RE: A mystery solved

Clarke Brunt (
Thu, 10 Mar 94 15:16 GMT

Seosamh's Drosera sounds just like my pots of D. peltata - that's not
to say they are peltata, as I'm sure there are others which are

My growing of Drosera has so far been more by experiment than
knowledge. I have always sown in Spring, although some books
suggest that Autumn (Fall) might be better for some Winter
growing tuberous species. My experience with peltata (half the
packet sown in 1992, and the other half in 1993 - they evidently
retain viability for at least a year) is that they come up some
weeks or months after sowing, develop little rosettes for a while,
and then put up central stalks with the shield-like leaves on them.
As of now, my 1993 seedlings have got taller stalks than the
1992 ones, which have been dormant, although the stalks on the
1992 tubers look stouter and will probably outgrow the seedlings

My treatment of first year seedlings has been to wait for them to
die down, then dry out, and tip them out to see what tubers I got.
I immediately replant the tubers nearer the surface in a bigger pot
(they do seem to like developing right near the bottom - are they
trying to tell me that's where they should be?), and keep dry
(well maybe the occasional spray of the surface). I usually include
all the old soil as well, in case I missed any small tubers. Because my
new seedlings were growing so well, I kept trying to coax the tubers
into growth by watering, starting about September, but they were having
none of it until about December - I think it was too early and this year
I will be more patient.

I have just had my first flowers on some other tuberous Drosera which I grew
from seed. They were labelled erythrorhiza, but I was never convinced -
I myself might have mixed them up. I asked this group about them once
before. I now wonder if I might have two species in the same pot.
Both initially develop a rosette. Some have just stayed like this -
no juvenile leaves in the centre - could *actually* be erythrorhiza,
but the others, similar initially, then develop about 3 prostrate stems
from the centre of the rosette, with usually triple sets of leaves
along them. The flowers are on a branching stem from the centre
of the rosette, white, about 10mm across. Maybe this is some sort
of stolonifera. Next time I dig them up, I'll have to see if
I can classify them into two types of tuber.