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Carnivorous Plants/Repotting Nepenthes


Hello! Right now I have a large mother plant of a Nepenthes alata growing in an 8 inch pot. I have had it in this pot for about 2 and a half years now. Over the years, it has produced many "babies" and offshoots that have sprouted out of the pot and now it's getting pretty crowded. Those offshoots have now gotten pretty large to almost the size of the original mother plant, and now mother plant has begun to vine so it's become a long, tangled mess. I want to repot and divide my Nepenthes but currently it is in a very sunny south window that gets lots of direct sun during the winter and it's producing a ton of pitchers. I want to repot it, but would repotting and dividing hurt it's current rapid growth? Would the plant's health be affected and stop growing pitchers? thanks

Hi Victor,

Unfortunately, you're always going to get some shock when you repot Nepenthes because of their delicate roots.  You can minimize the shock by soaking them for 15 minutes in a Superthrive solution, but they will still stop pitchering for a time after transplant.  The good news is that is is a really good time of year to do the transplant since the days are getting longer.

On a separate subject, you mentioned dividing.  You can't really divide Nepenthes the way you do Sarracenia.  Even though it may look like you have separate plants in your pot (It's possible you do have separate plants if the original nursery put multiple plants in the pot), usually it's just offshoots from under the soil.  If that's the case they don't have their own root systems, and you would need to treat them as a cutting.  Since your plant is very long, however, this would be a good time to take cuttings since you're going to disturb the plant anyway when you transplant.  We have a chapter in our volume #3 DVD on taking Nepenthes cuttings.

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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