Carniflora News, April 2015

Full download:  Carniflora News, April 2015 (PDF)


Utricularia juncea flowering under lights

Utricularia juncea flowering under lights

Renovations at Woodstock — May – June 2015
Renovations of the Woodstock Community Centre are planned now to start in May, thus the April meeting will be held at Woodstock. Check the ACPS Facebook page for updates.

Summary of the March Meeting
The March meeting was an interesting event with many excellent plants on show and for sale. More progress has been made in reactivating the Society’s PayPal account. Thanks Terry and Wesley for following this up.

Laurie Dorfer gave a comprehensive talk on carnivorous bromeliads and had flowering plants of Brocchinia reducta and Catopsis berteroniana for show. This group of carnivorous plants is neither well known nor widely grown in Australia.

The ‘Plant of the Month’ competition was between a diverse range of nicely-grown plants including Nepenthes truncata x spectabilis, N. truncata x tentaculata, Sarracenia leucophylla, an incompletely-known S. leucophylla hybrid, S. purpurea subsp. venosa var. burkii, Brocchinia reducta, Catopsis berteroniana, Drosera binata, and Dionaea muscipula.

The winner was a large, flowering plant of Catopsis berteroniana grown by Laurie. Nice work, Laurie.

Plant of the Month – Catopsis berteroniana

Catopsis berteronica leaves & waxy bloom

Catopsis berteronica leaves & waxy bloom

Catopsis berteronica rosette

Catopsis berteronica rosette

Laurie brought in several plants of Catopsis berteroniana, many of which were in scape with some in flower. Catopsis is an unusual epiphytic bromeliad that is widely distributed from south-eastern United States (Florida), Central and South America.

The species has unique adaptations allowing it to trap insects. Across its large range some plants have co-sexual flowers (i.e. styles and stamens in the same flowers) and others produce unisexual flowers due to the aborted development of either styles or stamens. Given their slow rate of growth it is unusual to have plants flowering together, and then to have the ability to cross-pollinate the flowers. After many years of patience Laurie had been able to pollinate some flowers and is looking forward to raising some seedlings.

Catopsis may be grown as an epiphyte secured to a piece of wood and watered regularly, or may be grown in a mix of orchid bark and perlite. When grown as an epiphyte roots only provide mechanical support for the plant, but when grown in a pot fine roots develop with the ability to absorb water and nutrients; thus pot-grown plants respond more quickly to doses of dilute fertilizer (such as a commercial epiphytic orchid fertilizer but at half strength) and tend to grow more quickly than those grown as an epiphyte. Plants may be grown relatively easily in and around Sydney. They prefer many hours of full sun per day and grow best if given protection from extreme heat and cold.

Catopsis berteronica detached flower

Catopsis berteronica detached flower

Catopsis berteronica in flower

Catopsis berteronica in flower

Forthcoming events
11th-12th April, 2015 – Collectors’ Plant Fair, Clarendon
Volunteers are needed. Bring plants for sale too. See page 6 for more details.

Sunday 17th May 2015, Koi Pet and Garden Show, Fairfield Showground
The next Koi Pet and Garden Show will once again be held in May at the Fairfield Showground. This is an excellent venue to sell plants and let members of the public know how great carnivorous plants are. The date of this event is Sunday 17th May. Please consider volunteering some time, and bringing some plants to sell. A roster is available on page 6. So far there does not  appear to be a dedicated website for this event yet.

March-April In the Greenhouse

emerging tuberous Drosera shoots with chlorosis

emerging tuberous Drosera shoots with chlorosis

Winter-growing Drosera continue to break dormancy and send up new leaves and stems. Thus now is the time to ensure that all pots are out of storage and the mix is rehydrated. Mature plants of some rosetted tuberous species will emerge quickly and flower within a few weeks.

Many Sarracenia are looking at their best, particularly those with S. leucophylla in them.

Nepenthes clipeata x ventricosa rooting cutting

Nepenthes clipeata x ventricosa rooting cutting

In January I started an experiment by taking a few cuttings of Nepenthes and placing them inside in containers of rain water under lights. The cuttings remained green and by mid-April some were showing root growth. These cuttings will be planted out into small pots of live sphagnum and kept inside until the plants have become established.

********** NEW SEEDS **********

The AUSCPS have managed to trade surplus seed with the VCPS, increasing our range of
Carnivorous Plant seed species and varieties for members. Seed packets are $1 each for members of the AUSCPS. Donations of seed are welcome. Please supply location data if available.

Your Seed Bank Officer is David Colbourn. Email:

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