The benefits of gardening cannot be understated, and it helps you achieve a sense of great accomplishment when you finally see the little shrubs and seedlings that you have spent countless hours taking care of bearing tasty fruits and wonderful flowers. However, the hobby can quickly turn into a frustrating experience when you notice your garden flooded with different types of pests and insects that eat away at the leaves of your plants, flowers, and fruits. Most people tend to spray toxic chemicals to get rid of pests, but they ultimately prove harmful to your plants too. If you follow that approach, you have to eventually replace the topsoil of your garden by searching “topsoil near me” online.
However, you can adopt a more natural approach towards pest control in your garden by growing carnivorous plants that eat pests, bugs, and other small creatures to survive. Here are a few plants that get rid of pests:
- Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula) – Venus flytrap is perhaps the most well-known carnivorous plant, owing to the countless depictions of the plant in many science fiction movies such as Little Shop of Horrors. The plant is about 6-inches in height and width while the trap is about 1-inch long in general.
Venus flytrap is a common household plant that is native to the Carolinas. Unlike many other carnivorous plants that wait for insects passively, the trapping mechanism of Venus flytraps moves actively.
- Sun pitcher plant (Heli amphora spp.) – Sun pitcher plants comprise more than 20 species of Heli amphora native to South America. The length of sun pitcher plants can range from 6-16 inches, and they feature a leaf structure that resembles a pitcher which has evolved to hold water down to drown the trapped insects.
Sun pitcher plants are difficult to cultivate since they require very high humidity levels and precise temperature to grow.
- Cobra lily (darlingtonia californica) – Cobra lily (A.K.A. California pitcher plants) is native to Northern California and southern Oregon. These plants are closely related to plants in the Sarraceniaceae family and can grow up to 39-inches tall. They are named appropriately since the flowers of cobra lilies resemble the head of a cobra in a striking pose.
Like other pitcher plants, cobra lilies also kill insects by drowning them in their specialized lead structure that contain downward-pointing hairs designed to prevent trapped insects from escaping.
- Tropical pitcher plant (nepenthes spp.) – Tropical pitcher plants are perhaps the weirdest of all the carnivorous plants since most of them are woody vines. They are native to regions that border the Indian ocean. Collectively, the Nepenthes genus includes more than 150 species, and some can grow large enough to trap birds, small mammals, and lizards too. N. x copelandii,Nepenthes x alata, N. sanguinea, and N. fuscaare some tropical pitcher plants that are suited for cultivating indoors.
- Bladderworts (utricularia spp.) – Bladderworts are found in both terrestrial and aquatic forms in almost every continent aside from Antarctica. The Utricularia genus comprises more than 200 species of plants, all with an ingenious trapping mechanism that acts in a way a syringe draws water to trap insects. The aquatic types of bladderworts feed on mosquito larvae and other such prey while the terrestrial types of feed on protozoa and the like.
- Yellow pitcher plant (sarracenia flava) – Yellow pitcher plants are native to the sandy, boggy areas of the Southern U.S and can grow up to 1-3 ft in length. As the name suggests, the modified leaf structure of the yellow pitcher plants that are designed to trap unsuspecting insects are yellow in color, but the pitchers are medium green. They need full sun exposure to grow and thus, bloom during the months of April to May.
- White trumpet pitcher plant (sarracenia leucophylla) – Most carnivorous plant enthusiasts consider white trumpet pitcher plants to be the prettiest of all and rightly so since the combination of red flowers with white pitcher that feature dark veins look mesmerizing. They are native to the Southeast and can grow up to 1-3 feet in length. It is easy to grow white trumpet pitcher plants during the months of April to May.
- Purple pitcher plant (sarracenia purpurea) – Unlike many other pitcher plants that are native to Southeast North America, the purple pitcher plants are native to the Great Lakes region and eastern seaboard. The pitchers of these plants are greenish while the flowers are red. They require specialized bog gardens to grow and can grow about 6 to 8 inches in length when taken care of properly. However, without the proper soil conditions, purple pitcher plants can be quite tricky to grow.
- Sundew (drosera spp.) – Sundew plants look beautiful since they feature leaves with protruding hair that secrete sticky, shimmering liquid. Sundew plants actively respond to touch and their hair-like tentacles reach out to trap insects that have made contact with the plants. The leaves of Sundew plants generally feature a reddish tint while the color of their flower varies according to the species. They can be found in many different sizes ranging from not larger than a penny to the size of small bushes and can grow on every continent except for Antarctica.
- Western Australian pitcher plant (cephalotus follicularis) – When it comes to the size of pitcher plants, western Australian pitcher plants are among the smallest with their sizes ranging from 1 to 1 ½ inch long. They are also among the rarest of plants with the ‘Eden Black’ — a black plant — dark enough to be qualified for being the rarest of the rare.
If the quality of the topsoil in your garden has declined greatly due to the regular use of chemicals in order to control pests, it makes sense to replace it with a new batch. Simply search “topsoil near me” on Google to find stores near your region that sell quality topsoil. Once that is done, you can focus on purchasing and growing carnivorous plants to prevent pests and other small insects from harming your beautiful plants.
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