Growing Venus flytraps: Propagation


Propagating Venus flytraps is a great way to make sure you always have a spare of particular flytrap cultivar. It’s also a great way to prepare flytraps to sell or trade with other hobbyists!

D.M. Whale

In this guide, we talk about how to propagate Venus flytraps and what you need to make sure your propagations grow nice and healthy.

•  Venus flytrap cultivars
•  Propagating Venus flytraps
ㅤㅤ•  Seeds
ㅤㅤ•  Pullings
•  Growing flytraps in the Philippines

Venus flytrap cultivars

“D.M.” stands for Dionaea muscipula in flytrap names (for example, D.M. Maroon Monster). Dionaea refers to Aphrodite, and muscipula is Latin for mousetrap or flytrap.

There is only one Venus flytrap, but there are many Venus flytrap cultivars or cultivated varieties. Each cultivar can have unique or weird properties that make them prized by collectors. Some have wild mutations, like D.M. Hanicka’s Butterfly, D.M. Mirror, or D.M. Asmodeus.


There are several Venus flytraps

Some flytrap cultivars have initials before their names, like CV. In this case, CV stands for Carnivoria, a carnivorous plant nursery/grower who “created” that specific cultivar. That means a plant with CV in their name—CV Demogorgon, CV Plumechon, CV Korri Double, CV Rimmon, CV Mr. Black—are all from Carnivoria. Carnivoria cultivars are considered less common, especially since the main website of Carnivoria.eu seems to be offline at the moment.


What’s in a name?
   

Other examples of cultivar initials include GJ (Green Jaws), SD (Stephen Doonan), and VC (Vegetalement Carnivore). When it comes to naming flytraps, it’s completely up to their creators or breeders how they’re named. Adding their names or the names of their nurseries helps us hobbyists and collectors keep the origins of certain cultivars. Cultivars, or cultivated variety, is a kind of cultivated plant that people have selected for desired traits and which retains those traits when propagated.

Each and every cultivar is a clone of the original plant that first exhibited its unique traits—which is why there’s no such thing as a cultivar that can be grown from that same cultivar’s seeds.


D.M. Asmodeus has really weird mutations

Propagating Venus flytraps

Venus flytraps can be propagated through different methods:
•  Seeds
•  Tissue culture
•  Taking pullings or divisions from a mature plant

The difference is that seed-grown flytraps are always considered “Typical” or D.M. Typical.

Venus flytraps that have names are clones propagated through pullings, divisions, or tissue cultures from the original cultivar, which is why they retain the features of that cultivar.

To illustrate: If D.M. Asmodeus above were to flower and produce seeds, plants grown from its seeds would be Typical.

Growing Venus flytraps from seeds

Typical flytraps are genetically different from their parents, which means they won’t necessarily have the traits of their parents.

D.M. Typical

This is why you cannot take the seeds of any cultivar and expect them to look the same as that cultivar. If you bought a flytrap that doesn’t have a name, it’s a D.M. Typical.

Named cultivars start as Typicals, but some growers breed Typicals to enhance a trait or find a mutation. Cultivars are the result of these mutations.

If you want to try growing flytrap seeds, make sure you buy from a trusted source. There are many, many fake seeds, so be careful!

Growing Venus flytraps from pullings

Venus flytrap cultivars with special traits—like large traps (D.M. B52 or D.M. DX CL) or unique traps (D.M. Wacky Traps, D.M. Korean Melody Shark)—are all clones of the very first plant that exhibited the characteristics these cultivars are known for.

One particularly cool cultivar is D.M. M.K. 1979, named because its creator, Mike King, grew this plant in 1979 and is still growing this clone to this day!


D.M. M.K. 1979

As another example, S.D. Kronos is bred by Stephen Doonan, Trev’s Dracula is bred by Trev Cox, and the G.J. cultivars like GJ Maratchi, GJ Bloody Nurse, and GJ Rose are all bred by Green Jaws, a nursery in Germany owned by Matze. These cultivars are pretty rare and are more expensive than others.


D.M. GJ Rose

Some cultivars are registered with the International Carnivorous Plant Society and are internationally recognized. However, some cultivars are only found in the Philippines, like beginner-friendly D.M. Sinagtala and D.M. Shenron with their dragon scale-like leaves, which are both created by Rain Tolentino of Venus Flytrap Store Philippines.


D.M. Sinagtala, an awesome beginner Venus flytrap

There are more local cultivars like D.M. Princess of Negros, D.M. Ogre, and D.M. Rosabella, named by local growers who bred and cloned these plants to preserve their special properties.

All named cultivars, in that sense, are clones from the very first plant that exhibited their special features and are preserved through cloning.

How many kinds of Venus flytraps are there?
There is only one kind or species of Venus flytrap: Dionaea muscipula. However, there are many, many cultivars, both registered and unregistered. Flytrapcare.com has a list of some registered Venus flytrap cultivars with descriptions. Note that this isn’t an exhaustive list, though, as some growers like Green Jaws, BCP, and Carnivoria have cultivars that aren’t here—like D.M. GJ Green Zebra or D.M. CV Rimmon.

D.M. Space

Are cultivars different from each other in terms of growth?
Yes, some cultivars are harder to grow than others, like D.M. Umgekrempelt or D.M. Waveclip. It’s best to ask your seller/grower about a cultivar if you want to be sure.

But as long as you know the basic requirements of carnivorous plants in general, you can raise a Venus flytrap. If you read all my guides from top to bottom, your chances of success are much higher.


D.M. Umgekrempelt

What’s important is to keep observing and learning, and don’t give up! I’ve killed many flytraps and other carnivorous plants before, I just kept trying and determining whether my grow space can handle certain plants.

How can I propagate my Venus flytrap?
The easiest way is by taking pullings. I don’t have a guide for how, but there are plenty online. You can try reading this guide from the International Carnivorous Plants Society to learn how to actually take good pullings.

D.M. Typicals with some All Greens

Instead of planting them in peat/sand, you can use sphagnum moss. I try to use live sphagnum moss, but rehydrated dry sphagnum moss is ok, too. I’ve even had success making B52 pullings grow in washed coco peat. Make sure that the media is moist/wet.

Some growers stick leaf pullings in pots and treat them like the mother plant. Then they forget about them. Depending on the cultivar, leaf pullings can take months to produce a good young plant, but it will take more months before they grow to much larger sizes.

Growing Venus flytraps in the Philippines

If you haven’t seen it yet, I have a complete guide on how to take care of Venus flytraps in the Philippines! Check it out to know about what they need to thrive, dormancy, and pests!

Growing Venus flytraps: basic care and information
Growing Venus flytraps: basic care and information

If you have any questions, feel free to ask in a comment!

You can also message me on and follow my Facebook or Instagram for more plant content since I post every day about learnings, experiments, and just the regular progress of the plants in my collection. I post about plants for sale, like Byblis, sundews, and Venus flytraps, as well as carnivorous plant gardening items like TDS meters,  pots, and Maxsea fertilizer.

If you haven’t seen them yet, I also have guides on how to prepare for your first carnivorous plant and how to grow other carnivorous plants like sundews and Byblis in the Philippines. You can check here for all my guides.

Preparing for your first carnivorous plant

 



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