NEWS

date
27
SEP

September Meeting

The September meeting was devoted to Cephalotus and the sub-carnivorous bromeliads. Cephalotus follicularis has a reputation for being finicky in cultivation. One of our members, Bryn Jones, has had a lot of success growing his Cephalotus in a terrarium. Two members who were inspired by Bryn's success brought their terrarium-grown Cephalotus into the September meeting. Andrew brought three pots of Cephalotus that have been growing in a 3 ft tank indoors under 4 x 24W T5 grow lights. The plants were all growing well and the largest of these plants was voted plant of the night. Second place went to Peter's Cephalotus which was growing in a fish bowl with a Drosera capensis. Peter keeps his plant in a shady spot in his greenhouse. Two bromeliad genera contain species that are currently considered to be sub-carnivorous: Brocchinia and Catopsis. Peter's Catopsis berteroniana was voted third place. This is an epiphytic species from that grows from Florida through to Brazil. Peter has owned this plant for around 20 years and pups from this plant have been spread around to many of our members over the years. Two Brocchinia reducta were brought into the meeting. In good light the leaves of this species are held tightly together to form a tall, "pitcher"-like tank. One non-topic plant was brought into the September meeting, Justin's Nepenthes attenboroughii with very dark red-purple pitchers. Justin said this is one of several seedlings he's growing and this plant was producing the darkest pitchers.

The species benched at the September meeting included:

Brocchinia reducta
Catopsis berteroniana
Cephalotus follicularis
Drosera capensis
Nepenthes attenboroughii


Plant of the night: Cephalotus follicularis.
Cephalotus



Cephalotus follicularis terrarium.
Cephalotus



Cephalotus follicularis.
Cephalotus



Catopsis berteroniana.
Drosera



Brocchinia reducta.
Brocchinia



Brocchinia reducta.
Brocchinia



Nepenthes attenboroughii.
Nepenthes

date
23
AUG

August Meeting

Following on from last month's rosetted Drosera judging, the show judging for the upright tuberous Drosera was held at the August meeting. This judging category covers a very diverse group of sundews including those with erect, self-supporting stems, those with a climbing or scrambling habit as well as the fan-leaved sundews and each of these three groups were judged separately. Several examples of Drosera with erect, self-supporting habits were brought into the meeting. First place was awarded to Sean's Drosera gigantea. This is a large sundew producing branching stems to 1m in the wild. Sean had several plants growing in his pot including one very robust plant. Second and third place went to Sean's Drosera menziesii and Drosera basifolia, respectively. Tuberous Drosera, such as Drosera macrantha and related species, produce long wiry stems that can't support the weight of the plant. Instead, they use their traps to stick to surrounding vegetation to hold the plant up. Some species can reach lengths of 1 to 2m. First place for the climbing tuberous Drosera when to Sean's Rock Outcrop form of Drosera macrantha. Steve's Drosera pallida came second and Sean's Drosera indumenta came third in this category. The fan-leaved species produce short erect to semi-erect stems with fleshy, fan-shaped leaves. In this category, Sean also won first place with his pot of Drosera rupricola red x green form. These plants were raised from seed and were showing varying amounts of red in the leaves. Second place went to Steve's Drosera rupricola and Sean's Drosera platypoda came third. Non-topic plant of the night went to Sean's Pinguicula caerulea, a south eastern US species with veiny purple/blue flowers. Justin's brought in a large pot of Heliamphora heterodoxa that was producing flowers, which was voted runner up while third place went to Sean's early flowering Utricularia dichotoma from Arrawarra Headland.

The species benched at the August meeting included:

Drosera aberrans
Drosera afra
Drosera andersoniana
Drosera auriculata
Drosera basifolia
Drosera bicolor
Drosera browniana
Drosera calycina
Drosera cuneifolia
Drosera drummondii
Drosera erythrogyne
Drosera glanduligera
Drosera gigantea
Drosera gracilis
Drosera granticola
Drosera heterophylla
Drosera hookeri
Drosera humilis
Drosera indumenta
Drosera macrantha
Drosera macrantha ssp eremaea
Drosera menziesii
Drosera modesta

Drosera moorei
Drosera pallida
Drosera pauciflora
Drosera peltata
Drosera planchonii
Drosera platypoda
Drosera prophylla
Drosera ramelosa
Drosera rosulata
Drosera rupicola
Drosera salina
Drosera stolonifera
Drosera aff stolonifera
Drosera subhirtella
Drosera trinervia
Drosera whittakeri
Drosera zeyheri
Drosera yilgarnensis
Drosera pallida
Heliamphora heterodoxa
Pinguicula caerulea
Utricularia dichotoma
Utricularia menzesii


