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Carnivorous Plants/nepenthes aritocholoides problem

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Nepenthes aristo
Nepenthes aristo  
Hi,

My nep aristo has dying tips. New tips are coming out, but soon they die. What is going on ? Fungus ? Pest ? Please help me treat this ! Thanks !

It is in a terrarium , filtered CFL light (quite  bright lighting), around 71 F , 75 % humidity.

Potted in live sphagnum moss.

Answer
Hi Pierre,

You may have a couple things going on here.  The first thing to check is how close to the light your plant is.  Since you are using a compact fluorescent, it may just be too hot.  This species likes it fairly cool, so it may just be getting burned as it grows closer.  The solution would be to move it a little further away from the light, or switch to long fluorescent tubes which are much cooler.  A two-tube shoplight with two T-8, cool-white, tubes can work very well, and give you more room to grow other plants.

Other things to check would include how wet your keeping your plant, and pests like Thrips.  Your moss in the pot looks fairly packed; it's always good to mix it with something like orchid bark, coconut chips or perlite to open it up some to increase drainage.  It would be a good idea to transplant it into a looser mix.  Just be very gentle since Nepenthes roots are so delicate.  Symptoms like these can sometimes indicate root-rot.  That's caused by lack of oxygenation from the soil conditions mentioned above, and/or being too wet.  Be sure you don't keep any water sitting in the tray below the pot, and that the soil is just damp to the touch.

You should also check for Thrips.  They will appear as tiny long bugs moving on the undersides of the leaves.  You will need a hand lens to see them.  If you see some you will need to treat with an insecticide.  Here's a link to our podcast on this subject:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbRCdJ8ZNF0

The last thing would be to see if you can get your night temperatures in the 60's.  This plant likes it fairly cool, and cool nights definitely benefit them.

Good Growing!

Jeff Dallas
Sarracenia Northwest
http://www.cobraplant.com

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If your carnivorous plant is showing poor growth, discoloration, abnormal leaves or possible infestation, the expert growers at Sarracenia Northwest can help! They have a great depth of experience dealing with diseases, pathogens, and abnormal growth in carnivorous plants.

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