How to Create a Terrarium for Carnivorous Plants

Most people think of the Venus flytrap when they hear the words "carnivorous plant," but there are several different varieties of these plants. Interestingly, most carnivorous plants are native to the United States. Being native, however, does not make them easier to grow. They are amongst the most difficult plants to grow. Still, it can be a lot of fun to try.


Step 1

Choose a container for your terrarium. Carnivorous plants need lots of humidity, so it should have a lid.

Step 2

Add a layer of gravel or loose pebbles to the bottom of your terrarium. The layer should be about an inch deep.

Step 3

Top the gravel with about 1/2 inch of activated charcoal to absorb any odors in the tank.

Step 4

Cover the gravel and charcoal with a layer of sphagnum peat moss.

Step 5

Add about two to three inches of unfertilized soil. Carnivorous plants like acidic soils. Consider using sphagnum peat moss with silica sand (not white, bleach or sandbox sand) or medium grade orchid bark. Add distilled water to the moss and mix until it turns black, then combine it with sand or bark.

Step 6

Plant your carnivorous plants. These plants include Venus Flytrap (Dionaea muscipula), Sundew (Drosera), Butterwort (Pinguicula), North American Pitcher Plants (Sarracenia), Australian Pitcher Plant (Cephalotus Follicularis), Cobra Lily (Darlingtonia Californica), South American Sun Pitchers (Heliamphora), Bladderwort (Utricularia).

Step 7

Water your terrarium well with distilled water. Other types of water contain minerals and additives that could kill your plants.

Step 8

Place the terrarium in a spot with bright light in a place where the temperature should be 65 to 75 degrees during the day and 55 to 65 degrees at night. Carnivorous plants do not tolerate high temperatures or low light levels.

Step 9

Since carnivorous plants need plenty of light but will overheat if placed in direct sunlight, you may need to supplement its light using a good quality florescent light.

Step 10

Feed your plant about once a month. You can feed your plants with either live or dead ants, flies or crickets.

Tips and Warnings

Do not fertilize.

Things You'll Need

Glass container, Gravel, Activated charcoal, Sphagnum peat moss, Distilled water, Several carnivorous plants, Insects such as crickets or flies

About this Author

Darcy Logan has been a full-time writer since 2004. Before writing, she worked for several years as an English and special education teacher. Logan published her first book, "The Secret of Success is Not a Secret," and several education workbooks under the name Darcy Andries. She received her Bachelor of Arts in English and Master of Arts in special education from Middle Tennessee State University.

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