LOOKING AHEAD by Michael Reif

Looking Ahead

I'm pretty jazzed about writing a regular column here on the Carnivore Culture web site. I've been interested in carnivorous plants since grade school when my parents bought me a couple of Venus Flytraps (which promptly died, of course). Like many of you, I learned the hard way how to keep these plants alive. I'll be helping to write tips and techniques for growing these amazing plants soon, but right now I want to tell you what this new CP company has in store for all of you!

I purchased a lot of plants over the years from various dealers, off FaceBook and through eBay. Most of the time I ended up pretty disappointed. That's what really has me excited about this new company: They refuse to sell plants just to make some money. The standards are high and I feel comfortable saying you'll never get a plant that isn't healthy, has a decent root system and in general will actually grow for you without a lot of fussing. I'm pretty lucky to be able to see what the company has in store. There are so many plants being propagated that room is getting to be an issue, which is why they are expanding their operation already, even though it's a very young company. Matt Byers, the owner, is committed to having lots of new plants available soon and even more as the months roll by.

The operation here is pretty sophisticated. The tissue culture lab is like something you might expect to see at NASA! I'm not exaggerating! Hopefully, when time permits, they will post photos of all the plants currently in tissue culture, like Drosera regia (yeah, I can't wait to get one or two of those!). I suggest you visit the site at least once a week to see what's new, because you can never know in advance what will be offered and when. I'm lucky to be close by, but if you're on the east coast and miss some of the new plants that are just about to be posted on the web site, you could really get bummed out for sure! For example, the entire stock of Drosera x Hercules (a really stunning D. capensis hybrid) was sold out in less than two days! So you'll absolutely want to check back often!

The future is pretty exciting at Carnivore Culture. Since I will be writing a regular column here, I get to see what is being worked on right now, and let me tell you, it's going to be amazing! Like any new company, there will be growing pains. That's to be expected. As the saying goes, "Rome wasn't built in a day." Honestly, there are so many great offerings coming that I really wish I could tell you about, but propagating any plant is always a gamble. A virus or other pathogen can wipe out months of work practically overnight, so it's best that you just keep checking back -- even if it's just to read my columns.

There are great things coming, so be patient and check the site often. And I'll see you back here soon. Deal?

Good growing,