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Darlingtonia californica "crisp" traps
Darlingtonia californi  

Darlingtonia californica "crisp" traps
Darlingtonia californi  
Hi Jeff,

emergency! Au secours! Help! ;-)

I have been growing my D. californica with success over the last 3 years, everything went fine! One year ago I repotted it in fresh life sphagnum moss mixed with perlite. It did like it.

I water it from top and let the water run down, the moss remains wet and is my indicator for watering. Sometimes I will water it and let the plant sit in a small tray of water for 1-2 days, shoud be fine I think.

Today I noticed that the plant went through a shock because of my watering I guess, some older pitchers are now dead "crisp" I canīt really explain why. However, the 2 smaller plants (you see in the background) are doing fine, and the mother plants new emerging trap is also fine...

I did not change anything such as the place the plants stands (behind a south window), nor did I change the water. (osmosis water with 13 ppm)

So do you have any clue what it could be?

Hi JP,

Your plant is most likely dying from an attack on it's roots from either Cylindrocarpon or Pythium.  Only thing to do is remove the plant, and soil around it, and destroy it.  Darlingtonia is very susceptible to these diseases, and is the most common cause of "Sudden Death Syndrome" in these plants.  The fungi are encouraged by overly warm conditions, and wet stagnant soil.  It can be picked up from pots making ground contact, and by reusing old pots that have not been properly sterilized.

Here's my recommendations for the survivors.  Remove them from the media and soak them for 15 minutes in a solution of either Tebuconazole or Propioconazole fungicide.  I'm not sure what is available in Germany, but Tebuconazole is sold by Bayer as Bayer Disease Control concentrate.  Be sure to follow directions for mixing.  Both of these are systemic fungicides.

Transplant them into fresh soil media with pots that you know are sterile.  If you reuse the old one make sure it's been washed and dipped in a bleach solution. (Sodium hypochlorite)

Afterwards, be sure to only top-water, and don't let the pot sit in water at all.  I've always gotten into trouble if they have water trays.  I couldn't tell form your description or photo, but they should be outside.  Try to position them so that they are a little shaded from your Sarracenia, and the Sarracenia pot block the sun to the Darlingtonia planter.  Your plants look like they need a bit more sun.  If they are behind the Sarracenia that will dapple the light, but they will still get plenty of sun.

To help them along a little, squirt a 1/4 strength fertilizer solution into a couple pitchers.

Let me know how things go.

Good Growing!

Jeff Dallas
Sarracenia Northwest

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