How to Remove Dead Leaves From Nepenthes

Print this articleNepenthes, which is among the most varied and dramatic-looking carnivorous plants, looks best with its dead leaves and traps pruned. Foliage tends to die back on the lower part of the plant, and the dead plant material and bare stems leave gaps in the plant growth. Removing the dead leaves and sparse stems encourages new shoots. The plant has pit traps formed from leaf tissue into nectar-scented cups to attract live creatures. In the wild, a large Nepenthes obtains nutrients from frogs, rodents and insects.

Related Searches:Difficulty:Moderately EasyInstructions Things You'll NeedClippers or sharp knifeSuggest Edits1

Cut off a dead leaf at its base, next to the stem. Use clippers or a sharp knife and take care not to nick living areas of the plant.


Prune a Nepenthes stem at its base when the stem has dead leaves or bare areas. Feel along the stem to where it ends in the pot if it is a large plant or it has crowded stems. Insert the clippers around the stem as close as possible to the plant without cutting other stems, or use a knife to sever the stem. Cut the stem 1 to 2 inches from the growing medium.


Remove dead material regularly and new shoots will help to fill out the plant. Pruning gives your Nepenthes a healthy and lush appearance, free of bare areas.


Cut dead traps off a Nepenthes by clipping them right next to the stem. This keeps the plant from having stumps on the stem. Use sharp clippers.


Prune a mature Nepenthes 30 percent in the spring to encourage new growth. Cut all of its stems back by almost one-third of their length. Support remaining stems on a wire trellis or allow them to hang over the pot.

Tips & Warnings

A Nepenthes that isn't producing pitchers may need higher humidity or more light.

Plant live stems that you prune from a Nepenthes in a suitable growing medium such as vermiculite to propagate new plants. Keep the cuttings at 100 percent humidity for the first two weeks.

A terrarium with a cover, an aquarium or a clear plastic box work well for starting carnivorous plants. Transplant the young Nepenthes plants into pots with excellent drainage — such as azalea pots — once they are well-established.

Dead plant material can attract pests. Dispose of dead leaves. Pruning your Nepenthes controls the plant growth so you don't have to repot it as often.

Suggest item

ReferencesBotanical Society of America: Nepenthes -- The Monkey CupsInternational Carnivorous Plant Society; Growing Nepenthes in a Completely Inorganic Substrate; Heiko Rischer; June 2000The University of Florida Miami-Dade Extension; Curious Vines for the Serious Hobbyist; John McLaughlin; May 2007ResourcesTexas A&M University; Weird Plants; David Wm. ReedRead Next:

Print this articleCommentsFollow eHowFollow

View the Original article

No comments:

Post a Comment