Sundew - planting, care and overwintering

The Content Of The Article:

There are some plants that are really fascinating. This includes, for example, the sundew. Fascinating because it is a carnivorous plant.


The sundew is one of the sundew family. This genus of carnivorous plants includes about 200 species. Common to all representatives is the ability to catch prey with the help of glued gland leaves. The plants, which are native to South Africa, South America and Australia, represent an unending fascination for hobby gardeners. However, the attitude of these exciting plant representatives, who can even be fed, is a challenge. If some conditions are created, some species, however, prove to be quite robust indoor plants. Below you will find out which species are suitable as indoor plants and what you should consider when cultivating sundew.

plant Description

Sundew is mostly perennial. It can be observed between ground cover from a few inches high up to the meter-high climbing plant a variety of species richness. Many species can become fifty years old and older. The plants are quite robust and some species have tubers as storage organs.

The leaves are the most diverse growth forms can be found. The catches are mobile in almost all species. A peculiarity is the leaf of the often cultivated Cape Sundew. The leaves are more than 360 degrees movable and the plant can almost completely enclose their prey with it.

Overview of different growth forms

The different species of sundew can be distinguished by their growth habit.

❍ temperate growth forms:

This genus includes all plant representatives found in Europe. During winter, the plants retire into a so-called overwintering bud. The budding takes place in the spring from just this Hibernakel.

❍ subtropical growth forms:

Since the climate in subtropical regions hardly changes year-round, the plants continue to grow without interruption. Therefore, no overwintering buds are formed.

❍ Knoll Drosophila:

This growth form occurs in Australia. To survive the hot summers unscathed, the plant retreats into a tuber and drives out in the autumn. Knollendroseras occur in upright, rosette-shaped and climbing species.

❍ Dwarf Drosera:

This growth form also occurs in Australia and serves to protect against hot summers. This happens in this case by dwarfism and the formation of breastshed.

Petiolaris Complex:

This plant group is native to humid areas of Australia. These plants protect themselves from dehydration by collecting condensation from the air and showing a dense hairiness.

The distribution area of ​​the Sundew

More than half of all sundew species are native to Australia, South Africa and South America. The roots of the sundew are probably in Australia. Some researchers also accept Africa as a country of origin. In Europe, the round-leaved sundew, the long-leaved sundew and the mid-sundew are home to only three species of plant genus. Commonly, the genus of plants is classified as worldwide. The opposite is the complete absence of the sundew in the Mediterranean, the north of Africa, Polynesia or the Pacific coast of America.

For cultivating on the windowsill, three species of the sundew have become particularly established. These are the Venus flytrap, Cape sundew and Drosera aliciae.

❍ Venus flytrap:

The venus flytrap is probably the best-known carnivorous plant for the windowsill in our latitudes. The plants come from the USA, where they occur only on a very limited territory. A special feature are the small traps. The plants grow slowly and flower only in the fourth year. In addition, the plant makes a kind of hibernation. Venus fly traps require a sunny and humid location and tolerate temperatures of up to 40 degrees in summer.

Cape sundew:

Cape sundew is a perennial, herbaceous plant that forms a rosette and has elongated catches. Cape sundew comes from South Africa, where the plant grows on lakes and in swamps. A location in full sun gets the Cape sundew very well. Calcified water is not tolerated. The insects are attracted by the secretion secreted from the tentacles of the leaves. If the animals are caught, they are wrapped in the complete leaf of the Cape sundew. This sundew species is the easiest to cultivate and is considered a popular beginner's plant.

Drosera aliciae:

This sundew type consists of a rosette, which is located directly above the ground. Over time, older plants form a trunk and new rosettes form laterally.If the plant is assigned a full sun, the leaves will quickly turn red. This is probably done to attract insects. Between December and January, the erect inflorescences appear, which can reach heights of up to 40 centimeters.

When does the sundew bloom?

The flowering time varies from species to species. In general, the flowers appear between December and February or native species in Europe from June. All sundew plants are extremely high inflorescences, because pollinating insects should not serve as prey animals. The flowering time is also dependent on the duration of sun exposure. The inflorescences turn to the sun and remain open only for a short period of time. Most of the flowers are small and rather inconspicuous and can be found in the colors white and pink. The species native to Australia show a broader color spectrum and are also found in reds and oranges.

Lining for the sundew

The sundew is not necessarily dependent on additional food. The substrate usually contains all necessary nutrients. If you want to feed your sundew, then please use only live insects and never dead insects or even leftovers. Dead insects otherwise lead to mold growth. By the way, a touch with the sticky plant secret does not hurt. The main component of this liquid is sugar water.

So plant the sundew properly

Cultivating sundew is certainly not an easy task, but a fascinating challenge for any hobby gardener and indoor plant enthusiast. The easiest way to do it is with the species that are adapted to our climate. The three species already mentioned in Europe can be planted in the field and survive the winter in a specially trained hibernation bud. In the focus of the plant friends, however, are the tropical species, which are only suitable for the room culture. Therefore, the focus in the following is also on these plant species.

❍ Find the right location

If we look at the natural range of the sundew, you can already draw conclusions for the siting. Sundew is usually found on moist soil. An increased occurrence can be observed in moors, heathlands and swamps. In order to create the ideal conditions for the plant, a bright and moist and warm location should be guaranteed. At a south window, where sufficient direct sunlight is provided, the plants feel particularly well. In a sunny spot, the tentacles also take on a reddish color, attracting insects.

Particularly important is a constantly high humidity at the site. Therefore, you should place the plant in a water-filled coaster. A location immediately above the heater is not tolerated. The ideal ambient temperature should be around 23 to 25 degrees. At night, the temperature can drop to 15 degrees.

