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Sowing Venus Flytraps From Seed



Growing Venus flytraps from seed is very easy and doesn't take long before the seeds germinate. This is the slowest method to propagate flytraps as it can take a few years until plants reach maturity, however this is a rewarding process to see the seedlings grow into lovely large plants.

Obtaining seeds is easy from either your own plants or from other growers. It is best to avoid cheap seeds found from Amazon and Ebay which will often advertise different coloured flytraps such as blue and purple which has been photoshopped. The seeds you will receive are fake and are often chia seeds or other plant seeds. Purchase your seeds from either reliable growers or carnivorous plant nurseries, don't be afraid to ask the seller about the seeds if you are unsure.

Flytrap seeds from my own plants


True flytrap seeds are tear shaped, black in colour and shiny.







Sowing the Seeds


Firstly fill your pot with your preferred media. I like to use 7cm square pots for sowing seeds. You can also use round nursery pots 6-9cm in size and small seed trays if desired.

For media I like to use Sphagnum moss. I will often also finely chop some of the moss to add as a top layer to the pot, this is not necessary but I like to sow onto a flat surface and sometimes find seeds will fall in the holes of the long fibred moss. You can also use a peat mix or carnivorous plant mix of your choice.

After you have filled the pot, water the media from above with a watering can using rain, distilled or reverse osmosis water. Never tap water.

7cm square pot filled with Argentinian Sphagnum Moss with a fine chopped top layer ready for planting.


Once the media is fully saturated, you can sow the seeds. Gather a small pinch of seeds in your hand and evenly sow the seeds on top of the media. You can simply use your fingers or you can roll them off some paper if preferred. Do not bury the seeds. The flytrap seeds are easier to see on top of the media as they are larger in size compared to sundew seeds, allowing for a more even sow.

(Left) The seeds on the palm of my hand. (Right) Sowing the seeds onto the media.


Once you have finished you should be able to spot a couple of the seeds sown. Place in a plant label and make sure to date the back. Leave the pot sitting in a saucer or tray of water on a bright windowsill or in the greenhouse until they germinate. You will often see germination within 3-6 weeks depending on surrounding temperature and conditions. You can also cover the seeds with a plastic bag or dome, however I have never found this to be needed.

(Left) Seeds on the media. (Right) Plant label in


After germination you can move the seedlings into a fully lit spot and treat just like adult plants. You may skip the first dormancy with the seedlings if you wish but I have also found seedlings to survive year round in an unheated greenhouse. Seedlings will look like smaller versions of the adult plants and will be able to capture small fruit flies and ants early on.

A selection of seed grown flytraps


Flowers


If you have a healthy flytrap and wish to get your own seeds then you may let it flower. If your plant is small and not healthy I recommend cutting off the flower stalks as this takes a lot of energy from the plant.

Plants will start to send flower stalks up in Spring and will take a month or so until the flowers open. The flowers open on a long thick stalk in order for them to be pollinated without pollinators being captured by the traps.

Flower are white in colour and will need to be pollinated by either pollinators or by hand in order to get seed. You will need to use a paint brush or similar to wipe the pollen from one flower and then place it onto the stigma of another, you will know when the flower is ready when the center is fuzzy.

(Left) Flytrap flower stalk on B52. (Right) Open flytrap flowers


After pollination the flowers will die off. You will often be able to feel the pods to see whether you have been successful as they will be firm and fat but it is always best to wait if you are unsure. The stalk and the pods will begin to go black and you will often see the casing of the pod start to crack revealing the seeds inside, once the seeds are visible you can harvest them!

Venus flytrap seeds ready to harvest from pollinated flowers.



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