The giant staghorn, Drosera dichotoma, has 12-inch long slender leaves that branches into as many as 4 points per leaf. (Juvenile leaves have only 2 points per leaf.) As you look closely, you will find sticky droplets all along the leaves. These droplets both attract and capture insects! An adult plant can easily capture insects as large as a housefly.
This species is native to regions that are equivalent to USDA zone 8 and will die back when exposed to frost. At our nursery, we've grown some of our mother plants outdoors. Over the years, they've tolerated temperatures down to 9°F (-13°C) with very little winter protection. In spring, these tough plants always came back with tremendous vigor.
One adventurous grower in Toronto (zone 4) planted a giant staghorn in his bog garden and grew it alongside Sarracenia pitcher plants. He reported that the sundew came back each year, just like the Sarracenia.
This is one of the few carnivorous plants that you can treat either as a cold hardy perennial or as a tropical houseplant. It will grow throughout the year if you keep the growing conditions constantly warm and bright. However, you'll need to use very bright fluorescent lights during the winter months. Thus far, we haven't found any adverse effects from growing this plant throughout the year. For this reason, we classify this plant as a tropical plant.
In short, grow it either as:
1) a cold hardy perennial alongside Sarracenia and Venus flytraps OR
2) a tropical plant in a bright sunny window with lots of direct sunlight. (Don't underestimate how much light this plant needs!)
Plants You Receive
Your plant will be shipped potted in a 4-inch pot. All plants were propagated on-site from proven mother plants in our collection. Leaves may or may not have the characteristic staghorn shape at the time of shipping.
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for examples of how your plant may look at this time of the year and important growing tips for the season.
Type of Plant
Tropical plant for indoor growing.
Size of Adult Plants
12 inches tall.
Partial to full sun. A south window with several hours of direct sunlight is ideal. Otherwise, grow outdoors in full sun.
Use mineral-free water or water low in minerals (less than 50 parts per million). Keep the soil wet by setting the plant in a dish of standing water.
Use 1 part peat moss and 1 part perlite (or washed river sand). Avoid fertilizers, regular garden soil, and compost.
Tolerant of very cool temperatures. If grown outdoors, plant will die back and reemerge in spring. In zones 6 or colder, mulch your plant.