Nepenthes Mirabilis var Globosa aka Nepenthes Viking

I slaughtered several of these before I figured them out. I find they need a lot of humidity to start. It’s best to keep them in a terrarium while they are small and ever so slowly adapt them to life on a windowsill.

I find they like less light than my other Nepenthes. They grow in a window that gets filtered morning light with a fluorescent lamp making up for the small amount of sunlight.

Pitchers are green to red, on the same plant, round with wings and grow on very long tendrils. Often there are a dozen or more pitchers. I’m not sure how large they will get, I’ve not seen photos of any more than 3″ or so in size.

The plants tend to be busy, sending up many basil shoots. They are hanging rather than climbing Nepenthes.

Mirabilis is a lowland plant, common to south east Asia. It has the widest know distribution of any of the Nepenthes. Mirabilis Var Globosa is only native to one island and the Thai mainland. There are dozens of natural hybrids. The habitat was wiped out in the 2004 tsunami. Plants are being cloned in labs in an attempt to re-establish the population.

Nepethes Mata Hari

This was an eBay purchase, it’s a cultivar between Splendiana x ventricosa created by Manny Herrera. It’s the first Nepenthes I had that flowered. I believe they are known to flower often.

I grow it in a window, in an open orchid pot that’s filled with sphagnum. I had it in an east window last year. This winter it’s in a full afternoon sun window and it seems happier. It may not like it so much come summer? I keep a half inch to an inch of distilled water in the dish the pot is sitting in.

It took a little while to settle in, putting out flowers rather than pitchers the first summer, then didn’t do much until a few months ago. Now it’s putting out leaves and pitchering regularly.

It looks like it’s going to be a climber rather than bushy. The pitchers are always full of bugs, the climbers seem to be better at attracting prey than the bushier Nepenthes.

Nepenthes Bloody Mary aka Lady Luck

Bloody Mary is a horticultural cross between Red Nep. Ampullaria and Red N.Ventricosa. It is more commonly sold now in Bio-Domes as Lady Luck, but I prefer the old name.

I find it stays bushier than most Nepenthes, both of mine have several basil shoots. It’s the only one I have the flat out refuses to put out pitchers all winter. It does make up for it in the summer.

Nepenthes want distilled or at least very soft water, no fertilizers. These are swamp plants so I keep 1/2″ – 1″ of water in the bottom. They seem happiest in sphagnum moss. I find they like the orchid baskets best. I think the air helps keep them from getting too soggy.

I have it in a south west window, it seems to like more light than my other Nepenthes.

Geranium carolinanum aka Carolina cranesbill

Several years ago I purchased some citronella scented geraniums ( which do not keep mosquitoes away, that’s Lemongrass (Cymbopogon ). They died off during droughts, freezes and go figure, today in its place I discovered a wild Geranium carolinanum. Only a tiny scent emerges from its leaves, I can’t quite place it.

This is a native through the middle of the US and across to the eastern states. Some authors claim it likes dry, wooded areas, others wet moist areas. Mine appeared in a sunny dry area.

One book lists it as the worst weed of the Geranium family, and that’s the kindest thing the author has to say about it. It spreads out from the roots becoming invasive. Time will tell, for now I’m going to leave it alone and see what happens.

Early flowers give way to fruits with a beak like appearance which also disperse seeds. The crane like fruit abruptly splits at the side which pulls the beak scattering the seeds a long way off. It is an annual or biennial

Can reach about 2′ in height and width.

Blooms March-May in the Houston area

Duchesnea indica aka Indian Strawberry

I’m not sure where it came from but it’s tried to overtake every garden bed here. It’s easy to pull out, but there’s so much of it I’m not sure I’ll ever get rid of it.

Fruit is bright red and flavorless, flowers are yellow

Loves sun or part shade, moist soil

Perennial herb, fast spreader, noxious weed, but that also makes it a good ground cover. It’s a recommended water wise ground cover by several references

Native to India, naturalized to eastern US and west coast

Some claim it can cause allergic reactions – birds, squirrels won’t eat it

Nothoscordum bivalve aka Crow Poison

Blooms early spring, sometimes in fall along road sides and other open areas. Leaves are long, thin all at the base of the plant.

Perennial bulb in Liliaceae family

Native to Texas, Mid Atlantic, Mid West and Gulf Coast

Toxic to humans, possibly crows, but loved by butterflies

aka Yellow False Garlic