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Orange-Yellowish-Red-Fungis-Looking
Orange-Yellowish-Red-F  
I have a drosera capensis and it recently grew orange-yellowish, and red looking fungus on the top layer of soil near where the plant is growing from the soil. I have never seen it before, is this even fungus or normal and safe for the plant?

Thank you.

Answer
Hi Tri,

This actually isn't fungus, it's mineral deposits from the peat moss.  Most consumer grade peat moss these days is of very low quality and has a high mineral content.  What you should do is top-water the pots daily for a couple of weeks.  This will help flush those minerals out.  It is also beneficial to the plants to help oxygenate the soil.

After that, when you repot plants, it's good to give the peat a soak in low-mineral water and drain and squeeze it off to remove some of the minerals before using it.  You can also order pre-mixed soil from us or another cp dealer.  Most of us use commercial coarse grade peat that is lighter in color, and has a much lower mineral content.  When we switched to this last year we saw a big difference in plants, particularly sundews in the greenhouse that don't get rained on.  Plants outdoors tend to not have a problem with the consumer grade peat since the rain flushes the pots.

Here's information on rinsing peat:  http://www.growsundews.com/rinsing_peat_and_sand_for_carnivorous_plants.html

Good Growing!

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

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