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Carnivorous Plants/Roots out of bottom of pot


QUESTION: I have some sarracenia seedlings, and upon changing their water in their tray, I noticed one had its roots sticking out the bottom of the pot. This seedling I in a pot with three other ones. They are indoors skipping dormancy and are under a grow light that they seem to love. Is it harmful to leave the plant's roots hanging out in the water tray? None if my other seedlings are doing this.

ANSWER: Hi David,

This is super common as the seedlings get bigger.  It's not a problem as long as you always have some water in the tray, and they don't dry out.  It is an indicator, however, that it is time to get them into bigger pots.

Good Growing!

Jeff Dallas
Sarracenia Northwest

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: So they can stay like this and it will not harm them?  How long would be too long like this?

Hi David,

They can be like that a long time.  I've had plants get so root-bound that they break pots apart, but that is far from optimal treatment.  You have to use your judgement some.  Does the plant look crowded?  Is it a species that gets very big like S. flava that has deep roots?  Might be time to transplant.  However, is it a slow grower like S. psittacina or some purpurea hybrids?  It is probably fine to let it go awhile.  I would need to see a photo and know what species you are growing to be able to tell if this is of concern or not with your plants.

Good Growing!

Jeff Dallas
Sarracenia Northwest

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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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