Written by Ivy
Jan 11 2023
Anyone who is interested in Venus flytraps must grow them from seed! If a few requirements are met for ideal germination and initial growth, Venus flytrap seeds are simple to grow and germinate. Below, we'll go into more detail about these situations and methods.
The Venus Flytrap's flowering and seed-producing period typically lasts from April to June in the northern hemisphere. Therefore, fresh new seed should be available by late June or early July. For at least a year following harvest, properly stored seeds in the refrigerator will germinate well. Many people report strong germination rates even after many years of storage.
Use the same soil that adult Venus flytraps use for growth. We advise mixing peat moss and silica sand in a 1:1 volume ratio. You can also add perlite, but make sure the pieces are very small. Long-fibered sphagnum also works well. Use only soil without any additional ingredients, such as fertilizer. No "potting soil" and no Because they contain minerals that will kill Venus flytraps, Miracle-Gro. Regardless of the soil you choose, sterilizing the soil before planting the seeds is strongly advised. Until the soil is introduced again, this will stop the growth of mold and algae. We use a pressure cooker to sterilize our soil. Once it reaches pressure, we add a sizable bowl of soil (enough to fill the pot we'll use) and run the pressure cooker for 30 minutes.
A growing container should then be ready. The seeds are kept warm and moist in this container, but it should also be able to breathe. A Tupperware-style container is a good, convenient option. Make holes in both the bottom and top of the cover for drainage and airflow, respectively. The lid's holes allow air to circulate and are ventilated. Additionally, they enable the container's excess heat to be released (see photo above). Using any ordinary pot or planting container and covering the top with a clear plastic bag is an additional choice.
Put the growing medium into the container after moistening it with distilled water. You can now start planting the seeds!
Don't bury seeds when planting venus flytraps. Instead, scatter the seeds over the moist growing medium. After that, sprinkle seeds with a very fine dusting of sphagnum peat moss. The very light dusting aids in keeping moisture close to the seed. Additionally, it prevents the emerging root from drying out, growing calloused, and becoming stunted. Additionally, it provides resistance for the seed to push against as the root emerges and tries to penetrate the soil. But only a very thin layer of cover should be applied to the seeds. Ensure that the seeds are only dusted to the point where you can still see them. If you cover them excessively, they might not germinate. It's too much dusting if the seed is no longer visible after you've applied the sphagnum peat moss.
Spray distilled water on the peat moss to moisten it and the seeds. The vented lid should then be placed over the container. Depending on the circumstances, germination may take 10 days to 30 days. The seeds should start to germinate in 13–15 days if kept at a moderate temperature, with the majority of germination occurring in 20 days, though some stranglers take longer than a month. Within 4-6 weeks after most of the seeds have germinated, the covering can be permanently removed.
Your germination chamber should be located in an area with strong indirect light. Avoid putting the container in direct sunlight. This will result in it overheating, which will harm or kill the seeds and plants that are in the process of germination. It's best to use bright indirect light. Remove the container cover as soon as the majority of the seeds have sprouted. Give the seedlings progressively more exposure to direct sunlight. A minimum of 3–4 hours of good light per day is needed for grown Venus flytraps.
Keep the growing medium warm and moist for the 13 to 35 days it takes for germination to occur. To water the seeds, you can either a) lightly mist the soil surface with a spray bottle and keep misting until some water drains out, or b) submerge the growing container in distilled water and let the soil draw moisture up through the drain holes in the bottom of the container.
This enables the newly emerging root to draw water from and continue to grow. ONLY use mineral-free water, such as distilled, reverse-osmosis, or clean rainwater. Reduce the water content and give the plants more air before removing the seedlings from their temporary germination chamber later. Once they have grown past the tiny seedling stage, venus flytraps do much better in just-moist soil than they do in soggy or saturated soil. But be careful to prevent the soil from drying out completely.
The container's cover automatically accomplishes this. Despite the fact that the chamber's interior ought to be humid. At least once per day, raise the container's lid and fan the air inside. The air is made fresher, and mold is avoided. Although your later developed and transplanted Venus flytrap plants don't need higher humidity, newly germinating seeds do need a higher humidity level.
Venus flytrap seeds need to germinate at temperatures between 78 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit (24 to 32 degrees Celsius or more). Seeds stored at much lower temperatures than this will take longer to germinate (3-5 weeks as opposed to 13–15 days), or they may not germinate at all if it is too cold. While seeds can germinate in temperatures a little below ideal, the process will take longer.
Transplant your seedlings of the Venus flytrap to a more long-term, uncovered container after a few weeks of growth. Do the transplant when the "cotyledons" (the two first leaves, the seed leaves) are almost fully extended out of the seed and the first tiny true trap leaf is forming. The plant can be transplanted at this point because it has a base and a tiny root. The plant's root aids in securing it to its new growing medium. The root also aids in its ability to adjust to environments with less humidity and more light. Using a wet wooden toothpick to transplant is a simple technique. Make a tiny hole in the fresh, mineral-free growing medium for the plant, gently insert a toothpick into the soil nearby, carefully lift the plant out of the soil with the root still attached, move the plant to the new hole in the growing medium, carefully orient it (leaves up, base and root down), and then very gently press the plant into the new hole with the toothpick and a very light touch of a finger, filling in any gaps with growing medium.
Sprinkle your Venus flytrap seeds on a medium that is primarily made of shredded sphagnum peat moss to help them germinate. You could also use perlite in place of vermiculite in your planting mix. 80% shredded sphagnum moss to 20% vermiculite or perlite is a good ratio for your planting mix. Alternatively you can use peat pellets, like "Jiffy Peat Pellets" that can purchased online or at a garden center.
