List of Care Guides
Tropical Sundew Care GuideJust the straight facts from guys who grow and propagate thousands of carnivorous plants each year.
No terrariums. No myths. No nonsense.
Some of the most common tropical sundews you might find in cultivation are:
While there are certain idiosyncrasies that vary from species to species and hybrid to hybrid, the general care is the same for all of them. Use the following as a guideline to growing tropical sundews.
Tropical sundews originate from warm climates of the world, such as those found in South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and South America where frost never or rarely occurs. Their habitats are mostly open fields where they can get lots of sunlight.
Where to Grow
Grow tropical sundews indoors as a tropical houseplant. A terrarium is NOTnecessary to grow the most common sundews grown in cultivation. Constant high humidity is not at all a significant factor to increase dew production and can cause more harm than good. For more information about growing tropical sundews without a terrarium, watch Grow Carnivorous Plants DVD, Volume 2.
If you live in a tropical climate where the temperature rarely drops below 55°F (13°C), you have the option of growing your plants outdoors.
All tropical sundews require a lot of sun to maintain their dewy appearance. Grow them in a location where they can receive partial to full sun. A window that gets four or more hours of direct sunlight and bright filtered sun during the rest of day is ideal.
Although tropical sundews can tolerate very warm temperatures, up to 100°F (43°C), dew production will decrease in excessively warm conditions despite being given lots of sunlight. Dew production generally resumes when the temperature drops below 85°F (29°C).
If a sunny window is not possible, use a couple of 40-watt fluorescent tubes or compact fluorescent bulbs of similar output. Keep the light source approximately 8 inches above the plant. If leaves are light green and not dewy, move the lights closer to increase the intensity. The light should be on for 14 hours during spring and summer, and 12 hours during fall and winter. Avoid using incandescent bulbs. They produce too much heat and the wrong type of light spectrum. Even incandescent “grow-lights” are inappropriate for carnivorous plants.
Set the pot in standing water to keep the soil wet at all times. Never allow the soil to dry out completely. This plant is very sensitive to water with dissolved mineral levels of 50 parts per million or more, so use mineral-free water whenever possible.
These plants require nutrient-free soil that provides good drainage and aeration. Use a standard soil mixture of 1 part peat moss and 1 part perlite. Never use potting soil, compost or fertilizer. They will kill your plant.