Red Nepenthes

From: Steve Hinkson (
Date: Thu Sep 23 1999 - 15:29:33 PDT

Date: Thu, 23 Sep 1999 15:29:33 -0700
From: Steve Hinkson <>
Message-Id: <aabcdefg3323$foo@default>
Subject: Red Nepenthes 


It's perfectly normal for nepenthes species and hybrids that develop
red pitchers to also develop red pigmentation in the leaves as well
under high light conditions. My guess would be that the new situation
under lights is simply a brighter spot for a longer duration than
their previous windowsill.
If the leaves go all red, perhaps the light is too bright, but that
isn't likely under regular fluorescents.
The red pigmentation is just one of the ways plants put on their "sun
screen" *grin*

The advantage is that the leaves will also thicken, as will the
petioles, and will support the pitchers formed better, and you should
get better pitcher coloration too.
Big wide floppy green leaves with faintly colored pitchers isn't any
more normal for Nepenthes than it is for Sarrcenia, it's only accepted
by many growers better in the Nepenthes, because they don't die from

There is a slight chance that if the red is only on very old leaves,
that the plant has developed a
magnesium deficiency. Peat based composts may sometimes cause a
deficiency in magnesium, or zinc. It's not too likely, though,
Nepenthes are very good at holding on to their micro-nutrients, but if
the red areas turn brown, then you might want to check into that.

> "I have recently moved some of my Nepenthes from a windowsill to
> under some flurescent lights. One is doing well, but the other one
> is starting to go red on the leaves."
As to your Drosera query, yes, the seasons may be changed. Just don't
forget the dormancy
for the new plants next spring. Cp growers south of the equator,
Aussies and NZ growers in particular, have been reversing the growing
seasons for Northern hemisphere plants for years,
as we northerners do for the Southern hemisphere orchids, and

> "When you take a leaf cutting from a temperate
> drosera, as an example, will the new plants from the leaf need the
> same seasonal schedule as the adult plants, or would they be
> receptive to a different one?"

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