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Sarracenia Everything about American Pitcher Plants



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Old 20th June 2013, 10:22 PM
Richard Hole Richard Hole is offline
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Default Best way to remove dead growth in dormancy.

Hi

What is the best and easiest way to remove dead growth off Sarracenias during dormancy? I thought it would be best to wait until the pitcher fully dies down to the base and then pull it off without cutting it. That way all the dead growth would be removed including near the base. If I cut it, then a short piece of the dead growth would remain attached to the crown and this could cause fungus. However, someone suggested I would need to be careful when pulling the dead leaves off so as not to expose much tissue on the crown as this could cause fungus. What would be more likely to cause a problem such as with fungus? A small amount of tissue ripped off on the crown to expose living tissue underneath or a small piece of dead leaf attached to the crown?

Would the best option be to pull dead leaves off only if they pull of easily and if they do not rip off easily then cut them as close to the base as possible?

If the leaf is dead on the top and still green on the bottom, is it much of an advantage to only cut the dead half off the top and leave the bottom green half attached? Or would it be best to cut the entire leaf off during dormancy when the first half dies? Or should I wait until the leaf fully dies so that the entire leaf could perhaps be pulled off right at the base? It would be less time consuming over all if the entire leaf was removed at once without having to cut half of it off and then the rest later and possibly pulling the rest of later again.

Your help would be appreciated
Regards Richard.
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Old 22nd June 2013, 12:13 PM
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strath76 strath76 is offline
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Default Re: Best way to remove dead growth in dormancy.

Hi Richard,

I just cut them off close to the rhizome. Never had a fungus problem. Most plants I see from growers in my area do the same thing. We also dry the plants out through winter. It improves the dormancy and we get better growth when spring resumes. I don't dry them completely, although I know some that have done this and had great growing seasons the following year.
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Old 22nd June 2013, 09:10 PM
Richard Hole Richard Hole is offline
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Default Re: Best way to remove dead growth in dormancy.

Hi

Thanks for the interesting info. I am actually allowing my Sarracenias to get dryer now. I have been watching them very closely every day to make sure they do not dry out completely as I thought it could harm them. However, from what you say this may not matter if it occurred for a couple of days. Bear in mind I am in the tropics at on the Atherton Tableland near Cairns at 757 meters altitude. Our temperatures can often get up to 26 degrees during the day. However, the average range is from about 13 to 23 degrees for this time of a year. Do you think that allowing them to dry out completely for 2 or 3 days under my conditions would not harm the plant?

To save time and labor cost associated with pruning my hundreds of Sarracenias I thought it may be best to leave the pitchers fully die before removing them. It would take many extra hours for people to make several cuts on the one leaf as it progressively dies. Is it fine to leave dead growth on the plants during dormancy until the leaf fully dies?

Regards Richard.
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Old 23rd June 2013, 02:06 PM
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strath76 strath76 is offline
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Default Re: Best way to remove dead growth in dormancy.

I don't think allowing them to dry out for a few days at a time would hurt them. It may help them to go dormant in your warmer conditions. I don't wait for my traps to die off. I just wait till about now or into July and them remove them all, cutting them off just above the rhizome.
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Old 23rd June 2013, 05:04 PM
Richard Hole Richard Hole is offline
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Default Re: Best way to remove dead growth in dormancy.

Hi

Thanks. That is interesting. Some people suggest leaving the green parts of the plants on to enable food and photosynthesis for the plant. I think it would be best to leave the fully green pitchers on the pants though and then MAYBE cut all the pitcher off at once is it has half died. Some people suggest only cutting off the dead half but this is time consuming as it has to be then done again later. Other people suggest to leave the leaves fully die and chop them off at the end of winter. You can see some other feedback I received at http://www.cpukforum.com/forum/index...howtopic=49839
Any more feedback from different people’s experiences with this would be appreciated. I am not sure how important the photosynthesizing aspect is during winter as the plants are dormant. It might be possible that less nutrients gained in photosynthesis may be better to give the plants a better dormancy. Also, people suggest putting the plants in the fridge during winter where there would be no light anyway.

What would be interesting to do is an experiment where someone with identical looking plants was to put them into three groups beside each other in the same conditions. One group would have all the leaves that have some dead growth on them cut off completely down near the base so green growth would also be removed on pitchers that have half died so the only pitchers left would be the ones that are fully green. This could be done around now in mid winter and again towards the end of winter to remove the remaining dead pitchers. On the second group only the dead growth would be removed progressively as the pitchers die. This would need to be done a couple more times to the same pitchers and would therefore be time consuming overall. In the third group, the pitchers would be only removed as they fully die down to the base.

Please let us know of anyone that has done any experiments like this and if there was any difference between the three groups regarding which plants grew the best and what percentage died.

Regards Richard.
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