Sunday, September 17, 2006

Death to Creepy Crawlies

Almost overnight, my house is buzzing with tiny black fruit flies. And, that's a good thing because Betty prefers her dinner while it's still wiggling.

The Venus Flytrap is one of the easiest carnivorous plants to grow. Just give her high humidity, full sunlight, and poor, acidic soil. An ant, fly or spider, every once in awhile, doesn't hurt. Never worry about over watering. She can live under water for months.

Betty is a good terrarium plant. An old fish bowl works great, too. Venus Flytraps have trigger hairs on their leaves. When something touches the hairs, they snap shut trapping the victim inside. (If she doesn't like what she's caught, she'll 'spit' it back out.)

It takes Betty 5 - 10 days to gobble a bug. You can fool her into eating a dead insect. Gently place the bug between her leaves and rub it against the trigger hairs. (An eyebrow tweaser makes a good 'spoon' for feeding Betty.)

But, why go to all that trouble?
Just be a lousy housekeeper like me. One luscious peach left on the kitchen counter a day too long should attract enough little flies to make her jump for joy.

Explore the dark side of gardening. Click here to visit the Little Shop of Horrors.

* Don't whatever you do feed her hamburger! (Gives her indigestion.) Don't feed anybody hamburger. Nobody knows for sure what goes into that stuff...

PS: She's probably not dead. Betty goes dormant in November for several months. Rejoins the living, come spring.

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