A closed terrarium is also an ideal location for sundew plants. Here a constant high humidity can best be achieved. Cults cultivated in the terrarium should only be cultivated from below. You should refrain from the treatment with a plant sprayer, because the plants are very susceptible to gray mold.

The ideal location in keywords:

  • bright
  • warm
  • sunny
  • high humidity
  • no dry heating air

AuswΓ€hlen Select the suitable substrate

The choice of substrate should be done wisely. Who puts his sundew in conventional potting soil, will probably not enjoy the plant for long. As the substrate permanently gets wet from below, it would start to mold and damage the plant.

The soil should consist mainly of white peat. You can add coconut fibers, shell limestone, quartz sand, quartz gravel or volcanic rock as additional constituents to the decomposed peat moss. Quartz sand ensures the permeability of the soil. Perlite acts as a water reservoir and quartz gravel offers a great alternative to sand.

The ideal substrate in key words:

  • permeable
  • mainly white peat
  • Admixtures of coconut fibers, shell limestone or perlites

Pfl Plant Sundew - step by step instructions

  1. Select location.
  2. Select substrate and mix if necessary.
  3. Plant container provided with drainage.
  4. Use plants carefully.
  5. Fill substrate.
  6. Place planter in a tall coaster.
  7. Fill coasters with water.

So that the plants can regulate their water requirements themselves, it makes sense to provide the planter with a drainage. For this purpose, potsherds or gravel are suitable.

This is how to properly care for the sundew


To water:

The most important rule for irrigating sundew is: no tap water. Rainwater or distilled water get the plant far better than calcareous water, fresh from the line. Always pour the water directly into the saucer and never water from above. The water level should be no more than two centimeters here. Between the individual waterings you should allow the soil to dry slightly.In a cooler winter location less water is needed. The soil must not dry out completely.


Sundew plants do not need fertilizer. This can be attributed to the weak root system, which is not designed to absorb nutrients from the soil. The tender roots only serve to fix the plant on its underground and to absorb water. All necessary nutrients are provided in sufficient form via the prey.

To cut:

Cutting measures are not necessary with sundew. You should only remove dried and dead leaves by hand. If it comes to mold, you should grab the scissors and remove the affected parts of the plant.


Spring is the time to replant the sundew. This should happen annually. The used white peat decomposes over time and has to be replaced. The substrate is particularly affected if you have poured the plant with calcareous water (tap water). This can be recognized by the yellow-brown deposits that appear on the substrate. Remove the spent substrate completely from the plant. On this occasion, you should also remove even dead root parts.

Since the weakly developed roots of the sundew hardly spread, you do not necessarily have to choose a larger planter when repotting. It is sufficient if you replace the substrate.


Only the three already mentioned sundew species, which are native to Europe, tolerate frost. Through the formation of winter buds, the plants can not harm even heavy frost.
Sundew cultivated as indoor plants likes a bright and sunny spot in the cold season. The ambient temperature should be about ten degrees. The Cape Sundew also tolerates room temperatures in winter.

Detecting diseases and pests on sundew

If sundew plants are attacked by diseases and pests, they are usually plants weakened by maladministration. Take note of the mentioned care instructions, you will rarely get problems with the rather robust plants. Only the following pests and diseases can tamper the plant:

❍ aphids:

Sundew plants are frequently attacked by aphids. The pests are visible to the naked eye. Chance of yellowing of the leaves may occur. Isolate the plant so that the infestation does not spread to neighboring plants. For the fight then promises a complete immersion of the plants in water success.

❍ snails:

Cultivate the sundew in the field, nudibranchs pose a threat to the plant. These can occur in masses and completely destroy the plants. You should prepare in good time with an anti-slug remedy. Alternatively, you can also collect the animals. You can also sprinkle cat litter or coffee grounds around the plant. Reading tip: Use coffee grounds against cats and snails - how it works!

❍ Scale insects:

Scale insects pose a threat to indoor plants. If the humidity is too low, the pests can attack the plants. Scale insects are considered to be persistent pests and most of the time you will need to use chemical agents to combat them.

❍ mold attack:

With a wrong casting behavior or an unsuitable substrate, mold can be the result. The plants are usually only to save if you remove all affected parts of the plant and repot the plant immediately.

Sundew multiply - 2 possibilities presented

The sundew can be propagated in two different ways. These are the propagation by seeds and by cuttings. Propagation is not easy and not always successful. However, a try is worthwhile and at the same time a challenge.

Propagation by cuttings:

The cuttings propagation of the sundew differs from the usual methods. To get a cuttings, you must cut a catch leaf into pieces about one centimeter in size. Then press the underside of the cuttings onto the substrate. If the planter receives a hood made of plastic or glass, ensure a uniformly high humidity. However, the planting cap should then be regularly ventilated to prevent mold growth.

After about three to four weeks, small elevations appear on the surface of the leaves. There the new plants grow up. You can now remove the slide. The plants usually develop quickly and can form flowers in the first year.

Propagation by seeds:

The multiplication by seeds is more time consuming than the cuttings propagation. The sundew is a light germ. Therefore, you must not cover the seeds with soil, but only spread on the substrate and lightly press. The seeds need a lot of light for germination and should also be covered with plastic to ensure high humidity. The germination time is about five weeks.The young plants should not be exposed to direct sunlight during this time, but still receive a warm location.

Video Board: Carnivorous Plants-Preparing your plants for the winter..

Β© 2019 All Rights Reserved. When Copying Materials - The Reverse Link Is Required | Site Map