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Pitcher Browning
Pitcher Browning  
Hi Jeff and Jacob,

I purchased a Sarracenia Alata from your store about a month ago. I repotted it after a week in 50/50 sphagnum peat moss and perlite. I am in Arlington, Texas and this past month has been characterized by 100 degree days with 70 degree nights. My Alata is located outside in full sun. I top water daily, and other than the issue I am building to, the plant appears healthy (I assume it is producing nectar, since I watched it consume a wasp a few days ago). However, many of the pitchers are drying out and browning at the top, including several of the smaller new pitchers. It is also producing several healthy new pitchers, so do I just need to cut off the offending leaves, or might this be indicative of something worse?

Thank you for your help,

-Zach

Answer
Hi Zach,

Your plant actually looks pretty normal for S. alata.  Older leaves get browning tips like this in the hot part of the summer.  You'll probably see the best pitchers of the season at the end of this month as weather starts cooling more at nights.  Both S. alata and S. leucophylla tend to produce the best looking pitchers of the season late summer and fall.

Be sure you're using either rainwater or distilled water to water your plant with, unless you know your tap water has a low mineral content.  It needs to have a total dissolved solids content of 50 ppm or less.  Minerals in the water can definitely cause browning leaf tips.  It's the first sign of hard water damage.

Good Growing!

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