NATCHEZ, Miss. (WJTV) – In Natchez, a friend of mine believes he’s solved the insect problem. It’s a by-product of the particular type of plants he has in his flower garden. Insects don’t eat his plants, because his plants eat the insects.
“Well, you know, in comic books back years ago, I haven’t seen a comic book in years, you turn pages and they’d have all these novelties. But there was always, ‘The plant that eats meat.’ The Venus flytrap, and I would order one and ‘course it would always die. To successfully grow them, you have to understand what they need,” said Burnley Cook.
Oddly enough, it isn’t flies. Matter of fact, the less you do for carnivorous plants, the better.
“Lots of sun. As much sun as it can possibly get. It needs pure water. Rain water, reverse osmosis, distilled water. Just as long at its pure water, and poor nutrient potting base. If you use anything that has Miracle Grow or fertilizers in it, you kill it,” Cook explained.
Once Cook figured out the secret of keeping that first successful flytrap alive years ago, his interest in the hungry little carnivores plants expanded. He has a backyard mostly potted flytraps and pitcher plants and sun dew plants, which have sticky, but insect attractive oily beads on their stalks.
“Once you find out how to grow the plants, you say, ‘Okay. Lemme try this one, lemme try this one.’ If you ever start growing carnivorous plants, all of a sudden you realize you’re being hypnotized. There’s a beauty to them, and there’s just a wicked side to them. But they’re easy to grow.”
Cook advised not to try to grow carnivorous plants in terracotta or clay pots. Plastic is better.