The Dionaea muscipula, better known as Venus flytrap, is very common in nurseries, garden centers, and other specialized centers. It is a plant that attracts a lot of attention for its many traps, shaped like a mouth, and for the speed, they close after a light touch.
This is one of the characteristics that most attract adults and children’s attention, and that is why it is so popular in, I would say, anywhere in the world, but especially in hot regions.
It lives in swampy lands in North America, specifically in the state of Carolina. It is made up of a rhizome from which rosette-shaped leaves grow at ground level. Each trap consists of numerous teeth, and three “hairs” on the surface, activated if an insect touches them, closing the trap. Its diet is mainly composed of small insects, such as ants, flies, bees, mosquitoes …
It does not usually exceed 3 centimeters in height, since its leaves, converted into “mouths,” grow horizontally, and not vertically. But if we talk about its diameter, it can be about 10 centimeters. But because of this, it is not only perfect for growing in small pots, but it is also very interesting to use it to create beautiful compositions of carnivorous plants.
In spring, from the center of the plant, one or more flower stalks about 20 centimeters high sprout, at the end of which will appear a beautiful white flower of about 1 centimeter in diameter.
Many types of Dionaea muscipula cultivars have been made: some with red traps, others with large traps, and so on.
The Dionaea muscipula is a carnivore that, well cared for, can live perfectly for several years. But what cares are those? If you have just purchased one or it has been given to you, and you are not very clear about what you have to do to keep it in good condition, we recommend you follow the advice that we are going to offer you below:
Outdoors: it is best to grow it outside the home, in semi-shade. You can give it direct sun for a while, but only when it has gotten used to the area’s climate and your care. You should not expose it directly to the star king, since it would burn from the nursery.
Interior: the room in which you will put your idea must be very clear, coming from the sunlight. If you don’t have one like that, we advise you to buy a plant lamp (like the one they sell here ).
Always water it with distilled, rain or osmosis water. In summer, it will be convenient to water it, as a general rule, every other day. Still, as I said, the frequency of irrigation will vary according to many factors (climate, rainfall, location …).
It is recommended, if we are not sure, take the pot: if it weighs little, then we will water abundantly. It can be placed (in fact, it is advisable during the summer season) on a tray or a plate.
The Venus flytrap is a plant that has to be grown in plastic pots with holes in their base. Likewise, this must be filled with blond peat mixed with perlite in equal parts.
There is no need to fertilize carnivorous plants. They feed on the insects they hunt. If they were fertilized, their roots would suffer significant damage and would not survive.
Being a small plant will need one or a maximum of two pot changes throughout its life. You have to do it when you see that roots are coming out of the drainage holes or producing so many leaves that it cannot continue growing. The appropriate time will be spring, although it can also be done in early summer.
It multiplies by seeds in spring or summer. You have to sow them in plastic pots with brown peat or esphagnum moss, and water with distilled or rainwater.
Put the seedbed in semi-shade, and keep the substrate moist. In this way, they will germinate in about 10 days.
It does not usually. Perhaps cochineal if the summer is being very hot and dry, but it removes quickly with a small brush or with the hand itself.
It is a plant that needs to hibernate. When the temperature drops below 10º, we will see how the aerial part (the leaves) starts to get ugly. It’s normal. We will space out the irrigations (they can be reduced to about three monthly irrigations, as a general rule, until temperatures rise again and we will continue to irrigate according to the plant). It can be allowed to hibernate outside if the temperature does not drop below four degrees below zero.
If we live in a tropical climate, then we will have no choice but to remove the Venus flytrap from the pot, carefully remove all the substrate, add a little fungicide, wrap them with a damp napkin, and put them in a Tupperware in the fridge, about two months. After this time, we will plant it in a pot with a new substrate, composed of blond peat and fifty percent perlite, or sphagnum.
It is a plant that withstands the cold and is not harmed by weak frosts. Its suitable temperature range is between the 30-35ºC maximum and -2ºC minimum, but it can hold up to -4ºC if it is a little sheltered.
However, it will not live in tropical climates because it would not hibernate unless it was kept in the fridge for a few months, as we have explained above. With these simple Venus Fly Trap Care, we can enjoy our carnivore for a long time.