Bog Garden

Introduction: Bog Garden

About: Graduated from college in 2010 with a Bachelors in Fine Art with a focused study in furniture design. I am also a mad scientist at heart.
As a hobby I enjoy growing carnivorous plants. I have recently discovered how to turn this hobby into a garden. As of right now it is in a experiment stage, but it is growing quit well and eating alot. In this instructable I will show you how to raise North American species(Dionaea, and Sarraceniums) in a garden. These plants can stay out all winter if appropriate measures are taken that they do not freeze. My Bog is not mature yet and all of my plants are young so my garden doesn't look great but they are growing very well. All of my plants are also not in my garden, I only used the ones that had a high hardiness.
  When you choose your plants you want t make sure that they have low  humidity requirements, species like Nepenthes require humidity around 80%. This is also why I chose the North American species because they like 50% humidity, except the butter wort family and sun dews. 

In my trails I have found that :

All the plants like high light, with direct morning sunlight.

Venus Fly Traps (Dionaea muscipula) will act as your warning plant for too little light and will start to grow long thin leaves connected to the traps

Sweet Pitchers (Sarracenia rudra-wherry) act as my water warning because they grow extremely fast and the new growth becomes curled when too dry.

Purple Pitchers (Sarracenia purpurea-venosa) act as my warning for too much light, the pitchers will sunburn on the new growth.

Tap water is also okay, so you can water them with a hose. However I live in the Midwest and water quality differs for everyone. If you live in a desert area don't use tap, too many salts! Also the traps are delicate, so mist the plants, not power wash.

When it is summer time you should water these plants every day or every other due the high evaporation rate during this time of year.

Materials needed:

Plastic container (no clay pots, these collect salt deposits)
Pee Gravel
Peat Moss
Carnivorous Plants

Planting Media: Carnivorous plants enjoy a soil medium that has good drainage, holds moisture well, and low in nitrogen. All North American plant species do very well in a 1:1 ratio by weight of sand and peat moss. Prior to mixing the sand needs to be washed to remove any salt, and the peat moss moistened. Then simply add the two proper weighed materials together and mix well.  After this mixture has been made set it aside for the moment.

Preparing for Soil: The container itself should be selected to allow proper growth for the plants without cramping their development. With my container I selected a plastic mixing box measuring 24"x24" (60.96cm x 60.96cm) and about 5" deep (12.7cm). I chose this to allow plenty of room for experiments with my plants and seeing how they would grow. The size is relative for the amount of plants and what type. I would give each plant a 3" radius  (7.62cm). 
  1. Drill a hole at the bottom of the pot that is 1/4"D (0.635cm), this prevents the plants from drowning.
  2. Add 1" (2.54cm) of pre-washed pee gravel to help with drainage.
  3. Put 2" (5.08cm) of sand on top of gravel to prevent the soil from washing out.
  4. Add soil till there is a 1" (2.54cm) gap from the top of the container.
  5. Remove plants from containers (carefully) and add them to your new bog garden.
Placing the bog garden tip: Place your new bog garden where it can receive ample morning light but shaded form the harsher afternoon sun. This garden does well on porches, under a tree, on the east side of the house, or make a canopy out of white cloth to shelter it from the afternoon sun.

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    3 Discussions


    5 years ago

    I made a hypertufa put with no drainage holes in it. The pot holds the water somewhat without being overly soggy and the pitcher plants i have have done wonderful in it. The son dew and the Venus fly trap have faired less well but the ones I got for free at the flower and garden festival at epcot were not the best looking.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Can I used milled peat moss or does it have to be long fiber? Where would I even GET long fiber peat moss??


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I am happy to answer any technical questions concerning carnivorous plants, or giving advice on how to make your own customized bog.

    As a side note you can fertilize these plants if you use orchid fertilizer and dilute one tablespoon to one gallon of water. This is a 10-10-30 fertilizer, and should only be done once a month.