Are you wondering why is my Venus Fly Trap drooping? The reasons behind this are incomplete knowledge and inappropriate care of this unique peep. This plant is botanically known as Dionaea muscipula and is native to the Savannahs of North and South Carolina.
The tissue-cultured plants you find in local nurseries need you to mimic their natural habitat to stay healthy. Even a slight error can make you lose your plant.
In this article, we will help you with all the common mistakes you can make while growing this plant. Keep reading for a summarized guide about taking care and requirements of the Venus Fly Trap plant.
Why Is My Venus Fly Trap Drooping
The main reasons for drooping or wilting venus fly trap are:
- Inadequate light
- Unsuitable soil
- Unsuitable water
- Improper watering technique
- Inadequate Humidity
- Improper Pot
- Pests or Diseases
- Acclimation Period
- Dormancy Period(winter)
Now, without any ado let us have a deeper understanding of how to save a drooping Venus Fly Trap Plant.
Venus Fly Trap is a carnivorous plant and needs lots of sun throughout the spring and summer. Ideally, they must get around 6 to 12 hours of sunlight. Failing to get enough sunlight, you will see it getting droopy.
The high requirement of the sun makes them more suitable for outdoor plantations. So, if you have a choice, try placing them outdoors in full to partial sun.
However, if the indoor setup is the only choice, find the sunniest windowsill of the house. You can also use artificial growing light to fulfill the desired amount of sun. This is the most suitable option for people in colder areas and not very well-lit houses.
These plants naturally like to grow in nutrient-poor soil. Here they consume tiny insects to fulfill their nutritional requirements. Howbeit, this is where the basic mistake is done by the new plant keepers. People think nutrient-rich soil will help the plant grow better but it shows opposite results.
The ideal soil for this plant should be low in nutrients and have acidic soil with PH lowers than 7. You can use a mixture of peat and sand in 1:1 or sand and peat moss in the 1:2. Also, you can replace sand with perlite in one part with 4 parts of peat moss.
Sphagnum moss is a good and economical alternative to perlite for this plant. However, it should be clean with small fibers, without any fertilizers and lime.
Since these plants like low nutrient soil which means fertilizers are never meant for them. So, make sure you strictly avoid using fertilizers.
Using improper or nutrient-rich water is a common answer to ‘why is my Venus Fly Trap drooping’. These plants need water with low mineral content. So, suitable options include distilled water, de-mineralized water, rainwater, purified or reverse osmosis water.
High mineral salts in water like tap and bottled water tend to accumulate in the soil. These crystals can not only cause wilting but also cause severe root rot. Left unchecked, this condition can even kill your plant.
If you want to check the suitability of the water, opt for using a TDS. This is a specialized device that can help you read the nutrient value in the water. Water with values lower or equal to 80 p.p.m is suitable for your plant.
Improper Watering Technique:
The majority of the carnivorous plants need to stay in wet soil. Always! Yes, your Venus Fly Trap Plant must be watered again before the soil gets dry.
Water the plant right after the soil starts drying or becomes mildly damp. Letting the soil dry out between watering is a perfect recipe to wilt and eventually kill your plant.
An ideal estimate for spring and summer is to water the plant every two to four days. The soil should be wet but not flooded. However, the dormancy period needs you to cut out watering. The soil should be barely moist and you don’t need to water more than once a month.
The plant needs moderate to high humidity to stay healthy. Ideally, there should be around 50% or more moisture in the air around it.
You can use a cool-mist humidifier or an open terrarium to ensure adequate moisture. The famous pebble-water tray is an easy and economical way for it. Use a big water-filled saucer under the pot. The ideal water level for this saucer should be around 1 inch in summer and half an inch in winter. This setup will ensure adequate humidity for your Venus Fly Trap Plant.
Just don’t forget to wash the saucer every week or more. This will help to avoid any fungal growth in it.
If you are growing it in a pot, make sure it has drainage holes at the base. This is essential to allow the wet soil to drain excess water.
Just like other plants, your insect gulping plant too can be a victim of pests and diseases. The common possible enemies include aphids, miticides, and spider mites.
These issues can be controlled by using particular insecticides which are commonly available in markets. Also, you can use a flea collar to help your plant avoid these nasty creatures.
Disease like fungal attacks is another common issue while you grow a Venus Fly Trap. This is usually due to mistakes like over-watering, high humidity, and unsuitably lower temperature.
