Pings & Pygmies! Who’s the cutest of them all?

As the ‘Merican carnivores (Sarracenia and Dionaea, namely) prepare for another dormancy season, some other plants are looking their best!

Mexican butterwort (pinguicula). A beautiful, delicate carnivorous plant that becomes a succulent in the winter! Click for more info!
Pinguicula ‘Pirouette’

I’ve never seen my pings (pinguicula) grow so fast and make such nice color before! It took me a long time to find a spot they were really happy with. My current space is great for full sun or full shade, but not much room in between. But I seemed to have found a sweet spot for pings! Here they get some direct light in the morning and shade for the rest of the day.

Mexican butterwort (pinguicula). A beautiful, delicate carnivorous plant that becomes a succulent in the winter! Click for more info!
P. laueana. I can’t wait until this one flowers!

 

Mexican butterwort (pinguicula). A beautiful, delicate carnivorous plant that becomes a succulent in the winter! Click for more info!
P. esseriana lookin’ super cute!

 

Mexican butterwort (pinguicula). A beautiful, delicate carnivorous plant that becomes a succulent in the winter! Click for more info!
P. agnata x moranensis staying pretty green, but still looking good!

 

Mexican butterwort (pinguicula). A beautiful, delicate carnivorous plant that becomes a succulent in the winter! Click for more info!
My other P. ‘Pirouette’.

 

Mexican butterwort (pinguicula). A beautiful, delicate carnivorous plant that becomes a succulent in the winter! Click for more info!
P. ‘Weser’. The biggest and most impressive in the collection.

The only pinguicula not looking great is my P. gigantea.

Mexican butterwort (pinguicula). A beautiful, delicate carnivorous plant that becomes a succulent in the winter! Click for more info!

I suspect browning heart disease (click at the bottom of the page), as the plant appeared to rot from the center outward. However, two plantlets are growing from this one leaf, so I’m cautiously optimistic for the future! Maybe these babies will live up to their name one day!

And now onto the pygmy Drosera!

Pygmy sundews are tiny carnivorous plants! Adorable, yet deadly! Click to learn more!

Winter is the growing season for pygmy sundews. Why is this? The only explanation I’m able to come up with is they’re Australian and everything is backwards down under. 😉

They do still love lots of light, so mine have been pretty happy over the summer. As long as you keep them wet during the summer months, they won’t go dormant and don’t need to!

Soon they’ll begin producing gemmae, their tiny modified leaves that can be removed and sown like seeds. Gemmae will produce clones of the parent plant. I have a feeling my winter will be busy with lots of pygmy propagation!

Pygmy sundews are tiny carnivorous plants! Adorable, yet deadly! Click to learn more!

 

My first pygmy sundew was Drosera omissa x pulchella, which I sowed from gemmae in a trade. And it’s really the perfect first pygmy. They get BIG for pygmy sundews and are extremely vigorous growers.

Look at how tiny and sparse these little guys used to be!

Drosera omissa x pulchella. Pygmy sundews are easiest to propagate through gemmae, which act like seeds but are reproductive bodies that create clones of the plant.
Drosera omissa x pulchella gemmae. My first pygmy drosera!

Pygmy sundew Drosera omissa x pulchella. Tiny, adorable, and easy to grow!

Pygmy sundew Drosera omissa x pulchella. Tiny, adorable, and easy to grow!

 

And look at them now! Same pot, nine months later.

Pygmy sundews are tiny carnivorous plants! Adorable, yet deadly! Click to learn more!

 

Pygmy sundews are tiny carnivorous plants! Adorable, yet deadly! Click to learn more!

Pygmy sundews are tiny carnivorous plants! Adorable, yet deadly! Click to learn more!

 

Drosera scorpioides is getting big and tall, too. Also sown from gemmae acquired from one of my main sundew dealers, Devon of Sundews Etc.

Pygmy sundews are tiny carnivorous plants! Adorable, yet deadly! Click to learn more!

