Ok… so I’ve been on this road of discovery this growing season. I’ve learned a couple of things. First, don’t “scalp” your plants in early spring, as it really sets them back. Second… just because they are carnivorous, doesn’t mean you can’t give’em some extra food!
Long time CP grower and neighbor down the street Jay, has been experimenting with the fish fertilizer pictured above. He’s been using it on Sarracenia seedlings to see how much of a difference feeding them them would make on their maturation rates. Lets just say the results were amazing! He did side by side comparison of fed vs non fed, and the fed ones matured more than twice as fast. My theory is that the undeveloped “traps” cannot catch that many meals when they are very small, so feeding the plants gives them that extra burst of nutrients they are lacking and increases their growth rate!
So… I was thinking… over the last couple of years, I’ve noticed my plants have lost some of their vigor. I’ve attributed that to them being in the same soil for 3 years now. Whatever micro nutrients or soil balance that was there is likely pretty much gone. I don’t know the technical term, but the soil is pretty much spent. So I though, why not dump some fish fertilizer in the bogs and replenish the soil.
I bought a litre bottle of Neptune’s Harvest and dumped it into my 200 gallon rain barrel (which was at about 175 gallons at the time). Pretty dilute if you asked me. I watered my bogs exclusively with this water all summer long! I also filled the leaves of the pupurea plants with this “juiced” water. As a result, the fall display this year was better than ever! Some of the plants have NEVER looked as good as they did this fall.
Now comes the caution. This stuff STINKS! Even with it being a dilute as it was, you could smell it for a day or two near the bogs. So if you are an indoor grower, I’d think long and hard about using this stuff in the house!