How to Care for a Venus Flytrap Plant


Caring for a venus fly trap plant is just as easy as caring for common houseplants. In fact, it may even be easier. Venus fly traps require very little to thrive. They don't even need to feed on insects to be healthy. In order to provide the best life for your plant, simply follow a few important guidelines and leave the rest up to nature.

Step 1

Get the soil composition right. This is the single most important factor to successful venus flytrap cultivation. Nutrient rich soil designed for regular houseplants will actually kill your venus fly trap. Because they do not use the soil components for growth and nourishment, they create toxic soil conditions that burn the plant's roots. Use poor soil composed of peat, sphagnum moss and perlite.

Step 2

Provide clean, purified water. The theory about soil applies to water. Tap water contains salts, minerals, chlorine and other treatment chemicals that the plant cannot use and that build up to toxic levels in the soil. Purified water or rainwater is the best choice.

Step 3

Find the right light conditions in your home. At least four hours of intense direct sunlight plus pure water is how your plant makes its own food. Overall, venus fly traps require 12 hours of sunlight, four of which need to be direct.

Step 4

Bring on the bugs. Venus fly traps are unique in that they can lure, trap and digest insects. Doing so is not necessary for their survival, however. Venus fly traps can thrive without ever having caught a single bug. If you'd like to feed your plant for fun, choose insects which have not been exposed to pesticides and limit feedings to one insect every one to two weeks.

Step 5

Skip the plant food. Venus fly traps need nothing more than good water and sunlight to make their own food. Adding fertilizers and plant foods, as with water and soil, allow for root damaging chemical build-up.

Step 6

Leave your plant alone. Avoid the temptation to show your plant's unique skills to your friends by falsely activating its snapping mechanism. Doing so repeatedly decreases your plant's sensitivity to stimulus and uses large amounts of the plant's limited energy reserves. Only allow your plant to snap close naturally while feeding on an insect.

Things You'll Need

  • Soil
  • Purified water
  • Insects (optional)


  • Care and Cultivation of Venus Fly Trap Plants
Keywords: care for, venus fly trap, carnivorous plant

About this Author

Lillian Downey is a writing professional who has served as editor-in-chief of "Nexus" literary journal and as an assistant fiction editor at the "Antioch Review." Downey attended Wright State University, where she studied writing, women's studies and health care.