Drosera spatulata, The Spoon-Leaf SundewDrosera spatulata is one of the most widespread sundews in nature. According to Adrian Slack's Carnivorous Plants, Drosera spatulata can be found found in Australia, Tasmania, and New Zealand, and also in various parts of the Far East, including China, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Borneo, and the Philippines" so there are many forms and varieties (133). Drosera spatulata is commonly known to become a weed in sundew collections because it constantly shoots up flower stalks loaded with tons seeds. The many forms of Drosera spatulata includes many locations, forms, and a few cultivars. The forms I grow are (Fraser Island), var. "Jacoby", and 'Tamlin'. Drosera spatulata is a rosetted sundew and should be grown in subtropical conditions for best results. I recommend Drosera spatulata for any beginning sundew grower. It is a truly vibrant and stunning sundew.
A 8-month old Drosera spatulata 'Tamlin'
Drosera spatulata (Fraser Island).
Drosera spatulata var. "Jacoby" under bright light. Click this link to see a picture when they were not getting as much light.
Media: Can grow well in pretty much any medium. I have successfully grown Drosera spatulata in 1 peat: 1 sand, pure Long-fibered sphagnum (LFS) 1 LFS: 1 perlite. Be sure to rinse your media before you use it
Media moisture: keep moist.
Humidity: not much needed. I'd recommend at least 50%.
Pot height: Drosera spatulata can grow well in pretty much any size pot. I always recommend 4 inches or taller for the best results, and maximum growth.
Trapping speed: moderate. Leaves will curl and fold drastically around food within a few hours.
Feeding: Feed your Drosera spatulata once every two weeks for rapid, robust growth and flower production. See feeding page. Feeding encourages flowering, but Drosera spatulata normally flowers no matter if it is fed or not.
Food size: medium
Plant dimensions: Drosera spatulata (Fraser Island) generally remains small, at around 1 inch across, but Drosera spatulata 'Tamlin' can reach up to 3 inches across if it is in a tall pot by itself. D. spatulata is a rosetted sundew.
Temperature: not picky. Has grown well for me in the temp range of 45-90 degrees F. Give Drosera spatulata subtropical conditions.
Lighting/Photoperiod: I grow mine under T-8 lights with a 16-hour photoperiod. Most, if not all forms of Drosera spatulata will turn bright red in intense light.
Dormancy requirements: None required. Can be grown year-round if grown indoors during the cold months. I recommend using the tray method. Drosera spatulata should come back from the roots if freezes and warms up again, or if the media dries out completely. Very hard to permanently kill once established.
Flowers: Drosera spatulata is one of the best self-pollinating sundews. There are normally 20+ flowers per stalk, with each flower containing 30 or more seeds. Drosera spatulata never seems to stop flowering for me either, so it has become quite a weed.
Propagation Techniques(click here to learn more about propagating sundews)
Seed: extremely easy. no cold stratification required. Can be grown to flowering maturity from seed in 1 year or less if fed often.
Leaf-cuttings: very easy. The water-floating method works best. Place directly under lights for the hightest success rate.
Root cuttings: Very easy. Roots are a bit more slender than D. capensis, but they work extremely well.
Divisions: very easy. Drosera spatulata tends to form clumps over time, when the seeds scatter everywhere. Drosera spatulata has no trouble dealing with repotting and root disturbance, so divisions can be taken easily.
References: Slack, Adrian. Carnivorous Plants. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 2000.
Additional Questions or Suggestions?
Contact me at: sundewman(at)yahoo.com