You can solve such fungal attacks by using common fungicides readily available in markets.
This is the time when you bring the plant home from the nursery. This is like a newbie who needs time to adjust to new environmental factors.
These factors include soil, temperature, water, sunlight, and humidity. So, many plants start wilting in the new place. However, they are not dying. Just be consistent in taking proper care of the plant and wait for it to start flourishing again.
Dormancy or Low Temperature:
Just like many other plants, this carnivorous plant gets dormant in winter. Many people get confused because the plant looks completely dead in winter and at low temperatures.
Don’t disturb the plant. This period also needs your patience until it gets healthy again in the spring. Just trim the black traps of the plant. This will help it to save its energy and use it for better growth and health.
Frequently Asked Questions
In this section, we are going to discuss the frequently asked questions about taking care of the Venus Fly Trap.
Are Venus Fly Traps supposed to be droopy?
Well, not in spring in summer. A droopy plant shows improper care. Make sure you are copying the natural growth habitat of the plant. It includes bright sun, moderate humidity, frequent watering, and wet soil. Moreover, strictly avoid using high mineral content in water and fertilizers.
However, besides all the good care, still, some plants grow close to the ground. People wonder, ‘why is the Venus Fly Trap not standing up?’. In reality, some of the plants are ground huggers by nature. They will be healthy in all aspects, still grow on the soil, and will never stand up.
How do you fix a droopy Venus Fly Trap?
Once you get a new plant at your home, it will pass through the Acclimation Period. This is the time when the newbie adopts the new environment of your house.
Just place it in a well-lit place with around 6 hours of sun. Moreover, ensure proper watering, moderate to high humidity along with low nutrient suitable soil and water.
You can also ask about the growing environment of the nursery and try to mimic it at your home. Alternatively, it is better to follow the natural requirements and common guidelines to help the plant.
Why is my Venus Fly Trap limp?
Limp stems and leaves are possible signs of under watering or low humidity. The best way is to water the soil thoroughly and avoid getting it dry. Moreover, make sure the humidity is suitable with at least 50 % of moisture content in the air.
Besides all these efforts, some plants may not get healthy again. Also, some of them have a natural limp in their foliage.
What does a Venus Fly Trap look like when it dies?
You can easily recognize and differentiate a dying plant from a dormant one. Unlike the leaves of the sleeping plant, the dying one shows completely dead leaves. You will see the remains of the plant getting all gooey and mushy. To make it simple, the dead plant will look like a frozen and thawed lettuce leaf.
Alternatively, a sleeping or a dormant plant will only show droopy or black leaves. Many of the plants only slow down their growth while they keep their leaves green even in dormancy.
Why is my Venus Fly Trap not eating or not closing?
Generally, the Venus Fly Trap plant can go without eating insects for about a couple of months. So, don’t worry if your plant is not eating. However, they will simply appreciate your effort if you provide some good-sized insects around them.
The Possible reasons for not eating insects for longer times include poor health, unsuitable environmental factors, and dormancy. Make sure the plant is placed in suitable conditions. Also, old and poor or inactive traps are another cause of the plant failing to eat.
Unavailability of proper insects is another possible cause. Either the insects are too big to be eaten or the plant is taking longer to digest the bigger insects.
How and what to feed my Venus Fly Trap Plant?
The outdoor peeps are good to catch the prey and don’t need any of your help at all. However, you can provide some dead or alive small insects to the traps of the indoor plants. The edible insects include ants, crickets, flies, grasshoppers, tiny beetles, spiders, millipedes, and small slugs.
Just poke the tiny hair of the trap a few times with the help of some stick. Put the insect in and poke it again to give a signal to close. One insect will be enough for about the next ten days for that single trap.
In case you don’t feed them anything, these plants don’t starve at all.
Venus Fly Trap is a famous carnivorous plant. It belongs to low nutrient soils and compensates for the nutrients by eating insects. However, drooping or wilting is a common issue in domestic growth.
These plants need frequent watering, bright sun, good humidity, and nutrient-poor water and soil. A slightest of negligence in the care and you will be wondering ‘Why is my Venus Fly Trap drooping’. So, to ensure a healthy plant, make sure you keep the soil moist in the growing season.
Place it in at least 6 hours of sun with good humidity and air. Moreover, make sure you are using suitable soil and water with low nutrients and avoid using bottled or tap water.