those roots and then re-pot. If you find all your roots are bad come back here and I'll tell you how to re-root.
Also, get used to the way your plant feels when just watered and when it needs water. Lift the pot. Feel the weight. You will soon be able to tell just by lifting a plant whether it needs watering. Trying to tell by the feel of the top is deceiving. The top area dries out quickly due to exposure while the area in the pot can be dripping wet.
No funerals!
Linda

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clipped on: 05.24.2013 at 04:54 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2013 at 04:54 pm