There is already plenty of cultivation information available on the web, as well as in books, so I will not repeat it here.  I add to it though, or present different views on existing information because there's more than one way to skin a cat.   If you use the following links you will get a good basis before you go on.

Here you will find tips for the successful cultivation of Texas carnivorous plants in our climate, as well as ways to defend against infestations of local insects.  Our 105° Julys and Augusts in much of the State, and the snow, hail, tornados, ice, and gusting winds in other parts, have been taken into consideration.

Growth Season
You can grow native Pitcher plants and Sundews outside year-round.   Yup.   They love the hot Texas ....most-of-the-year, and the not-so-cold-to-ice-and-snow winters, when they must go dormant.   Pitcher plants are perennials.   Both native sundews die away in the winter to return in the Spring from seed and/ or roots.

Deformed Spring pitcher Flower-buds emerge in March In south and south-east Texas new S. alata flowering and pitcher growth starts at the end of March.   It takes another couple of weeks to begin 300 miles further north. New pitchers grow all summer long, until the Fall growth of the largest and best-looking pitchers.   It is not unusual for some of the new pitchers to be deformed or downward-arching.  The next pitchers ought to develop normally.   If they do not, check for an aphid infestation.

Pitcher plants need several hours of direct sunlight in order to thrive and attain their most intense venation and coloration.   If the summer is particularly hot, the plants may slow down their growth, even show some signs of heat-stress, like a wilted pitcher or two which recover in the cooler evening temperatures (only in the 80s or so).  

After October, the pitchers start drying out, without new growth.  In Southeast Texas dormancy may not set in until November or December.

Carnivorous plants live in very poor, acidic, permanently wet soil mixtures, like sand, sphagnum peat moss, or a mixture of both.   You could grow them in sphagnum peat moss only but because sphagnum breaks down over time and produces more organic materials, more uninvited weeds could grow in your pots.  

You could grow them in silica sand only, but it would be very hard to keep it constantly wet.   My preferred medium is a mixture of the two, 2/3 sphagnum peat moss/ and 1/3 silica sand.   The sphagnum peat moss is acidic and helps maintain humidity when the temperatures sky-rocket.  The silica sand is slightly acidic and also retains moisture.   In SW Texas a 50/50 mix will work fine.

I don't use perlite in my soil mixture, because it tends to float to the top every time it rains. &nbsp Now, read 'Making the planting mix' and 'Filling the pots'.

pots in pool pots in pool The two best ways to grow them in Texas are either in drained pots or in man-made bogs or seeps.  Pots is a good way to get started.

potted Sarracenia in tray of water One-gallon drained pots which always sit in a couple of inches of water, work great.   If you have a few plants, place each pot in a deep saucer with water.   If you have a larger collection, what works well is hard-plastic childrens' swimming pools.   One will hold 22 1-gallon pots.

The tents protect seedlings from Spring hail Hail-damaged pitchers Put your plants in a location where they get full sun all day long (a southern location is best), but are protected from very strong winds if possible.   There's absolutely nothing you can do about twisters, little you can do against hail, and snow and ice will not hurt them.

Never fertilize your Texas carnivorous plants;   it could kill them.  They can catch and eat their own meat.

In December or January, when they are dormant, I cut off all last year's pitchers about an inch from the rhizome, to make room for the new ones in the Spring.  If you have a lot of plants in big bogs and are familiar with prescribed burnings, just put a match to it and watch it go fast. Droseras (sundews) will be covered with white ash, but will not be hurt at all. Always comply with local fire ordinances regarding burnings.

These plants may have 'turned the tables on animals' as a general proposition, but there are exceptions:





All the Texas carnivorous plants are easy to grow, but you must first educate yourself on the few, simple requirements they have.   You cannot grow them like regular plants.