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gardianlh t1_j6hepi5 wrote

Considering Venus Fly Traps only have an average lifespan of three feeding cycles, this one did well with a two for one special.


sgame23 t1_j6iywkz wrote

I have 2. Ones been alive for over 2 years now. The others about a year old. The "mouths" only survive for about 2-3 feeding cycles if that. But they just grow new ones


TRNC84 t1_j6ker2v wrote

So what happens if you like poke the mouth does it close? And if so does it know to open back up if it caught nothing?


pees_on_dogs t1_j6kj9br wrote

Yes, it'll close, but this is bad for the plant. It takes a lot of energy for them to do this, so if they catch nothing its a problem. Don't try and make them close for no reason.


wiseroldman t1_j6kutcp wrote

Would heavy rain have the same affect and make the mouths close?


RainboBro t1_j6kz1st wrote

>Gentle rain can close traps, but this is not a common event. The necessity of two or more stimuli to close a trap accounts for traps general lack of responsiveness to raindrops in light rainfall. Traps observed to be closed by raindrops began reopening in an average of 4.5 hours and full reopening averaged 15.8 hours.

>Only 6 to 12% of the traps in the field of view were closed by intense rain. Even rain so heavy that the traps were submerged in water left most of the traps open. Gentle rain can close traps, but this is not a common event.

  • Research Gate,is%20not%20a%20common%20event.


wiseroldman t1_j6l03ty wrote

Interesting, so the plant has evolved to deal with the stimulus from rain drops. Thanks for sharing!


reddragon105 t1_j6kuzwx wrote

This is the thing that blew my mind about them when I first got mine - they actually have a built-in timer to make sure they caught something living, and thus worth digesting.

When something first lands in one of the traps and touches a trigger hair, the plant does nothing - it has to sense two trigger hairs being touched within 20 seconds for it to snap shut, and then it has to sense more hairs being triggered - five in total - in order for it to tighten even more and then start digestion.

The video above actually only shows the first stage of the trap closing - if it was 30-60 seconds longer you would have seen the trap shut tighter, so there were no gaps left, as the flies kept moving around inside.

If a trap was accidentally triggered without live prey inside (like by a rain drop), or a fly managed to get out in time, then the trap would shut but when the plant didn't detect anything still moving inside it would open again slowly - takes about a day or two.

But don't trigger them on purpose - it takes a lot of energy for the plant to close and reopen them, and if it's not getting any food from the effort it could kill the plant.

The traps themselves can last for a few months before dying off and being replaced. They can only be triggered so many times though, so once they've opened and closed a few times they become inactive and basically just serve as normal leaves for photosynthesis.


underscore5000 t1_j6ifquv wrote

Dont just their leaves have that? The plant itself survives.


Hive747 t1_j6iugd4 wrote

I wondered about that too. Would be weird if the plant dies so fast. Or is a feeding cycle like a few months?


reddragon105 t1_j6kvcgt wrote

They digest insects in about 10 days. The traps can last a few months, but they can only be triggered so many times - it takes a lot of energy, and if they keep catching bugs it just gets harder for the planet to digest them every time as it can't remove the old dead insects, so at a certain point they become inactive and just serve as regular leaves for photosynthesis until they die off. The plant itself is constantly growing new traps and they can live for 20+ years.


Hive747 t1_j6m90de wrote

Ahh okay thank you for clarifying that! That makes a lot more sense. Though I never had good luck with them. They rarely lived for more than a year. Though I keep all my other plants mostly in a very good shape.


reddragon105 t1_j6mqpbb wrote

Yeah, they're not the easiest plants to keep alive! My first one only lasted 9 months - it went dormant for the winter and then just didn't wake up.

My second one is going on for 2 years now - I bought it some higher quality soil and a bigger pot, one where you can water it from the bottom so the soil is always just damp, which is what they like.


reddragon105 t1_j6kvqxh wrote

The actual traps/leaves last for up to three months. They can only be triggered a few times, but once they can't digest insects anymore they still stick around for a while, acting as regular leaves for photosynthesis, before they die off - the plant is constantly growing new ones.

The plants as a whole are actually pretty long lived - they're slow to mature and can live for 20+ years.