Spread the seeds out over the medium very thinly so that once they sprout, they can grow for an entire season without becoming overcrowded or needing to be transplanted. Because you want larger plants instead of small ones produced by overcrowding, you should scatter the seeds thinly. Furthermore, overcrowding Venus flytraps may increase the likelihood of fungus diseases, which are very common in overcrowded seedlings. It is not necessary to cover the seeds after they have been thinly sown; however, you could.
You should expose the planting tray or pot containing your Venus flytrap seeds to as much light as you can after you have sown the seeds. More light is always preferable to less light when it comes to germinating seeds. For your seeds to germinate successfully, bright light—either natural or artificial—is necessary. Regarding light, it must be noted that fluorescent bulbs provide artificial light that has a clear advantage over natural sunlight, which will cause many seeds to germinate. The increased amount of time you can expose the seeds to light is, of course, the main benefit. Make sure to leave fluorescent lights on for 12 to 16 hours each day if you're using them to germinate Venus flytrap seeds. Using a timer with your fluorescent lights will make the whole process that much easier by putting this project on "auto pilot". A common question that we frequently get asked is, "how far should we place the lights above the seedling tray or pots?" The solution is straightforward in the best sense. The truth is that fluorescent lighting becomes more useful the closer it is to the seeds and eventually the seedling. As a result, we advise positioning the lights 2 to 3 inches above the seedling tray or pots.
Even though light is crucial for the Venus flytrap seeds to germinate, if the proper humidity and water levels are not present, nothing will happen. The planting medium should feel moist to the touch but not drenched in water like a sponge. Additionally, a high humidity environment will promote faster seedling germination. Increasing the humidity can be as simple as placing "saran wrap" style plastic wrap over the seedling tray or pots, or for a more sophisticated setup, by using one of those commercially available seed starting kits which typically include a plastic dome. These kinds of seed starting kits, which include a thick plastic tray, peat pellets, and a clear plastic dome to prevent humidity evaporation, may be familiar to many of you. Utilizing the appropriate water is a further crucial point to remember regarding water. Any type other than tap water is what we mean by the "right kind." The majority of tap water contains an excessive amount of chemicals and minerals (salts), which will eventually kill your Venus flytraps. Therefore, we strongly advise using either spring water, distilled water, or rainwater if you have access to it.
While a mature Venus flytrap can withstand a wide range of temperatures throughout the growing season, maintaining a temperature range of 80-85°F (26.7-29.5°C) will hasten the germination of the seedlings. In fact, most gardeners are aware that warm environments are better for seeds, which is why many serious hobbyists and professional growers use heat coils or heat pads to maintain a warm environment for their seedlings. This might only be required occasionally, like when you are starting your seeds in the winter. Then it might be time to invest in a heat mat that can be placed under the seedling tray or pots if you are providing the seeds with the correct conditions, such as 12 to 16 hours of fluorescent light per day and the right amount of water and humidity, but the seeds are still not germination.
Not for Venus Flytrap seed, though. For several weeks or months, seeds are kept cold and damp during the stratification process. For plants that bloom in the fall, this process can simulate a winter for the seeds, which are then used to germination the following spring. However, Venus Flytraps do not require stratification because they bloom in the spring rather than the fall. Instead, during the summer, Venus Flytrap seeds germinate within days (typically 13–25 days), with warm temperatures hastening the process. Venus Flytrap seeds shouldn't be stratified because of this; however, if they aren't sown right away, they can be kept in a cool refrigerator to keep them fresher longer and improve germination when sown later.
Extra seeds can be refrigerated in a small plastic bag for later germination. To prevent the seeds from drying out, squeeze any extra air out of the plastic bag. Preventing them from trying to germinate early by keeping them cold and keeping them fresh, and preventing them from drying out too much to keep them fresh longer and maintain a higher germination rate. To prevent mold growth (since freshly harvested seeds are more moist), dry newly harvested seeds in a small open container for 2–3 days before storing in the refrigerator.
The Venus Flytrap blooms and produces seeds from about April to June in the northern hemisphere. Fresh new seed should be available by late June or early July. For at least a year after harvest, Venus flytrap seeds will germinate well if stored properly in a refrigerator.
We never advise letting the flower stalk grow on your Venus flytrap plant unless you intend to collect seed because it will drain a lot of energy and the plant won't do well that year. If you choose to allow the flower stalk to develop and bloom, it will usually do so in the Northern Hemisphere any time between February and May. Only 1 to 1.5 days after the flower opens are flowers sensitive to pollen. Fresh pollen from a younger flower, preferably one that has just opened, should be used to pollinate receptive flowers.
A perlite, silica sand, and peat moss soil blend can be used to grow your own Venus flytrap seeds. Make sure to plant your seeds in a well-ventilated container with a lid, and do not bury them; instead, sow them directly on the ground. Make sure your seeds are above 75 degrees Fahrenheit in indirect sunlight and keep them consistently moist while they germinate for about a month.
The seedlings can be transplanted once they have four leaves or more. Planting your seedlings at least one inch apart will help you avoid overcrowding if you plan to grow more than one in a pot or tray. Please keep in mind that the entire process requires patience from you. Venus flytrap seedlings can grow into large, mature plants over the course of several years. You will undoubtedly find this project to be fulfilling if you decide to grow Venus flytrap from seeds.