Plants benched at the August meeting.
Drosera



Erect tuberous Drosera place winners.
Drosera



Climbing tuberous Drosera place winners.
Drosera



Fan-leaved tuberous Drosera place winners.
Drosera



Non-Topic plant of the night: Pinguicula caerulea.
Pinguicula



Heliamphora heterodoxa.
Heliamphora



Utricularia dichotoma.
Utricularia

date
26
JUL

July Meeting

Judging for the Annual Show's Rosetted Tuberous Drosera category was held at the July meeting. These plants grow throughout the cooler months and most have species will be entering dormancy in December when our show is held. Congratulations to Steve Fretwell, whose pot of Drosera squamosa was awarded First Place. Second Place was awarded to Peter Bloem's large pot of Drosera aberrans from Kyneton. Third Place went to Steve Fretwell's Drosera browniana, a western Australian species from the eastern wheatbelt. Propagation was the topic for the July meeting. Justin brought in some Heliamphora in flower and showed us how he pollenates these plants. Helimphora flowers release there pollen before the flowers become receptive. The flowers are also buzz pollinated, releasing the pollen in response to the buzzing vibrations of the pollinator against the anthers. Justin uses a tuning fork to release the pollen from newly opened flowers and brushes it on to older receptive flowers. Andre runs Flora Laboratories, a tissue culture laboratory that propagates carnivorous plants, orchids and bromeliads and told us about the flasking process as well as how to harden off tissue cultured plants when taking them out of flask. Several members brought in a range of other seedlings they have been growing including Drosera, Dionaea Nepenthes and Utricularia. An unusual plant was a pot of small Drosera magnifica seedlings. This is a recently described species from Brazil that is one of the largest species of Drosera in the world. By all accounts seedlings of this species are slow growing so it may be a while before these seedlings reach there full potential. However, seed has been distributed to several people across Australia so hopefully it won't be long until this magnificent species is more readily available to enthusiasts.

The species benched at the July meeting included:

Brocchinia reducta
Cephalotus follicularis
Dionaea muscipula
Drosera aberrans
Drosera auriculata
Drosera browniana
Drosera capensis
Drosera coccicaulis
Drosera collina
Drosera erythrorhiza
Drosera hirsuta
Drosera hookeri
Drosera indumenta
Drosera macrophylla ssp macrophylla
Drosera magnifica
Drosera pauciflora

Drosera peltata
Drosera prostratoscaposa
Drosera serpens
Drosera squamosa
Drosera tubaestylis
Drosera whittakeri
Heliamphora folliculata
Heliamphora folliculata x heterodoxa
Heliamphora nutans
Heliamphora purpurescens
Nepenthes albomarginata
Nepenthes ampullaria
Nepenthes glandulifera x vogellii
Nepenthes gracilis x rafflesiana
Utricularia cornigera x nelumbifolia
Utricularia nelumbifolia x cornigera


First Place: Drosera squamosa.
Drosera



Second Place: Drosera aberrans.
Drosera



Third Place: Drosera browniana.
Drosera

date
28
JUN

June Meeting

The June meeting was the society's annual general meeting. We'd like to thank all members who have contributed to running the society last year and to those who have volunteered the be on our committee for the coming year. The current committee members can be found on the committee page of our website. The topic plant for the June meeting was open to any genera of carnivorous plant. Sean won plant of the night with his Roridula gorgionas. This is a protocarnivorous species from South Africa. Sean's plants were grown from seed, sown in July 2016. This species has very hard seed coats so Sean soaked the seed in giberellic acid for 24 hrs prior to sowing to encourage germination. Sean's Drosera prolifera and Drosera schizandra were voted second and third place, respectively, for plant of the night. These two Queensland species require low light and high humidity and can be temperamental if conditions aren't right.
The species benched at the June meeting included:

Drosera collina
Drosera macrophylla
Drosera monantha
Drosera pallida
Drosera prolifera
Drosera prophylla
Drosera schizandra
Roridula gorgionas


date
26
APR

April Meeting

April's topic genus, Drosera, is one of the largest and most diverse genera of carnivorous plants. A wide variety of species were brought into the meeting. Peter's Drosera adelae was voted plant of the night. These were large plants that Peter is growing in a terrarium. Runner up plant of the night was a giant form of Drosera binata var dichotoma from NSW, grown by Sean. Several examples of rosetted tuberous Drosera were brought into the meeting including a well grown pot of Drosera rosulata, owned by Sean that achieved third place for plant of the night. Sean's Byblis gigantea was voted non-topic plant of the night. This plant was brought into the previous meeting and was now producing a flower. Amongst the other plants that were benched was a very robust form of Genlisea hispidula and a pot of Pinguicula caerulea, a species from south east USA that is not often seen in local collections. Also benched was a pot of Roridula gorgonas seedlings. This species relies on a symbiotic relationship with assassin bugs to digest the prey that it captures and provide the plant with nutrients from the bug's droppings.
The species benched at the April meeting included:

