I must admit, when I decided to start this I haven’t come equipped with a database of knowledge in my head like Professor Brian Cox or Sir David Attenborough. Just a child-like enthusiasm for the living organisms on our planet and what we have become as human beings in a society. If your a beginner yourself, we’ll be learning together.
The main focus of this blog will be to bring science and the ecosystems back to its basics. Using real life examples, to teach and learn about how the world works around us and just appreciating the simplistic beauty of our planet.
I visited the local garden centre and picked up a more popular of the carnivorous plants – the Venus Fly Trap. Something you might find in Poison Ivy’s hidden lair, the Venus Fly Trap I have here is only young and I count around 8 heads. As we enter late April the air is still very cold and Spring has not yet fully arrived, I anticipate the plant is being stubborn before it begins to really open up.
The “teeth” are what give Venus their popularity. They act like the bars on a jail cell and snap shut on any insect or bug who dares wonder into its mouth.
The surface of its mouth is covered in little hairs and when one hair is flicked by an insects leg – a timer is triggered. The unknowing insect will have just 20 seconds to escape before the mouth is sealed shut and the insect is unable to escape and there it will be slowly digested. The reason behind this 20 second gap, is so that the Venus doesn’t unnessecarily snap shut on passing winds or dust and waste its energy on indigestible meals.
A beginner like me requires some research on the care of plant life and I was pleased to see that our climate is well suited to the Venus Fly Trap. Coming from the East Coast of the United States, Carolina, the seasons are acutely similar to ours in the South of England and London, and Venus requires damp conditions.
Should you choose to own one yourself, you’d be best to collect rainwater and feed this to your plant (tap water can be too acidic and the chlorine levels are also dangerous), otherwise you could leave a mug of water on the side between 24 and 48 hours – this would allow any chemicals in the water to disperse. Boiling the water can also be an option but perhaps as a last resort, as any bacteria is left dead in the water – of course, dead is good though.
I’m going to show you the progress over the next few weeks, amongst other things, and if indeed I’m cut out to at least be a florist. Introducing Hector, our Venus Fly Trap.