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What kind of damage is this and how do I fix it?


Far too old to grow up now.
A little over 2 weeks ago I purchased a mystery nep (I suspect N. x ventrata). Keep in mind I have never attempted growing a nep in a window before, but I got out the light meter and found the best location for it and crossed my fingers. Things are not going so well. About a week in the older leaves and pitchers started turning brown, I thought it was just being grumpy because I moved it. The growth tips were still green and growing and a new, though much smaller pitcher had opened up. I trimmed back the browning growth as it progressed and kept an eye on it. Yesterday the same type of browning started on the new leaves.








Unfortunately I have forgotten more about the proper care and feeding of neps than I think I ever knew. To me this almost looks like cold damage, which is possible, my windows are not the best at insulation and we had a surprise freeze one night.

So, what is it and where do I go from here?
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Thrips would be my first thought. Confirm by locating and identifying a thrips. If so, treat with a Spinosad based pesticide. Google "thrips" to find images of the insect.
An in depth investigation using a magnifying glass revealed no crawlies of any kind, which if I remember my thirps knowledge correctly means exactly diddly squat. This brings up two questions. 1. Do I go ahead and treat anyway? 2. Is there something else I can use to treat them since Spinosad based pesticides are either well camouflaged in my area or just plain not available without ordering from amazon which will take 3-4 weeks. (It might also be worth noting I can not get anything by Safer's that is not an insecticidal soap. Ortho products are not available aside from Home Defence and it has been years since I saw anything from Bayer. Neem oil may be an option, I have not looked specifically for that, however, I am not hearing promising things.)
Not so sure this is thrips, though everyone seems to get them eventually so getting something to treat them is a good idea. Orthene works on just about everything except spider mites.
It reminds me somewhat of certain fungal infections I've seen, but I can't say for certain on that.
Unfortunately I have forgotten more about the proper care and feeding of neps than I think I ever knew. To me this almost looks like cold damage, which is possible, my windows are not the best at insulation and we had a surprise freeze one night.

So, what is it and where do I go from here?

The markings on TOP of the leaves is not Thrip damage - it looks like tissue collapse from cold exposure. I think you put your finger on the problem already: damage from cold exposure. The leaves don't have to freeze to cause this kind of damage, just a few hours of temps below 40F can do that. Nothing you can do to fix it, you have to wait for the plant to grow out of it.
I agree with Paul, it could very well be temperature based as you are assuming, but at the very least I think it is safe to say that it is an environmental issue not a pathological issue.

My first thought was nutrient burn or heavy minerals in your water, but cold damage could look very much the same.
Thank you for the input. I had someone who does not require glasses to see 3 feet in front of their face have a look with the magnifying glass and she is certain she found a crawly or two (Tiny, indistinct, blurry, bits to me. I couldn't tell you if they were moving or not - they were way too blurry) . I went ahead and treated for bugs anyway with Safer's End All (was recommended by an experienced Canadian grower on another forum in the past, bowing to experience there).

My gut still tells me cold damage, especially as it progresses on one of the newer leaves. To that end I have turned a 10g aquarium on it's side and set it with the former bottom facing the window 3-4 inches away as a buffer from any future freezing temps. The plant is now tucked safely inside. I also added 3 LED light panels to supplement through the dim, drizzly weather we have had for the past week.

Side note, this will be an interesting experiment as when I first purchased several sets of these LED panels to be my new under cabinet lighting in the house we have under renovation I plugged them in and they nearly blinded me. They are far brighter than panels of their size and wattage have any right to be. The lux meter is telling me they are between 3 and 4k (8-10k if I get within an inch of them) at the distance I have them from the plant. I am curious to see how they work for supplemental (key word) plant lighting ... all of this hinging on my managing to not kill this plant. Which brings up another side note. I was never impressed with the way the grower "pruned" (by which I mean hacked at haphazardly) this plant. I took the opportunity (and calculated risk as it is obviously not in the best of health) while moving it to give it a bit of a tidying trim on the two main stems. Tossing the bits I cut off seemed like a waste of perfectly good single node cuttings so they are now tucked away in baggies and media beside the main plant. If I remembered how to root neps from cuttings correctly, I might just come out of this ahead and having relearned a bunch of the information I forgot.

We shall see how it goes. Worst case scenario, I have been bitten by the nep bug again and will have to order more plants should this one fail to make it. Actually, I think I should order more as "insurance". Neps grow much better with company don't they? :-D
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:-D I couldn't agree more . . . the Nep fever strikes hard around this time of year.