Humidity and Nepenthes

Steven Klitzing (
Tue, 22 Nov 94 16:00:49 -0800

When I used to grow Nepenthes Khasiana, I discovered that it thrived well
with higher humidity. Nepenthes love heat, humidity, and diffused or
frosted sunshine. I grew about ten Khasiana on a west facing window
sill, with a pane of frosted plastic between them and the window. They
were also in individual pots in a tray, with a cover over the tray to
maintain the humidity from the thin film of water the pots stood in.
I got a new leaf every week, and generally a new open pitcher every
10 days or so. The plants were seedlings when I got them from
Peter Paul's, and had a two inch diameter width. Within three
months, they grew to about 6 inches across. The first pitchers
could accept only small insects. The later pitchers could take
moths, sowbugs, beetles, etc. These conditions were mainly in the
Summer. That Fall, I moved and gave the plants away. I hope
some day to repeat the experiment over a much longer period. I would
love to grow Nepenthes Khasiana from seed again, too, as that's how
I first got introduced to the hobby. There's nothing like the feeling
when you see your first Nepenthes primary leaves appear on the
surface of the spaghnum. Nobody but a CP nut could understand that.
People's reactions to CP growers tend to be that it's a weird hobby.
I think they're the most amazing plants on this planet. I remember
looking through a magnifying glass at my first Nepenthes seed sprout.
And, when the third leaf appeared, there was a little round dent in
the end...the beginning of a rudimentary pitcher. What got me
interested was, at age five or six, I saw a National Geographic
magazine that had CPs in it, and it showed Malaysia, Nepenthes,
and Mt. Kinabalu. Fifteen years later, I got a Park Seed catalog,
and ordered Nepenthes seed. The first two plantings croaked.
The third one gave me a handful of plants. From then on,
Nepenthes were my favorite. I learned not to feed them flies,
though, because every time I did, a worm would appear in the
pitcher and eat the pitcher and the leaf. I'm not sure if this
was due to fly larvae, or whether a moth had visited the plant
and deposited eggs.