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Hello, can these plants grow in a tropical setup?
Highland tropical setup, yes. Lowland tropical setup, probably not but maybe some of the H. minor clones from low elevation
sigh looks like i wont be keep these then... i dont want them to end up like my lowii
Can Heliamphora heterodoxa survive lowland tropical conditions? I read that they grow at lower altitudes than other sun pitchers.
If you can find a clone from lower elevations you have a good shot
Hm lowland = not much light = unhealty, green and ugly Heliamphora. This Genus needs !much! light with !much! UV-radiation! Heliamphora heterodoxa, minor and nutans are more tolerable to heat than most people think. Thomas Carow told me that the plants he sold on our society meeting (see my website for pictures) grew at 40° (Celsius!) for some time during the hot european summer this year. So if you can provide all the other conditions (humidity, very high light levels...) the temperature is not so important.

I grow H. heterodoxa x minor in a terrarium that got well over 90 degrees this summer, but went down into the 50's at night and they did just fine.
My heterodoxa x minor has been growing in my *lowland* terrarium for several months now.  It has been growing quite well.  It's placed on a shelf close to the lights.  Average highs in the low 70's currently.  Lows in the mid 60's.  If these clones origionated from lower or upper elevations I have no idea.  Hope this helps.

  • #10
I grow a H. heterodoxa x minor plantlet in 55-100F, in a windowsill that gets a few hours of morning sun, indirect the rest of the day. It enjoys hanging out next to the orchids. It's too small to see any coloration yet either way. I do keep a plastic cup w/hole on top to keep the humidity above 50%
  • #11
I am trying to grow heliamphora tatei, as we speak, i had a full mature pitcher and a baby one. I had it for three weeks. The mature pitcher is getting yellow but the baby one is growing strong!!.

I grow mine in a terrarium with the bottom part of the pot immersed in water, it gets all the light it can get from 2 x 36 W bulbs. the temperature right now is about 85 F during the day and 75 at night. Let's hope it can acclimatized to these conditions.

  • #12
What medium do people use on their Heliamphoras?
  • #13
I grow mine in a very airy mix of perlite/peat with a topdressing of live LFS. I keep the mix light to compensate for the tray watering method which I use: the plants do not appreciate being waterlogged.

I lost several species overnight last summer in the worst heatspell in a decade. They might be able to tolerate some heat, but I would advise good attention be payed to the plants in conditions of extreme heat. When they go, they go fast!
  • #14
My wife Michelle got me a large mature H. nutans for my birthday last May. It's growing in a belljar where the humidity is always extremely high. Since getting it it has grown some huge pitchers. We keep it indoors where it gets some direct morning sun and a very bright open shade exposure the rest of the day. During the summer it lived at air conditioning temps-mid eighties when the sun shines into the belljar, with night temps down into the mid to low seventies. we let the house get cool at night now (winter), so its night temperatures are consistently into the sixties. It's growing in a mix of washed, untreated cypress mulch, perlite, and a little peat moss. Michelle fertilizes it with very dilute orchid fertilizer with trace minerals no no urea once a month.
  • #15
a friend of mines recomends a soil mix of long fibered sphagnum moss , tons of perlite , and orchid bark . good things to add to this mix are live sphagnum as a top dressing and pumice or lava rock to keep the roots cool and aerated . i hear peat is not good for this plant and get make the plant quite waterlogged and as for growing helis in highland conidtions , its possible i think as long as it stays cool at night .
  • #16
I have just repotted a few of my H. sp 'Ilu Tepui'. I use a mix of live sphagnum moss, peat, sand and perlite (approx 4:3:1:1) - they're not fussy, but as Tamlin said, a more open mix obviates problems if you water on the tray system. A little more growing live sphagnum on the top looks nice, and may help to reflect light (heat) away from the soil in hot times.

Best wishes.


  • #17
hi all;

I think one of the secrets is to make sure the roots don't heat up. That's why, i am using terracotta pots. I am growing H. tatei var tatei in sphagnum moss and nutans "giant" in a mix of 50% peat moss and the rest a combination of perlite, vermiculite, and sphagnum moss. They are both doing really well, they are throwing pitchers at me. The temperature right now is about 34 during the day and 25 at night and they are growing in a fish tank.

  • #18
My Heliamphora (nutans, heterodoxa, ionasi, minor and various hybrids) all grow in NZ long-fiber sphagnum with some perlite mixed in. Over the years, I have lost H. tatei and H. tatei var. neblinae (both of which hurt a lot!). I used to water in essence via the tray method (small amount of water in the bottom of the tank), but I've begun an experiment (I finally have enough plants to experiment!). In one 55 gal tank, the plants are raised on screens and top watered and misted frequently. In the other 55 gal tank, the plants are sitting on the bottom with a small amount of water. I believe I lost the plants above due to fluctuating water levels -- alternating very wet and then dry seems to have rotted them out. Since I've kept the watering more consistent in the tray-watered tank, the plants seem to be doing better, and the screen experiment is only a few weeks old. Temps are low 70s during the day and 60s at night (basement, under lights). My plants seem to be very susceptible to scorch, when I change a bulb, many plants seem to get sunburned (I'm trying to be more careful about increasing light levels gradually by raising the lights then slowly lowering them). My plants consistently flower in the winter (now) as the photoperiod drops to 12 hours from a high of 16 during the summer.

In my experience, H. ionasi seems to be the most sensitive to wet feet. I've kept these dryer for several months now, and even the most pitiful little guy has improved considerably.
  • #19

I am very interested in the use of such mulch as you mention. I have some good results with some Drosera species using mulch with aniseptic qualities, and I might have to try it with Heliamphora as well. I am still struggling with the genus, and will begin to try fertilizer. Back in the Days of Yore I was corresponding with Joachim Nertz, and in an old letter he mentioned immersing the plant monthly in a bucket that had some manure in it. I am sure he has since refined his protocol, but as I recall he had some good results back then!

Jay, I had my best results as well via tray watering, and I *never* let the trays dry out. Losing the H. ionassi hybrid you gave me was a hard hit, since it was in bud. I had never flowered any of them (well, I never had them to flower, lol). I have heard they can take a good deal of heat if the roots are cool, so I can only assume that the very hot weather we had was responsible for the loss. I believe that nightime drop is critical for their happieness as is the case with so many of the Tepui species. It's not the heat that gets to them, but the lack of differential between day and night when summer sets in. My plants likewise did not prosper in the evenly cool conditions of my cellar, so I am inclined to think that a marked change between day and night temps. is very important. If their culture holds true to other genera from the same area, an increase in humidity during the night would also be desirable.

These are fantastic plants! I believe I like them more than any other CP (yup, including Drosera!), and look forward to mastering their culture.
  • #20
Temperature is not a big factor I think. More of lots and LOTS of overhead watering with nice decent humidity 70% and higher possibly only a minimum of 80% even. Also a very well drained mix lke mentioned before should be always be imperative. If you're having trouble with your plants, check for insect pests in the soil (i had toruble with gnats again) and check your climate after. Most likely it's due to low humidity and/or compacted soil and root suffocation.

My .02 cents.