Byblis gigantea
Cephalotus follicularis
Drosera aberrans
Drosera adelae
Drosera admirabilis
Drosera aliciae
Drosera barbigera
Drosera binata var dichotoma
Drosera binata var multifida
Drosera capensis 'Mini Red'
Drosera enodes
Drosera erythrorhiza
Drosera filiformis
Drosera graminifolia
Drosera lowrei
Drosera petiolaris
Drosera prolifera

Drosera ramentacea
Drosera rosulata
Drosera sessifolia
Drosera slackii
Drosera squamosa
Drosera tubaestylis
Drosera whittakeri
Genlisea hispidula
Nepenthes alba
Nepenthes attenboroughii
Nepenthes burbidgeae
Nepenthes copelandii
Nepenthes spectablis
Pinguicula caerulea
Roridula gorgonas
Utricularia chrysantha
Utricularia dichotoma


Plant of the night: Drosera adelae.
Drosera



Byblis gigantea.
Byblis



Drosera binata var dichotoma.
Drosera



Genlisea hispidula.
Genlisea



Pinguicula caerulea.
Pinguicula



Roridula gorgonas.
Roridula

date
22
MAR

March Meeting

The March meeting was devoted to Sarracenia and Dionaea. Both genera thrive under Melbourne conditions and are excellent beginner plants while still holding a lot of appeal for more experienced growers. Steve brought in several pots of venus fly traps. His Dionaea muscipula 'Clone SS10', a cross of Dionaea muscipula 'G16' x 'G14' that originally came from Sean, was producing large colourful traps and was voted best VFT of the night while his Dionaea muscipula 'Akai Ryu' was voted runner up. As well as some of the more common cultivars seen in Melbourne collections he also brought in some seedlings of 'Claytons Volcanic Red' x self which were colouring up well and 'Biohazard' x self with one of those seedlings showing the distorted traps of the parent cultivar. Bryn brought along a flask of Dionaea muscipula 'Wacky Traps', which produces thick irregular serrations along the edges of its traps. Sarracenia purpurea spp venosa var montana is not common in Australian collections. Steve brought in a very colourful plant with bold red veins over yellow-green pitchers that won Sarracenia of the night. He said it seems to be losing a bit of colour as it gets older. Sarracenia leucophylla produces its showiest pitchers in autumn and Steve also brought in several examples of leucophylla showing the variation you get in this species including two plants, a leucophylla var alba and a leucophylla that was producing red-tinged, "var alba"-like pitchers, that came second and third for Sarracenia of the night. Non-topic plant of the night went to Sean's Byblis gigantea. This is species can be problematic to grow from seed. Seed can be reluctant to germinate and when they do the seedlings are often suffer from fungal problems. Sean germinated his seed in a terrarium and sprayed with Mancozeb and has had a good survival rate. Sean also brought in several examples of the Drosera indica complex. These tropical, annual species are not seen very often at our meetings. Sean is keeping them very wet and they were growing nicely and showing a lot of variation in colour.
The species benched at the March meeting included:

Byblis gigantea
Cephalotus follicularis
Dionaea muscipula
Dionaea muscipula 'Akai Ryu'
Dionaea muscipula 'Biohazard' x self
Dionaea muscipula 'Claytons Volcanic Red' x self
Dionaea muscipula 'Fang'
Dionaea muscipula ('G16' x 'G14')
Dionaea muscipula 'Tall Green/Small Traps'
Dionaea muscipula 'Wacky Traps'
Drosera binata
Drosera callistos x pedicellaris
Drosera 'Dorks Pink'
Drosera enodes
Drosera finlaysoniana

Drosera hartmeyerorum
Drosera ramentacea
Nepenthes attenboroughii
Pinguicula laueana
Sarracenia alata var atrorubra
Sarracenia alata var rubrioperculata
Sarracenia leucophylla
Sarracenia leucophylla var alba
Sarracenia rubra ssp jonesii
Sarracenia purpurea ssp venosa
Sarracenia purpurea spp venosa var montana
Sarracenia rubra spp alabamensis
Sarracenia minor var okefenokeensis hybrid
Utricularia dichotoma
Utricularia monanthos