These guys are also one of the bigger of the pygmies and grow a crazy stem! The tallest of these is about 2 inches high.

Pygmy sundews are tiny carnivorous plants! Adorable, yet deadly! Click to learn more!

 

So who wins the battle of cuteness, pings or pygmies? I just can’t decide, but I suppose that’s why I have both! Do you have a preference of pinguicula or pygmy Drosera? Let me know in a comment!

And thanks for reading! Catch ya next time!

21 comments

  1. Devon says:

    Hey, those are some good-looking plants. I’ve got a decent-sized spare P. gigantea plantlet if your little babies don’t make it. Also that pot of D. omissa × pulchella is hilarious. Every single pot of that hybrid ends up looking like that.

  2. Paige says:

    Omg! They are all sooo cute, I can’t decide. I think the succulent-lover in me has a little more affection for Pings simply for their shape, gosh they are so adorable. And those colors! Ahhhhh!!

    • Maria says:

      Hehe, thanks for your vote Alexis! Pygmies are interesting because they are small areas with microclimates. Some can totally fail while others flourish.

  3. Hayden says:

    I’m looking for a good beginner Mexican butterwort and was wondering: which is easier, p. ‘Pirouette’ or cyclosecta?

    • Maria says:

      They have pretty much the same conditions as far as I’m aware. I only have experience with P. Pirouette, which has done beautifully with all my other Mexican pings!

  4. Cora says:

    I vote for the pygmies! I feel like I have too since I have a pygmy occidentalis, sooo small but they are so fun! Mine are finally coming back after they were taken over by moss, they are so small the moss gets taller than them! I had to use tweezers to remove all of it! I love the butterworts too, I’m thinking they might be my next buy.

    • Maria says:

      Ahh, I don’t have occidentalis but I definitely have expanded my pygmy collection. I need to update my growlist soon!

  5. Leo C Song Jr says:

    I had a lot of Pigs when I was Greenhouse Manager at Cal State U, Fullerton and produced many hybrids which are still around today. Not all have been registered and some may have been lost to cultivation after I retired in 2004. P. ‘Pirouette’ was distributed and one ended up at UCD, who liked it and asked my permission to name it, which I was honored to grant. It has proven to be a very popular cross and vigorous plant. I enter the cross minimizing brackets and parenthesis as one mistake, things can get complicated to unravel. The original cross was labeled (with P. understood) agnata X2 14 Oct 1986-LCS moranensis X ehlersiae. the agnata is a form that has fragrant flowers and is the only agnata used in my crosses due to the fragrant flower.
    The agnata X moranensis is another one, Don’t have the date on hand now. It has not been named. One of my largest crosses is P. X ‘Titan’ named for the nickname of our school- CSUF Titans. At one time, it was being propagated and released thru Booman Floral in Vista, but they have lost to cultivation due to crop failure.

    • Maria says:

      Thank you for commenting, Leo! I’ve heard and read your name in many places. Thank you for creating such lovely hybrids and I’m honored to own a few of them. 🙂

  6. Kim says:

    Your enthusiasm is contagious, and I love it. Eagerly anticipating my own U. sandersonii from Predatory Plants (thanks for the tip there) and as soon as it is gemmae season again I will be getting in on pygmy Drosera. Can you recommend types for beginners, or maybe just the really tricky ones a beginner should consider avoiding?

    • Maria says:

      Hi Kim! Congrats on your new U. sandersonii!

      Most pygmies have pretty similar needs, so it’s not a big deal which ones you start with. The two I started with were D. omissa x pulchella, and D. scorpioides. They’re big for pygmies, and very hardy!

    • Maria says:

      Thank you, Kaila! I’ve gotten most of my pings from private sellers in Facebook carnivorous plant groups. A couple from California Carnivores, and some others from Ebay.

    • Maria says:

      This is an older post, but more recently I’ve been using all-mineral mix of sand, perlite, lava rock, and vermiculite

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