Venus Flytrap, originally uploaded by nevadabrad.

A little more than six weeks ago I acquired a Venus flytrap while at The Home Depot. I think I was there looking for stuff to revive certain parts of our lawn that are less than spectacularly healthy. Anyway, I was inspired to spring the few bucks to buy this plant by the fact that our house is constantly full of flies. It could be because the kids leave the back door open all day. It could be because we have four kids in diapers and that makes our house a particularly delectable resort for these pests. Whatever the reason, I was intrigued by a plant that murders flies to live. I mean, I love to murder flies but I have yet to test whether it is truly a matter and life and death to me.

As it turns out, the plants they sell at The Home Depot are pretty much meant to played with for a few days and then tossed. At least that’s the impression I get. I’ve taken it upon myself to try to make the plant a healthy one. I re-potted the plant, arranged for sufficient lighting and moisture and so far it seems to be doing very well. I’m currently in the process of trying to propagate the plant through a couple methods. First, I’m using a cut flower that I’ve been working on for a few weeks. Second, I just started a pulled leaf today. It remains to be seen whether either method will work.

The plants are very interesting so it’s been a lot of fun to watch and experiment. I’m embarrassed to show a picture of it because it’s not very attractive. First, I had it in sort of a mini-terrarium and the shape of the container was making the leaves grow in strange directions. I cut the top half of the container off so that the plant is free to roam, but it’s looking pretty crazy. Also, it seems that there are at least three plants growing based on the number of traps. If my propagation attempts are successful then I’ll try experimenting with splitting the main plant.

You can see in the picture that there is one trap with a fly corpse in it, another with just the head showing and less obvious is one with a yellow-jacket in it. The plants caught the flies on its own, but I gave it the yellow-jacket (I heard that’s like ice cream for these plants). In the background you can see a round container with the flower in it and in the far rear is the pulled leaf.

Watch for more exciting updates!