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Carnivorous Plants/Pale Pitcher Plant

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Question
Dear Sirs,

I have two pots of Pale Pitcher Plants,that I have been growing (with great luck) for the last three years. Last summer both plants grew to over foot. During winter,I followed the usual winterizing instructions.This year(in Michigan)we had a very cool start to summer.It seemed like forever for my plants to start growing,and the new pitchers are very,very small.Every year these plants are given fresh soil with the proper mixture. I use rain water only and the plants are placed in full sun all day long. Both clay pots are placed in a pan of rain water that is several inches deep.The bog type soil is never allowed to totally dry out. For the first time this summer we are now in the 90's. Will this solve my growing problems? Or is there something else, I should be doing?

Answer
Hi Victor,

Sarracenia alata, the Pale Pitcher Plant, is a plant from the Gulf Coast of the U.S.  It is used to hot, humid summers.  They are often slow growing until temperatures are sustained above 80 during the day.

Your growing conditions sound fine, but the only thing I would change is your pot.  Terracotta clay is good if you are trying to cool the roots, but you're having the opposite problem.  You need to keep these plants warm.  Try transferring them to a dark colored either glazed ceramic or plastic pot.  The extra soil warming will be beneficial to this plant, especially if you have cool nights like we do here in the Pacific Northwest.

Good Growing!

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

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