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Youngsters Guide To Caring for Venus Fly Traps


Caring for your Venus Flytrap Plant

Just do a few simple things and follow some easy rules and you can have lots of fun growing and feeding your Venus Flytrap plant!

Light: your plant will enjoy bright sunlight and even some direct sunlight. Try to give the plant 3 or 4 hours of direct sunlight each day if you can. An east window (morning sun) west window (afternoon sun) or south window (all day sun) are best in the fall, winter and spring. Try to avoid all day sun inside in summer. Try not to have the plant sit in a very hot sunny window as this may dry it out too fast.

Water: In Nature, your Venus Fly trap grows in the drier parts of the swamp, so you can try to have conditions like that at home. Place your plant in a saucer or tray and put about a half inch or so of water in the saucer to water the plant. Let the water slowly dry out over a few days, then refill it again. You might have to water every few days or sometimes even every day in the dry parts of winter. Never let the soil dry out completely.

Potting mix: Your plant does not grow in “regular” soil or dirt, but in peat moss. This is very close to what it grows in in nature in the swamps. You can use either peat moss alone or peat moss mixed half and half with sand. Sandbox sand is OK, but beach sand is too salty and will kill the plant. You do not have to grow your flytrap in a big pot until it starts getting real big.

Feeding: Your flytrap will grow OK without you feeding it, but it does grow better if you feed it Bugs. Remember this easy rule, “we don’t eat bugs and flytraps don’t eat meat”. It’s OK to feed your plant any bug that you can find and put into the trap, or any bug that the plant catches itself. Left outside in summer most flytraps will eat a lot of spiders and daddy long legs. If you grow your plant inside you can feed it bugs you catch or crickets that you can buy at a pet store. Try to feed the plants bugs that are about half the size of the trap, anything too big might kill the trap. But new leaves and traps should quickly grow from the center to replace the dead ones.

Dormancy: Just like the trees in your yard a flytrap might want to rest a little in winter and stop growing. Sometimes it will stop completely and shrink back to the soil, and other times it might just slow down a bit and not grow or eat. Once the days start getting longer in the spring, the plant should start growing and be ready to eat again. But if your plant seems to slow or even die back in fall or winter, just keep it slightly damp and cool (not frozen) for a few weeks, and when the weather warms and the days get longer, it may come back and start growing.

Venus Fly Trap -
Dionaea muscipula