Q:

How do you care for pitcher plants?

A:

Quick Answer

Pitcher plants require a wet environment, mineral-free soil and water, and an abundance of light. They don't need to be fertilized since they obtain their own food. Caring for a pitcher plant involves a minimum investment of time.

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Full Answer

  1. Plant in mineral-free soil

    Plant the pitcher plant in a mixture of sphagnum peat moss and horticultural sand. Make sure the sand is free from fine dust, silt, clay and other materials. Don't use sand that contains salt, as this will harm the plant.

  2. Keep the soil wet

    Place the pot of the pitcher plant in a tray of water. Provide at least 1/4 inch of water in the tray, refilling it when it is almost gone. Don't water the plant directly. This will wash away the sticky muscilage inside the plant and cause the trap to close due to a false alarm. Since the pitcher plant prefers to obtain its own nutrients, use mineral-free water to avoid over-fertilizing the plant. Use purchased distilled water, or collect rainwater if possible.

  3. Provide proper sunlight

    Place in an open, sunny location. If appropriate light is unavailable, grow the plant under an artificial light with a timer set at 12 to 14 hours. Use fluorescent tubes designed for plant growth.

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