Caring for a garden of carnivorous plants should fall under two main categories. Plants that eat meat must be fed regularly and given plenty of water to help ward off diseases. Some plants actually do better when raised in the shade since sunlight helps improve their energy levels and metabolism. It is best to keep carnivorous plants in partial shade during the hottest part of the day, when you are not eating your plants.
Most carnivorous plants need an excellent amount of moisture in order to thrive. Water retention is important to plants that don’t have the luxury of air circulation in their container. Plants with poor air circulation like most houseplants thrive in well-drained soil with little drainage. A key element in providing well-drained conditions is proper drainage. It is very important for houseplants to have a good supply of water both in the soil and in the air.
When choosing what plants to raise in your garden to feed on, it is essential to choose those that will feed primarily on insects. A few examples of insects to consider include grubs, ants, mites, and beetles. Grubs can be a problem, since they can eat through your soil and ruin your organic garden. Ants can cause your whole plant, to become diseased, while mites and beetles are known to destroy large portions of your plants foliage. Plants with large and bushy leaves can be targeted by the larger types of insects, while snails and slugs can be controlled by snails.
Carnivorous species should also have some means of protecting themselves from damage. A few of the natural and artificial means of protection for these species are resin or scent glands, hardy stem hairs, and calcium channels and root collars. Many of these plants possess hairs that secrete a harmless resin when threatened. This is a useful way to control some of the insects that you will commonly face. Hardy stems can provide excellent support for your plants and, depending on the type of plant, may be able to ward off some pests that you would encounter if you chose not to grow carnivorous species in your garden.
For the most part, carnivorous plants require only regular watering. Excessive watering can do more harm than good, however, and should be avoided at all costs. If you know that your garden is going to experience an especially dry season, or that you have a plant that is highly sensitive to moisture, you may want to consider using a humidifier. For normal plants, a light watering may be necessary once a week, and you should never completely water your soil with tap water. Never water from the tap, but keep a few drops of water available in a spray bottle near by to add as needed.
If you have an abundant native plant community to help provide a natural pH level for your carnivorous plants, you may also consider growing a native plant in your garden. Some native plants are more acid resistant than others and can actually help improve your soil’s alkalinity. These plants include heath, rye grass, red clover, horsetail, blue star, red foxglove, and more. You can purchase or grow these native plants at a nursery or a gardening store.
One thing that you should be careful about when growing carnivorous plants is over-watering the soil. Excessive watering will encourage the growth of weed seeds, and the roots of the plants can also become entangled in the weeds. Also, the soil could become so acidic that the roots will begin to rot. You should experiment a bit with different varieties of plants before making your final decision.
As with all types of gardening, it is essential to plan your planting and grow properly in carnivorous plants. There are many different types of carnivorous plants that vary in height and type of leaves and flowers. You should determine which ones will best fit your growing area, and how much room they will need to grow. With careful planning you can grow a healthy, productive garden. Now that you have some basic information about this type of gardening, you can start researching the various kinds of native plants that will work best for your growing area.