Byblis gigantea.
Byblis



Dionaea muscipula 'Akai Ryu'.
Dionaea



VFT of the night: Dionaea muscipula ('G16' x 'G14') 'Clone SS10'.
Dionaea



Sarracenia of the night: Sarracenia purpurea ssp venosa var montana.
Sarracenia



Sarracenia leucophylla.
Sarracenia

date
22
FEB

February Meeting

The topic plants for the February meeting were Darlingtonia, Nepenthes, Heliamphora. Steve brought in two pots of Darlingtonia including a pot of seedlings sown in 2015. Darlingtonia seedlings produce thin, tubular juvenile pitchers that end in a filament-like hood. These juvenile pitchers are produced for several years before the plant starts to produce the distinctive cobra-like pitchers that this species is known for. Nepenthes are tropical carnivorous plants, however, many montane species experience cool temperatures in their natural habitat and can be grown in unheated greenhouses in Melbourne. Several species and hybrids can even be grown in a proteted spot outdoors such as under patios or in ferneries. Steve brought in a plant of Nepenthes aristolochioides which was runner plant of the night. This species produces unusual bulbous pitchers are bulbous with a small opening forward facing opeing. Third place went to Brendan's Nepenthes leonardoi, a species from Palawan, Philippines that is closely related to Nepenthes mira. Heliamphora are native South America where they grow on the the Tepui of the Guiana Highlands. Justin brought in a large Heliamphora ionasi in flower, which was awarded plant of the night. Steve also brought in his Heliamphora chimantensis and Heliamphora minor. Heliamphora chimantensis comes from the Chimanta Massif and is not common in Australian collections. The Heliamphora minor was growing in a 6 inch pot and was producing lots of pitchers. Non-topic plant of the night went to Steve's Sarracenia flava var atropurpurea from Cook's Bayou. This plant was producing dark red pitchers and Steve said it was more colourful than the Blackwater forms of atropurpurea that he is growing.
The species benched at the February meeting included:

Darlingtonia californica
Drosophyllum luscitanicum
Heliamphora chimantensis
Heliamphora ionasi
Heliamphora minor
Nepenthes albomarginata
Nepenthes attenboroughii

Nepenthes burbidgeae
Nepenthes glandulifera x vogellii
Nepenthes leonardoi
Nepenthes sanguinea
Nepenthes veitchii
Sarracenia flava var atropurpurea
Sarracenia flava var flava


Darlingtonia californica.
Darlingtonia



Drosophyllum luscitanicum.
Drosophyllum



Plant of the night: Heliamphora ionasi.
Heliamphora



Heliamphora minor.
Heliamphora



Nepenthes albomarginata.
Nepenthes



Nepenthes aristolochoides.
Nepenthes



Nepenthes leonardoi.
Nepenthes



Nepenthes sanguinea.
Nepenthes



Nepenthes veitchii.
Nepenthes



Nepenthes sanguinea.
Nepenthes



Sarracenia flava var atropurpurea.
Sarracenia

date
28
JAN

VCPS Start of year BBQ

The start of year BBQ is a great chance to catch up with other members and see how people are growing their plants. Our seed bank and show sales coordinator, Ron Abernethy, hosted this year's BBQ. Ron grows a wide range of carnivorous plants, particularly both New and Old World pitcher plants and VFTs and has a keen interest in growing plants from seed. Wandering through Ron's greenhouses, we were able to see some of his VFTs grown from imported seed. Interestingly, several of the seedlings, such as the selfings of 'Mirror' which has trap-like outgrowths and 'Spider' which has long thin petioles (shown below) were displaying the traits of the parent plants. Ron's Heliamphora were also looking spectacular as were his Sarracenia, with a lot of promising seedlings putting up some very colourful pitchers.




Dionaea muscipula 'Mirror' x self.
VFT




Dionaea muscipula 'Spider' x self.
VFT




Dionaea muscipula 'Big Tomato'.
VFT




Cephalotus follicularis.
Cephalotus




Drosera Regia.
Drosera




Heliamphora minor x heterodoxa.
Heliamphora




Heliamphora nutans x glabra.
Heliamphora




Nepenthes lowii x campanulata.
Nepenthes




Nepenthes x (ventricosa x sibuyanensis) x carunculata.
Nepenthes




Sarracenia alata "Pubescent, Black".
Sarracenia




Sarracenia flava var rubricorpora.
Sarracenia




Sarracenia x Moorei.
Sarracenia